I bought this Acer Aspire 5500Z when I was in the final year of degree 2 years ago. In that old time it costed me around usd 900. It was 2 years ago and now on the price did fell to be usd 500. That's why I put the price is usd500 in the title. I got the Intel Pentium M 740 (1.73 GHz, 553 MHz FSB, 2 MB L2 cache) as the processor, 256Mb for RAM, 60G for the hard drive, Acer CryslatBrite for the LCD performance, cd & DVD player and also CD burner.
For the first time thought, this Acer Aspire was simple and nice. But since the RAM is pretty low so I did add the RAM for 512Mb to be 768Mb for the total of the RAM.
I just bought that simple Acer without any bluetooth adapter, combo DVD & CD burner and webcam because I know when you got that bunch of features, it will kill your machine later. Once it's broken, it will always be that bad and you need to re fix it over and over.
By using this nice and simple Acer Aspire, I never meet any problem for the performance as an example the graphic is bad or my hard disk is broken. Never. It goes smooth for these 3 years! From my degree time till I'm taking master. The computer still be that splendid.
I do a lot of graphic things including photoshop & flash, I also do a lot of programming languages including C, PHP and .net. could you imagine how much those things load in my simple computer? Nothing happened and my computer never get any single computer crash.
Last year, I got a car accident which this Acer Aspire flew up the sky and bang on the road. Could you imagine that? The first thing that reminded me in that time was my Acer. When I was home, the first thing that been done was trying to turn on my computer. I was so supprised, after getting such hard bang this simple computer still could work in spledid without having any trouble.
The computer did bang on the road but the edge of the computer case just got a bit flattened (I did attach the picture of the flattened edge). Till now on the computer still that nice and splendid, nothing bad is happened.
As a conclusion this is the most robust laptop ever I have for the performance. Many of my friends did buy some advanced computer, all features bundled in one (build in features) but it resulted the bad damge for their machines.
So if you want to buy the new laptop or computer just choose the simple one, I mean it's really fine if the computer come with the basic part, like this Aspire 5500Z. If you want to add the features, it's better for you to buy the external gadgets like external bluetooth adapater, external web cam and external dvd burnerr. This review is not only come based on my expirienced but it also come with my knowledge in computer.
p/s : some users said the Acer will be that hot after sometimes of usage. Well, buy the external laptop cooler that will cost you only USD4! It will normalize the heat of your machine.