Like the 10in 1,024 x 600 screens found on most netbooks, the LED-backlit one on the HANNSnote is fairly average. It’s essentially unchanged from the Wind’s, so we get bright colours, relatively good contrast and sharp text, with very decent viewing angles. What lifts it above the majority of current netbooks is its matte finish, which might not look quite as good in an ideal environment but makes working under everyday circumstances (you know, with external light sources) far more pleasant.
The speakers, meanwhile, are hideously underpowered, so you’ll be hard-pressed to hear the quieter moments in films or music. Nor does Hannspree’s netbook offer any form of Dolby processing like many of its rivals do, but it’s still perfectly adequate when listening through external speakers or headphones.
Getting onto that all-important battery life, this is one area where Hannspree has thankfully decided to make a major upgrade, providing a 4,400mAh, 49Wh battery as standard. Compared to the pitiful 2,200mAh efforts that come as standard on the other Wind clones, this is fairly encouraging, especially since weight has been kept down to a reasonable 1.3kg.
In practice, the results are pretty good. Though nowhere near the longevity of the better Asus or Samsung netbooks, we managed to get a respectable four hours and 20 minutes running video with the screen at 50 per cent brightness and wireless turned off. Since the screen is perfectly usable at 25 per cent or less, you should be able to get around five hours or more of light use from the HANNSnote.
Before we get onto considerations of price, it’s also worth mentioning the elastic leatherette black slipcase. It looks reasonably attractive despite the neon-green Hannspree logo, and though it’s a bit of a tight fit thanks to the netbook’s protruding battery, it’s a sight better than nothing.
Finally then it’s time to talk about price. The HANNSnote is currently available for around £260, but a £20 cashback offer that lasts until the end of next month brings that down to £240. For this kind of money Hannspree’s take on the Wind seems like a bit of a bargain. Even without the cashback it’s still good value, though then it’s seriously worth considering a bit more for something like Asus’ Eee PC 1000HE, offering a better touchpad and keyboard, and far superior battery life for around £290.
If your budget won’t stretch that far, the only serious competitor at the £260 mark is the original Eee PC 1000H XP, which offers a better touchpad, Dolby sound processing and longer battery life but worse keyboard, outdated looks and a heavier weight. While the cashback offer lasts, little can touch the HANNSnote for value
If you can get past its faults, Hannspree’s HANNSnote is excellent value for a netbook with a six-cell battery. However, depending on your needs it’s definitely worth checking out the competition before buying.
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