Ticks all the right boxes, almost
The result is the N140 made a decent fist of 1080p QuickTime files which, while not playing back with complete smoothness, was still entirely watchable. Media playback is further enhanced by the N140 having 1.5W stereo speakers in the front corners of the chassis, rather than a mono unit tucked away in its bowels as per the N130. Another advantage the N140 enjoys over the N130 is it has the same Realtek HD Audio Manager software complete with SRS surround sound effects as the N120. The sound output is impressive and fine for movies but, unsurprisingly, a bit thin for music.
A well-equipped, good all-rounder
In battery tests, the N140 lasted for 4 hours 38 minutes. That's 13 minutes less than the N110 managed with an identical capacity battery pack, but still translates into an easy six hours of average use on a full charge. The actual best we managed was 6 hours 35 minutes with the screen brightness at 65 per cent and the Wi-Fi radio on, but if you turned the wick all the way down, eight hours might not be out of the question.
At the moment the N130 can be picked up for around £250 compared to the N140's £315. Is £65 worth it for a more modern OS, larger battery and more roomy hard drive? On balance, probably. If Samsung took the plunge and shipped the N130 with a Linux OS for around two hundred quid, then that would be a harder question to answer. Perhaps more importantly – if the prices we found on several major retailer web-sites are anything to go by – the N140 isn't noticeably more expensive than the old NC10 and that makes it a bit of a bargain, at least for a Samsung.
At last Samsung have just gone ahead and replaced the NC10 with something better, rather than try to cook up yet another endless variation on the theme. The N140 takes all the good bits of the NC10 but adds a larger HDD, a bigger battery and a more modern operating system and some other bits and bobs like draft-n Wi-Fi and stereo speakers and then squeezes them all into a slightly smaller and lighter package but without much of an increase in price. That's a bit of a result if you ask us. ®
More Netbook Reviews...
Sponsored: Optimizing the hybrid cloud