Compaq Mini with Verizon 4G LTE Battery Life, Heat and Noise and Conclusion

December 9, 2011 by Charles P. Jefferies Reads (40,631)
Editor's Rating

Ratings Breakdown (1-10)

    • Software & Support
    • 4
    • Upgrade Capabilities
    • 4
    • Usability
    • 4
    • Design
    • 5
    • Performance
    • 3
    • Features
    • 4
    • Price/Value Rating
    • 5
    • Total Score:
    • 4.14
    • Rating 1 to 10, top score 10

Heat and Noise
The netbook itself rarely gets more than lukewarm under any usage conditions. Its single fan however is always on and audible in a quiet room. It could and should be quieter; fortunately it doesn’t have a whine so it isn’t annoying.

Battery Life
I measured 6 hours, 50 minutes of battery life during our standard battery rundown test (Windows 7 Balanced power profile, 70% screen brightness, Verizon WWAN active and refreshing a web page every 60 seconds). This is the kind of time we expect from a netbook.

Battery life test results (higher scores mean better battery life):

Conclusion
The Compaq Mini is like other netbooks we’ve reviewed: a suitable travel companion but not serious enough to be used as a primary machine. The low resolution screen hampers usability and the overall performance is horrific; it struggles even with basic tasks such as Microsoft Office. There are some positive aspects: the anti-glare screen coating, great keyboard and touchpad, and nearly seven hours of battery. The real reason to get this netbook though is the built-in Verizon 4G LTE network, which is blazing fast. That’s one aspect of this machine I can’t fault.

It is ultimately hard to recommend this netbook given the limitations of the hardware – and that’s before we take the price into account. Verizon may have a fast network but it’s not the cheapest wireless provider; $80/month for 10GB of data and a required two-year contract to get the $149.99 intro price on this netbook, which translates into $2,070 plus taxes (which would be another few hundred) at the end of two years.

It takes a special set of conditions to make such an investment attractive and even then I can’t imagine too many people being satisfied with this netbook for any period of time.

Pros:

  • Fast Internet via Verizon 4G LTE
  • ~7 hours of battery life
  • Great keyboard and touchpad

Cons:

  • Awful performance
  • Screen resolution too low
  • Windows 7 Starter Edition
  • Expensive monthly fees


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