|Preliminary review - MSI a6200-248us laptop from Frys
||[Aug. 7th, 2010|01:03 pm]
Tier 12 Support
I picked this up last night. I almost didn't when the sales girl started going over how bad the unit was. Overheating, network issues, bad reviews, one lady brought one back and was yelling at her, etc. |
It must be a serious loss-leader as the sales girl didn't even bother to write up a sales slip to get credit for the sale. She walked two up - one for me and one for another shopper I was talking with. I _really_ know it was a product they get no credit for in and of itself, as two of her co-workers actually laughed at her as she carried our laptops past them. The clincher - my fellow shopper decided to get the $100 2- year Frys warranty while at the register. On hearing this, she walked him back into the store to put in her sales slip. (warranties are something sales droids get major kudos for selling) The pre-sales period wasn't a complete loss though, as she was quite entertaining eye candy. ;-)
The laptop itself.. It is reasonably light weight. I'm not entirely sure if it has an allow or high strength plastic internal frame, but the weight seems low enough that it will not matter much. The LED screen appears bigger than I expected, and its nice and clear and bright. The keyboard has a num pad on the right hand side, which shifts everything a little further left than I'm used to, but with a little acclimation is it easy to use. I expected to detest the single-bar left/right mouse clicker, but it is OK. How did MSI make a single bar clicker that so far, I like better than the gummy two button unit on my HP Elitebook from work? It also has a built in system recover option. Hit F3 during boot and it does 'something' to restore your system. I'll be playing with this later to see exactly what it does.
Now to the drawbacks.. The most serious so far is that the bundled System Control software makes it IMMENSELY frustrating to get the wireless turned on. Fn F10 'should' do it... but it does not. I'm not entirely sure how I accidentally got it activated, but it was some combination of Fn F10 and trying to launch the (interface-less) System Control software. At a certain point, I noticed the wireless was now active, so I stopped poking at it.
Another drawback is useable drive space. It is advertised as having a 320g drive. The bios bears this out, but when you open My Computer, you see a pair of 110-ish MB partitions. I know that some of it is set aside for the F3 System Recovery feature, but why split the remainng space this way? I suspect it is because the recovery will overwrite some or all of the contents of the C partition. They conveniently label the D partition as Data. I'm guessing it will not get wiped in a restore. I'll test this later and update.
I'll be back to update this as I find more.