10.1 in 1,024x600 display, , 1.6GHz Intel Atom N2600, 1.00GB RAM, 320GB disk, Windows 7 Starter 32-bit
The netbook looks more stylish than most, too, having a matt black and gold theme that makes it look less cute and more sophisticated than many of its rivals. The wrist rest is particularly comfortable and we're fans of the keyboard, which has broad, flat keys that provide accurate feedback for touch typists. The centrally located trackpad is a bit broader than those of most netbooks, too, but it doesn't get in the way while typing.
The NB520 has three USB ports, 3.5mm stereo MIC and headphone ports, Gigabit Ethernet and, unusually, dual-band 802.11n Wi-Fi, which means you can connect to both 2.4GHz networks and those which use the less congested 5GHz band. The battery also impressed us, lasting over nine hours in our tests.
On paper, the NB520 is the same as other new N2600-based netbooks, its excellent build quality, dual-band Wi-Fi and atypically good speakers mean that it's in a different league to most of its rivals. Fortunately, it isn’t significantly more expensive, being £305. Alternatively, you can buy the Budget Buy-winning Toshiba NB510-11E, which is an equally powerful laptop, although it does lack some of the bells and whistles.