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Samsung N110 - 10.2in Netbook review

Andy Vandervell




  • Recommended by TR

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Samsung N110 - 10.2in Netbook
  • Samsung N110 - 10.2in Netbook
  • Samsung N110 - 10.2in Netbook
  • Samsung N110 - 10.2in Netbook
  • Samsung N110 - 10.2in Netbook
  • Samsung N110 - 10.2in Netbook
  • Samsung N110 - 10.2in Netbook
  • Samsung N110 - 10.2in Netbook
  • N110-KA01 10.1" Netbook - Atom N270 1.60 GHz (1024 x 600 WSVGA Display - 1 GB RAM - 160 GB HDD - Intel 945GSE - Bluetooth - Webcam - Windows XP Home - 9.50 Hour Battery)


Our Score:


Up-sell: it's a phrase that's heard quite often in the TrustedReviews office, though it's never uttered by any of the wordsmiths that write these articles. However, our Publishing Manager -an affable Australian with a special love for Excel spreadsheets - can often be heard using the term, often prefaced with other jargon such as 'top line', 'up-weight' and 'run rate' - he speaks the English language, just not as we know it.

It's the phrase 'up-sell' that's relevant here, though, because PC manufacturers are desperately trying to do just that with their netbooks - just look at the Asus Eee PC 1008HA we reviewed yesterday for evidence of that. And, with Computex quickly approaching and promising a slew of nVidia Ion based netbooks, it's a trend that's likely to continue, but in the meantime we're looking at the more humble Samsung N110. It's the long-term successor to the outstanding Samsung NC10, which won our coveted Editor's Choice Award as well as Best Netbook in our 2008 annual awards. Suffice to say, then, that the N110 has a lot to live up to.

In all honesty, though, there's no need to get too excited, since the N110 is really a relatively light refresh of the NC10. Indeed, in terms of hardware, it's the exact same machine. There's an Intel Atom N270, 1.6GHz processor, 1GB RAM and a 160GB hard drive for the basic components, while Wireless-G Wi-Fi, 10/100 Ethernet and Bluetooth round things out. Windows XP is a given and it is worth noting that the N110 continues with the Intel 945GSE chipset, so doesn't feature any video processing extras.

So, what does it feature? Well, though the basic chassis is largely the same, Samsung has opted for a few well considered design changes. Gone, for example, is the faux-chrome trim, replaced with a thin strip of deep red that's somewhat reminiscent of the company's Touch of Colour designs. It's a nice addition, too. It makes the N110 look slightly classier than the NC10, which didn't lack for class, while the edges have a greater curve and sculpted feel to them than the NC10.

This hint of red is mirrored in the lid, where the glossy black finish is infused with a red glittery hue when light strikes it at the right angle. Samsung has also seen fit to improve one of the few negative points of the NC10, the touchpad, making it ever so slightly larger. Like everything else it's a very small change, but it's definitely a positive one.

Perhaps less positive is the new glossy finish to the screen. This is bound to polarise opinion, some people cannot stand them and some are more ambivalent (while some of us actualy like them - ed.), but given the choice we'd sooner have seen the anti-glare finish of the NC10 retained. Despite this change, though, it should be stressed that the screen is a very good one. It's bright, has decent viewing angles and produces sharp and readable text.


May 8, 2009, 5:34 am

Its always nice to see a product get updated but does this really add anything to the NC10?

The red stripe instead of the "chrome" is pretty but thats about it!

Is the touchpad button still a rocker style like the NC10? That is the only downside to the original! My NC10 gets more use than my desktop machine or my xps1730 - well when I can pry it from my good ladies hands!


May 8, 2009, 7:38 am

Somehow it looks more 'handsome' than NC10 at first glance :-)

Kinda sad that it's rare to find Samsung netbooks in Malaysia though..


May 8, 2009, 2:47 pm

I'm the only one who prefers the chrome, then?


May 8, 2009, 3:12 pm

When oh when will you be reviewing the NC20??? This was the form factor that for me would be ideal, and I've been waiting with anticipation to see your opinion!

Or has that boat sailed?


May 8, 2009, 7:29 pm

I hope to see a TR review of the Dell Mini 10 sometime soon, but it can't be easy with the constant roll-out of tempting upgrades that Dell keep on unveiling. It looks like an exciting system for sure.


May 8, 2009, 9:33 pm

Apart from an opportunity to increase prices, what is the point of this new machine? And what is the point of reviewing it? I bought a couple of NC10's for my kids, and they are great. If I bought one now, it would be the NC20 - a 12" screen is better than 10" and the trackpad is also bigger. Processing power, memory and Win-XP are perfectly adequate, while battery power and portability are everything on both.

The N120 (not N110) is at Amazon.uk at £359, almost as much as the NC20 at £374, while the original NC10 is only £302. The choice is still between the NC10 and the NC20, and the N110 (N120?) is irrelevant despite the red trim :-)

Oh, and I am an Australian too; "up-weight" isn't Australian and "run rate" is simply a cricketing term, perhaps less familiar in England :-)


May 8, 2009, 10:03 pm

Hmm. Apparently the N120 is the same 10" screen model but in a bigger NC20 chassis to accommodate a slightly bigger keyboard. But why not pay an extra £15 for the NC20 and get the bigger screen as well? Samsung marketing are crazy, even if the basic product is good.

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