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Summary:

My return of the Acer Aspire One this past weekend was a little half-hearted. I was torn because I really liked the hardware overall. So last night I checked in with Douglas Krone of Dynamism to see if they had the MSI Wind in stock with […]

MsiwindMy return of the Acer Aspire One this past weekend was a little half-hearted. I was torn because I really liked the hardware overall. So last night I checked in with Douglas Krone of Dynamism to see if they had the MSI Wind in stock with the 6-cell battery. A check on the site indicated that these units usually ship in 3 to 4 days, but I wanted to confirm since that configuration is a hot little commodity right now.

Douglas was over in Tokyo, no doubt checking out other great gadgets to potentially import, but he told me that Dynamism has been shipping the black MSI Wind with 6-cell for over three weeks and that they would have the white and pink models this week. That’s good enough for me, so I just pulled the trigger on a white model; hopefully it arrives by end of week, but if not, I expect I’ll see it just after the weekend.

Although MSI was originally shooting for a $499 price tag on the 6-cell model, we’ve already seen the prices hiked up in the $549 to $599 range. In fact, my price was at the top of that range from Dynamism: $599. For a while I thought perhaps to wait and see if anyone else gets stock of this netbook configuration at a lower price, but with the demand for the unit, I don’t think that’s going to happen any time soon if at all.

Anyway, the 6-cell battery offers 5200 mAh which actually is a little more than double the 3-cell at 2200 mAh. I’m hoping to see at least five hours of real-world run-time from the unit, but we’ll see. It’s quite a bit more expensive than the Acer Aspire One, but does offer a few advantages for me: a slightly larger screen, integrated Bluetooth (handy for a mouse) and an easier way to get at the RAM slot for upgrades. I’ll curious to see if the build quality is drastically different.

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  1. ImaRealFancyBoy Tuesday, August 26, 2008

    it will be interesting to see your take on the build quality of the Wind compared to other netbooks. the HP, Acer, Lenovo have all seen good marks about their quality, while some folks say the Wind feels a bit cheap.

    how does the Wind look with the 6-cell? does it have 1 of those ugly bumps like the HP or a more flush brick-like EEE bump.

  2. Wow, 599 is a lot of money for a netbook!

    For me the MSI Wind is currently the best netbook on the market, I think the screen and keyboard are great and I like the added bluetooth.

    Unfortunately the screen hinges do not feel very solid which is strange as the overall build quality is great.

    I would like to get a Wind and install Vista on it, which is rumoured to be a bit faster than XP and gives about 20% extra battery time but I guess I will go for the 3 cell battery as I think 599 dollars for the 6 cell version is too much.

  3. Kevin C. Tofel Tuesday, August 26, 2008

    I’m very interested in the build quality and will report my thoughts on that.

    Johan: I agree with you, $599 is quite a bit for a netbook… about the most I’d be willing to pay, to be honest. I’m not sure why you think Vista will run faster on the Wind, nor why it would provide 20% extra battery life. In my experience with Vista on many mobile devices, it tends to run a little slower than XP and offers around 10% less battery life, all things being equal.

  4. Did you choose the WiND over the Eee PC 1000H just to get it in white?

  5. Kevin C. Tofel Tuesday, August 26, 2008

    Travis, I picked the Wind over the Eee because of the placement and size of the Right-Shift key. The Wind is also around a half-pound lighter with the 6-cell battery. Color had nothing to do with it… although I wouldn’t have bought the pink model. ;)

  6. Wind is 1/2 pound lighter? if the Wind is a 5200MAH what is the EEE?

  7. Kevin C. Tofel Tuesday, August 26, 2008

    With 6-cells, the Wind is about 2.6 pounds while the Eee PC 1000H is around 3.2 pounds. The battery in the Eee is 6600 mAh, 7.4V.

  8. bostonirishguy13 Tuesday, August 26, 2008

    I’ve had a 3-cell Wind for about six weeks now. I’m desperately holding out for a 6-cell battery from MSI or a third party.

  9. bostonirishguy13 Tuesday, August 26, 2008

    I’ve also been tempted to just grab a 6-cell Wind, and then try to sell the 3-cell. If only I’d been more patient. I really like the size of the Wind. I also have an Eee PC 901, Sony TZ150 and MacBook Air as “portables” right now. I went through the original Eee PC, HTC Shift, HP 2133, and N800 in the past year, too.

  10. Brian Goodwin Tuesday, August 26, 2008

    Would really like to see a good head-to-head comparison of a 6 cell Wind and 1000H.

    The 1000H is slightly heavier but if the battery lasts an extra hour then that’s a tradeoff some of us would seriously consider…if all other things are roughly equal (keyboard, screen, etc.).

