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View Full Version : Inspiron Mini 12...why?



NintendoTogepi
November 24th, 2008, 07:17 AM
What's the difference between this and the Mini 9?

As far as I can tell, a far bigger hard drive, a bigger battery and...that's it? Plus it comes with the major negative of Windows Vista installed (with no technical boost from the Mini 9) instead of Ubuntu or XP...

gn2
November 24th, 2008, 01:11 PM
The screen, far better resolution at 1280x800.

Sadly the price Dell is charging for the Mini 12 in the UK is an illustration of manufacturer greed.
No way should it cost 430.

Far better 12" laptops are available for significantly less money, e.g. this one (http://www.pcworld.co.uk/martprd/store/pcw_page.jsp?BV_SessionID=@@@@1623154762.122752849 8@@@@&BV_EngineID=ccceadefkgffldkcflgceggdhhmdfnm.0&page=Product&fm=null&sm=null&tm=null&sku=904068&category_oid=-27757).

LMP900
November 24th, 2008, 02:14 PM
The screen, far better resolution at 1280x800.

Sadly the price Dell is charging for the Mini 12 in the UK is an illustration of manufacturer greed.
No way should it cost 430.

Far better 12" laptops are available for significantly less money, e.g. this one (http://www.pcworld.co.uk/martprd/store/pcw_page.jsp?BV_SessionID=@@@@1623154762.122752849 8@@@@&BV_EngineID=ccceadefkgffldkcflgceggdhhmdfnm.0&page=Product&fm=null&sm=null&tm=null&sku=904068&category_oid=-27757).

Manufacturer greed? They are a business; they will sell the product at the most profitable price. If they attempt to sell something at a higher price than we are willing to pay, they are the ones to suffer. Not us.

gn2
November 24th, 2008, 03:47 PM
Manufacturer greed? They are a business; they will sell the product at the most profitable price.

Indeed.

Sadly they are able to charge over the odds for the "trendy" or "cool" factor, just like Apple.
Fools and their money are easy parted and all that.

I still contend that the Dell Mini 12 is vastly overpriced, as is the Mini 9.

If Acer can knock out the Aspire One for 180 and show a profit, Dell are just greedy charging 270 for a Mini 9.

Dragonbite
November 24th, 2008, 04:33 PM
Crap, that's better than my current Dell D400!

Except the price, of course... to buy a Mini 12 would cost a few hundred buck while to use my D400 right now it costs me nothing! ;)

Oh, I see it doesn't have 1394 ports. That's +2 for my current system.

And that my system is running Ubuntu is another for a total of +3!

noremac
November 24th, 2008, 04:57 PM
They're going to make what will sell. As others have said, if it doesn't sell thats their problem.

Many people were rather unsatisfied that Asus was making the Eee bigger and more a little more expensive. Asus took what was a small line of 7 inch netbooks and has now grown it (and some believe overgrown) to something way larger than what was expected. I however, am very glad they did that...as I type this on my Eee 1000. This is so improved over the 701 series.

This could be a flop for Dell due to a high price, but it could also be a stepping stone to something else they will create. Who knows.

-Cameron

Dragonbite
November 24th, 2008, 05:02 PM
Is there any talk of offering it with Ubuntu installed?

I will not be surprised if Linux didn't help sell the Mini 9, tapping into the growing Linux user base.

klange
November 24th, 2008, 05:20 PM
The graphics chipset in the Mini 12 is completely incompatible with Mesa - Intel turned to a third party to make the "GMA 500" which bears no resemblance to any other Intel graphics chipset. If you want a netbook with Linux, get the Mini 9.

zmjjmz
November 24th, 2008, 05:29 PM
I think they figured that they could just make a 12" laptop for kicks.

Dragonbite
November 24th, 2008, 05:37 PM
The problem I think they'll find is people like me. Why go for a netbook with 12" screen when I can get a more powerful one with a 12" screen?

One of the advantages of the netbook is the small but usable size which reduces the most common tasks it has to handle (anybody going to try desktop publishing or large-scale graphics on one? doubtfull, except with an external monitor and even then probably pretty rare).

