NEC Versa P7300 (2100DR)

NEC Versa P7300 (2100DR)
  • NEC Versa P7300 (2100DR)
  • NEC Versa P7300 (2100DR)
  • NEC Versa P7300 (2100DR)
  • Expert Rating

    3.75 / 5

Pros

  • Good range of connections, attractive and simple design, solid battery life

Cons

  • Integrated graphics chip, reflectivity issues, undersized keyboard

Bottom Line

The Versa P7300 (2100DR) is a solid entry into the all-purpose notebook market, especially if you're not into gaming. While slightly let down by its graphics performance, it offers plenty of functionality for the price.

Would you buy this?

The P7300 (2100DR) is the plus-sized baby in NEC's Versa 'P' notebook family. As such, it resembles a stripped down version of its Versa P8310-2402DR sibling but still offers a solid array of components for the asking price. Chief among these are a Core 2 Duo T8100 2GHz processor running on Centrino's Santa Rosa platform, 2GB of DDR2 667MHz RAM (upgradeable to 4GB) and a 200GB, 5400rpm SATA hard drive.

Standout features include four USB ports, 802.11b/g wireless and Bluetooth capabilities, a four-in-one media card reader, a 1.3-megapixel webcam and a 15.4in widescreen LCD display. Unfortunately, these impressive specifications are slightly let down by the Intel GMA X3100 integrated graphics chip. This severely limits the P7300's usability as a games machine, and may also slow down other processor-intensive tasks, such as video rendering. Nevertheless, it will satisfy most people who need a basic multimedia entertainment notebook.

Measuring 358x259x35mm and weighing over 2.5kg, the P7300 isn't the most portable all-purpose notebook we've looked at. While it will fit in most large briefcases, it isn't exactly something you would want to continually lug around—it's better suited to your desktop. The upside of this is its widescreen display, which proved proficient at displaying movies and computer games. Images appeared sharp and well saturated at the native resolution of 1280x800 and the screen offers a decent range of viewing angles. However, the screen's reflectivity marred our viewing experience in sunny outdoor environments.

In terms of looks, the P7300 is understated yet attractive. The model is encased in traditional black plastic with the NEC brand name across the front lid. While it's not exactly a head-turner, it has a decent minimalist design. Things are kept equally simple beneath the reinforced hood—none of the stylised LEDs or look-at-me logos that have become industry hallmarks. The basic black keyboard and enlarged silver touchpad have no superfluous design trimmings. It lends the notebook an unashamedly old-school look that we sheepishly confess to liking.

NEC has managed to cram a full-sized keyboard onto the Versa P7300, though some keys have been shrunk, including some frequently used ones such as Enter and the cursor-keys. This may hamper speed typists, but it also gives gaming enthusiasts access to a numeric keypad, which is essential for most mouse-and-keyboard games. Unfortunately, the limited graphics capabilities render this trade-off somewhat questionable.

With its humble 965 chipset, we were never expecting big things from the P7300, but its average of 552 in 3DMark06 is still disappointing. These results rule out the majority of modern games, including older DX9 titles like F.E.A.R. It's not all doom-and-gloom on the gaming front though: in 3D Mark 2001, the P7300 returned a result of 6214, which should allow for plenty of vintage gaming.

Unfortunately, the underpowered graphics card also affected other benchmark tests. In WorkBench 6, which assesses a notebook's processing speed and overall performance, the P7300 received a combined score of 72. This result isn't terrible, but it compares unfavourably to some notebooks with specifications similar to the P7300's. The notebook will be able to handle most business applications, as well as multitasking and playing DVDs.

In our battery run-down test, the P7300 performed reasonably well for an all-purpose notebook. To test its battery life, we played a looped DVD. This test simulates a worst-case scenario because the optical drive and the speakers put maximum drain on the battery, as well as the core components like the CPU and RAM. The system held out for 104 minutes, which should just get you through the majority of feature length movies.

Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection

Join the newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Show Comments

Cool Tech

Breitling Superocean Heritage Chronographe 44

Learn more >

SanDisk MicroSDXC™ for Nintendo® Switch™

Learn more >

Toys for Boys

Family Friendly

Panasonic 4K UHD Blu-Ray Player and Full HD Recorder with Netflix - UBT1GL-K

Learn more >

Stocking Stuffer

Razer DeathAdder Expert Ergonomic Gaming Mouse

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

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.

George Khoury

Sharp PN-40TC1 Huddle Board

The biggest perks for me would be that it comes with easy to use and comprehensive programs that make the collaboration process a whole lot more intuitive and organic

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?