Wednesday, January 7, 2009

eee 901, end of story

I ordered a Asus Eee 901 about a month ago after some research on the tiny netbooks. It was a windows edition because the linux version was not on sale. The netbook arrived a week later, and the first glance was impressive -- it's really small, especially because I'm used to my 14 inch T61. The keyboard is quite undersized, but not as bad as many online reviews claim.

Putting Xubuntu on it is an easy task, and I was all happy the next day before first the screen and then the whole thing died completely. That's a little more than 24 hours after I put my hands on it. I thought that it was pure bad luck -- I haven't seen any complaints about the build quality of the Eee PCs. So I contacted, where I ordered the computer from, and they were quite willingful to send me another one for exchange. They also provided a return shipping label. It's another two weeks before I receive the replacement due to backordering, but I did get it before the New Year.

This time, it didn't take me 24 hours to find out what's defective: the battery cannot be charged beyond 51%. A quick online search leads to a few similar cases and a few solutions, but none works for the unit I have. So I decide to drain out the battery to see what would happen. Yes, miracle happens, when the battery indicator drops to 0%, the computer is still alive, and stay alive for another 3 hours! This saying, the battery is actually good, but it gives wrongful information to the system. Now I start to recharge the battery, the battery capacity indicator increase from 0% instantly rather than wait until it's half charged. That's a good sign, and indeed, this time the indicator does show 100% charge, but -- why there is always a but -- charging does not stop there. The charging light on the front of the computer keeps blinking in red for a whole night, and there is actually a small charging current of about 20 mA (the normal current is between 1000mA and 2000 mA).

This is not good! Two defective products in a row cannot be explained by my bad luck. So I send it back and decide to wait until the weight of Thinkpad X2** drops to bellow 2.5 lbs.

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