Received the Laptop

I just received my new Dell Inspiron 6000 Notebook this Monday and I’m quite happy with it so far. Raquel teased that because I have a new toy, I’m all giddy again. Well, I certainly wasn’t disappointed with the new laptop.

Honestly, I was a little wary on purchasing a Dell laptop online. I mean, I’ve never seen it except on the images Dell had on site. I wasn’t able to try it out unlike the display laptops in brick & mortar computer shops. I could only hope that the reviews I’ve read for this notebook are fairly accurate.

It’s a sleek and shiny machine and it didn’t weigh as much as I originally thought. The screen looked nice and clear and I was thankful that I upgraded to the 15.4″ Ultrasharp Wide Screen SXVGA+ (with a 1680 x 1050 display resolution) just before ordering the laptop. The default 1280 x 800 resolution doesn’t look nearly as crisp as the one I have. I had to increase the display font size though as the text were so tiny at the 1680 x 1050 resolution.

If your eyes just glazed over that technical mumbo-jumbo, the short of it is that I bought the notebook with a better screen than what it would’ve been by default.

I’ve also been installing software on the machine since I got it two days ago and I’m still not done. I wanted to have all my stuff in there as soon as possible so that I could quickly determine if there’s something wrong with it — so I could return it if there is. And so far, so good.

The typical programs I use seem to run just fine on the notebook with the exception of Half-Life 2 / Counterstrike: Source. Granted that the laptop I bought wasn’t really designed to be a gamer’s PC, it’s understandable that it didn’t match the performance of my current desktop PC, game-wise. Still, if I really want to play HL2 or CS:S, I still could; I just have to endure the skips in frames.

I also tried the wireless feature (dual band 802.11 a/b/g 54Mbps) on the laptop when I got it. It was the first time I had a machine capable of WiFi networking so I was a little daunted by it at the start. It didn’t take a genius to make it work in the end. When I turned on my laptop’s WiFi at work, I found over ten WiFi capable machines and/or ports, most of them secure.

I was curious so I connected to one of the unsecured WiFi nodes belonging to an Australian telecommunication company (the node was labelled as such). I was very hopeful that that telecom company was offering free WiFi Internet access to everybody around the Melbourne CBD. Unfortunately, I was only able to gain access to that company’s Intranet (internal Internet). Ah, well. At least now I know the WiFi on the laptop works.

At home, I plugged the LAN cable I usually reserve for my Playstation 2 to the laptop to test the LAN card. At first I thought there was something wrong with it because I couldn’t connect to the Internet even though my PS2 could using the same cable. In the end, I realised the problem was that I was running the laptop on batteries. The default setting on the machine was to turn off the network card when the laptop is on batteries. I’ll have to change that later.

I also tested the DVD drive by playing my The Matrix DVD on the laptop. According to the Dell site, the notebook should come with CyberLink’s PowerDVD software. Well, it did, in a way. It was part of Dell’s Media Centre software which I thought to be a little crappy. I was happier with PowerDVD 5 which I use on my desktop machine; it had more features. So, I installed PowerDVD 5 on top of the one already installed. It worked without problems.

I still have a lot of stuff I need to install and test on the new laptop in the coming days like my PocketPC programs, my programming software suite and graphics software. Once I’m all done with that, I can finally get back to doing what I used to do during my spare time.

Published in: on September 7, 2005 at 1:54 pm  Comments (5)