The Bottom Line
- Excellent Price
- Decent 3D Graphics
- Larger Dimensions and Heavier Weight
- Glossy Screen Can Be Difficult to Use In Certain Light
- Uses Slower DDR2 Memory
- Intel Core 2 Duo T5800 Dual Core Mobile Processor
- 4GB PC2-5300 DDR2 Memory
- 320GB 5400rpm SATA Hard Drive
- 8x DVD+/-RW Dual Layer Burner With LabelFlash
- 16" WXGA (1366x768) Display with 1.3 Megapixel Webcam
- ATI Mobility Radeon HD 3650 Graphics with 512MB Memory
- v.92 56Kbps Modem, Gigabit Ethernet, 802.11a/g/n Wireless
- Four USB 2.0, HDMI, ExpressCard/54, 5-in-1 Card Reader
- 15.3" x 10.4" x 1.7" @ 7.7 lbs.
- Vista Home Premium 64-bit, MS Works, Power2Go, Norton 360
Guide Review - Gateway MC7803u 16-inch Thin and Light Laptop
11/14/08 - The Gateway MC Series of laptops introduces the larger 16-inch display panel that features a true 16:9 aspect ratio similar to those of HDTVs. The 1366x768 resolution gives a bit wider view than the traditional 1280x800. It also uses a glossy, bezel free design that helps bring out the colors. The drawback to this is that the glossy coating is prone to reflections and glare especially in sunny outdoor use.
In terms of performance, the MC7803u performs quite well given the use of an Intel Core 2 Duo T5800 processor. The 4GB of memory helps it run the Vista operating system without any slowdowns from virtual memory. It would have been nice to see Gateway use a faster PC2-6400 DDR2 memory instead of the PC2-5300 that ships with it. Systems with DDR3 memory will also outperform it in memory tasks.
The 320GB hard drive provides it with plenty of space for applications and digital media. It is partitioned with two drives each with roughly 150GB of data which is a bit annoying since most applications default to saving on the applications drive instead of the data drive. The dual layer DVD burner includes support for burning labels directly to Labelflash compatible media. With the focus on media, it would be nice to see Gateway develop a version with Blu-ray.
The Radeon Mobility HD 3650 graphics may not be top of the line compared to many of the options available from NVIDIA, but it does handle many of today's games smoothly with the resolution of the display. It is refreshing to see smooth 3D graphics in a system of this price range.
Overall, the Gateway MC7803u is a surprisingly well featured machine for its under a grand price tag. It has a few flaws and the build quality could be improved somewhat, but many people will be able to overlook these.