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Great Laptop/Netbook Deal for a Traveler

Act fast if any of this pertains to you. November 12 is the last day!

How nice it was to be shopping for a new laptop when the old one isn't quite dead. What an energy hog the old laptop was, consuming 4 amps DC during normal operation. And I use it many hours per day! It's hard to find power consumption data on the internet or on the boxes at the stores since nobody really cares except a traveler who is running down his coach batteries. Fortunately I got some good numbers from tdhoch of RV Sabbatical, who has a Kill a Watt device for measuring power consumption in watts. (I use a resistor-based DC current sensor in the line between RV frame ground and the negative post of the battery.)

Going through a Target recently (blush) I noticed a superb deal on an 11.6 inch netbook by Acer, model Aspire One AO722-0473. You can't get it online at Target since they are using it as a loss-leader to drive the consuming masses wild and bring them into the store. It would have been an excellent deal at $300, the regular price, but it is only $200 until 12 November 2011. Unlike the shabby 15 day return policy offered by Walmart and others, Target offers a 45 day return policy. When it comes to electronics, the return policy is quite important.

I have transitioned over to it and love it. Obviously it is not meant for power users. I just need it for web browsing, typing this blog, light photo editing (Picasa), and word processing (Windows Notepad). I don't play computer games or stream videos, although it is supposed to be quite good at the latter. (By definition, a netbook lacks an optical drive.) The internet connection will usually be the weak link in the chain -- not the computer itself. Above all else, I want it to use little power.

And it does! It uses 1.1 amps DC (just under 13 watts) for standard web browsing. Just think how reducing your power consumption by this much reduces your needs for solar panels, generators, and batteries. As an added goodie, it was nice to finally get an electronic gadget that doesn't come with a 5 pound power brick.

It is small enough to easily carry to a wi-fi hotspot, but still has a full-size keyboard. I was led to worry for nothing about a lot of things by the tech reviews on netbooks. Those reviews were probably written by the digital equivalent of gearheads.


Ted said…
Congrats, Boonie! Looks like a super deal that's perfectly suitable to your needs.
Unknown said…
Perfect tool for a boon docker.

How are we going to get this economy going with deals like that. Too bad more people aren't happy with less -- rather than more.
Congrats, but it will be obsolete next week :)) Of course you don't care about that as long as it works. Smaller is better... no matter what some people say :))
I can't believe it -- congratulatory statements from 3 Apple fan-boys!