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Elonex Websurfer review

Has Elonex's Websurfer netbook cut more than just the price?

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Our Verdict

Even though it's very cheap, this netbook just doesn't cut it

For

  • Good portability

Against

  • Awkward to use
  • Poor screen
  • Slow performance

Elonex is making something of comeback to the netbook market with the introduction of two new machines. The Elonex Websurfer is the smaller and cheaper of the two machines and is aimed at those on a tight budget.

The 7-inch screen features a 640 x 480-pixel resolution and is encased in thick black plastic, which makes it look tiny and, consequently, text can be hard to read. It certainly isn't suited to watching films, although its matt finish means it doesn't suffer from reflections.

Portability is good and the machine weighs only 645g, so is easy to carry around. With a 201-minute battery life, you also won't need to carry the charger.

We've seen the chassis before, as Packard Bell used it to encase an EasyNote netbook. While it is utterly uninspiring, it is durable enough for life on the road. The keyboard mounted on the chassis
is tiny and also spongy, producing a cramped and stunted typing experience, meaning you really won't want to work on this netbook for long periods.

Similarly the touchpad is miniscule – barely 20 x 13mm in size – which makes navigating through the machine and any applications an awkward, frustrating experience and it's all too clear to see where costs have been cut.

Internally, a VIA processor and 1024MB of memory are used. Windows XP runs rather slowly and, while basic word processing is possible, we found programs were slow to launch and run. A 30GB hard drive provides room for your office work, but not much more.

Connectivity consists of 10/100 Ethernet and 802.11g Wi-Fi for browsing the internet. Two USB ports are included, as are a memory card reader and a DVI out for hooking up to an external monitor.

It's easy to dislike the Websurfer. It's old, clunky and outdated with performance to match. We therefore find it hard to recommend it to anyone.

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