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Old 01-03-2013, 08:49 AM
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Exclamation Netbooks getting phased out?



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It would appear that I really missed the train on this one, was going to get a new netbook and "blue-eyedly" expected the current models to accept 12V DC as input as before... As it were the lot seems to take 19V as input just like many full-size laptops, I guess the manufacturers started cramming them full of power guzzling & more capable processors and other components to turn them into miniature laptops instead of netbooks.

Apparently the manufacturers favor only surf pads nowadays (netbooks are considered obsolete or "vestigial"), I got the advice of getting a surf pad with a keyboard dock but that's not the same for me*, surf pads include mobile operating systems that are geared towards connectivity and apps and surfing... not perhaps storing internally a PDF library and perhaps some entertainment such as movies for the kids and such...

Atleast the latest Asus model to accept 12DC appear to have come onto the market around 2009 and these are only available as refurbished from the factory or new old stock at exorbiant prices... a shame as these also include harddrives as opposed to only (slow & low capacity**) SDDs that the first models came with

And no, I don't like inverters. Would prefer to be able to run off a car battery + solar power setup (thus hardly the risk of damaging the equipment that could be the case if running off a car alternator or such).

Any ideas or hints?



*) maybe I'm just a neo-luddite.

**) which is why I finally thought of getting a current model as a replacement to my 2008 model to store in an ammo can in case of a rainy day...
Old 01-04-2013, 09:22 AM
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Actually the net books now use much less power then the old Asus models (EEEPC) used.

With the price of first generation iPads, why not just get a few dinged up used ones? Throw in five or six second generation iPod touches and a nice external battery and you'll be fine. My ipad right now has a ton of ebooks and keeps them better organized than a folder full of a hundred other folders and useless file names. I also have five or six seasons of Seinfeld and all of the Die Hard movies.

The lack of a physical keyboard does suck, but you can buy a real full sized Apple keyboard and just use that.

An even better idea would be to buy dedicated hardware such as an amazon kindle as they don't try to do 500 different things.... Then buy a few iPod touches and load them with sponge bob and Star Trek.

You can run all that stuff off of 5v USB too.

If all you want a netbook for is to read ebooks and watch tv shows then why do you need a device that tries to do 500 different things, and sucks at all of them?

You don't buy a 16" AR for the range and then throw on a 2" barrel and carry it concealed do you? Dedicated hardware.
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Old 01-05-2013, 11:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kingcodez View Post

You don't buy a 16" AR for the range and then throw on a 2" barrel and carry it concealed do you? Dedicated hardware.
Oh, I would so love to do that.....


AR-15 snubnose pistol....
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Old 01-05-2013, 11:45 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scoo View Post
Any ideas or hints?
Get a Raspberry Pi.
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Old 01-06-2013, 12:26 AM
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You could pick up a used ipad, wireless router with built in USB and a portable USB hard drive and make a battery ad hock wireless file server that you could access with the ipad and a file browser app.

Not sure if this idea would suite your needs but it would be a very low power shtf option. Just fire up the router combo as needed to copy whatever files you want to the ipad then shut it down.
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Old 01-06-2013, 10:41 AM
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I use netbooks. My fingers seem to be incompatible with touch pad devices. Find them extremely frustrating.

Why not use a simple 12 to 19 adapter?
Old 01-06-2013, 10:55 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RedTail View Post
I use netbooks. My fingers seem to be incompatible with touch pad devices. Find them extremely frustrating.

Why not use a simple 12 to 19 adapter?
I have found a stylus makes touch devices much easier to use, I have an 'amPen stylus' purchased on amazon. Works like a champ!
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Old 01-07-2013, 03:10 AM
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I suppose I just prefer the form factor of a netbook over a 'pad (with optional attached keyboard).

As for the Raspberry Pi, suppose that one or two of those would be good to have in store even if one hasn't planned on using them.

As for why I would not want to use an adapter it's due to that there's always some loss when switching voltage (less efficient than to feed nominal 12V to the computer directly). Since I would most likely be running off 12V lead acid batteries that get charged via solarpanels (no other option at the moment) AND I'm located on roughly the same latitude as Alaska (little sunlight in winter) it's not at all guaranteed that my off-grid/post-crisis setup could deliver enough power to a 12DC->15/19V for it to work (say 12.7V for a healthy battery or even downwards to 10.5V when the off-grid system would shut off as to not damage or discharge the battery too much). A lot easier if you have mains power...

