One other key advantage that the Vostro has over your regular off the shelf laptop is the screen, which is vitally of the non-glossy variety. This makes it far less susceptible to reflections under the office staple fluorescent lighting, or any other high light situations. Rated at 220nits the 1,280 x 800 13.3in screen isn’t the brightest, but it’s not bad and is suitably sharp and easy to read. Audio isn’t so strong though, with a single puny speaker only sufficient for Windows notifications.
Performance, however, garners no complaints and it is here that the Vostro 1310 shows what a great value and performance proposition it really is. Starting with arguably the most important metric, battery life, it puts in a sterling performance. In the Productivity segment of MobileMark 2007 it managed a superb four hours and 31 minutes, a result matched only by the five hours and 22 minutes of the lower intensity Reader test. Two hours and 49 minutes in the DVD playback segment is no bad effort, either.
Application performance is also strong. Though no powerhouse the 2.1GHz T8100 Intel Core 2 Duo is more than sufficient for most people’s needs and it, combined with the 2GB complement of RAM, crunches through our benchmarks with sufficient speed. All new systems also come pre-installed with Vista SP1 and this helps make performance significantly peppier – if you haven’t already installed this on your own machine then you should!
This excellent performance combined with a competitive price cements the impression of a supremely well targeted machine. Its design and features don’t excite, but Dell has economised in most of the right areas. Utilitarian design makes it durable and cheap and the lack of stereo speakers or a modem helps further to trim the costs, without taking too much away. Indeed, the only real issue is the slightly spongy keyboard and though it does take some shine off the great overall performance, the battery life in particular is enough to make this machine worth recommending.
Superb battery life and good performance at an affordable price make the Vostro 1310 a superb option for the small business in need of portable work horse.
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