Sharp PC-AR50

WHAT'S HOT: Because it has only one internal media bay, the Sharp PC-AR50 measures a relatively thin 1.3 inches tall and weighs only 5.9 pounds, not including the AC adapter. You can hot-swap the floppy drive and the 8X/4X/24X CD-RW drive you get at this price, or you can put a second battery in the bay.

The PC-AR50 also provides two USB ports (on the left and the back), as well as an IEEE 1394 (FireWire) port for high-speed downloads from digital camcorders and other digital equipment. If you need to see more on a notebook screen, you'll like the PC-AR50's 14.1-inch display, which offers a higher-than-average resolution of 1400 by 1050 pixels.

WHAT'S NOT: Only one thin print manual comes with the PC-AR50, and you get no electronic documentation--which is always useful for looking up information on the road. To attach the floppy drive externally, you must shell out another US$49 for a housing with a built-in parallel port cable.

WHAT ELSE: Overall the PC-AR50 is an attractive notebook, but nothing makes it stand out, and its price of $2499 is only about average. It features an attractive case, silver and dark blue, with user-upgradable memory and storage. The keyboard is soft and quiet, with five dedicated shortcut buttons that are rather strangely labeled with archaic-looking Roman numerals, but useful all the same.

The PC-AR50 offers clear, medium-volume stereo speakers, but it lacks the audio controls that some notebooks have for easy music-CD playback. In terms of performance it lags behind the average Pentium III-850 laptop by a slim 6 percent, a difference you probably won't notice. Battery life also just skirts the average, at 2 hours, 44 minutes.

UPSHOT: Although the PC-AR50 would make a fine laptop for digital editors, it can't match its competition in the notebook price wars. For instance, the Toshiba Satellite 2805-S603 also reviewed this month offers a lot more--including a 15-inch screen, a combination DVD-ROM/CD-RW drive, and a 30GB hard drive--for $100 less.

Sharp PC-AR50

PC WorldBench 2000 score of 135, Pentium III-850/700 CPU, 128MB of RAM, 256KB L2 cache, Windows Millennium Edition, 14.1-inch active-matrix screen, ATI Rage P/M Mobility graphics chip with 8MB of SGRAM, 20GB hard drive, 8X/4X/24X CD-RW drive, built-in V.90 modem and ethernet connection, touchpad pointing device, 6.6 pounds (including AC adapter and phone cord). One-year parts and labor warranty; free unlimited 24-hour toll-free tech support.$US2499; www.sharp-business.com

Join the newsletter!

Or
Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Carla Thornton

PC World
Show Comments

Essentials

James Cook University - Master of Data Science Online Course

Learn more >

Mobile

Victorinox Werks Professional Executive 17 Laptop Case

Learn more >

Exec

Budget

Back To Business Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Louise Coady

Brother MFC-L9570CDW Multifunction Printer

The printer was convenient, produced clear and vibrant images and was very easy to use

Edwina Hargreaves

WD My Cloud Home

I would recommend this device for families and small businesses who want one safe place to store all their important digital content and a way to easily share it with friends, family, business partners, or customers.

Walid Mikhael

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

It’s easy to set up, it’s compact and quiet when printing and to top if off, the print quality is excellent. This is hands down the best printer I’ve used for printing labels.

Ben Ramsden

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

Brainstorming, innovation, problem solving, and negotiation have all become much more productive and valuable if people can easily collaborate in real time with minimal friction.

Sarah Ieroianni

Brother QL-820NWB Professional Label Printer

The print quality also does not disappoint, it’s clear, bold, doesn’t smudge and the text is perfectly sized.

Ratchada Dunn

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The Huddle Board’s built in program; Sharp Touch Viewing software allows us to easily manipulate and edit our documents (jpegs and PDFs) all at the same time on the dashboard.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?