8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on January 26, 2011
I am downgrading to one star because, like all the other reviewers warned, my touchpad DID stop working, THREE of the keypad buttons stopped working, and the power cord no longer sits tightly. Sorry to whomever read my initial review, below.
I recently purchased this Gateway and so far I love it! I have had zero problems with the touch pad. It's actually neat; it's backlit so it glows (you can turn off this feature if you don't like it). You can tap anywhere on the touchpad instead of having to use the left click button. To do a "right click" (as some other reviewers said they couldn't figure out), you still have to push down on the lower right corner of the touch pad. If you are on a webpage and you want to scroll down, you can just press and hold over the right side of the keypad, and a little emblem pops up and you can swipe up or down to scroll. I was really nervous about the touchpad after reading other reviews, I'm happy to report it exceeded my expectations.
As far as the rest of the computer, it has a really nice flat top, very ergonomic and simple. It's pretty light, around four or five pounds. It has a nice speaker which lines the entire front of the laptop base; for a "Dolby Virtual Surround Sound" experience. It's not quite a Bose, but it is better than any of my previous computers.
The keypad is large and easy to type on. The screeen is widescreen, with good graphics. I primarily use my laptop for personal use, mostly surfing the web (including writing product reviews on amazon), I also like to watch netflix and Hulu.
For these purposes, the i3 processor seems to be terrific. Much better than my old dual core intel. I don't have an i5 or and i7 to compare it to, but I think the higher end ones are maybe better for things like "gaming".
Best of luck!
10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
on January 18, 2011
I just got my laptop today and I wanted to comment on it. I have read a lot of reviews talking about the multi-gesture touch pad not working properly or being hard to use. I have not had a problem using the touch pad for me it is working like a normal touch pad. I didn't see it listed as a feature, but it has a glowing touch pad. when you go to click it lights up. Unlike the last Gateway that I bought 2 years ago this one does not come with the system restore cds, but it prompts you to make the system restore cds using 3 DVD's when you are setting it up. For the price it is a very nice laptop. If you are worried about the touch pad, then I wouldn't let that deter you from missing out on this laptop.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on February 1, 2011
I have had this laptop for 2 weeks now. I didn't want to write a review until I had a chance to put it through it's paces.
I really like the size. At 5 pounds it is easier to tote around and balance on my lap. Very thin with a super thin screen. Also very bright display, still good even when dimmed to conserve battery.
Performance seems great! It is very fast with booting up, launching programs, surfing internet, streaming video and downloading files.
I thought the product description was wholly exaggerating the battery life at 6 hours, but it has been performing at or around that level on every occasion that I have run it unplugged.
SO WHY NOT 5 STARS?
It came close, but there were 2 things that held me back.
1. It comes preloaded with a bunch of garbage programs like Norton, Silverlight, and B&N reader that want you to register them and buy the upgraded version, etc. and mercilessly bug you until you do so or remove them. I was unable to uninstall Norton until I downloaded their proprietary removal tool from the Symantec website (PS- it wasn't easy to find either). I know just about every computer comes with a lot of programs preloaded, but these were particularly annoying.
2. The touch pad works okay as a regular pad, but is a little touchy. Even after several setting tweaks, I still have missed taps and scrolls, and trouble getting it to ungrab images or frames. Also the multi-gesture features such as zoom and rotate are problematic and not very reliable.
Overall I really like it. Quite satisfied. And at $489, my IT guy at work said I got a steal!
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on February 4, 2011
Props to gateway for trying something creative but the touch pad malfunctioned within two weeks of me using this computer. The mouse just freezes, moves erratically or is unresponsive. How could gateway mess up on something so important? If you already use a external mouse this will be a minor problem. However if you plan to rely on the built in trackpad beware. It has a smooth glassy feel which picks up fingerprints and gets greasy almost immediately. I turned off the glowing function because it is annoying. The only thing is you have to turn it off every time the computer starts up. I miss the actual buttons to click - using right click often means you will have to press down hard on the right corner to depress the whole touchpad which doesn't feel natural. For the first time in a year i've whipped out my USB mouse. The laptop came with a 3 in 1 cloth i've been using as a mouse pad. Processing speed is good, it can run multiple programs at a time with no fuss. Downloading speed is really fast with the wireless N card. Windows 7 has some obvious improvements on Vista, namely the fact that you can see previews of programs/webpages running from the bar at the bottom - very cool. I find the screen size to be a little small because my old laptop was a 15" but I deliberately chose a 14" to have a lighter laptop so that's my fault, hopefully i'll get used to it. Can't say much about build quality as the laptop is brand new. It is very lightweight and the screen has a sturdy hinge mechanism but it doest have a latch. Battery life seems to be more like 3 hours than 6. I want to comment on the keyboard. This is the first time i've used one with totally flat keys and it took some getting used to. The keys have a very soft mushy feel when you press on them which means you'll be using less pressure than you would on a keyboard with harder keys. If you like a more sturdy feel on the keyboard you may prefer a different brand.
