The front of the chassis is well featured. Here you’ll find headphone and mic sockets along with an analogue volume wheel. There’s also a FireWire port, an infrared port and a memory card reader that accepts SD/MMC, SmartMedia and Memory Stick.
The left side of the case is taken up by the massive battery pack and a large exhaust vent area.
The right hand side features the aforementioned optical drive along with a 10/100 Ethernet port, a modem socket, a Type II PC Card slot, and two USB 2.0 ports.
At the rear is a parallel port, a D-SUB connector, an S-Video socket and two more USB 2.0 ports.
Above the keyboard is a long silver ridge with a large power button at the right end. On either side of this ridge are speakers covered in metal mesh. Considering the size of the speaker covers I expected big things from the built-in sound, but my expectations were unfounded. It would appear that only the speaker covers are large and that the actual speakers are tiny, since the sound quality is tinny and poor when playing back music.
The Voyager 64 comes loaded with Windows XP Home. You also get a copy of Microsoft Works 7.0 for office productivity, Pinnacle Studio 8SE for video editing, B’s Recorder Gold for optical disc burning, and WinDVD 4 for watching movies.
Performance wise the Voyager 64 is fast, but not as fast as I was expecting it to be. The SYSmark 2002 score of 214 makes it the second fastest notebook we’ve seen at TrustedReviews, but to be honest I didn’t expect it to be lagging 23 points behind the Fujitsu-Seimens Amilo D8830. That’s not to say that the Voyager 64 isn’t a fast notebook, it most definitely is, I just expected it to be a faster notebook.
However, what really surprised me was the battery life. Usually with a big desktop replacement machine, the battery life will be pretty poor. But running Mobile Mark resulted in a battery life just four minutes short of three hours.
The Voyager 64 also turned in a 3DMark 2001 SE score of 10,044 which again is pretty impressive for a mobile platform. Of course this is due to the ATi Mobility Radeon 9600 chipset and it means that you can use the Voyager 64 for a little entertainment as well as work.
If you’re thinking of using the Voyager 64 as a ‘carry everywhere’ type of notebook, don’t. With a weight of 3.6kg, you wouldn’t want to be lugging it around with you unless you had to and the dimensions of 332 x 285 x 41mm (WxDxH) don’t make it easy to slip unobtrusively into a bag either. That said, as a desktop replacement solution, the Voyager 64 excels. And if you do want to use it on the move, the battery life is more than acceptable for a notebook this large and powerful.
The only thing really missing from the Voyager 64 is wireless connectivity, but then I expect a machine like this to be carried from home to office and back again, and the chances are it will be plugged into a wired network in both places.
The final factor to consider is price, and like any new technology, Athlon 64 chips don’t come cheap, so I was expecting something a little scary as far as the price goes. I was however, surprised once more when Evesham informed me that the price for the Voyager 64 was only £1399 including VAT. Considering that you’ve got cutting edge technology surrounded by a feature rich package, with a price like that the Voyager 64 is a bit of a bargain.
The first AMD Athlon 64 notebook to arrive at TrustedReviews is something of a hit. The performance wasn’t quite as breathtaking as I’d hoped but the overall package offers great features and good value for money.
If you’re interested in purchasing the Evesham Voyager 64 click here
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