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Acer TravelMate Timeline 8371-944G32N review

Alan Lu
13 Oct 2009
Expert Reviews Best Buy Logo
Our Rating 
Price when reviewed 
677
inc VAT

Acer's TravelMate Timeline is one of the best ultra-portable laptops we've seen thanks to its excellent battery life and performance.

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Specifications

13.3 in 1,366x768 display, 1.7kg, 1.4GHz Intel Core 2 Duo SU9400, 4.00GB RAM, 320GB disk, Windows Vista Business

Acer's TravelMate Timeline 8371 has a plain, grey appearance that looks dowdy compared to most ultra-portable laptops. It feels sturdy, though, with an especially rigid lid that barely flexes at all under pressure.

The Timeline may be slender, but it's one of the few ultra-portable laptops that comes with a dual-core processor, Intel's 1.4GHz Core 2 Duo SU9400. Although this isn't as powerful as desktop Core 2 Duo processors, it helps make the Timeline significantly quicker than the ultra-portable laptops that use ULV processors, especially our in demanding multitasking test. As expected, its integrated Intel graphics chip wasn't up to playing the latest 3D games.

Although the keyboard is large the keys feel a little springy and the cursor keys are smaller than the others. However, we soon got used to these, and the keyboard is comfortable enough to use. The touchpad is small but accurate. We wish the buttons were bigger and gave more tactile feedback when pressed, though.

The Timeline is well suited to working on the go. It has a built-in 3G modem, and if you insert your own SIM you can get online from almost anywhere. Battery life is stunning; it lasted eight hours and 40 minutes in our test. This is one of the longest times we've seen.

It's also equipped with a large 320GB hard disk, which should be enough for all but the biggest files. The only minor disappointments are that, like all ULV ultra-portable laptops, there's no optical disc drive or ExpressCard slot.

The 13.3in 1,366x768 widescreen display has a matt finish, which reduces distracting reflections caused by overhead lighting. The screen is bright, evenly lit and displays accurate colours. If you want to use an external display, the HDMI and VGA outputs will be useful.

Acer's TimeLine 8371 is one of the best ultra-portable laptops we've reviewed. Its battery life is stunning, it has a built-in 3G modem and a dual-core processor. It's excellent value and wins our Best Buy award.

Basic Specifications

Rating*****
ProcessorIntel Core 2 Duo SU9400
Processor clock speed1.4GHz
Memory4.00GB
Memory slots2
Memory slots free0
Maximum memory8GB
Size31x324x230mm
Weight1.7kg
SoundIntel HD Audio
Pointing devicetouchpad
Power consumption standby1W
Power consumption idle15W
Power consumption active26W

Display

Viewable size13.3 in
Native resolution1,366x768
Graphics ProcessorIntel GMA 4500M HD
Graphics/video portsVGA
Graphics Memory64MB

Storage

Total storage capacity320GB
Optical drive modelnone
Optical drive typeN/A

Ports and Expansion

USB ports3
Bluetoothyes
Wired network ports1x 10/100/1000
Wireless networking support802.11a/b/g, HSDPA, HSUPA
PC Card slotsnone
ModemNo
Supported memory cardsSDHC, MMC, Memory Stick Pro/Duo, xD
Other portsport replicator connector

Miscellaneous

Carrying caseNo
Operating systemWindows Vista Business
Operating system restore optionrestore partition
Software includedInterVideo WinDVD 8
Optional extrasnone

Buying Information

Warrantyone year collect and return
Price£677
Detailswww.acer.co.uk
Supplierhttp://www.kikatek.com