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Almost There For Mobile Gaming

While the E-350 at least brings netbooks into the era of genuine usability and the Radeon HD 6310 is definitely a step up from the Nile platform's IGP, you'll see that unfortunately CPU performance isn't quite there yet.

In all cases the HD 6310 acquits itself fairly well compared to the other integrated parts, but CPU performance takes its pound of flesh. Bumping settings down can improve the situation (usually these lower-powered parts will hit bandwidth limitations at 720p and can come into their own at around 800x600) and at that point you're liable to see a substantial improvement over the Nile platform's Mobility Radeon HD 4225, but at the end of the day we're still pretty heavily processor limited.

Jarred's working on some additional gaming tests for his E-350 review, but the general rule of thumb is that you'll want to look at slightly older games (or very undemanding current games). As an example, the original Half-Life 2 runs reasonably well at 1366x768 and medium quality settings; move to the later episodes, however, and performance starts to drop into the 20s and teens—and don't even try bumping the shadow quality above "Low". Maybe now would be a good time to rediscover some of the gaming gems from before 2007?

Fusion-Powered: Application and Futuremark Performance Genuinely Portable AMD is Here
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  • Gigantopithecus - Tuesday, February 22, 2011 - link

    "When the internet gave everyone a voice, we discovered how few people were actually worth listening to." Reply
  • Halley - Tuesday, February 22, 2011 - link

    In my spare time I enjoy listening to music. Music by youtube - 720 or 1080, please - or by Windows Powerpoint .pps files is better sometimes IMHO. Am I better off with a tablet or with this HP dm1z netbook?
    Reading and replying email must be done, too. Without a keyboard, replying would take more time, I guess.
    Tablets are definitely more portable. It's nice to have both - tablet and netbook - but tablets are too expensive to me. If I can afford, I would have both.
    Reply
  • cyrusfox - Monday, February 21, 2011 - link

    I second this question, is the other mini-PCIe slot msata compatible? Reply
  • nitrousoxide - Monday, February 21, 2011 - link

    I am expecting a Fusion-based netbook with USB 3.0 support, slightly larger screen (12.1 or 13.3 inch) with better display quality and really low noise (as noise is a matter of concern with dm1z), 4GB RAM packed in a form factor lighter than 3.2lbs while charging me no more than USD500. dm1z is not a perfect choice, ASUS 1215B(USB 3.0+overclocking) or MSI U270(USB 3.0) may be better but they are not shipping at this point. One thing I worry about 1215B is upgrade flexibility as 1215N is extremely hard to disassemble so this may be a problem `cuz I want to install an SSD on it. Hope to see more Fusion-based netbook reviews. Reply
  • Impulses - Tuesday, February 22, 2011 - link

    I'm right there with ya... Gimme USB 3.0 plus maybe a slightly larger battery and/or screen and I'm sold, though I'd take 11.6" over 13.3", 12" would be ideal. I don't even care if it's a pain to disassemble, I did it with my 1st gen Acer netbook (to install an X25-V), I don't mind going thru it again if everything else (ports, screen, noise) is ideal. Neither the dm1z (couple of small compromises, and frankly I don't care for the aesthetics) nor the X120 (somewhat overpriced) have struck that perfect balance so until then I'll stick to my current netbook. Reply
  • QChronoD - Monday, February 21, 2011 - link

    Maybe I'm not the typical gamer, but I wouldn't even bother trying to play something that only gets 15 or 20fps on the lowest settings. Looking to replace my old 1.2GHz C2D machine and want to be able to game a little when I have an hour or two between classes.

    I'm more interested in how it scores on some of the older and less demanding games? I would assume that it can play games from 3-4 years ago much better than the ones that you have benchmarked.

    I don't think we'd need exact numbers, but would it be possible to test this level of machine with some older games and just give us a report on whether they ran smoothly at around medium settings? Maybe also test a few of the more demanding flash games, and possibly minecraft.
    Reply
  • JarredWalton - Monday, February 21, 2011 - link

    I'm working on it with the MSI X370... you'll notice the last paragraph on the gaming page mentions additional testing. HL2 runs okay, though EP2 starts to get sluggish. Quake 4 is another title that runs fine. I figure anything from before that time will also be good, so maybe grab the original Deus Ex (with the enhancement mod) while you're at it. :-) Reply
  • QChronoD - Monday, February 21, 2011 - link

    Sorry Jarred, reading comprehension fail on my part.

    Keep up the good word on your reviews.. definitely the best in the business!
    Reply
  • Powerlurker - Tuesday, February 22, 2011 - link

    If you're a gamer, you probably wouldn't be looking at a netbook in the first place. The extra graphics horsepower in Brazos is mostly intended for things like video decoding and Flash acceleration. Reply
  • MonkeyPaw - Monday, February 21, 2011 - link

    I looked at this very netbook at a local store, and I saw that it came with 71 services running from the factory. It's such a disservice what OEMs do to machines. I can't imagine any machine would feel responsive with that much running in the background. Though I am impressed with the 7200rpm drive on a netbook.

    Did you do a clean install for your tests?
    Reply

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