My only other comment is about the speakers. Speakers are very important to me in a laptop because i watch a lot of video and movies and can't be bothered to lug around extra speakers with me. I would say these speakers are average, especially for video, nothing to blow me away. You are probably going to still need headphones or external speakers to boost sound quality. That said the built in speakers are not BAD but not really an improvement from my Dell Inspiron 1525. Music sounds really good, maximum volume is decent - enough to fill a small room, I actually find the sound is better without the dolby digital enhancement so I took it off.
So buy with caution, if you are concerned about the touch pad, be prepared to get an external mouse.
PROS: Fast CPU, Lightweight, Decent battery life for a 6 cell battery, Fast wireless internet speeds and HUGE harddrive.
CONS: Widescreen size is a bit narrow, flat-keyed keyboard is mushy and not sturdy feeling, touchpad faulty
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on February 28, 2011
This little thing is great. The specs for the price is awesome. The chassis is a solid build too. It looked like it could be plasticky by the pictures, but it is solid save for one thing. the keyboard.....
the keyboard itself is stable and not squishy like some laptops can be, but each individual key is somewhat fragile. so keep that in mind when you purchase it. I bought mine, and the K key broke off 2 weeks after receiving it. Gateway said they would replace it, for free and all since it's brand new and still under warranty, but it would take 14 days to do. They won't just send me a little key. That seems kinda bogus.
If you can be careful with the keys, I'd suggest this laptop. It's a great size and great specs. 500 GB is more than enough for a laptop. the i3 is speedy and 4GB of RAM is sweet. Theres nothing really slowing it down. Having the HDMI out is a nice bonus too. what others are saying about the touch pad is somewhat true. I have not had any troubles with its responsiveness, but it collects finger prints like nobody's business. The lighting up is cool. I wish there was an option to just have it backlit instead of just when I click though. good machine though.
just watch out for the keyboard. or maybe just the K one.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on February 2, 2011
This laptop definatley deserves 5 stars!! It's fast, can handle multiple programs at once, the price was right ($530 when I purchased it). You can not go wrong with this laptop. I did not have any problems with the touchpad like another person wrote. At first the fact the touchpad glows was a little annoying but you can turn it off. The battery lasts between 4-6 hours. It did have some junk software loaded that I removed, but they all do when they are new. I was looking for a new laptop for about 2 months untill I found this one. I would definatley recommend this to anyone looking to purchase a new laptop!
3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on January 28, 2011
Checked the ship free box so it took a few extra days to get here. First its a 14" but very hard to see much
difference size wise with the more common 15.5. Its really fast, I'm not a gamer but suspect this i3 processor
could do the trick. Love the screen, I've actually turned the brightness and contrast down, very sharp.
Comes with a dvd player and has the easiest to use touchpad I've used. It also looks good if thats important
to you, Overall a 5 star and a super savings from Amazon.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on March 5, 2011
A sleek laptop with excellent display quality. Its fast and massive storage, I dont see myself running out of space with a 500 GiG HDD. This Core i3 processor is quite fast, imagine how the i5 and i7 processors are. I have many pros to be honest, the keys however feels abit flimsy at times. But overall I am please with my purchase.
on February 4, 2011
Update 5- Because I had no return options, I had to keep the laptop and learned how to deal with the problems. However, a few months since I got it back (2.5 to be exact)- my sound failed. I went through 1 attempted troubleshooting method with a Gateway Tech, and then was told because that didn't work the only option was to do a complete system recovery which would delete all personalization (software, files, etc) I had made to the computer. This seems to be the Gateway saying: "If we can't help you with one simple step, you'll have to delete everything you've done and we're going to cross our fingers that it works". Just a final warning.
