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Acer Aspire One 522-BZ897

  • Category: Notebook Computers
Last Updated
March 24, 2011

Editor's Rating
3.5 Out of 5

Pros
  • High-quality LED display
  • Lots of connectivity
  • Multitouch trackpad
  • Good battery life

Cons
  • Needs a 1GB RAM upgrade
  • Slippery keyboard

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Review

The Acer Aspire One 522-BZ897 is a 10.1-inch netbook with a 250GB hard drive, a multitouch trackpad and AMD's latest Fusion dual-core processor. The standard 1GB of RAM is much too small for great performance, so a RAM upgrade is a must with this netbook.

The measurements of the Acer Aspire One 522-BZ897 are 1.01 x 10.2 x 7.3-inches (hwd) and it weighs 2.6-pounds, which is a little heavier than other netbooks, especially for its small size. The chassis is made of a sturdy plastic with a shiny finish the shows a good amount of fingerprints.

The keyboard on the Acer Aspire One 522-BZ897 is 93% of a full size keyboard and is the usual chiclet-style. However, the keys were quite slippery in our opinion and led to some slippage while typing at a brisk pace. Acer includes a multitouch trackpad that supports multitouch gestures, like pinch for zooming. The trackpad's performance was quite good and all the gestures worked as they should.

A very high-quality 10.1-inch LED-backlit widescreen display provides a pleasurable viewing experience with this netbook. The native resolution of 1280 x 768-pixels, which is just over 720p high-definition resolution. Because the screen is only 10.1-inches, viewing text documents for long durations does get tiresome, but viewing multimedia content and some light productivity work suits this display just fine. The display is very bright and displayed excellent color and contrast qualities.

In terms of connectivity, the Acer Aspire One 522-BZ897 doesn't leave much to desire. You get 3 USB 2.0 ports, HDMI-out, VGA-out, Ethernet (10/100 only) and a multiformat memory card reader. Wireless 802.11b/g/n connectivity is also built-in. It's really nice to see an HDMI port on such a cheaply priced netbook as some other competitors lack this crucial multimedia feature.

The internal specifications include AMD's latest Fusion dual-core 1GHz C50 CPU, 1GB of DDR3 RAM, a 250GB 5400RPM hard drive and integrated AMD Radeon HD 6250 graphics. Acer pre-installs Microsoft Windows 7 Starter as the operating system. The 1GB of RAM is much too low for really good performance, especially since the integrated AMD graphics consumes 256MB of it. To get a huge performance boost, you'll want to add another 1GB of RAM to this netbook. Once you've done that, the Acer Aspire One 522-BZ897 turns into a very powerful netbook that doesn't end up costing a whole lot.

Even with an upgraded 2GB of RAM, don't expect to do any 3D gaming on this computer because it has integrated graphics versus discrete graphics, which severely limits your graphical performance.

Acer includes quite a bit of trialware and bloatware with this netbook, which is very disappointing. The office productivity suite that comes with the Acer Aspire One 522-BZ897 is Microsoft Office 2010 Starter Edition, which is a "light" version of the regular Office suite. There are also many different Acer-related utilities and tools and some of which are helpful, but some are not. There's also many games and completely left-field applications like the New York Times eReader software.

Battery life is quite admirable at around 6-7 hours using the included 6-cell battery.


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