Performance and Benchmarks
The newer 1005PE with its Intel Atom N450 processor didn’t show a huge increase in performance compared to the 1005HA with the N280. Both processors offer the same specifications including a 1.66GHz clock speed, 667MHz FSB, and 512KB L2 cache. The main difference is the N450 makes use of the newer Intel GMA 3150 graphics whereas the N280 gets stuck with the GMA 950. In our performance tests PCMark05 dropped significantly compared to the 1005HA running Windows XP. wPrime actually scored the same on both systems, which wasn’t a surprise given both processors operate at the same speed. The newer GMA 3150 integrated graphics gave the system a small boost in 3Dmark06 and seemed to handle HD video better. In our HD video tests the 1005PE had no problem playing our 720P trailer of Up!, but 1080P pushed it over the edge. Flash video was out of the question even with the newest Flash 10 beta installed. 720P YouTube clips wouldn’t play without severe stuttering in both Internet Explorer and Firefox. In terms of real-world system performance most of the enhancements of the 1005PE came from the system running Windows 7 instead of Windows XP.
wPrime processor comparison results (lower scores mean better performance):
PCMark05 measures overall system performance (higher scores mean better performance):
3DMark06 comparison results against netbooks @ 1024 x 768 resolution (higher scores mean better performance):
Heat and Noise
Thermal performance of the Eee PC 1005PE was excellent with its very low power consumption. Even under continuous stress we still couldn’t get the 1005PE to form any significant warm spots. For heat-sensitive users this netbook would be an excellent choice. Fan noise was minimal at worst, needing your ear right next to the exhaust vent to hear it during normal conditions. With the system stressed the fan speed increased but it was still difficult to hear over room noise.
Compared to the 1005HA, the 1005PE’s biggest strength is the newer chipset which is much more efficient. ASUS claims that this netbook should get an estimated 14 hours of runtime while operating from the battery, up from 10.5 hours with the older platform. Considering we didn’t see much improvement with the overall performance of the 1005PE, we hoped at least one area would see jump in results. In our battery test with the screen brightness set to 70%, wireless active, and Windows 7 set to the Balanced profile the system continued to run for 12 hours and 1 minute. This is a 25% boost compared to the 1005HA with the Intel Atom N280 processor and older GMA950 graphics that managed 9 hours and 37 minutes. Movie playback was no problem for the 1005PE, getting an estimated 8.5 hours decoding SD-video and 6.5 hours decoding HD-video. In short you can get more video playback time from the Eee PC 1005PE sitting on your lap than you can from the Ipod Touch… with a larger screen to boot.
The Intel Pine Trail platform doesn’t bring a huge performance boost compared to the older N270 and N280-based netbooks, but it does give a huge bump in energy management. Compared to the Eee PC 1005HA which got 9 hours and 37 minutes in our original battery test, the 1005PE managed over 12 hours … a 25 percent increase. Most of this comes from the newer system-on-a-chip design, which puts important system components like the processor, memory controller, and graphics controller on a single chip instead of spread out over the motherboard. At current market prices the 1005PE lists for $379.99 compared to about $340 for the Windows 7 version of the 1005HA. If battery life is the most important feature you look at when buying a notebook, 40 bucks gets you over two hours of additional mobility.
- 12 hours of battery life
- Good overall build quality
- Excellent thermal management
- Annoying keyboard movement