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PC Nextday Zoostorm 84-5200 review

Alan Lu
11 May 2009
Our Rating 
Price when reviewed 
650
inc VAT

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Specifications

15.4 in 1,280x800 display, 2.7kg, 2.4GHz Intel Core 2 Duo P8600, 4.00GB RAM, 320GB disk, Windows Vista Home Premium

PC Nextday's Zoostorm 84-5200 is almost identical to the 82-4200 in our £500 group.

It shares the same case and includes the same components and ports. The only differences are a faster 2.4GHz P8600 processor and an Nvidia GeForce G 105M graphics chipset with 512MB of dedicated memory.

Despite this, its gaming performance wasn't very good, and the laptop managed only 8.9fps in Call of Duty 4. While this rules out the latest first-person shooters, the chipset should cope with less demanding strategy games.

Windows performance was considerably better, and the 84-5200 achieved the highest benchmark results in this group. Its score of 4,084 was second overall, making this laptop faster than models costing twice as much.

The 15.4in widescreen display has a resolution of 1,280x800. Its glossy finish helps to improve contrast and colour vibrancy, but reflections can be a problem under bright lights. Image quality was very good, although we found that whites had a slightly blue tint, giving the image a colder appearance.

The 84-5200 has a generous 320GB hard disk, as well as HDMI, S/PDIF and eSATA ports, but only three USB ports. It has no FireWire ports, Bluetooth or Draft-N WiFi.

The black-and-white design may appear tacky to some, and for £650 we'd expect something a little more refined. There's nothing wrong with the case, though, and it's well built. The keyboard is firm, and we liked the moulded keys with their standard layout. The touchpad is large and smooth but the buttons are too stiff, and the all-in-one design makes it hard to distinguish the buttons from the surround.

In a group test dominated at the budget end by a £500 Blu-ray laptop, the 84-5200 still offers decent value thanks to its great performance, even if the lack of a Blu-ray drive is slightly disappointing. If you don't want Blu-ray, but you need a powerful laptop for video or photo editing, the 84-5200 is a great option. Otherwise Acer's 6920G is better.

Basic Specifications

Rating****
ProcessorIntel Core 2 Duo P8600
Processor clock speed2.4GHz
Memory4.00GB
Memory slots2
Memory slots free0
Maximum memory4GB
Size40x359x267mm
Weight2.7kg
SoundRealtek High Definition Audio
Pointing devicetouchpad
Power consumption standby1W
Power consumption idle29W
Power consumption active45W

Display

Viewable size15.4 in
Native resolution1,280x800
Graphics ProcessorNvidia GeForce G 105M
Graphics/video portsVGA, HDMI
Graphics Memory512MB

Storage

Total storage capacity320GB
Optical drive modelTSSTcorp SN-S083A
Optical drive typeDVD+/-RW +/-DL

Ports and Expansion

USB ports3
Bluetoothno
Wired network ports1x 10/100/1000
Wireless networking support802.11b/g
PC Card slots1x ExpressCard/54
ModemYes
Supported memory cardsSD, MMC, Memory Stick Pro
Other portseSATA, minijack audio output, minijack microphone input, minijack S/PDIF output

Miscellaneous

Carrying caseNo
Operating systemWindows Vista Home Premium
Operating system restore optionrestore partition
Software includednone
Optional extrasnone

Buying Information

Warrantyone year RTB
Price£650
Detailswww.pcnextday.co.uk

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