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Leo Waldock

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WD Black2 Dual Drive

Bigger on the inside: WD’s Tardis-like Black² Dual Drive laptop disk

Review The phone call from Western Digital's people promised me “a completely new category of hard drive”. Naturally I was sceptical. After all, what could possibly be new in the world of rotating magnetic media – and don’t we all just want fast SSDs anyway? In fact, there’s no denying that WD has indeed delivered something new and, …
Leo Waldock, 06 Dec 2013
In-Win D-Frame

Build a BONKERS gaming PC

Feature There is a select band of gamers who will only be satisfied by a huge amount of graphics and processing power. For them, the only thing to do is build a bonkers gaming PC. In my opinion, the tricky part of the job is organising the pile of parts that you’ll use for the build. While we ‘Build a Bonkers...’ writers don’t worry …
Leo Waldock, 18 Mar 2013
AMD Llano vs Intel Sandy Bridge

AMD Llano vs Intel Sandy Bridge

Review At first glance, AMD's 'Llano' CPU and Intel's 'Sandy Bridge' second-generation Core i platform look like blood brothers. They combine the CPU, a GPU and a memory controller all on a single 32nm die. So how do these laptop chips stand up against each other? To find out, we asked HP to send us two 15.6in Pavilion dv6 laptops, …
Leo Waldock, 03 Oct 2011
Acer Ethos 5951 15in laptop

Acer Ethos 5951G 15.6in Core i5 notebook

Review The Acer Ethos 5951G laptop, with its matt black casing and blue activity LEDs, looks rather purposeful. I continued to be impressed by the cosmetics as I hefted the 3.3kg slab onto my lap even though a closer look revealed the brushed finish on the lid was nothing more than plastic, rather than the implied aluminium skin. …
Leo Waldock, 22 Sep 2011
Packard Bell Easynote LM

Intel 'Sandy Bridge' mobile platform

Review Sandy Bridge is the codename for Intel's second generation of Core processors that covers Core i3, i5 and i7 for both side of the desktop-mobile divide. If you've been following the news lately, you'll know that Dell has discovered flaws in the Cougar Point chipset that, while not revealing a fault in the actual Sandy Bridge CPU …
Leo Waldock, 01 Feb 2011
15in laptops

15in Notebooks: Best Buys

Group Test Choosing a winner from this group of 15.6in laptops was a tricky matter as they have a great deal in common. Apart from sharing the same size screen and 1366 x 768 resolution, they all come with 802.11n Wi-Fi and have a tray-loading multi-format DVD writer. So relatively small differences count for a lot. The HP Pavilion dv6 …
Leo Waldock, 20 Sep 2010
15in laptops

Buyer's Guide: 15in Notebooks

Group Test In this group test I'm comparing six models that have a 15.6in screen with a decent, 1366 x 768 resolution that supports HD video - look for an HDMI port if you want to hook it up to a telly. A mid-size 15.6-inch chassis gives you free rein to choose either a dual-core or quad-core CPU. Intel rules the roost with its Core i3 …
Leo Waldock, 20 Sep 2010
Toshiba Satellite Pro C650

Toshiba Satellite Pro C650

Review Toshiba has built its Satellite Pro C650 into a chassis that feels rather cheap and not especially cheerful. The deck around the keyboard has a curious textured finish that shows greasy fingerprint marks horribly. Toshiba Satellite Pro C650 Furthermore, the layout of the hardware appears to be guided by the price rather than …
Leo Waldock, 20 Sep 2010
Sony Vaio EB

Sony Vaio EB2

Review The Sony Vaio EB2 is available in a choice of brown, black or pink. Presumably Sony mistook your reviewer for a teenage girl as they sent me the pink version, which was a nasty shock. Sony Vaio EB More importantly I got a pre-production sample with a Pentium P6000 CPU which runs at 1.87GHz and does not support HyperThreading …
Leo Waldock, 20 Sep 2010
Lenovo ThinkPad Edge

Lenovo ThinkPad Edge

Review Lenovo offers its ThinkPad Edge in a massive number of permutations but they are all rather expensive and start north of £1000. My review sample was a relatively basic model that came without the 3G mobile broadband option and with the 4GB of memory installed in two modules, leaving no scope for an upgrade in that department. …
Leo Waldock, 20 Sep 2010
Acer Aspire 5741

Acer Aspire 5741

Review The Aspire 5741 follows Acer's tried and true formula of extracting the maximum value from the core hardware without wasting money by adding extra features. The fact of the matter is that the Intel Core i3's combination of CPU and graphics isn't especially exciting but it does a very fair job of work and offers good value for …
Leo Waldock, 20 Sep 2010
HP Pavilion dv6

HP Pavilion dv6

Review HP describes the Pavilion dv6-3085EA as an "entertainment notebook PC" which shows a shocking lack of imagination as this laptop has a list of interesting features that merit close examination. For starters, this particular version of the dv6 stands out in a world of Intel laptops as it uses an AMD CPU which is allied with an …
Leo Waldock, 20 Sep 2010
Dell Inspiron 15R

Dell Inspiron 15R

Review I'm used to seeing Dell laptops and PCs that are as dull as mud, so the rather attractive-looking Inspiron 15R sample came as a shock. The lid comes in a choice of red, pink, blue or black while the deck of the chassis surrounding the keyboard is chromed. Dell Inspiron 15R The power button and activity lights use subdued …
Leo Waldock, 20 Sep 2010
CyberPower Ultra Scylla

