Site Updates

I haven’t made a post / even bothered to check the site in a while, but bear with me because I’ve got a lot of material that I can do a writeup on, I just haven’t had the energy to take pictures and put the kind of QC that I want for my write-ups, but hopefully that changes soon.

I’ve been completely invested in finding work and it’s been really, REALLY rough lately. I’ve always been able to find not just work but good work and I’ve even passed up a few opportunities because I was in college, but now that I have my degree it’s like all that stopped and I can’t even get a chump job as a night auditor or anything. If anyone in Lincoln, NE has any leads you should hit me up – I’m getting worried. Doing sporadic contracts here and there isn’t cutting it.

Long story short, if I can get a job and get a routine going again then I shouldn’t be so stressed out anymore and can invest my leisure time into projects and doing write-ups on them.

Hopefully I can get stuff rolling soon, so look forward to it.

-xR

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New Cooling Idea; Netbook Renamed, Again!

I would like to thank Lewis Carol for the new codename for my netbook: The Jabberwock.  It’s appropriate because of all the stuff I’ve done to it / will do to it will make it look like a clusterfucked mess.  On to the topic:

The heatsink on this netbook’s processor / gma chip are lame – the part that makes contact w/ the chip is recessed so you have to use a thermal pad – stupid.

Until I get my brazing stuff set up to fill the gap and switch to AS5 or TuniQ or something, I’ll need an additional method of keeping my monster from heating up.

This works really well, even as a prototype:

IMG_0040

I just stuck a tiny fan that I pulled out of an aftermarket PS2 vent thing onto the exhaust port at the bottom of the Jabberwock and plugged it into the nearby usb port.  I don’t know if there’s a 5v trace nearby that won’t blow something up that I can leech off of, so I’ll play it safe and probably just install a simple 4 port hub over one of the usb ports to I have stuff inside to work with (any ideas on just stacking the fan’s supply with the existing port for the time being?  it doesn’t use data).

I affixed it with some silicone I had lying around temporarily, but I’ll need screws with spacers (the free part of the fan is facing the bezel) and I might need to add an additional vent cover so I don’t accidentally plug the exhaust port and blow the fan up….
Developments coming soon….

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Aspire One 9 Cell vs 6 Cell

backshotlg

The 9-cell battery I ordered came in recently and I figured I’d do a write-up on it, since there wasn’t much out there when I was researching these and kinda bit the bullet on it.

I bought the battery from an Ebay seller called Everwaypower in Shenzen, china for $55.88.  Shipping was free but took about 10 days to arrive.

The package was completely coated with packing tape and once I deciphered the box style I managed to cut the seams open.  Inside was the battery, extremely well packaged in cut foam and anti-static bag.

package1package2

The battery was easy to install, as all the Aspire One batteries are considered universal (for the most part).  Unfortunately this 9-cell doesn’t meet flush with the seam of the bezel like the stock 6-cell does.  I also noticed that I could force the battery out of the lock, so don’t trust your battery to stay in if you hang onto the battery like a handle and swing it around (no sane person would do this but I’ve abused the hell out of my netbook and can attest to the stability of things).  This may be due to this series of battery being ‘optimized’ for the AoA (8.9″) series of Aspire1′s so if you shop around then you can potentially expect a better experience.

6-cell being flush with the bezel9-cell and it's offset with the bezel

I’ve also included shots of the size difference.  Some of the older 9-cells I’ve seen had the cells stacked in a linear fashion, but this battery had them in an L formation, so it’s more compact (than older 9-cells).

6cell side9cell side

Despite noted flaws this battery does hold up to the kind of quality I would expect for anything I’d affix to my netbook.

The battery is advertised as a brand new 7200mAh capacity battery.  As anyone should know, this manufactured capacity is not the true capacity, so I did some analysis with a program called Battery Care to learn more about my batteries.

This program reads capacity in mWh (miliWatts per hour) as compared to the standard miliAmperes per hour, so I’ll just use mWh for the rest of this writeup for sake of ease.

The ‘designed’ capacity of this particular 9-cell was 73260mWh; it’s actual capacity is 71817mWh, which equates to a very low wear level (the designed capacity is like a theoretical maximum, where the actual capacity goes down as the battery is worn) which is expected as it’s a new battery.

Battery Care isn’t very good at reporting accurate ‘time remaining’ calculations very frequently, but based on my tests the 9-cell lasts about 7 hours.  This should shock you as this is barely over what’s advertised as the battery life of the 6-cell, but keep in mind I’m now running Windows 7, with a lot of intensive processes (firefox / thunderbird / utorrent / gmabooster / dashboard widgets / full screen brightness / max wifi) so you have to consider this.  If you ran your netbook with the intentions of saving battery life then you should see some serious time clocks.  Contrast this with my previous 6-cell that now only gives me about 4 hours of life (50461mWh), and things make sense.

The lesson here is that my disregard for battery life and the use of windows 7 is costs me a great deal of battery life, however by using a 9-cell I can compensate for every watt of power consumed…

So to wrap things up:

Stock 6-Cell Rated Capacity: appx. 52,000 mWh Minimal Wear Actual Capacity: 50,461 mWh Windows 7 (heavy load) Time: appx. 4 Hours Cost: about $30 difference between 3 and 6 cell retail
Aftermarket 9-Cell Rated Capacity: 73,260 mWh Minimal Wear Actual Capacity: 71817 mWh Windows 7 (heavy load) Time: appx. 7 Hours Cost: $50 – $60 shipped from China

Overall, this is a helluva deal if you can score it for as cheap as I did.  It takes a bit longer to ship from China but the quality is still good and assuming you don’t get a dud (as is known to happen with aftermarket batteries) then you will notice a difference.  There are the obvious flaws with using aftermarket products, like how the battery doesn’t fit flush with the bezel, but it does fit and lock in place (although it can be forced out).  Hopefully this helps those out there considering buying a 9-cell battery to more effectively weigh the pros and cons of owning one, at least for this model and style of battery.  I know there are other styles out there so I can’t assure you that you will have the same experience, but I encourage you to take the jump as you do get a performance gain.

  • Pros
    • About 150% more charge time
    • More real estate on the back for pirate stickers
    • Priced about the same as any of this model’s 3 or 6 cell
  • Cons
    • Can’t buy stock, so you gotta spend extra money to get one
    • Big and heavy
    • Might not fit flush with bezel
    • Takes a little longer to charge (obviously)
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