|Screen Size||10.1 inches|
|Screen Resolution||1280 x 720|
|Max Screen Resolution||1280x720 pixels|
|Processor||1 GHz AMD C Series|
|RAM||1 GB DDR3|
|Memory Speed||1066 MHz|
|Hard Drive||250 GB SATA|
|Graphics Coprocessor||AMD Radeon HD 6250|
|Card Description||Radeon HD 625|
|Graphics Card Ram Size||256 MB|
|Wireless Type||802.11 B/G, 802.11bgn, 802.11B|
|Number of USB 2.0 Ports||3|
|Average Battery Life (in hours)||6 hours|
Acer Aspire One AO522-BZ897 10.1-Inch HD Netbook (Diamond Black)
We don't know when or if this item will be back in stock.
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- Enjoy smooth streaming Internet video on the Aspire One AO522 Netbook featuring an AMD C-Series Processor and ATI Radeon HD Graphics.
- The AMD C-Series Processor is designed to deliver the balanced performance you need to enjoy your favorite applications.
- The AO522 boasts impressive ATI Radeon HD 6250 Graphics delivering the performance you need to take your high-definition experience to the next level
- Access your email and browse your favorite websites wherever you are with integrated 802.11 b/g/n Wi-Fi CERTIFIED network connection and fast Ethernet LAN.
- Windows 7 Starter makes the things you do every day easier and with Office Starter 2010, experience new ways to deliver your best work!. Complete your PC. Buy full-featured Microsoft Office 2010.
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Acer AO522-BZ897 comes with these high level Specs. AMD C-Series Processor C-50, Windows 7 Starter, 10.1" HD WXGA LED-backlit Display, AMD A50M Fusion Chipset, ATI Radeon HD 6250 Graphics, 1024MB DDR3 Memory, 250GB SATA Hard Drive (5400RPM), Multi-in-1 Digital Media Card Reader, 802.11b/g/n Wi-Fi CERTIFIED, Built-In 1.3MP Webcam, 3 - USB 2.0 Ports, HDMI, 6-cell Li-ion Battery (4400 mAh), Up to 6-hours Battery Life, Microsoft Office Starter 2010, 2.87 lbs. | 1.3 kg (system unit only), Complete your PC. Buy full-featured Microsoft Office 2010.
Top Customer Reviews
Unfortunately, despite the dual core CPU, web browsing felt sluggish so I checked the RAM. Despite being billed as having 1gb memory, the dedicated video format siphons off a quarter of that, only leaving 768mb available. It -is- a netbook, and they're not known for their speed, so if your needs are modest, this may just be fine. But I had other plans in mind...
Dual core, with discreet graphics? World of Warcraft has pretty low system requirements... could it maybe work? With only 768mb of ram, just barely, if you were desperate. With graphics set to a mix of low/fair, it was okay (mid 20s) in isolated areas, but populated towns (like Orgrimmar or Stormwind) turned into a slide show -- I spent a lovely minute with the frames per second pegged at 0.4. Okay, so what about more memory?
Unfortunately, new products are too new for reliable information. Acer's website didn't acknowledge the model existed, Crucial's memory tool couldn't suggest an upgrade (and worse, when I emailed them, their response recommended a 1gb DDR2 chip -- for a computer that runs DDR3). Another user has reported being able to upgrade this model with 4gb of ram, but my research said that Windows 7 starter wouldn't be able to see/use more than 2gb, so that was all I ordered. With a leap and a prayer, I ordered Amazon part number B001KB6Z2U (a 2gb DDR3 chip from Crucial) after I determined there was only one ram slot on this netbook. For one of the better demonstrations of how to access the ram slot, check on YouTube for "HOWTO Update your Acer Aspire One 533 from 1GB to 2GB of RAM" - the plethora of model numbers for Acer's netbooks make it hard to trace product lines, but the 533 seems to mirror what I found inside my AO522. Ignore any videos that suggest there are screws under the rubber feet - there aren't on this model. Despite having built my own desktops for the last 15 years, prying apart the tiny, flimsy bits inside a netbook was utterly nerve wracking. Yes, I scratched up the little tabs while prying up the keyboard (which you sadly have to do to access the screws holding the back panel on) -- but the results were worth it. (And a sharpie will make the scratches disappear.)
My Acer Aspire One AO522 now has 2gb of ram and it zooms. Web browsing is zippier, but my happy dance is mainly over the gaming improvements. World of Warcraft isn't blazingly fast, but it's definitely playable. Populated areas slow down to fps in the teens, but it isn't laggy, and every where else it's easily into the 30s (with video settings massaged from "Fair/Good"). I wouldn't raid on it, but for casual play it should be fine.
