Top critical review
44 people found this helpful
Not DOA but on full life support
on November 26, 2012
I bought this for a friend whose key requirement was portability, not performance. Even with performance in the back seat, I elected to go with a Celeron based machine as I was concerned an Atom based one lacked the minimum horsepower to make a user happy. The computer showed up with the usual prompt Amazon delivery and seemed in good condition on arrival. That's the last of the "good" statements you'll see. During the initial power up, the machine autonomously shut down. I hadn't paid too much attention up until that time as my friend was certainly capable of running through the new user initialization screens. After a second shutdown, I became more involved. It made it through to the desktop on the third try and I assumed it was some sort of learning curve issue until it instantly closed out of Windows 8 while doing essentially nothing. At this time, it wouldn't even boot properly and shutdown before hitting the windows screen. The second attempt brought up a screen asking about whether to try correcting Windows. Figuring there was certainly something wrong, it seemed reasonable to say, "Yes" and it went though it's correction routines. We were then able to get it to boot properly. Again I made the assumption the problems were Windows based and transient in nature. After downloading Skype, I was talking to my son when the machine shut off, instantly. Like the other times, this wasn't an orderly shutdown but rather as if someone had just pulled the plug (yes, this is a laptop but you get the drift. For what it's worth, the configuration for the first couple of boot attempts were on the battery which was fully charged but after that, I plugged the machine in to ensure there wasn't some sort of battery issue). We did another start and this time it stayed up for about 15 minutes. Two more shutdowns and I hit the Amazon return button.
I wanted to like this machine because if it had worked, it would have been an ideal machine for its intended use. The screen was certainly adequate and while the keyboard was small for my hands, I'm sure a person could get used to touch typing on it. Two USB ports allowed me to hook a portable DVD drive to it and it read and installed software fine. Unfortunately, there was a quality (or design) problem. I did an internet search for Windows 8 autonomous shutdowns and didn't find any results so it appears to be on the hardware side. When I ordered I was concerned about Acer quality and in this instance, it appears they cut one too many corners and lost a sale. It's difficult to objectively rate a computer that arrives with a hardware problem. Without the problem I encountered, it might be a great machine so giving a one star rating based on an obviously defective machine is a bit harsh. I'm sure this isn't the typical computer but I felt I couldn't rate it higher than two stars because even though it had potential, Acer quality control wasn't up to preventing defective machines from making it to end users and any buyer needs to be aware of this.