Depending on your computing needs, there might be a void where a netbook actually makes a lot of sense to you. For some, netbooks play the role of a cheap ultra-portable, for others it's about the miniature footprint and the perfect couch companion. For enthusiasts, it's often the case that netbooks fill the role of a secondary or even tertiary mobile system.
Unfortunately unlike desktop systems, mobile solutions are usually very limited in terms of customization. Shopping online and “building your own” portable solution does offer certain flexibility in terms of what hardware you want, but are still confined to what the particular manufacturer offers.
With this in mind, OCZ is offering the Neutrino 10” Do-It-Yourself netbook ($280), that allows users to select and install their own storage, memory and operating system. For those of us that have a spare laptop hard drive or an extra stick of memory lying around, the Neutrino seems like a great value.
But as we mentioned in our previous netbook round-up coverage, because processing power is uniform among today's netbooks, it's build quality that matters the most. This is where our emphasis will go in testing the Neutrino netbook, besides the obvious value proposition for getting a full system up and running with the barebones hardware.
The Neutrino arrives in the shoebox-like retail box. Inside you will find the 10” netbook barebones, a power adapter, four screws, a 4-cell battery, driver disc, installation guide and quick setup guide.
For the purpose of reviewing this system, OCZ provided us with a 2GB stick of their PC2 5400 memory ($30) and an Apex Series 120GB solid state drive ($350), which is one of their mainstream SSD products.