Netbook for traveling and sorting of photos.

Started Jan 10, 2013 | Questions
Birch_Tree Junior Member • Posts: 34
Netbook for traveling and sorting of photos.

I am planning to spend several months traveling later in the year, and looking for a small computer to take with me. Other then surfing the net, I mainly need the laptop for backing-up, sorting and viewing of photos. I doubt I would be processing raw files.... I use a olympus EM-5 so have decent size images to work with.

I was wondering wither anyone uses a netbook for such tasks? , are they speedy enough not to be irritating. I would love a ultra book but they are quite pricey.

ANSWER:
snesieboi Junior Member • Posts: 29
Re: Netbook for traveling and sorting of photos.

Netbooks usually have small and poor displays (resolution & color- accuracy) and limited internal memory.

BobSC Veteran Member • Posts: 3,714
Re: Netbook for traveling and sorting of photos.

I have a dell xt2, which is nice, but might be out of your budget. They're around $1000.

NewsyL
NewsyL Veteran Member • Posts: 5,736
Re: Netbook for traveling and sorting of photos.

ASUS UX32VD ultrabook about $1000 USD

Small & light - 13.3" 2.9 lbs

powerful with i7 CPU and Nvidia GPU and up to 10G RAM

Beautiful 1920x1080 IPS LCD screen with almost full sRGB color space cooverage

decent storage with 500GB HD + 24GB SSD hybrid drive and USB3.0 for speedy transfers to external backups.

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(unknown member) Contributing Member • Posts: 946
Re: Netbook for traveling and sorting of photos.

NewsyL wrote:

ASUS UX32VD ultrabook about $1000 USD

Small & light - 13.3" 2.9 lbs

powerful with i7 CPU and Nvidia GPU and up to 10G RAM

Beautiful 1920x1080 IPS LCD screen with almost full sRGB color space cooverage

decent storage with 500GB HD + 24GB SSD hybrid drive and USB3.0 for speedy transfers to external backups.

I just bought the Windows 8 version of this ultrabook (UX32VD-DH71). The screen quality is amaxing. However the default hard drive (5400rpm hdd) is too slow and I switched it for a 256GB SSD and within a few days I will also upgrade the ram from 6GB to 10GB. There is other versions of the laptop that come with SSD pre-installed but less ram (4GB) and are not upgradable. Aside from the bloatware that needs to be uninstalled, it seems to be a fast high quality option though I read many users complaining about some defects here and there. So I would recommend it if the buyer needs to spend some time with it making sure his unit is not defective before taking it to a long trip.

dradam Senior Member • Posts: 2,818
Re: Netbook for traveling and sorting of photos.

Birch_Tree wrote:

I am planning to spend several months traveling later in the year, and looking for a small computer to take with me. Other then surfing the net, I mainly need the laptop for backing-up, sorting and viewing of photos. I doubt I would be processing raw files.... I use a olympus EM-5 so have decent size images to work with.

I was wondering wither anyone uses a netbook for such tasks? , are they speedy enough not to be irritating. I would love a ultra book but they are quite pricey.

If you aren't doing any really critical image work then the netbook should be fine.  I have an older Toshiba netbook with a 1.6GHz processor that I upgraded to 2GB of ram.  It's no great shakes as computers go, but it has an SD card reader, a 250GB harddrive, and can go for over 10 hours on light usage so it's easy enough to download photos and toss the obvious duds.  If you're doing much more, though, you would be frustrated.  But, all told, it cost $250, so what can you really expect.

If you have the cash, the $1000 ultrabooks are clearly the better computer.

photosen Veteran Member • Posts: 5,960
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I use a 11" Core 2 duo 2GB Macbook air... So it would qualify as an "ultrabook". It fits in my Lowepro with all my camera gear (camera + 4 lenses). An older model can be had new for $700 USD (Core i5, 2GB RAM), so not that far away from netbook territory. Not a mac fan but it's very quick, light, battery lasts for 7 hours, and never fails...

I also have an Acer netbook with Linux but it's much more limited (battery lasts all of 1 hour... On a good day).

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Jim Cockfield Forum Pro • Posts: 16,338
I spent $153.22 for my newest netbook
1

Birch_Tree wrote:

I am planning to spend several months traveling later in the year, and looking for a small computer to take with me. Other then surfing the net, I mainly need the laptop for backing-up, sorting and viewing of photos. I doubt I would be processing raw files.... I use a olympus EM-5 so have decent size images to work with.