  11. @Kevin:

    The guys at notebook review performed speed and battery performance comparison which showed Vista was faster than XP on the Wind:

    http://www.notebookreview.com/default.asp?newsID=4505

    You can also read quite a lot of positive things about Vista’s performance on the MSI Wind forums at http://forums.msiwind.net/

  12. Kevin C. Tofel Tuesday, August 26, 2008

    Brian, I’m sure you’ll see a head-to-head of the Eee PC 1000H and the Wind. Stay tuned… As far as battery life, LAPTOP Magazine got around 4.5 hours of use with the 1000H using WiFi. I’m not sure the Asus will get longer run time, even though it’s rated at 6600 mAh… the voltages might be different, but I’ll take a look.

  13. Kevin C. Tofel Tuesday, August 26, 2008

    Thanks for the link Johan. Bear in mind that Notebooks Review disabled many services in Vista to achieve the results. I prefer to compare items “out of the box” as that’s how most consumers their use devices.

  14. Kevin Tofel, you really should try the Aspire One models with the HDD vs SSD, big difference in performance, might make you reconsider getting a Wind, it doesn’t have things like Bluetooth, but you save a lot of money.

    The Aspire One $399 config with 160gb HDD and 6 cell battery is coming soon. $200 cheaper than the Wind and you can always add Bluetooth externally or internally.

  15. Kevin is kidding all of you. He bought it simply to put OS X on it for a while so he could torment me. Kendrick has told him he must bear down on the pedal to maintain his Frequent Fiend Points.

  16. Bob in Pittsburgh Wednesday, August 27, 2008

    Interestingly, newegg.com is showing that they have the MSI Wind in stock, at $499.99 plus shipping. It appears they have only the “Love Edition” (3-cell battery, white case with hearts etched on the outside). I’d rather get the 6-cell battery than the 3-cell, but I think the hearts on the case are the real deal-breaker for me. I’m waiting to pull the trigger on something, and am looking forward to the deluge in supply chain that everyone is predicting will come before the end of the year. Right now I’m thinking either MSI Wind or Lenovo (we’ll see if I can put up with the small right shift key).

  17. Bob in Pittsburgh Wednesday, August 27, 2008

    Later in the day, newegg.com is now stocking the regular black 3-cell MSI Wind (U100-016US)for $499.99, so I ordered one. Would have preferred the 6-cell, but hopefully I’ll be able to pick one up separately at some point.

    Woo-hoo! It should be in my hands on Tuesday.

  18. I received my Wind last week from Amazon for $549. It was not a disappointing device. It has few great advantages over Lenovo S series, Acer One and other:

    1- Yes it does run over 5 hours with the 6 cell battery even playing videos.

    2-It has awesome back-lit display like the ones in MacBook Pro which put extra sharpness and brightness to the screen ans saving battery power.

    3- Keyboards are well placed and build.

    Few issues:

    1- as it may have already been circulated on the Internet, the touchpad is below standard. It does not have snaptics’ page scroll function. Instead, a corner-click type of scrolling function which occasionally makes URLs on the path of scrolling active.

    2-It has built in 1 GB RAM, and an extra slot to insert another 1 GB. However, user will need to open the back case to insert the extra RAM. This becomes issue since MSI put a sticker on one of the screws to be unscrewed to take of the case. Damage of this clearly marked screw VOIDS the manufacturers warranty. So, if you want to keep you warranty, you may want to wait a year before expanding your RAM. Nonsense.

    Overall, this is a great travel laptop for now. If you like to wait,however, few other manufacturers are coming up with similar products. Besides, you will need to wait at least few weeks after ordering this from Amazon anyways.

  19. @kevin
    a newer revision will include sentelic toucpad instead of synaptics tough, i’m quite lucky to get the synaptics edition :)

    http://msiwind.net/msi-wind-touchpad-no-longer-synaptic/

  20. Kevin, why did you return the Acer Aspire One again? I’ve been looking at a netbook purely for travel email/internet. Best Buy was selling the blue Aspire One with 1gb ram/120gb HDD with XP for $350.

    I remember you saying it wasn’t powerful enough for everything you wanted to do, but do you think it would be good just for checking email and browsing the internet (via FF3)?

    TIA!

  21. Kevin C. Tofel Monday, September 1, 2008

    LP, I returned the AAO because I wanted the flexbility to effectively run Windows XP if I wanted to. The 8 GB SSD module was too slow for me when I installed XP. Had I intended to only run Linux on this device, I would have kept it as it was fantastic for that.

    I don’t recall saying it wasn’t powerful enough for everything I wanted to do, but having the flexibility to run my OS of choice (and change that OS based on my desires and needs) was important to me. I could have easily done what you outlined with the device: e-mail, FF3. However, the additional $20 for the version with a hard-drive, additional memory and XP license is well worth the incremental investment.

    When I returned the AAO, there were no XP/hard drive models in stock so I decided to try the MSI Wind. That device should be here in 48 hours and I’m looking forward to using it!

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