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on November 23, 2012
I bought this notebook to use primarily as a streaming device connected to my TV. It does this well. I also have a few games loaded on it and it runs them well with their settings turned down. I purchased this on Monday of black Friday deal week (2012) for $329 and then used Microsoft's windows upgrade offer ( $15) to install windows 8. The verdict is still out on windows 8 but for the notebook I feel I got a good value. I especially like that it has a HDMI port so it is just one cable going to my TV for video and sound.

If i needed a second I would definitely buy another at the sale price and possibly at regular price. I gave it four stars because I would say I like it not love it. It would have to be faster to love it but that would also cost $500+. Overall I would recommend this notebook for streaming video, light gaming, paper typing, and internet.
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on January 15, 2013
Used to think highly of Dell computers till I got this. Have to keep refreshing my internet browser EVERYTIME because it will not load. It's not my wifi because my internet works just fine on my ipad and other devices plus I have the same problem while using other networks. I have spent hours on the phone with DELL customer service and after all else failed, they restored to factory settings but still no difference. They tried to refer me to their software department to pay $130 because its "not a hardware problem and they are not software experts". Why do I have to pay so much money to fix a problem on a laptop that is still under factory warranty? Just horrible!
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on November 30, 2012
I don't review things very often, but I have decided to give it a go. Below is a list of things I thought were worth mentioning. Hopefully I will remember to update this over time.

It has a very pretty glossy finish. The only negative about this thus far is that it attracts smudges and fingerprints very easily.
Set up was really simple and fast. I did not have to uninstall many programs.
This is the first laptop I have had with the island style keyboard. It will take some time to get used to. In my opinion, it feels a bit clunky.
The optical drive is kind of loud. So far I have only used it to install a few games. I am hoping that it is not quite so loud while playing dvds.
Speaking of games, if you like to play The Sims 3, it works wonderfully.
The Windows Experience Index is 4.6
The webcam could use improvements.
The track pad is not jumpy and the zoom is fun to play with. The scrolling is going to take some practice though.
With default settings, the speakers kind of suck. (What I did to make it better: start/control panel/hardware and sound/sound/right click on speakers/headphones and choose properties/enhancements/check loudness equalization/apply)

Update one:
Thankfully the optical drive is not loud while playing dvds. However, something I have noticed is that when you open it while it is laying flat on a surface (the laptop) the disc holder thingy will scrape along the surface.
I had an issue after using sleep mode for the first time. After doing so, whenever I put it on hibernate, I would find that hours later it had turned itself itself. I did quickly find a solution though and it has not repeated this since.

Update two (a year later):
Still a very good laptop. My least favorite thing is still the optical drive. It is just cheap and flimsy. (It does work though) The only new issue that has popped up for me involves the trackpad. It occasionally just slows down for some reason. I usually just press F3 to deactivate it and then again to reactivate and then it begins working correctly again. At this point I have played many games using this laptop and although you may have to adjust the settings, it still runs wonderfully.
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on December 26, 2012
Finally got fed up and sent this computer back. It kept shutting down Windows, and would say there was no internet connection even though the other laptop was connecting fine. The final straw was when the computer went to black screen with a message stating 'driver power state failure'. Enough already. Two weeks of nothing but trouble.

Update on 12/28/12 Sent this off on Monday the 24th and got an email yesterday that Amazon has processed the refund. Awesome! I was a bit apprehensive about ordering an expensive product online but am very pleased with the quality of customer service provided. Thank you Amazon.
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on September 11, 2012
Excellent for students, good quality in video and fast enough w/ regular MS applications, good responsein internet. It is not too heavy and it doesn't get too hot in your lap.
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on December 25, 2012
I had been looking for a laptop as backup to my Dell desktop for some time. I wanted one with Windows 7 as opposed to Win 8. On Black Friday night I received an e-mail from Amazon about this laptop. After doing some research I ordered it. I day shipping was free with my particular credit card. I received it on following Monday afternoon.

Everything came up and ran correctly. I was able to load all of my application programs. I was able to connect to my wireless network with no problem. I had a problem connecting to to the internet via wireless when using battery mode. It worked perfectly when the laptop was plugged into the wall outlet. I found that there was a setting in advanced power settings that reduced the power consumption of the wireless adapter. I changed it to a better reception setting, and I've had no problem since.

I definately would recomment this laptop, but all current models will probably be shipped with Windows 8.
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on December 14, 2012
I got this for a friend who only needs to browse, watch movies, view google earth and shop online. Its basic and the performance is decent. I have use teamviewer to login to the machine and see its performance and it responds well for the use that i had in mind.
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on February 8, 2013
Let me preface this review by stating that Amazon's service was impeccable and this review is by no means a reflection on them. Now, on to the laptop.

I bought this during the black friday sale as a present for my daughter. Consequently, it wasn't put into use until Christmas day. From the first full system startup, the wifi randomly dropped connection to the router. We have 5 other computers in the house and this laptop was the only one with the issue. Additionally, it would "blue screen" when operating on battery power. After a bit of searching online, a number of people with similar problems suggested the power management needed tweaking. None of the proposed measures fixed the problem. Thinking a complete system reload might help, I proceeded down that path...this didn't help either. Two usb ports then decided to join the fray and quit working. Thankfully all of these problems surfaced during the return period and Amazon issued a refund. Hopefully this system was just a fluke as I am usually pleased with Dell's products.
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on December 2, 2012
I bought this laptop for my wife as a lightning deal on Cyber Monday and picked it up for 329.99. For this price point, I really felt like I couldn't do better. The laptop seems to be pretty solid with good hinges (sounds like a dumb point unless you have had a laptop with crappy hinges). The only part that seems kind of cheap is the keyboard, but for the price I can't complain too much.

It comes with an intel core i3 processor which is what really sold me (I could not find the core i series processors at this price point on any other laptops), as the HD and RAM can be upgraded at a pretty inexpensive price. My wife was adamant about having windows 8 so I purchased the pro upgrade at a reduced price through MS (after rebate from Dell, the upgrade is free). The upgrade went fairly well, however I had to do a bios upgrade in order to get the laptop screen to work with win 8 (the upgrade would seem to freeze after a certain point on me, but once i hooked it up to an external screen i was able to complete it, then found on the dell website that this is a known issue for this model).

I did a clean upgrade to 8 so i can't speak to the performance out of the box with all the bloatware, but for my wife's purposes (viewing videos, pictures, facebook, youtube, etc.) it runs great and is very quick on win 8.

Just a note on the weight. The 8lbs reported by amazon is the weight including shipping materials. The actual weight of the laptop is around 5lbs with a 15.7" screen and we are happy with that size/weight. We have not had a need to really test battery life so I can't speak to that aspect of it.

Overall we are very happy with this product and would consider buying it again.
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on July 12, 2013
Slow from day one. Used for short periods each day for homework. Motherboard beyond financially reasonable repair after having this computer only 6 months. This is my first and last DELL. Lesson learned. One star for the fact that the product was actually received but that is it....wishing I had never bought it in the first place.
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