If I am going to get to the size of a laptop then I am going to want laptop power and capabilities.

Now if this was the first 12" laptop coming out then that would be different, but 12" laptops have been around for a number of years so half of the "wow" factor is missing whereas the netbooks have a "Wow!" factor.

gn2
November 24th, 2008, 07:13 PM
The graphics chipset in the Mini 12 is completely incompatible with Mesa - Intel turned to a third party to make the "GMA 500" which bears no resemblance to any other Intel graphics chipset. If you want a netbook with Linux, get the Mini 9.

Is it definitely a 500 in the Mini 12?

This page (http://www.euro.dell.com/content/products/productdetails.aspx/laptop-inspiron-12?c=uk&cs=ukdhs1&l=en&s=dhs&dgc=ST&cid=5186&lid=121454) states 900

This one (http://www.euro.dell.com/content/products/productdetails.aspx/laptop-inspiron-12?c=uk&cs=ukdhs1&l=en&s=dhs&dgc=ST&cid=5186&lid=121454) states 500

Could 500 be a typo?

LowSky
November 24th, 2008, 07:25 PM
both say 429

xpod
November 24th, 2008, 07:34 PM
both say 429

Their talking about the chipset and not the price:)



Is it definitely a 500 in the Mini 12?

This page states 900

This one states 500

Could 500 be a typo?

Both of those seem to be the same page.With the 900 listed.

gn2
November 24th, 2008, 07:35 PM
both say 429

Which is a lot of reasons to buy something else ;)

gn2
November 24th, 2008, 07:40 PM
Both of those seem to be the same page.With the 900 listed.

Thanks for pointing that out Xpod, the second link should have been for the Tech Specs tab on the product page which lists the graphics adapter as 500.

klange
November 24th, 2008, 07:42 PM
My source is from a feed pulled on the Fedora planet. Could be wrong, hopefully is, but he had a complete synopsis on the GMA 500 (and the new Atom chipset that it is part of, which is supposed to be in the Mini 12).

e: Dell.com says 500. This machine utterly fails.

http://oasis-games.com/~klange/mini12.png

(Listed for all available stock models)

Plus, at 12", it's just another ultraportable laptop. I think I'll stick to the 9, which can actually do things like hardware accelerated 3D.

gn2
November 24th, 2008, 08:02 PM
I think I'll stick to the 9, which can actually do things like hardware accelerated 3D.

Problem is that the 9 is massively more expensive than the Acer Aspire One.

jdong
November 24th, 2008, 08:11 PM
The GMA500 is definitely paired with the Z5xx series Atoms -- and those are PowerVR cores, not related to the GMA950/GMA3xxx ancestry. I'm not sure if Linux drivers for this chipset exist. That is probably why Ubuntu isn't an offered option on it yet.

DellCA
November 25th, 2008, 08:30 PM
If you wanted to, you can view the User Manual for the Mini 12 here (http://support.dell.com/support/edocs/systems/ins1210/). Checking it, I show the 12 uses the GMA 500 graphics chipset.

I'm not sure what the exact reasons for it are, but if we are not selling the Mini 12 with Linux then it is going to be due to some part of the hardware not having support. This is also the reason not all of the 'normal' Dell notebook or desktops have an Ubuntu option. Which is worse, after all, selling a system without a Linux option, or selling it with a Linux option but with unsupported hardware? :)

jdong
November 25th, 2008, 08:40 PM
Well currently the reason is almost certainly that the PowerVR graphics chipset (GMA500) has basically no Linux support. Is that going to change in the future? I am willing to bet so... Dell has been known for getting us goodies with their influence (i.e. the wl.ko broadcom STA drivers). Let's hope the same happens.

init1
November 25th, 2008, 10:36 PM
what's the difference between this and the mini 9?