I was wondering wither anyone uses a netbook for such tasks? , are they speedy enough not to be irritating. I would love a ultra book but they are quite pricey.

What's your price range?

I've using a little Dell Inspiron 11Z right now when away from home, and it works fine for my use. It's using a Celeron 743 Mobile CPU with GMA 4500MHD graphics (not as fast as the newer chipsets, but fine for anything I'd do with it).

I got it for $153.22 delivered with an 11.6" 1366x768 LED backlit display, 2GB of memory, Win 7 Home Premium (not Starter like some cheaper netbooks come with), 160GB drive and more. Here's an old thread about it:

http://forums.dpreview.com/forums/thread/3069871

I've got it setup with 64 Bit Win 7 Home Premium and two different Linux distros (Mepis 11, Kubuntu 12.04 LTS right this minute).

That's a discontinued model now though, and battery life isn't as good as some of the newer models either.  I also don't see any of them right this second in the Dell Outlet Listings at http://www.dell.com/outlet (but, the listings change all the time, so you have to be a good shopper to find the best deals).

Again, what's your price range? What do you mean by "small computer to take with me"?

Dell has a pretty good deal on their new Inspiron 13Z right now. It's got an Ultra Low Voltage version of their I3 CPU installed (Core i3 3217U) that they claim has a battery life of up to 7 hours. It should "run circles" around a netbook like my 11Z (or any of the Atom based models for that matter). It's also got the latest HD 4000 graphics built in (same thing you get with higher end CPUs like the Core i7 3770)

They've got it for approx. $450 right this minute, with 6GB of DDR3, 500GB drive, Windows 8, 1366x768 display, etc (a lot lower than you'll find at retailers for the same laptop right this minute). See here:

http://www.dell.com/us/p/inspiron-13z-5323/pd?~ck=mn&~ck=mn

If $450 is over budget, then there are plenty of models around for less. But, I'd strongly advise getting one with at least 1366x768 resolution, as many of the smaller netbooks are using 1024x600 displays that just do not work well with many software packages (some software won't even install on a display using resolution below 1366x768 now).

I'd also watch out for systems shipping with Win 7 "Starter" versus "Home Premium" (you want Home Premium so that you can have more apps open, install more memory, etc.).

Looking at newegg.com right now, something like this refurbished Acer might be worth considering, as it's got a 1366x768 resolution display, 64 Bit Win 7 Home Premium and more. But, fair warning, that's a slow, very underpowered CPU for doing a lot with:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16834215458

I'd probably just grab a model using a newer Ivy Bridge CPU like the Core i3 3217U in that Dell 13Z I mentioned if that's not too large, as it's going to be *much* faster than the CPU like that Acer is using, even though both of those models are rated with up to 7 hours battery life (because the newer Intel model has a lot better performance for the amount of power it's drawing)

To put that into perspective, the AMD C-60 CPU scored a 433 on the Passmark series benchmarks:

http://www.cpubenchmark.net/cpu.php?cpu=AMD+C-60&id=243

The Intel Core i3 3217U scored a 2226 (more than 5 times as fast).

So, if you buy a smaller netbook with decent battery life, be prepared for a slower CPU unless it's a very current model like that newer Dell using a Lower Voltage Ivy Bridge Core i3 or similar (look for the models with a U suffix to find the Ultra Low Voltage models).

There are lots of netbooks around. I'd just check CPU performance and battery life so that you're weighing the pros and cons of any given model, and I'd suggest getting something with higher resolution than the 1024x600 displays you often see in netbooks (because you can't even install some software on displays with a resolution that low).

That's one reason I got the 11Z I went with in 2011. I was replacing an Asus EeePC with 1024x600 that had some problems, and it was more trouble than it was worth for viewing some software and web sites. So, I wanted to make sure I was using something with 1366x768 or better the next time around (hence why I went with a larger model using an 11.6" display with 1366x768 resolution).

Of course, that I found a deal on a refurb for only $153.22 delivered including tax and shipping also played into my decision.

-
JimC
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CAcreeks
CAcreeks Forum Pro • Posts: 12,342
Netbook great for battery life!

My wife's Samsung running Windows XP has about 10 hours of battery during use. That's better than an iPhone, isn't it?

I can't read it, though. Fonts are really small and the screen is only 10 pixels high or something. I would much prefer an iPad.

OP Birch_Tree Junior Member • Posts: 34
Re: Netbook great for battery life!

Thanks for all of the advice and experiences, this being such a international forum its hard to give price ranges, but would like to spend less then $800US.

