GCN Lab Review: Gateway M465-E
|GCN Lab Reviewer's Choice|Pros:
Superior battery life, good performanceCons:
No fingerprint reader optionPrice:
If only gas stations were like Gateway. The company seemingly discounts energy throughout its notebook line. The M465-E's $1,674 price tag is fairly reasonable for this caliber of mainstream notebook. But it looks like a steal when you consider its utopian 12-cell lithium ion battery. Its five-hour-29-minute battery life is like getting 40 miles to the gallon. (The standard battery is a six-cell for $60 less.)
And that's not all. The M465-E earned a benchmark score of 7,538, which placed it near the top of systems tested. That's like a Toyota Prius with additional towing capacity. The notebook also provides a number of multimedia interfaces. If you can't transfer what you need via S-Video or FireWire, then you should be able to use the six-in-one media-card reader. Moreover, our unit was Bluetooth-enabled (a $50 option), which allows it to communicate with many types of devices.
Unfortunately, Gateway does not yet offer a fingerprint reader option on its laptops. Nor can you get it with a smart-card reader. A year ago, this wouldn't have been a big concern, but these days, we'd say Gateway is behind the times.
At 6 pounds 14 ounces, the M465-E was the heaviest system we tested, much of which could be attributed to the bigger battery. Keep that in mind when you think big batteries. Bottom line, though: the M465-E is an exceptional value. If you have no need for an integrated fingerprint/smart-card reader, this is the dual-core notebook for you.
Gateway Inc., Irvine, Calif., (800) 846-2000, www.gateway.com
Greg Crowe is a staff writer covering mobile technology for GCN. Follow him on Twitter: @GCNLabGuys.