Pioneer Computers Australia DreamBook Light IL1
A notebook that can't compete
- Very long battery life
- Slow processor, screen resolution incorrectly configured on release, small keyboard, small touchpad
As long as far better products remain on the market at similar prices, buyers should steer clear of the Pioneer DreamBook IL1. It suffers from a slow processor, small touchpad and the screen resolution is stretched in all the settings. The only thing that saves this product from being a complete flop is its phenomenally long battery life.
Price$ 549.00 (AUD)
Since the runaway success of the Asus Eee PC 701 4G, notebook makers have been tripping over themselves trying to cash-in on the popularity of ultraportable laptops. Devices such as the MSI Wind U100 and the latest Asus Eee PC 901 combine surprisingly good performance with cheap prices and portability to be hot items.
Enter the Pioneer DreamBook Light IL1 — a unit that lacks the processing power, usability and price value of all the aforementioned devices.
One of the few saving graces of this laptop is its battery's staying power. In our battery rundown test, where we loop a movie with the sound on, the IL1 lasted a phenomenal 6hr 40min.
From the outside, the IL1 looked promising. Compact and light, the notebook has a sleek black chassis. The device weighs in at a mere 1.2kg without the power supply and 1.5kg with it included.
As we lifted the panel, however, things started drifting downhill. The 7in screen features an unusually large bezel for such as small device and the built-in graphics processor does not support the native resolution of 1024x768, making the display look stretched. This greatly diminishes the usability of the device in general and is a basic point that should've been corrected before release.
As for usability, we found it difficult to type documents with the small keyboard, which is almost identical in size to that of the Eee PC's. The touchpad was too small to use comfortably.
On the inside, the DreamBook is run by a 1GHz VIA C7-M processor and 1GB of RAM. Although this is fine for browsing the Web or running one simple program at a time, users will find that anything more hardware-intensive, such as image manipulation, will take excessive amounts of time.
In our iTunes benchmarking, where we convert 53min of WAV files to 192Kbps MP3s, the IL1 completed the task in 22min 38sec. Our Blender 3D rendering tests were completed in 21min 42sec. These results reflect the weak CPU; of course, if you're looking for a high-powered device you'll probably need to look at an entirely different category of computers.
As for users hoping to play games, the integrated graphics provided by the VIA VX800U chipset will quickly destroy your dreams, with 3DMark06 refusing to run a single test on this device.
Storage is provided by a 40GB hard drive that spins at 4200rpm. The hard drive's read/write speed is not very quick, but its storage capacity should be enough for most casual users.
In terms of expandability options, the Pioneer is adequately covered. On the left side of the device is a VGA port, along with a headphone port and microphone port. The front of the device features a 3-in-1 card reader (SD, MMC, MS) while users will find two USB 2.0 ports, a 10/100 Ethernet port and a 56Kbps modem on the right-hand side. It also has built-in 802.11 b/g connectivity for wireless network access.
Join the newsletter!
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Dell U3223QE review: A winning debut for an IPS Black monitor
- 2 HP Spectre x360 16 review: The right 2-in-1 at the wrong time
- 3 Asus ProArt PA279CV monitor review: The go-to for content creators on a budget
- 4 Lenovo Yoga 9i 14 (2022) review: The pinnacle of design
- 5 Netgear Nighthawk M5 mobile router review: Probably too expensive, but nice
Latest News Articles
- Fortnite returns to the iPhone (sort of) courtesy Xbox Cloud Gaming
- iPad buying guide 2022
- Best Mac for music production
- Apple’s 3-meter Thunderbolt 4 cable for AU$249 is the only game in town
- Apple adds two popular classic iPads to ‘vintage’ list
PCW Evaluation Team
Set up is effortless.
The strength of the Aruba Instant On AP11D is that the design and feature set support the modern, flexible, and mobile way of working.
Aruba backs the AP11D up with a two-year warranty and 24/7 phone support.
Ultimately this laptop has achieved everything I would hope for in a laptop for work, while fitting that into a form factor and weight that is remarkable.
This smart laptop was enjoyable to use and great to work on – creating content was super simple.
It really doesn’t get more “gaming laptop” than this.
- 100 Great PC Games You Should Play Before You Die
- Best Click Frenzy mobile and Internet plan deals
- Microsoft’s iconic browser Internet Explorer is being killed off in June
- Everything you need to know about Smart TVs
- What's the difference between an Intel Core i3, i5 and i7?
- Laser vs. inkjet printers: which is better?