Henry Richardson Forum Pro • Posts: 15,461
Yeah, netbook works pretty well for travel
2

Birch_Tree wrote:

I am planning to spend several months traveling later in the year, and looking for a small computer to take with me. Other then surfing the net, I mainly need the laptop for backing-up, sorting and viewing of photos. I doubt I would be processing raw files.... I use a olympus EM-5 so have decent size images to work with.

I was wondering wither anyone uses a netbook for such tasks? , are they speedy enough not to be irritating. I would love a ultra book but they are quite pricey.

I often take a 10.1" netbook with me when I travel. I installed the free FastStone to view photos (handles raw too). My netbook is a couple of years old, has Win7 Starter, Intel Atom N455 cpu, 1gb ram, and 250gb hd. It works fine for "backing-up, sorting and viewing of photos". I have used it for Olympus E-M5, Panasonic G3, Canon 60D, Sony A700, and Canon S95 raw files. I paid about $230 for it, but now you can get newer 10.1" netbooks with a faster cpu and bigger hd for about the same price. The one I have is an Acer, but Asus, Gateway, etc. make similar ones.

A netbook is small/light, but still has a keyboard and allows all the functionality that a notebook has so is good for wifi, email, Skype, etc. too.

By the way, I see that many people are advising you to get a super-duper netbook whereas you have pretty clearly stated what you want it for.  Those expensive computers are overkill if you just want it for the things you stated.  As I have said, I have used one for travel doing the things you want to use one for and I have done it for a few years (had a different one prior to the 2-year old one I have now).  Photos while traveling here:

http://www.bakubo.com

Setter Dog Veteran Member • Posts: 5,573
Re: Yeah, netbook works pretty well for travel

Henry Richardson wrote:

A netbook is small/light, but still has a keyboard and allows all the functionality that a notebook has so is good for wifi, email, Skype, etc. too.

http://www.bakubo.com

Henry, I have a similar netbook and it's okay for the functions you mention. However, I get a little frustrated when I can't get it to play a simple You Tube or an HD video clip I've made. I'm going to get something that has a little more power and, hopefully, a better screen. I just started a thread and hope some photographers will come up with a good suggestion.

Jack

Henry Richardson Forum Pro • Posts: 15,461
Re: Yeah, netbook works pretty well for travel

Setter Dog wrote:

Henry, I have a similar netbook and it's okay for the functions you mention. However, I get a little frustrated when I can't get it to play a simple You Tube or an HD video clip I've made. I'm going to get something that has a little more power and, hopefully, a better screen. I just started a thread and hope some photographers will come up with a good suggestion.

Hmm, mine works with youtube and I have viewed many videos using it.  I just booted it up, went to youtube, and played a couple of videos.  So, fortunately not only has mine worked with youtube okay for the last 2 years it still works today.  I wonder if yours has some other problem?  Anyway, I am not trying to talk you out of getting a new one, just wondering why yours has a problem.  Good luck with your new one!

Oh, by the way, the older netbook I bought in 2008 had a weaker cpu, WinXP and it also worked okay with youtube.

CAcreeks
CAcreeks Forum Pro • Posts: 12,342
Re: Netbook great for battery life!

Birch_Tree wrote:

Thanks for all of the advice and experiences, this being such a international forum its hard to give price ranges, but would like to spend less then $800US.

That is a lot to pay. A good netbook can be purchased new for under $300. Personally I would recommend a used laptop, with large disk, DVD or BluRay dirve, and SD card slot. They are not a lot heavier or larger than a netbook, but are much more pleasant to use.

For quicker booting and avoidance of antivirus pattern download, you can install Linux on it. Linux does everything you need to do except Quicken (if you use Quicken for accounting).

OP Birch_Tree Junior Member • Posts: 34
Re: Yeah, netbook works pretty well for travel

Thanks everyone for all of the advice, the price I quoted seem high because I live in New Zealand and we are charged a premium plus 15% tax so laptops are more expensive here. I probably should of adjusted the amount downwards.
I eventually purchased a HP Pavilion 14-B006AU 14" Notebook , paid $545NZD (455USD), was discounted down from around $700
Specs
AMD E2-1800
Memory: 4GB
14" Screen 1366*768
500GB hard drive (larger then my desktop) 
Dimensions (W x D x H) 34.7 x 23.8 x 2.1 cm
About a decade or two ago I said I would never buy another HP again, but that was mainly referring to their desktops. Hopefully I do not reject my decision.

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