Reviews: HP Mini 2140  

Posted by Mohammad Talha in , , , , ,

The HP 2133 Mini-Note was (and still is) ahead of its time design-wise, with an aluminum finish that made the original ASUS EeePC 4G look like a toy by comparison. As one of the first netbooks that helped spur the ongoing revolution, it was enticingly presented and crafted to look like its EliteBook business siblings. But it wasn't without flaws. Specifically, the VIA processing innards were slow and required excessive cooling, resulting in significant fan noise and heat coming from the base. The newly minted HP Mini 2140 ($500 street) replaces the older parts with faster and more energy-efficient ones from the Intel Atom platform while keeping the impeccably fresh design intact. It's basically a business and education version of the HP Mini 1000.

From the outside, you can't tell the Mini 2140 from its predecessor. The aluminum alloy finish, a glaring departure from the white lacquered designs of the Acer Aspire One, the MSI Wind, and the Lenovo IdeaPad S10, is what made the Mini-Note exceptional in the first place. The 2140, starting at 2.6 pounds (with the three-cell battery), is slightly lighter than the 2133. It's as heavy as the Mini 1000 (2.5 pounds) and the MSI Wind (2.6 pounds), and a bit heavier than the Acer Aspire One (2.1 pounds), the lightest in the netbook category.

The 2140 could have been as light the Acer One had it not moved to a bigger screen. It now sports a 10-inch LED widescreen like those of the Wind, the Mini 1000, and the ASUS EeePC 1002HA, rather than an 8.9-inch one. The hinges are concealed when the lid is open, dropping down so that the bottom of the screen meets the system's base, which gives it a modern look. The optional 1,366-by-768-resolution screen is the first on a 10-inch laptop (HP is calling it its high-definition display). My test unit came with a 1,024-by-567 display, which is more consistent with the resolutions found on most netbooks, and it will save you a couple of bucks. The 92 percent keyboard is one of the biggest among netbooks I've seen, as big and as nice to type with as those on the Wind, the 1002HA, and the Mini 1000. The Samsung NC10-14GB, however, has a minuscule advantage with its 93 percent keyboard. As with its predecessor, an exceptional keyboard doesn't help the placement of its mouse buttons, as they flank the touchpad on each side. I found it easier to navigate with two hands.

The 2140 ranks high in features. Its two USB ports don't sound impressive, but it forgoes a third USB port for an ExpressCard 34 slot, which is a better choice. This slot can be used to expand the netbook's capabilities by adding, for instance, a FireWire ports, extra USB ports, a TV tuner, or mobile broadband. Oddly enough, this business netbook doesn't integrate mobile broadband or 3G wireless. Meanwhile, the Mini 1000—a consumer netbook, mind you—does. Otherwise, the 2140 has an impressive selection of storage options, including 160GB (5,400- and 7,200-rpm) spinning drives or an Intel 80GB solid-state drive (SSD). Capacity-wise, the Samsung NC10 has a slight edge with its 320GB, 5400-rpm drive. Like all netbooks, the 2140 comes with an SD slot for digital camera cards and a webcam for video chat… (full Story)

This entry was posted on Jan 27, 2009 at 12:13 AM and is filed under , , , , , . You can follow any responses to this entry through the comments feed .

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