Acer Ferrari 4000 notebook
Getting Turion right
If you fancy a bit of downtime, the ATI Mobility Radeon X700 chipset should be able to cater for your needs. You won't be playing anything at the native screen resolution, but if you're sensible with your settings you'll get a decent enough frame rate from most games.
The chassis is jam-packed with pretty much every feature you could want. On the right-hand side is a slot loading DVD writer. Why doesn't every notebook ship with a slot loading drive? It's a real pain trying to eject a drive tray when you've got a notebook balanced on your lap, or even on a tray table on a plane, but with a slot loading drive the procedure is simple and there's no drive tray to damage. Not only is the slot loading method a welcome sight, the drive itself is also a good one. This is a Super-Multi Panasonic DVD burner that will happily write to DVD+R/RW, DVD-R/RW, DVD+R DL and DVD-RAM discs, while also supporting CD-R and CD-RW media. Next to the optical drive are three USB 2.0 ports, all with enough space around them for full population.
At the front you'll find the two hard switches for the Bluetooth and Wi-Fi adaptors, a headphone socket, a mic socket, an infrared port and a memory card reader which will accept SD/MMC, xD and MemoryStick/MemoryStick Pro cards.
The left-hand side sports a Type II PC Card slot, which unfortunately has a removable blanker rather than a spring-loaded door. I far prefer the latter since it leaves you with nothing to lose while you're using the slot. There's also a four-pin FireWire port, another USB 2.0 port, a modem socket, the Ethernet port and a D-SUB port for connecting an external monitor.
The rear is dominated by the battery, but there's still room for a docking connector, a TV-out port and a DVI output.