Samsung N150 Heat, Noise and Battery Life

November 19, 2010 by Jerry Jackson Reads (35,640)
Editor's Rating

Ratings Breakdown (1-10)

    • Software & Support
    • 8
    • Upgrade Capabilities
    • 3
    • Usability
    • 7
    • Design
    • 5
    • Performance
    • 5
    • Features
    • 7
    • Price/Value Rating
    • 9
    • Total Score:
    • 6.29
    • Rating 1 to 10, top score 10

Heat and Noise
Exterior heat output from the Intel Atom N450 and GMA 3150 integrated graphics was quite minimal. Even when stressing the netbook by running multiple applications and using the Verizon WWAN card the N150 stayed cool on my lap. During normal use the system stayed right above room temperature and was very comfortable to use for extended periods of time. The temperatures shown below are listed in degrees Fahrenheit:

The cooling fan stayed on continuously, spinning at a lower speed when idle and picking up as heat output increased. Fan noise was tolerable, but you might notice it in a quiet office environment or classroom setting.

Battery Life
The stock six-cell battery on the N150 is pretty standard for any modern netbook  In our testing with the screen brightness reduced to 70%, Wi-Fi activate and refreshing a webpage every 60 seconds, and Windows 7 on a balanced profile the Samsung N150 stayed on for 6 hours and 28 minutes. This is what we expect to see from a modern netbook. That said, battery life will drop by several hours if you are using the Verizon wireless service to connect to the internet and you are actively loading new web pages on a regular basis.

Conclusion
Almost every technology journalist on the planet (including this one) is less than impressed with what can only be called sub-par netbooks. On the surface, the Samsung N150 is precisely that. The N150 delivers a low-resolution screen, weak speakers, a horribly small touchpad, and weak performance even by netbook standards.

However, there is a reason that the overwhelming majority of user reviews for the Samsung N150 from Verizon Wireless are positive: Convenience. For $30 (or less depending on the current Verizon deal) you can buy a netbook and stay connected to the internet anywhere that you have access to the Verizon wireless network. Combine that with long battery life and it’s easy to understand why many consumers are willing to live with a low-resolution screen and other minor netbook annoyances.

Bottom line, this is a netbook that lets you stay connected anywhere for a relatively low cost (assuming you don’t mind the monthly service fees). As long as you buy it with that understanding and don’t expect this PC to replace your family desktop then you might actually be happy.

Pros:

  • Good battery life
  • Low cost with Verizon 3G service

Cons:

  • Difficult to upgrade
  • Weak performance
  • Low-resolution screen


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