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Author Topic: Gateway 2000 Solo 2300 Reviews with some tech specs  (Read 34 times)

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Online mikedijital

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Gateway 2000 Solo 2300 Reviews with some tech specs
« on: July 11, 2019, 12:36:57 PM »
I found an old review but it listed some lost information on this machine, it can be found here

https://www.seebs.net/reviews/solo.html

but incase it gets deleted, here is the text

Review - Gateway 2000 Solo 2300
Overall Score:

Quality
   

A+
   

Price
   

$2,800+ (when new)

Vendor Support
   

B+
   

User Support
   

N/A

Vendor Attitude
   

A
   

Vendor Net Savvy
   

C

Value
   

A
   

Reliability
   

A-
Product Description

The Solo 2300 is a member of the Gateway 2000 laptop family.

The model I'm reviewing is a Pentium 133, with 32 MB of memory, a 2 GB hard drive, and a 12.1" active matrix display.
First Impressions

I was looking at Gateway 2000 for my laptop because of their good reputation, and because they own the Amiga technology.

I was disappointed to find out that it is impossible to buy this laptop without Windows '95; I primarily want a Unix system anyway, and I'm not happy with paying a tithe to a company whose products suck so badly.

When I ordered my laptop (Gateway 2000 is primarily a mail-order vendor), I wanted to get it as quickly as possible; at the time, the company was out of stock of the cheaper dual-scan displays, so I spent the extra $500 for an active matrix display. Overall, I think I like it better, although I don't believe I agree with the salesman's statement that the screen works at "any angle".

When my laptop showed up, I was unable to get the CD-ROM to work; I called support, they confirmed my findings, and a replacement was shipped. In the mean time, I loaded BSDI (over ethernet), and got started getting used to the box.

The replacement CD-ROM showed up within a couple of days (before my trip, which made me happy) and worked fine. This was pretty cool.

On the down side, it took a couple of weeks to get the battery working. It would have been a couple-day no-brainer, but there were confusions about how to test the battery I had, and one particularly unhelpful support guy (I believe he was the exception, not the rule) insisted that my problem was that they don't support Unix, and that the battery itself could not possibly be the problem. (It was.)
Product Features

Well, it's pretty much "a notebook". The display is 800x600, it has a 2GB hard drive, a Pentium, and all the normal stuff. You can look the specs up on the Gateway web page they may change.
Design Wins

    The plastic flap which covers the "less used" ports (parallel, docking station, serial, VGA) doesn't just fold out and get broken off; there's a slot in the bottom of the laptop that it can latch into, to hold it in place, so it won't catch on something and be broken. Clever!
    USB ports. I believe these are the wave of the future.
    The floppy can be plugged into the parallel port - and it works, even as a boot floppy, and even under Unix. Very, very, nice feature!
    The eject buttons for the PCMCIA slots use a latch mechanism such that they don't stick out from the side of the laptop until you want to use them to eject, but they still work without power.
    The sound is nice, with stereo speakers by the keyboard, and also all the ins and outs you'd normally want.
    Composite video out - either PAL or NTSC.
    A fairly nice, tunable, touchpad, which is a standard PS/2 device, so it works under Unix.
    The laptop features like power management support, a suspend button, battery status display, and brightness controls, are all operating below the OS level, so you can use them even under an OS that doesn't know about them. (Or when nothing is booted.)

Design Losses

    The presence of the Windows key requires the system to be bundled with Windows '95 - even though it sucks. Eeewww!
    It would be nice if this weighed less, took up less space, and so on.
    There's no way to tell the system's power management to consider serial port activity to be "activity" for purposes of screen blanking, and yet...
    You can only have one PS/2 device attached, so if you want, say, a trackball, and an ergonomic keyboard, you need to use a serial mouse - which, as noted above, may confuse the power management.

Vendor Attitude and Net Savvy

Gateway's low score in Net Savvy is solely a reflection of their horrible, confusing, unbookmarkable web page. It's all "Active Server Content", graphics, and weird context that isn't part of the URL, so you can't save your place. UGH! You can't even reliably try to "load images" in some parts of it, it's all silently subdivided, and you can't just browse around. This is a horrible loss, as it used to be fairly nice.

Apart from that, their competent e-mail support, the good availability of downloads (however hard they are to find), and their general quality of information is fairly good. I'm disappointed by the build-your-own PC section; some machines can be configured with no hard drive, and one or two without video cards, but I'd rather be able to configure any machine with any or all of these missing; likewise, they still stick you with Windows '95.

The phone attitude is, in general, great. I had one bad experience with a phone rep, and there was a bit of fumbling in my quest to get my battery replaced, but everything else has gone well, and the other support reps I've worked with have been great. The sales people are friendly, the support people are friendly, and they actually play real music sometimes when you're on hold.

 

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