Media and Entertainment â€“ Acer Aspire 5920
If you want a notebook that combines performance, media functionality and attractive design then you can't do much better than Acer's Aspire 5920. Featuring an Intel Core 2 Duo T7300, 2GB DRR2, nVidia GeForce 8600M-GT 256MB graphics, a 160GB hard drive, DVD Re-writer drive, Intel Turbo Memory, Draft N wireless, Gigabit Ethernet and Dolby Home Theatre certified audio, it's an all-rounder in the true sense of the word.
Retailing for a mere Â£800 inc. VAT you get a lot of notebook for your money, and it should do you well for many years.
Note: Some early batches have reportedly been shipped without Bluetooth, see this forum thread for more details.
Media, Entertainment & Gaming â€“ Evesham Zieo N550-HD
For a little more money it's worth considering Evesham's Zieo N550-HD. When we originally reviewed this it was known as the Zieo N500-HD, but it has since been changed to the N550-HD with the original moniker being used for a different configuration. It may not be the most beautiful notebooks, but it certainly is powerful and the Â£1,099 inc. VAT asking price is reasonable considering the well appointed spec.
Powered by a Core 2 Duo T7500 running at 2.2 GHz, the Zieo features 2GB DD2 667Mhz RAM, a 160GB hard-drive, Dual-Layer DVD-RW drive, a 17in 1,680 x 1,050 display and an nVidia 512MB 8600M-GT graphics. This provides all the media functionality of the Acer Aspire 5920, but adds a little more gaming grunt as a well as an internal Digital TV Tuner and a media remote â€“ just try to remember to buy a TV license.
Luxury â€“ Sony TZ
If money isn't a problem for you then you can't do much better than a Sony TZ series. Small, stylish and with a price to match its incredible looks, we can't think of a more desirable Windows based notebook. Actually, we can't think of a more desirable notebook at all.
Prices start at Â£1,399 inc. VAT, and make their way all the way up to Â£2,099 inc. VAT for the 32GB SSD edition â€“ which currently resides in our labs.