Summary

Our Score

8/10

Review Price free/subscription

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While the Butterfly Touch's dual-core Celeron does mean it falls significantly behind the faster Core 2 Duo CULV laptops on the market, it actually holds up quite well against other budget ultra-portables – especially considering its sub-£500 price.

More importantly, despite its inability to handle intensive material like Full HD video decoding on the CPU alone, this is alleviated by Windows 7's ability to accelerate it using the integrated graphics, and for daily use and it is far superior to the Atom processors found in most netbooks. All in all, it's an intelligent compromise on PB's part.

Despite its ability to decode HD video, where gaming is concerned Intel's integrated graphics are utterly incapable. As such the Butterfly Touch didn't manage anything even resembling a playable frame rate in the relatively undemanding TrackMania Nations test.

This much is no surprise, but it allows PB to claim eight hours of battery life. Thanks to the Butterfly Touch's 5,600mAh/63Watt-Hour battery, it's a claim that's not far from the mark. In our semi-intensive Productivity test the Butterfly Touch managed a very respectable seven and a half hours, which pretty much qualifies as all-day use in our book.

Though this is a bit behind the Award-winning Sony VAIO Y Series and Acer Aspire Timeline 1810TZ, it's worth keeping in mind that the former costs nearly £200 more and the latter doesn't offer as much functionality or flexibility.

This brings us neatly to value, where the Butterfly Touch really shines thanks to its £499 asking price. Granted, you can get a similarly sized laptop with a slightly more powerful CULV processor for the same money, but the Celeron employed here is sufficient for most tasks. Add in the swivel screen and touch functionality and you have yourself a bit of a bargain - one that's sweetened with the addition of Adobe Elements 8 (worth around £60 retail) being pre-installed.

Verdict

A few minor niggles do little to distract from this stylish yet affordable convertible tablet laptop. Packard Bell's Butterfly Touch offers decent build quality, excellent battery life, flexible functionality and some great software without charging a significant premium. Even if its tablet capabilities aren't your main point of interest, it's still well worth checking out.

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