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Dell Inspiron M101z review

Verdict

A pint-sized beauty that combines great build, good looks and a keen price

Review Date: 19 Aug 2010

Reviewed By: Sasha Muller

Price when reviewed: £426 (£500 inc VAT)

Overall Rating
5 stars out of 6

Features & Design
6 stars out of 6

Value for Money
5 stars out of 6

Performance
3 stars out of 6

PCPRO Recommended

Dell's Adamo ultraportables are right up there with the Apples of this world for aesthetics, but one thing they're not is cheap: precious few will ever be able to afford the stratospherically expensive Adamo XPS. Don't despair, though, as Dell's keen to spread some of that ultraportable class down the price scale. Meet the latest addition to its Inspiron range, the M101z.

First impressions are excellent. Many 11.6in portables look or feel cheap and unsubstantial, but not the M101z. Our review model came with the striking Tomato Red lid, and it looks fantastic. That crimson paintjob does a great job of livening up proceedings - although you can opt for Lotus blue or Peacock pink if red's not to your tastes - but you can save £19 by opting for a plain gloss black. Regardless of which colour you choose, the interior oozes understated class. Chrome-effect plastic stretches around the Scrabble-tile keyboard, and gloss black surrounds the display and pools between the dainty, rounded keys.

Dell Inspiron M101z

The looks are backed up by strong build quality, too. Yanking the chassis with all our might revealed barely any flex, while even the lid - a common weak point of dainty ultraportables - proved reassuringly solid. For a laptop weighing just 1.56kg, Dell has done a great job.

For once, it's not a low-power Intel chip at the heart of things; instead, AMD's Vision platform steps up to the occasion. The top-end model on test has a dual-core 1.3GHz Athlon II Neo K325 processor, but those on a tighter budget can opt for one of the cheaper single-core Athlon Neo configurations.

The K325 helped the M101z along to a fine 0.67 in our benchmarks - just a few per cent slower than laptops we've seen with Intel's latest low-power chips - while the ATI graphics powered ahead. The Radeon HD 4225 eased through 1080p HD videos and even managed an average of 13fps in Crysis at 1,366 x 768 and Low detail settings.

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User comments

Good performance laptop.

Hi my name is JD, I work for Dell. Nice post written as it is very informative. I think Dell has come up with more new range of laptops good for home and home office use. You can check at Dell online store at http://www.dell.com/uk/p/laptops. looking forward for more new posts from you. Thanks for sharing.

By jd251986 on 5 Mar 2012

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