While I was waiting for the extra memory to arrive, I tried finding netbooks with 2gb of ram and nice web cams, but even as prices crested $500, nothing brought as much to the table as this Acer Aspire. The "up to 6 hours" of battery life seems optimistic, but 4-5 may be doable, and at under three pounds, it's barely noticeable in my backpack.
The cons that keep it from 5 stars:
- 768mb ram leaves it meh. RAM is cheap and the upgrade is a substantial pain for the average consumer.
- the tiny speaker (located on the front left, by the bank of indicator lights) is minimally adequate for system alerts. Given that one of the touted features is being able to stream HD internet, you'll want either headphones or a set of external speakers.
- The heat vent is also on the left side and it can get pretty toasty over there. My laser thermometer showed 120-125 degrees F (51 C). Thankfully, for all that heat dissipation, it still manages to be very quiet under load.
BUT _do read_ these comments if you are wondering if a meager-sounding 1.0 ghz processor is enough, or if you are wondering whether there is finally a solution to the woefully poor graphics performance of prior netbooks. There is presently very little information available on the new AMD chipset powering this netbook since the chipset was only introduced this month (at CES in Las Vegas), and Acer has been incredibly fast to market with both netbooks and notebooks based on the new chip (within 2 weeks after the show!). I have taken the time to include links to what early tests and benchmarks are available, and in addition I just purchased a C-50 powered notebook from Acer, so these comments are very relevant, imho, to this netbook.
The Acer C-50 powered notebook I purchased last week from Fry's is the 15.6" screen notebook editino - the Acer AS5253-BZ893 15.6" Notebook. If you search for this notebook on Amazon, you will find that Amazon only (presently) sells a version with the much faster, more powerful E-350 chip. If I owned the E-350 version, I wouldn't be commenting here, because the comparisons wouldn't be valid. But I own the C-50 version with the same chipset as the 10.1" netbook, so the comparisons are very valid (and are hopefully helpful to you).
Here is the AMD Fusion page on Amazon:
Basically, the E-350 notebook chipset runs at 1.5 ghz with a 500 mhz integrated, same-die graphics processor (supports DirectX 11)
The C-50 chipset found in this netbook and my notebook runs at 1.0 ghz with a 200 mhz gpu which also supports DirectX 11.
Both chipsets are dual core.
According to the Windows Experience Index on my notebook running the C-50 (same apu powering your netbook), the scores are:
2.8 CPU calculations
4.9 memory operations
4.2 Graphics (Windows Aero performance)
5.5 Graphics (gaming)
5.5 Hard Drive
These are VERY good numbers for a budget machine (both the netbook and notebook qualify as bargain priced); the only "low" number in there is the CPU calculations per second. However, prior Atom netbooks ranged from 1.9-2.2 (z520/z530/N270/N450), and even N550 dual core Atoms netbooks are only 3.1, so 2.8 is actually pretty good, and phenomenal coming off a 1.0 ghz processor.
But wait, there's more!
A Dutch website has actually benchmarked the 1.0 ghz C-50 chipset - Google "review AMD C-50" or "AMD C-50 benchmarks" and it delivers nearly the performance of the N550 dual core atom in cpu tasks while blowing away the graphics in all the "stock" Atom netbooks (Ion equipped netbooks, which are fairly rare, post some good numbers too, but unless you have an "auto switching" Ion netbook battery life is severely shortened).
Some comments/translation on that review are on Fudzilla - the Fudzilla comments can be found by a search on their website or on the C-50 Google results above.
Fudzilla comments in part that "Guys from Dutch Hardware.info site managed to get their hands on Toshiba's N550D netbook with AMD's Fusion C-50 dual-core APU clocked at 1.0GHz. When compared to Intel's Atom N450 and N550, it is quite clear that those are no match for AMD's Radeon HD 6250 graphics found in the C-50."
In my experience, the AMD C-50 chipset really DOES work as promised (almost, see note below). I downloaded VLC and ran the test HD video that comes with Win 7 in the Video folder and it ran clear, sharp, glitch free (I run Microsoft Security Essentials as my anti-virus; it's free and low overhead, recommended! that's why I use VLC instead of other programs to run my videos, too). YouTube with the /HTML5 option, fine, full screen 480p fine. Hulu very smooth in browser at 480p, dropped frames (the "flicker" or "jerky" effect) full screen. Converted DVD's ran fine full screen. Windows Experience Index for Aero is 4+ (compared to 3.0 with an Atom N450 or N550) and 5+ for other video. Comparable to, or slightly better than, an Ion equipped Atom netbook, and a lot cheaper.
