Verdict

Acer aspire one 522

The Acer Aspire One 522 promised to be a netbook with a different slant, using one of AMD's latest processors instead of the usual Intel Atom CPU. We were curious to see how it fared in our benchmarking tests, and how it handled in general.

We liked

The slender chassis is light and highly portable, and while the lime green design might remind some users of unhealthy bodily secretions, we actually quite liked it.

Usability is strong, with a well-sized keyboard and responsive multi-touch touchpad in place. We also enjoyed working on the Aspire One 522's bright and sharp 10-inch screen.

Graphical performance is a leap beyond most netbooks, and the HDMI port can be used to output high definition video to an external display.

We disliked

Unfortunately, the AMD processor is no better than Intel's cheerful Atom CPU, proving fit for the most basic office applications and browsing the web. Not too surprising, but perhaps a little disappointing given the Aspire One 522's graphical performance.

A far more serious crime is the Aspire One 522's terrible battery life, which is the worst of recent memory for a netbook. Three and a half hours is barely enough to cover our daily commute, let alone a lengthy trip.

The glossy screen coating is also a pain when using the Aspire One 522 outdoors.

Verdict

If it wasn't for the terrible battery life, the Acer Aspire One 522 would be a commendable entry in the netbook market. If you can live with that then we'd recommend it as a well-built, highly usable machine, but there's better to be had.