Update 4- The repair did not take too long after they received it, it's now March 8 and I've just received my computer back from the warehouse with a note that everything is fixed. However, not a thing is fixed. I would recommend that you buy anything other than this computer, and if you value getting help, probably not a Gateway as their customer service is unreliable for fixing your problem.
Update 3- Just to give a further update - it's now 28 Feb. I mailed the laptop a week and a half ago. Gateway has had it at the warehouse since 24 Feb. When I talked to the Gateway customer support- they informed me it is going to take another 14 business days to resolve my problems. I only post this to alert people- you may get a great computer that works great. Or you may get one that breaks within 2-3 days and is obviously defective, but you can't get a replacement and will be fighting with Gateway to get a computer fixed that might mean you're without a computer for more than a month when it's all said and done. (14 business days [...] 3 weeks, they'll ship it ground, so it will be another 4-5 days depending on where you live... and then your shipping there is another 3-4 days- thats 29 days).
Update 2 - as of 9 Feb I've downgraded to one star. Owned it for 6 days, had to call support 3 of the days for the same problem. I am told that some software I installed on the computer is causing a driver issue (let it be known- I've only installed MS Office, Itunes, and Picasa). When I asked to have a new computer shipped, Gateway says they cannot do it because I didn't buy it from them. I accept that. But when I asked if they would pay to have my brand new, less than 7 days old computer shipped to their warehouse for repair. However, even though I bought the laptop (read- I paid for it) on 31 January- I'm told that the software expired on 17 January. I am contemplating my options- but will most likely be returning this laptop and going with something else, most likely not a Gateway after this experience (full disclosure- I owned a Gateway for 5 years before this and had no problems)
[...]Update[...] It's 7 Feb and I just changed my rating from 3 star to 2 star- and the reason is because I again had problems with the mouse pad (onwership of 5 days- two major problems with a complete inoperable mouse). I chatted with a Gateway tech that told me there was a compatibility issue with the laptop and either Itunes or Picasa- the only two programs I installed. This is troubling to me- these are very basic programs that I envision many people will have. I think the root of the problem is that gateway tried to get fancy with the mousepad- when you get it you'll notice that it's all one giant button- there is no separate left/right mouse button- and the glowing feature. I know whenever I start seeing it glow- I'm going to have issues. I almost hope that I have another problem so I can see if gateway will replace the laptop.
There are good things and there are bad things with this laptop. The good- it's a great little laptop- looks good, functions well and the battery life has shown to be quality so far, and it recharges very fast.
The bad: I've had it for 2 days, transferred all my files from my old laptop- and then I had to call the Gateway helpdesk and they had to have me restore to factory defaults, erase everything I transferred over and the programs I set up because one of the mouse drivers wasn't working properly (put it this way: the mouse stopped working, reboot it still didn't work, a 3rd reboot and it started working again but the touchpad itself starting flashing on and off uncontrollably). I have some serious concerns about this being an ongoing problem, especially as I've noticed that it takes several clicks sometimes of the buttons to respond.
2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on February 12, 2011
I had this computer for less than a week and returned it. The reason is the click buttons on the touch pad did not work. When I clicked the buttons, quite often there was no response. Even when clicked repeatedly there was no response. I had to move the mouse pointers around for a while before the button clicks would be responded to again. When using an external mouse I had no such problems. The buttons on the external mouse were always responded to reliably. I suspect the problem is with the software driver for the touch pad. Besides the non-responding touch pad buttons, the tactile feeling of the button press is quite heavy. I am not talking about stiff. It is heavy like the buttons are made with a solid block of metal that have large inertia to move up and down.
Other than the non-responding buttons on the touch pad, the machine seemed well made. The glowing touch pad though is not much useful. A glowing keypad would be much more helpful.
One odd thing about this computer is the lack of dedicated PgUp and PgDn keys. They are replaced by dedicated speaker mute/volume control keys. For PgUp and PgDn one has to hold down the left side Fn key and press a right side arrow key at the same time. I find this design inconvenient. The PgUp/Dn keys are among the most useful keys when browsing or reading. Ever since the start of personal computers there have been dedicated right hand-side PgUp/Dn keys. I am so used to press these keys while reading or browsing, it is second nature to me without thinking. The lack of these keys made an awkward experience. I don't do the speaker mute or volume control nearly as much as I page up or down.