Video resolution on my 15.6" is actually very comparable to resolution on the 10.1" netbook, since Acer bumped up the resolution on the 10.1" screen in this iteration (it is actually the same as a white Macook now!). The C-50 in my notebook has no problem driving this higher resoluion.
(A note on the resolution bump up: now you can register your iPod Touch using iTunes on this netbook. Before - trust me, I ran into this problem on another netbook - you couldn't reach the bottom of the screen to move to the next screen. The height of the display was too short! While the physical display on this 10.1" netbook isn't any taller, in squeezed in the extra pixels side to side and top to bottom. This also results in tinier but sharper type. HP and Dell used to charge about a hundred dollar premium to upgrade to higher resolution on their 10.1" netbooks!)
For those of you who are tech-minded, there is only a single addition chip required in addition to the apu to make the basic motherboard chip - the Hudson Fusion Controller Hub (FCH), which adds support for things like SATA, USB, Ethernet and Audio. (see Anandtech's review of the Fusion powered motherboard with incidental Fusion comments, go the the Anandtech website and search for "The Brazos Review: AMD's E-350 Supplants ION for mini-ITX".
So the hardware driving my notebook and your netbook is identical, with the sole exception of the additional RAM on my notebook.
I am very satisfied with the performance of the AMD Fusion/Vision C-50 APU and wouldn't recommend ANY of the other Atom N450 or N550 netbooks. Atom N550's test a little faster on pure CPU intensive functions, but I have kept the Task Manager open and usually the processor is loping anyway. For my word processing, email, and web uses even an N450 (or miserably slow z520) is enough. This is the first processor that combines reasonable (5+ hour) battery life with decent video performance plus the promise of full screen 480p and even 720p video. But be sure not to overlook the importance of the increased resolution for a better web browser view. While some type may be small sometimes, it is easy to hit Control + and - to adjust viewing size on the fly.
Caveat: Neither the E-350 chipset or the C-50 chipset powering my notebook or your netbook will work with Flash perfectly on Hulu right now. I base my comments on the E-350 based on the review on Anandtech of an E-350 powered motherboard, on my comments based on the C-50 base on my own personal Hulu experience. For additional details, please review the comments below this post.
Anandtech reports that a revised Flash 10.2 beta WILL run Hulu much better, and AMD blogs about the same issue on its blog - Google "AMD Fusion blog" then read the Flash article.
I was really debating whether to get the 15.6" or the 10.1", but in this instance opted for the 15.6" first due to the fact that it was only $20 more but included a DVD player/burner (with dual layer burn capability), 3 gb RAM, and of course the bigger screen. Less portable, but much better for home usek, and something I can hook up to my TV via the HDMI out.
If you find these comments helpful, please vote up. If these comments are not helpful, I intend to remove them.
Engadget now has an article entitled "Editorial: The rise of the notbook, the fall of the netbook" which is worth reading. The interesting part is the comments on how superior the new AMD chipsets are to anything else out there.
Netbooknews has a compilation of a whole bunch of video benchmarks for the C-50 vs. Ions, last gen AMD efforts, single cores, dual cores, just Google for "AMD C-50 Benchmarks, Gaming & Video Playback Testing."
In mid-February 2011 (last week) two major video performance updates were released: Flash 10.2 with better use of video hardware, and a new Catalyst driver from AMD. Google Flash 10.2 for the one, and AMD Catalyst driver for the other; for Catalyst, select Notebook graphics, select C-Series CPU, select C-50 CPU, select Windows 7 32-bit unless you have upgraded your operating system. Once you have updated Flash and the video driver, you should be able to run 720p YouTube crystal clear, stutter-free, full screen (I tested Lady Gaga Born This Way on the VEVO channel at YouTube) with about 40% CPU utilization. Sadly, Hulu continues to be the worst Flash offender on the planet, and even with the software updates can't run anything sharper than 360p full screen, and even at 360p doesn't run as smoothly as it does "in browser." Full screen has improved, however, to the point where it is acceptable for desperation watching while on the road. You will need to do these upgrades yourself even if you buy your netbook later in the year, since manufacturers seldom make rolling updates to their software packages on the actual assembly line.
April edit: Adobe continues to release upgrades to the Flash 10.2 driver without changing the release number. I can now watch Hulu full screen when starting out of the Google Chrome browser (11.xxx release) in 360p very smooth in 480p with minor occasional stutters, but very watchable.
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