The Bottom Line
- Well Priced
- Improved Keyboard Design
- Very Compact Power Adapter
- Short Battery Life From 3-cell Battery
- Awkward Touchpad With Buttons Integrated Into Pad
- Glossy Screen Causes Too Much Reflection and Glare
- Intel Atom N270 Mobile Processor
- 1GB PC2-5400 DDR2 Memory
- 120GB 5400rpm SATA Hard Drive
- 10.1-inch WSVGA (1024x576) Display With 1.3 Megapixel Webcam
- Intel GMA 950 Graphics
- Fast Ethernet, 802.11b/g Wireless
- Three USB 2.0, VGA, 3-in-1 Card Reader
- 10.3" x 7.2" x 1.1" @ 2.5 lbs.
- Windows XP Home
Guide Review - Dell Mini 10v 10.1-inch Netbook Laptop PC
Aug 20 2009 - Dell's Mini 10v is a less expensive version of the Mini 10 . While the system has the same look as the Mini 10, the Mini 10v uses a plastic shell exterior instead the magnesium alloy. The other big change to the exterior is the removal of the HDMI video connector to a more common VGA. The most notable sacrifice in the Mini 10v is the reduction of the hard drive from the more typical 160GB down to a 120GB. It is possible to get the 10v equipped with a 160GB drive but it bumps the $299 price tag up to $349.
One nice change to the Mini 10v over the previous Mini 9 and Mini 12 designs is the keyboard. Dell has expanded the keyboard to use the full width of the netbook chassis that gives the keys a 92-percent size. They also have included the function key row unlike the Mini 9. This gives the keyboard a better overall feel but the lack of key spacing can make it more difficult to use than those that isolate the keys. They also changed the trackpad design to integrate the buttons onto either side of the pad. This is very awkward to use as it can often cause the cursor to move if you don't press just right on the pad.
The 10.1-inch screen of the Mini 10v is nice and bright. The real issue is the glossy coating that Dell uses. In low light conditions it is just fine. Take it outside or use it with a bright light behind the user and the glare on the screen can make it nearly impossible to use.
In keeping the costs down, Dell only ships the Mini 10v with a 3-cell battery pack. During testing with video playback, the system was just short of reaching two and a half hours of use. This is fairly short and will leave users needed to recharge frequently. Thankfully, Dell's power adapter is one of the smaller and lightest on the market making it much more convenient to carry with the netbook.