Quick Look at HP Mini 5102 Netbook — All About Touch

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The FedEx guy showed up today unexpectedly and brought a new little bundle of joy to Mobile Tech Manor. Last year I thoroughly enjoyed evaluating HP’s Mini 5101 netbook, and the Mini 5201 that arrived today looks just as nice. It is a netbook made of brushed metal, which is unusual for a netbook as most are plastic. The 10.1-inch screen has a surprise in this refreshed model — unlike the previous model this one is a touchscreen.

The HP Mini 5102 is that rare notebook that just feels right. I picked this thing up this morning and got right to work with it. It is the perfect size for a 10-inch netbook, and the island keys on the keyboard are as good as those on any notebook. I took it out of the box, installed the Google Chrome browser on it, and have been using it for work since.

I will be doing a detailed evaluation, along with a video review soon. Meanwhile here are the specs of this model as supplied by HP for evaluation:

  • CPU: Intel Atom N450, 1.66 GHz
  • Memory: 2 GB
  • Storage: 160 GB, 7,200 rpm
  • Display: 10.1-inch, 1024×600 (a 1366×768 hi-res option is available), single touch-enabled
  • Ports: 3xUSB 2.0, VGA out, audio in, audio out, power, RJ-45, SD/MMC slot
  • Communications: Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n, Bluetooth 2.1
  • Webcam: 2 megapixel
  • OS: Microsoft Windows XP Professional 
  • Battery: 6-cell, rated at 10 hours
  • Accessories: Carrying handle
  • Dimensions and weight: 10.3 x 7.09 x 0.98 inches, 2.86 lbs.

The 5102 is much the same as the earlier 5101 model, with the addition of the touchscreen option. This is not a convertible netbook, so without the ability to swivel the screen into a slate configuration the touchscreen may not provide a lot of value for some. I intend to spend a fair bit of time using the touchscreen and will have additional thoughts at that point.

HP has included a unique carrying handle which attaches to the side of the battery on the bottom of the unit. It folds up and forms a prop for the netbook which adds a nice typing angle. The handle swings open for carrying, and it is more useful than I thought it would be.

So far I am impressed with the performance of the 5102. The N450 processor coupled with the high-speed disk drive has things hopping nicely. I’ll be testing this more thoroughly as I spend more time using it. I can already tell that the N450 is going to get good battery life. I have been using this for over three hours and based on that limited usage I think I’ll get a good 8 hours of use per charge.

 

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