Cyberpower Ultra Scylla six-core AMD PC

Review The Cyberpower Ultra Scylla derives its name from a mythical six-headed sea beastie, which is a tribute to the hexa-core nature of the AMD Phenom II X6 1055T processor that lies inside the PC. CyberPower Ultra Scylla The joy of six: Cyberpower's Ultra Scylla The £899 version of the Ultra Scylla that I was sent includes a …
Leo Waldock, 14 Jul 2010
Sony Vaio L13

Sony Vaio L13 touchscreen PC

Review The Sony Vaio L series of all-in-one touchscreen PCs launched last year, now has some new additions. The Vaio L13, L11 and L12 models share the same basic features including a 24in 1920 x 1080 multi-touch glossy screen, 4GB RAM and 64-bit Windows 7 Home Premium. Sony Vaio L13 Touch and go: Sony's Vaio L13 The L11 model …
Leo Waldock, 30 Jun 2010
WD SSD SiliconEdge

WD SiliconEdge Blue 256GB SSD

Review Hard drive manufacturer Western Digital has taken not one but two steps into the Solid State Drive market. Up in the Enterprise stratosphere we have three WD N1x drives that use SLC memory and are hellishly expensive at £310 for 32GB, £649 for 64GB and £1099 for 128GB. WD SSD SiliconEdge Solid offering? Western Digital's …
Leo Waldock, 17 Jun 2010
Acer TimelineX

Acer Timeline X 4820TG

Review A year ago Acer’s Aspire Timeline 4810T notched up a ground-breaking eight hours of battery life thanks to the careful use of low power Core 2 hardware. The new Acer Aspire Timeline X ups the ante with claims that it can deliver up to 12 hours from the optional nine-cell battery – the standard six-cell is another story. Acer …
Leo Waldock, 12 May 2010
Acer Aspire X5900

Acer Aspire X5900

Review Acer classifies its Aspire X5900 as a prestige PC and I have to confess that I was bowled over by the looks of this sleek micro-tower. The power button is brightly lit with a white LED, while the hard drive activity light is positioned on the top of the case along with the DVD eject button. It’s all very neat. Acer Aspire …
Leo Waldock, 29 Apr 2010
Dell Inspiron Zino HD

Dell Inspiron Zino HD

Review The price of the Dell Inspiron Zino HD has risen since Reg Hardware first reviewed it, with the base price now starting at £329 instead of £279. The highly specced review system came complete with a Blu-ray combo drive and we calculate the all-in price at £730. Dell Inspiron Zino HD You don’t get a TFT display included in …
Leo Waldock, 29 Apr 2010
Fujitsu Esprimo Q9000

Fujitsu Esprimo Q9000

Review Fujitsu's Esprimo Q9000 packs the guts of a laptop into a tiny desktop system. There’s a 2.13GHz Intel Core i3-330M with integrated Intel HD graphics, 4GB of DDR 3 memory, a 160GB Hitachi laptop hard drive and Gigabit Ethernet. Fujitsu Esprimo Q9000 There's an 802.11n Wi-Fi option - it was included in the test unit - and you …
Leo Waldock, 29 Apr 2010
Peak Cape 7 Ion

Peak Cape 7 Ion

Review The Cape 7 Ion combines a single-core Intel Atom 230 processor with a Nvidia Ion graphics chipset in a tiny PC that measures 173 x 154 x 20mm - approximately the same size as a paperback book. Peak Cape 7 Ion Inside the casing there is a Fujitsu 2.5in laptop hard drive that was 80GB in the test sample but will be 160GB in …
Leo Waldock, 29 Apr 2010
Shuttle XPC SG41J1

Shuttle XPC SG41J1

Review The SG41J1 is part of Shuttle's entry-level J series of barebones systems so you’ll be building this PC yourself. Provided you can live with fairly basic integrated graphics you’ll need to supply an LGA775 Intel Core 2 processor, DDR 2 memory, a hard drive and an operating system, plus mouse, keyboard, speakers and a display. …
Leo Waldock, 29 Apr 2010
Viewsonic PC Mini 132

Viewsonic PC Mini 132

Review The Viewsonic PC Mini 132 has a fair amount in common with the Cape 7 Ion as both machines are tiny devices that combine an Intel Atom processor with an Nvidia's Ion integrated chipset. Viewsonic PC Mini 132 Viewsonic includes a stand that holds the PC upright with the antenna for the Atheros-made 802.11n wireless pointing …
Leo Waldock, 29 Apr 2010
Mini Desktop PCs

Mini Desktop PCs: Best Buys

Group Test Mini PCs range from the downright tiny to systems that, today, seem barely smaller than a regular mini-tower machine. They encompass models based on desktop components and PCs that use laptop parts. To recap, here are the machines I looked at this time: Acer Aspire X5900 Dell Inspiron Zino HD Fujitsu Esprimo Q9000 Peak …
Leo Waldock, 29 Apr 2010
Mini Desktop PCs

Mini Desktop PCs

Group Test While Microsoft and Intel both spent many years trying to persuade us we needed big, bulky media centre PCs underneath our TVs, space considerations and a lack of downloadable content meant that most folk were more than happy to make do with a DVD player. The explosion in online content - particularly video material - means …
Leo Waldock, 29 Apr 2010