Home' LAPTOP Magazine : September 2010 Contents UMPCS
At first blush, the Viliv N5 seems like the perfect
compromise between smart phones and tablets
that don't offer the full PC experience, but for
whom netbooks are too big. This 5-inch, 1-pound
system is powerful enough to run Windows 7 with
all the trimmings, and even includes a webcam and
optional 3G broadband. However, with a starting
price of $649, the N5 doesn't come cheap, and its
battery life is relatively short. So is this pocket-size
Windows machine more than just a novelty?
Measuring 6.8 x 3.4 x 1 inches, the Viliv N5 is
much larger than even the biggest superphone,
but it still fit in the front pocket of our Dockers.
The superior build quality and elegant design
look premium. We love the soft rubberized black
plastic exterior. Throughout our testing, the device
stayed relatively cool.
The N5 sports a thumb-friendly QWERTY
keyboard with good tactile
feedback. For the most part,
the fairly large keys appear in
their typical positions, but the
placement of some of them
Instead of a traditional
touchpad or pointing stick,
the N5 has a tiny optical touch
square located above the right
corner of the keyboard. In the
upper left-hand corner are
dedicated keys that serve as
left and right mouse buttons.
You'll only find a single USB port, a microSD
Card slot, and a headphone jack for port selction.
There's no VGA or HDMI output option.
The 1.3-megapixel webcam couldn't produce an
image larger than 320 x 240 when shooting stills
or videos. Worse still, the camera had real trouble
handling florescent and low lighting. Over Skype,
Get More Online
N5 IN THE FLESH
See just how small a PC can be.
See p. 6 for more info on how to use this code with your cell phone.
Although it's on the pricey side,
this pocket-size Windows PC is
CPU: 1.33-GHz Intel Atom Z520 Operating
System: Windows 7 Starter RAM/Upgrade-
able to: 1GB/GB Hard Drive Size/Speed:
32GB SSD/N/A Display Size/Resolution: 4.8
inches/1024 x 600 Graphics/Video Memory:
Intel GMA 500/Shared Wireless: 802.11b/g,
Bluetooth 2.1 + EDR, 3G Ports: One USB 2.0,
headphoneCard Slots: microSD Size:6.8 x 3.4
x 1 inches Weight: 1 p o und Warranty/Support:
One-year limited/24/7 toll-free phone
Stylish, compact, and durable design
Keyboard provides good tactile feedback
Bright high-res screen
Snappy app open times
Strong video playback
Poor touch experience
No video output
gish, as was
The battery's endurance of
roughly 4 hours seemed reasonable
for this form factor.
We saw disappointing Wi-Fi transfer rates at 15
and 50 feet from our router. We streamed a 720p
episode of Fringe wirelessly at full screen with no
lag and very sharp, colorful images.
With its comfortable keyboard, colorful screen,
and snappy video playback, the N5 makes a
compelling argument for ultramobile PCs. But we
wish this device had a better webcam, a video-out
option, and longer battery life.
small, and pixelated. The
external mic picked up our voice from a few feet
away. Speaker audio quality was decent, but
volume way too low.
The glossy 4.8-inch screen is the real star of the
show. For a display that's barely
larger than a cell phone's, it
provides reasonable viewing
angles and a native resolution
of 1024 x 600, similar to those
found on 10-inch netbooks.
The picture is sharp, colorful,
and bright. Icons and text are
understandably small, but we
found that tweaking Windows
7's display settings to show
fonts at 125 percent of their
size helped. You can turn the
resolution up to 1024 x 768 for more vertical screen
Featuring a resistive touchscreen, the display's
unresponsive behavior was frustrating. Instead of
a stylus, Viliv includes a piece of plastic that looks
like a guitar pick and attaches to the device via
a string. Prodding the screen with this pick was
an exercise in futility, and there's no multitouch
support for pinch-to-zoom or other gestures.
Performance scores on the N5 won't set any
records, but everyday tasks worked well overall. On
PCMark05, the score was a bit below the netbook
category average of 1,430. The SSD took longer
than a minute to boot into Windows 7 Starter, but
the machine woke
from sleep in a mere
5 seconds. Write
performance was slug-
The tiny optical touch square
on the N5 reminds us of the
BlackBerry Bold 9650.
LAPTOP | September 2010
BENCHMARKS Score Category
LAPTOP Battery Test
LAPTOP Transfer Test
Boot Time (min:sec)* 1:11
Test (min:sec)* 7:51
* Lower is better
Links Archive October 2010 Navigation Previous Page Next Page