The Eee PC 901 I have from 2008 has a 12V power supply and the battery itself is 7,4V (similar but not identical to a slightly older model who's power consumption and possible feeding from a 12V battery is detailed here).
Old 01-07-2013, 03:41 AM
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I got an inexpensive Nexus 7 tablet, it's very small and fits in a Maxpedition 6x9x3 pouch. I also have an inexpensive MiniSuit keyboard which acts as a case. I've got about 700 Android apps (95 % were free) and tens of thousands of books on it (also 95 % free).

Pros:
small size

fast

relatively inexpensive (cost me like $230 total incl. keyboard, looks like prices have gone up tho (almost $300 now for same setup). wait for them to go down .. they will).

Cons:
small size


https://www.google.com/nexus/





Old 01-07-2013, 05:11 AM
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The netbook wasn't a hugely functional platform; and while they were being introduced, there was the explosion of the pads. On top of that, pile on the smaller form factor laptops that were being produced; and you have a market where the netbook is simply not necessary.

For those who like netbooks, power to you. Personally, my last computing choice was either an iPad or a Mac Air - I chose the Mac Air and couldn't be happier (I can hear all the Apple nay-sayers now).

peace
Old 01-07-2013, 06:42 AM
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netbooks still have a place and believe they will still be produced though they are forcing people to tablets and ultrabooks. IMHO the surface is the kit to get though its 2 times what the eeeepc was. though i use an acer aspire 722 because of the screen res.
Old 01-07-2013, 08:07 AM
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Apart from that I like a netbook for it being a scaled down laptop with all the necessities included (screen, keyboard etc.) plus that the operating system will be a fully fledged one and not one geared towards mobile use (not perhaps a good idea to run photoshop or similar "heavy" programs on one but still a possibility, thus different from a pad even though it may be possible to store apps on a removable media, I've no idea.

What I though was going to be the gist of this thread is that they (used to) run on a low voltage (the current models that need 19V chargers typically come equipped with a battery whose nominal voltage could be 11V, sure, one could power the unit via its battery connector but these are usually non-standard and multi-pin [so that each individual cell can be charged as to keep the battery cells "symmetrical"] which could be a hassle).

Nice to see that some pads (such as the Nexus) charges/runs at 5V. Only problem is that it needs 2 amps at 5V which is a lot for USB (discussion at a another forum), one could run into difficulties with 12V -> 5V USB adapters/chargers (overheating due to overload, even unit failure etc which would be a bummer), regardless what some listings say such as this standard cigarrette plug adapter which purportedly will charge a nexus even though it's stated output is 0,6A...
Old 01-07-2013, 02:17 PM
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For a SHTF situation it really depends on what your plan is. If your gonna "Bug In" and you got a sweet solar setup or some other awesome power solution then you should get whatever your the most comfortable with because you don't really have to worry about batteries and charging.
But if you don't have a top of the line power solution or you plan to "Bug Out" then a smaller 4"-5" portable media device (Like a Galaxy Player) would be the best choice IMO. These smaller devices, while harder to read from, allow for up to 60 hours of juice. Depending on what your doing with them.
I created a thread in this section about the Galaxy Player 5.0 that is very similar to this thread. It covers reasons for using a smaller portable media device and a little about why iPads and iPods aren't necessarily a good choice.
Its all about being able to accept SD Cards, or USB. Once you have a good battery/charging solution, then you can have all the data in the world at your fingertips. Or at least as much as you spend time loading onto SD cards or USB sticks.
I am actually writing this using an Acer 10" netbook running windows 7 starter. And I can honestly say that the battery life of this thing SUCKS, I only use it plugged in.
Other people have suggested using a Nook, as it is a little bigger and easier on the eyes but maintains good battery life.
...Movies would probably be the last thing I would worry about. Just not practical. (Morale can be lifted for much less expense in power and resources)
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Old 01-07-2013, 03:13 PM
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I love my IPad, but when I travel and I know I'll be accessing the computer for work, I take the IPad and my HP netbook. It's just so much easier with a real keyboard.
Old 01-07-2013, 05:23 PM
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Funny, we have the same ASUS netbooks. Best all around, they are basically a full laptop without being too big to use as a laptop like most now a days.
Tablets just don't do enough for me, not enough storage, limited apps, etc. I would also never buy an Apple product.
I have a 500G drive in my ASUS, all my pictures, all my documents, etc all in one small package, no need to access a server or the cloud.
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Old 01-09-2013, 01:54 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mgriffen View Post
For a SHTF situation it really depends on what your plan is. [---] I created a thread in this section about the Galaxy Player 5.0 that is very similar to this thread. It covers reasons for using a smaller portable media device and a little about why iPads and iPods aren't necessarily a good choice. [---]
...Movies would probably be the last thing I would worry about. Just not practical. (Morale can be lifted for much less expense in power and resources)
Thanks for the heads-up about that thread, very informative.

