We take a look at the MSI U130 10in Mini Laptop

Lightweight netbooks have been around for a while now, but it seems that companies are really starting to get their heads around what exactly we as consumers want from such devices. MSI have gradually been growing a reputation for offering excellent systems for a good price, and their latest offering, the MSI U130 10in Mini Laptop certainly reinforces that idea.

It's 1.66GHz Intel N450 Atom processor may not be the most powerful on the market, but it does expertly tread the fine line between performance and battery life, which we all know is the holy grail when it comes to netbooks. This is supported by 1GB of RAM as standard, which can be upgraded to 2GB with minimum fuss, a 160GB internal hard drive, 1204x600 LCD display and all the usual Wireless connectivity you'd expect from a computer of this kind.

Everything is powered by a lightweight 3 Cell Battery, which offers a surprisingly good five hours of use under optimum conditions, although if you require the use of your netbook for prolonged periods while out of the reach of electrical outlets it is advisable to familiarise yourself with the various quick access keys for the more battery reliant functions on the device such as lowering brightness, turning off WiFi when not needed and decreasing the volume.

Eschewing the trend of shipping with Windows 7, the U130 comes instead with the infinitely more netbook friendly Windows XP - an operating system which has surely proven invaluable for portable users for quite some time now, and looks set to continue to do so for the foreseeable future. In fact, the first thing we recommend anyone who has just bought a new netbook to do is wipe whatever operating system came with it and install XP, so MSI have saved us the hassle here!

Weighing a mere 2.4lbs, the U130is as portable as they come and has little we disliked. Although it doesn't really do anything to stand out from the crowd, its battery life is commendable, so it might be worth checking out based on that alone.

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