3 ;)

gn2
November 26th, 2008, 08:24 AM
3 ;)

I understand why you might think that, but it's actually 160!

init1
November 26th, 2008, 02:34 PM
I understand why you might think that, but it's actually 160!
Rather counterintuitive then ;)

mips
November 26th, 2008, 02:38 PM
Far better 12" laptops are available for significantly less money, e.g. this one (http://www.pcworld.co.uk/martprd/store/pcw_page.jsp?BV_SessionID=@@@@1623154762.122752849 8@@@@&BV_EngineID=ccceadefkgffldkcflgceggdhhmdfnm.0&page=Product&fm=null&sm=null&tm=null&sku=904068&category_oid=-27757).

Friends don't let friends buy Packard Bell ;)

Dragonbite
November 26th, 2008, 02:44 PM
I understand why you might think that, but it's actually 160!

Ok, I'm curious about your math. I'm sure there's a good explanation but I'm missing it. :)

jdong
November 26th, 2008, 02:55 PM
Ok, I'm curious about your math. I'm sure there's a good explanation but I'm missing it. :)

I'm guessing the price tag :)

Dragonbite
November 26th, 2008, 03:06 PM
I'm guessing the price tag :)

<Smack hand on head>Doh!</Smack>
8-[

gn2
November 26th, 2008, 05:26 PM
Friends don't let friends buy Packard Bell ;)

Well, one's mileage may vary...

Personally I've never had any bother with any Packard Bell kit I've owned or been responsible for.

gn2
November 26th, 2008, 05:29 PM
I'm guessing the price tag :)

Spot on.

429 UK = $652 US = a shocking price for a very low spec 12" laptop.

rigormotis
December 9th, 2008, 11:27 PM
Well currently the reason is almost certainly that the PowerVR graphics chipset (GMA500) has basically no Linux support. Is that going to change in the future? I am willing to bet so... Dell has been known for getting us goodies with their influence (i.e. the wl.ko broadcom STA drivers). Let's hope the same happens.

I have a Mini 12 and have been stuck with Vista for a little while, but I just checked on Dell's japanese site (where the mini 12 has been available for a couple months already) and they do offer a Ubuntu version with the GMA 500 chipset. Hopefully I won't have to wait much longer till I can get rid of Vista.

http://www1.jp.dell.com/content/products/productdetails.aspx/laptop-inspiron-12?c=jp&cs=jpdhs1&l=ja&s=dhs&~ck=anavml&ref=homepg

linuxguymarshall
December 9th, 2008, 11:42 PM
I see no reason to get the Mini 12. Only the Mini 9. There are better 12 inchers out there for less than the mini 12

gn2
December 10th, 2008, 12:19 AM
Ubuntu Mini 12 also available in UK now, but it's still a hideous price.

http://tinyurl.com/6r76r6

kylecronan
December 19th, 2008, 10:21 AM
I see no reason to get the Mini 12. Only the Mini 9. There are better 12 inchers out there for less than the mini 12

Yes, but not ones that weigh 3 pounds. My 4 year old Toughbook T2 finally croaked on me the other day and the Mini 12 was the perfect replacement. It's significantly faster than what I had, very similar form factor, and 1/4 the price I paid back then.

jdong
December 19th, 2008, 01:45 PM
Personally, I view these netbooks as appliances, and as such to be honest, as much as it'll get me flamed, I really don't care for its practical purposes what OS it runs as long as it has good internet connectivity and set of remote-access applications. For me, as long as it runs some SSH client and Firefox, I am all set. My primary use case for these netbooks is as a portable network terminal into my 8-core shell server or Linux/OSX desktops.

gn2
December 19th, 2008, 09:53 PM
My primary use case for these netbooks is as a portable network terminal into my 8-core shell server or Linux/OSX desktops.

In which case you probably wouldn't want to buy a 12" Dell one that costs double what a 9" Acer one costs...?

jdong
December 19th, 2008, 10:09 PM
In which case you probably wouldn't want to buy a 12" Dell one that costs double what a 9" Acer one costs...?

I would probably go with a 9" formfactor for a netbook. If I get something in the 12-13 inch area I want something with a decent amount of processing power to double as a usable standalone system for my work too -- at least a P-class 1.6-2.0GHz core 2 duo low-voltage CPU.