I'm a bit wary of these due to the mobile OS, though there's no denying that they are already quite capable and still get more capable all the time (though more power consuming at the same time). Suppose I'm an oldtimer that prefer to have all the tools available, though as I said earlier it might not be a bright idea to try to run heavy programs on a netbook, so one might very well get along fine with a small device for accessing one's PDFs that weren't printed or could be brought along as physical books.

All in all, I think people might need to consider the issue of low-power computing/device reading a bit more (a bit like QRP ham rigs, say the Icom-703 that could not put out many watts but was quite capable in other ways [for example used VERY little power in standby, excellent for a setup such as you describe when one's on foot], it got discontinued a couple of years ago and no direct equivalent remain in production anymore and thus "lost" to us)..

Movies was only an example, TV/computers don't act as babysitters in our family but will still be most useful as a morale booster, but not the chief cause for me wanting to stash away a netbook in an ammo box
Old 01-09-2013, 09:25 AM
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Your right about the mobile OS. Its not as easy to manipulate than something like WIN7 or even better, Linux. But I guess I would only be using it for a quick/emergency reference. Then when you get back to the BOL or PAW trade station, you could plug into a full size terminal/laptop. I also hate trying to type on a touch screen device, but like I said, I doubt I would be doing much typing. Just reading. Although these devices do have internal microphones so you could just speak into it and it would do the typing for you. (granted the dictation technology is still lacking!)
I guess that doing research into what the best Laptop/Netbook vs Battery Life, would be the next step. Unfortunately battery on any unit with attached keyboard is not gonna be great. Never more than 10 -12 hours worth of use before needing a charge. And portable solar chargers would have a difficult time keeping up with anything over...1500mAh? Depending...
Old 01-09-2013, 12:49 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scoo View Post
It would appear that I really missed the train on this one, was going to get a new netbook and "blue-eyedly" expected the current models to accept 12V DC as input as before... As it were the lot seems to take 19V as input just like many full-size laptops, I guess the manufacturers started cramming them full of power guzzling & more capable processors and other components to turn them into miniature laptops instead of netbooks.

Apparently the manufacturers favor only surf pads nowadays (netbooks are considered obsolete or "vestigial"), I got the advice of getting a surf pad with a keyboard dock but that's not the same for me*, surf pads include mobile operating systems that are geared towards connectivity and apps and surfing... not perhaps storing internally a PDF library and perhaps some entertainment such as movies for the kids and such...

Atleast the latest Asus model to accept 12DC appear to have come onto the market around 2009 and these are only available as refurbished from the factory or new old stock at exorbiant prices... a shame as these also include harddrives as opposed to only (slow & low capacity**) SDDs that the first models came with

And no, I don't like inverters. Would prefer to be able to run off a car battery + solar power setup (thus hardly the risk of damaging the equipment that could be the case if running off a car alternator or such).

Any ideas or hints?



*) maybe I'm just a neo-luddite.

**) which is why I finally thought of getting a current model as a replacement to my 2008 model to store in an ammo can in case of a rainy day...



You don't need an inverter for 19V Netbooks. I purchased an adjustable 15V - 24V step-up transformer. This works from any 12V battery or cigarette lighter socket.

It uses less power than an inverter & is very compact & easy to use....
Old 01-10-2013, 10:20 PM
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Netbooks!

...happy shopping (I have no idea what the specs on the chargers for these units are, the ads don't seem to say...)
Old 01-16-2013, 08:52 AM
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Netbooks are called Ultrabooks now ...same size just with more power and functionality...and of course 3-4 x the price lol
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