To help us provide you with free impartial advice, we may earn a commission if you buy through links on our site. Learn more

Packard Bell EasyNote LM86 review

Our Rating :
Price when reviewed : £500
inc VAT

Great image quality from the large widescreen display, coupled with decent Windows performance, make the EasyNote LM86 a worthy Best Buy award-winner


17.3 in 1,600×900 display, 3.3kg, 2.13GHz Intel Core i3-330M, 3.00GB RAM, 320GB disk, Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit

Packard Bell is a subsidiary of Acer and it certainly seems to produce more stylish laptops than the Aspires and Timelines we’ve seen from Acer recently. The EasyNote LM86 is aimed at those who value aesthetics as much as performance: the silver lid has a wavy white pinstripe, a design that’s repeated on the wrist-rest, while the keyboard surround and screen bezel are finished in glossy black.

Packard Bell EasyNote LM86

This two-tone colour scheme may not appeal to everyone, but it has some unexpected advantages. The silver pinstripe material is smooth to the touch and, as the touchpad uses the same material, it’s extremely responsive and comfortable to use. It has a long see-saw button underneath it which has a light action, if you press either end of it.

The keyboard has flat-topped keys that also have a light action, and we found were great for touch-typing. There’s a four-column numeric keypad to the right above which are shortcut keys for volume control.

Packard Bell EasyNote LM86 left

We were impressed by the 17.3in screen. It has a 1,600×900 resolution which gives more space than the average budget laptop. Image quality is excellent, with a bright, even backlight, accurate colours and good contrast. As with most laptop screens, it’s fussy about vertical viewing angles, but there’s enough tilt to allow you to get it just right.

If you want to watch films, you might want better sound than the typically tinny internal speakers can provide. An HDMI port means you can send both audio and video to an AV amplifier, or simply connect to an HD TV directly for Full HD content. There are only three USB ports, so you may need a hub to connect all your peripherals.

Packard Bell EasyNote LM86 right

Performance from the Core i3 330M processor was reasonable, with an overall score of 76 showing it to be capable of handling most applications. There’s no dedicated graphics card, so you won’t be able to play the latest 3D games, but the power this saves means that battery life is fairly good for such a large laptop: you can use it unplugged for three hours 44 minutes before it’ll shut down. However, you probably won’t want to travel with the LM86 as it weighs a hefty 3.3kg.

With longer battery life than the Acer Aspire 7741 and a larger 320GB hard disk (the Aspire has only 250GB), the LM86 is clearly better value as it costs exactly the same. Even without the comparison, the large display, great image quality and decent performance make this a great choice, and it wins our Best Buy award.

Basic Specifications

Rating *****
Processor Intel Core i3-330M
Processor clock speed 2.13GHz
Memory 3.00GB
Memory slots 2
Memory slots free 0
Maximum memory 8GB
Size 34x414x275mm
Weight 3.3kg
Sound Realtek HD Audio
Pointing device touchpad


Viewable size 17.3 in
Native resolution 1,600×900
Graphics Processor Intel GMA HD
Graphics/video ports VGA, HDMI
Graphics Memory 128MB


Total storage capacity 320GB
Optical drive type DVD+/-RW +/-DL

Ports and Expansion

USB ports 3
Bluetooth no
Wired network ports 1x 10/100/1000
Wireless networking support 802.11b/g/n
PC Card slots none
Supported memory cards SD, MMC, Memory Stick Pro, xD
Other ports minijack audio output, minijack microphone input


Carrying case No
Operating system Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit
Operating system restore option backup and recovery software
Software included Nero 9 Essentials
Optional extras £132

Buying Information

Warranty one year RTB
Price £500

Read more