Dell’s Vostro 1310 notebook suitable for small business and budget conscious-users

At a starting weight of just 4.45 pounds and a screen size of 13.3 inches, Dell‘s Vostro 1310 notebook is a suitable companion for any small business, or budget-conscious end-user.

The one downside to this notebook is that while Dell offers a range of colours with its other products, the Vostro 1310 only comes in one colour, black.

At first glance, the notebook appears to be just a basic glossy black colour. However, with closer inspection and when held under the light, the notebook’s glossy black casing also features a subtle hint of metal flakes too. Unlike the notebook’s glossy exterior, the laptop’s interior is all a matte black. I wasn’t a fan of this look and feel because for a business notebook, I was expecting more of a sleeker finish throughout. What I did like though, were the touch-sensitive media buttons just above the keyboard. When one of these buttons is selected, the media button lights up blue. When not in use, the light stays turned off. The blue lighting against the notebook’s black design was visually appealing and gave the notebook a very modern look.

The Vostro 1310’s 13.3 inch screen size was suitable for my basic computing needs and for viewing videos. The notebook comes in one of two screen offerings, with either a matte anti-glare, or a glossy display. Both screens come with a 1280 by 800 WXGA aspect ratio. The model I reviewed was the glossy screen one, which made viewing the screen from different angles a bit challenging and inconvenient at times, since I was constantly tilting and readjusting the screen.

The laptop also comes equipped with a built in camera, along with a biometric fingerprint reader for extra user security. Not a fan of this particular technology, just based on personal preferences, I disabled the fingerprint detection option, and instead enabled a password lock.

Heat and noise weren’t a problem when I used the Vostro 1310 because it was fairly quiet, and didn’t heat up too much when it was placed on my lap.

Boot up time for the notebook was fairly quick too since it runs on Intel‘s Core 2 Duo processor technology. Genuine Windows Vista comes with the notebook, with the option of downgrading to Windows XP Professional.

The Vostro 1310 can also hold up to 4GB of RAM and also comes with either an integrated Intel graphics GM965 Express chipset, or an Intel discrete graphics 965PM Express chip. Storage on the notebook can hold up to 320GB based on a 5400 revolutions per minute (RPM) hard drive.

I found the battery life of the Vostro 1310 was pretty decent and could give up to three and a half hours of use based on balanced power settings. With the screen brightness dimmed and Wi-Fi disabled, I’m sure the battery would stretch at least another half hour or so too. There are three different multi-cell battery options that users can pick from for the Vostro 1310. A four-cell, six-cell and nine-cell lithium ion battery is available, depending on the user’s requirements.

The notebook features a total of four USB ports, with a microphone in, headphone out, multi-card reader, and ExpressCard slot, in additional to a slot-loading optical disk drive, with a Wi-Fi on/off switch, VGA out, Ethernet and security lock slot and a power jack.

Overall, I liked this notebook because of its compact size and weight. If Dell offered the notebook in other colours too, it would be even better. It’s also nice that the vendor is offering this notebook with Windows XP, in addition to Windows Vista as well.

Dell’s Vostro 1310 notebook is now available at a starting price of $879 and comes with a standard one-year parts and labour limited warranty, with the option of extending this up to three years.

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Maxine Cheung
Maxine Cheung
Staff Writer, Computer Dealer News

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