Reviews  

Gateway LT21

Jayesh Shinde 2010-09-03
75 Good
Price: Rs 19,990

Full Review

The Gateway LT21 is a 10-inch netbook that runs on an Intel Atom N450 1.6-GHz processor, and packs in plenty of RAM and hard drive space. It also has a very good keyboard for a netbook.

Design
The Gateway LT21 appears to be the shrunked version of the 11.6-inch Gateway LT31 netbook. The LT21 has a 10-inch form factor and an all-black look. The netbook has a glossy black screen lid -- fingerprint magnet -- but matte finish elsewhere including the keyboard, touchpad, and palmrest.

The Gateway LT21 is just a regular netbook without any extra features.


The Gateway LT21 isn’t really stylish like the Sony VAIO M, MSI Wind U160, or Lenovo IdeaPad S10-3 nor is it extra-thin like the Asus Eee PC 1018P -- it’s just a regular black netbook. It has average build quality and weighs 1.4-kg with a six-cell battery -- standard for a 10-inch netbook.

Usability
The Gateway LT-21 comes with a 10.1-inch glossy LED-backlit screen with a resolution of 1024x600 pixels. Nothing about the screen stands out -- it’s an average netbook screen with good brightness and contrast levels. Colors on the screen aren’t warm and appear a tad bit washed out. But reading both text and watching video went well on the Gateway LT21’s 10-inch screen. The screen has a 1.3MP webcam on its top bezel which is good for videochats.

The Gateway LT21’s keyboard has a similar layout compared to the one on Acer Aspire One 532h. The flat-top keys are nice and big and isolated enough to give a comfortable typing experience. The keyboard is different compared to the Dell Inspiron Mini 10 or the Lenovo IdeaPad S10-3 in terms of layout but the feel and ease-of-use is good as the best on the Gateway LT21 -- slightly better than the Sony VAIO M. The netbook’s gesture-enabled touchpad is good to use, but it’s single strip mouse button is a bit of a pain and takes time getting used to.

Hardware Specs and Features
The Gateway LT21 has standard netbook hardware. It comes with a 1.66-GHz Intel Atom N450 processor, 2GB RAM, 320GB hard drive, and onboard Intel GMA 3150 graphics -- nothing better or worse compared to our featured Top 5 Netbooks. You can easily upgrade its RAM and hard drive, though, with isolated RAM and HDD compartments on the netbook’s back panel. The Gateway LT21 comes with Windows 7 Starter Edition operating system.

For connectivity options, the Gateway LT21 features three USB ports, VGA, Ethernet, audio jacks, and a card reader slot. The Gateway LT21, disappointingly, doesn’t include Gigabit Ethernet or Wi-Fi 802.11n -- settling for 100Mbit LAN and Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g support. Also, like the HP Mini 210-1095tu, the Gateway LT21 doesn’t bundle in any extra features: instant on pre-OS or syncing data to the cloud; Lenovo IdeaPad S10-3’s VeriFace login or OneKey backup and recovery software. The Gateway LT21 is just a regular netbook without any extras.

Performance
The Gateway LT21 performed like any other netbook, in our synthetic benchmarks. With a WorldBench 6 score of 33, you can expect to multitask up to three programs -- browsing the Web, listening to music, working on a spreadsheet, for instance -- before hitting into serious performance roadblocks.

The onboard audio of the Gateway LT21 isn’t great but okay for personal entertainment confined to a small office cubicle -- we still recommend headphones, though. The Gateway LT21 played standard definition video well but couldn’t play smooth 720p HD video files.

The Gateway LT21 netbook’s six-cell battery lasted 3 hours 57 minutes in our synthetic battery test -- carried out on full-screen brightness and high performance preset. This isn’t the best battery life compared to most netbooks featured in our Top 5 Netbooks list, but it isn’t bad either. Expect close to 7 hours of run time on a single charge, on a conservative power plan.

Bottom Line

The Gateway LT21 sells for a priced of Rs. 19,990. It’s just a regular netbook offering standard netbook performance. The only thing we liked about it is its extra RAM and hard drive space offering, and that it’s easily upgradeable. It also has a very good keyboard.

It isn’t exactly stylish and doesn’t offer any extras compared to the Dell Inspiron Mini 10, Lenovo IdeaPad S10-3 or HP Mini 210-1095tu featured in our Top 5 Netbooks list. But consider the Gateway LT21 if you’re hunting for a netbook below Rs. 20,000.

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