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MSI Wind12 U210 vs. HP Mini 311

There were a lot of comparisons between the HP Mini 311 and the MSI Wind12 U210 when both netbooks came out in stores just weeks apart. Let’s put them side by side and do a specs comparison so people get a better picture.

In this comparison chart, we will pit the two units with the model that has a pre-installed OS. That way, it’s easier to see between the two which one is more affordable or cheaper for the specs out of the box.



The external DVD drive from HP comes inside the box so there’s no way to opt out of it. As for the MSI Wind12, the 9-cell battery is just a limited promo. Default battery is also 6-cell.

The Php23k price of Wind12 U210x has no operating system so buying a Windows XP license will set you back about Php4,000 as well. I’d say it’s a neck and neck fight between the two.

Abe is the founder and Editor-in-Chief of YugaTech. You Can follow him on Twitter @abeolandres.

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53 Responses

  1. IC DeaDPiPoL says:

    AFAIK that ATI Radeon is expandable to 700mb accdg to Villman’s specs page. Also the 9-cell battery was just an upgrade promo. Default battery is a 6-cell.

    IMO HP wins solely on the bundled optical drive and opting for a Windows XP OS. Wished they buffed their RAM and WiFi specs

  2. berkano says:

    Well, well.neck and neck indeed. Though Wind’s got a 2GB RAM its graphics card memory is only 128 MB vs Nvidia 512MB. then theres the DDR2 vs DDR3 fight

  3. Sherwin says:

    hp gets my vote. while I do like the msi wind u100 i owned before, it was simply no comparison to hp’s mini 2140. the build and quality must be taken into consideration. while the specs of the msi wind are nice, the mini 311 has dd3 and can be upgraded to 3gb ram (just add a 2gb ontop of the built in 1gb)

    Most importantly, the mini 311 has better chances of being OSXable due to the choices of hardware. Intel + Nvidia.

  4. aldrin says:

    i think it’s more of a matter of preference. HP Mini 311 has decent specs that anyone can hang up with. But if you need larger RAM and HDD, you may go with MSI Wind.

  5. Neck and neck spec wise but how about performance wise ? The MSI wind has a dual core CPU, how well does it stand against HP Min’s Atom N280 ?

  6. manong says:

    nVidia Ion is not the GPU, it is a system/motherboard platform that includes Nvidia’s GeForce 9400M (MCP79) chipset, DDR3-1066 or DDR2-800 SDRAM, and the Intel Atom processor.


    9400M is a class 3 GPU (New games should run on these cards, but only with decreased details and mediocre resolution)

    X1270 is a class 5 GPU (Only older games can be played fluently with these graphics chips)

  7. Albert King says:

    I think i’ll go for HP mini having an optical drive packed with it.

    I just wonder though if Wind’s processor is 64 bit capable. Is the 9 cell offer of Wind still available? I think MSI should have offered an option to use an XP OS rather than Vista which is a little unattractive considering the bad reviews for this OS.

  8. manong says:

    An external DVD-RW drive is worth PHP 3K+

  9. ricky says:

    MSI Wind U210 Review



    “As one of the largest netbooks, the MSI Wind U210 proved to be a worthy option for people wanting something larger than your average 9-11″ netbook. It offered slightly better CPU performance than Intel Atom systems and Intel CULV systems we have tested. The only area that it lagged behind was in graphics, where the X1270 chipset fell behind when compared to the Intel X4500. Battery life was decent at 4 hours and 19 minutes, but if you are looking for all-day battery life one of the smaller netbooks might be a better option. Overall, for the price and features, the MSI Wind U210 is a worthy competitor to some of the newer Intel CULV based 11.6″ netbooks”.

  10. George says:

    I shared your Mini 311 vs Wind u210x links on my Facebook :)

    I for one will be eying for the HP Mini just because its better built and much more upgradable (to 3gb ram!). Plus I saw links that can unlock the DX10 capabilities of the ION LE so the Windows Experience Rating for Graphics will go up.


  11. manong says:

    I quite puzzled with the AMD Athlon 64 X2 Neo specs because I think it should only be AMD Neo since it is only a single core CPU (AND there is no such name in http://www.amd.com)

    Misleading, isn’t it?

  12. vepa814 says:

    may Bluetooth ang HP Mini 311??! I thought wala, i thought this was optional? But anyway, that’s a relief!

  13. manong says:

    Specs-wise (+BT) and RAM/HDD upgradeability (except WIFI-g)…

    Neck and neck? DUH! NOT EVEN CLOSE!!!

    HP Mini 311 WINS via KO!!!

  14. Jon says:

    Prices are pretty steep given their specs, however, the bigger resolution of both is an advantage.

    Does anyone else find the MSI netbook kinda funny and somehow appropriate? XD It cracks me up. LOL.

  15. manong says:

    Yep… AMD Athlon Neo has a DUAL CORE model… my bad!

    But still… Intel Atom has HYPER-THREADING!

  16. manong says:

    3D Mark Comparison (Higher is better):

    Intel GMA 500 = 137 (Dell Inspiron Mini – PHP33K)

    nVidia GF 9400M = 3,326 (HP Mini 311 – PHP29K)

    ATI Radeon X1270 = 1,018 (MSI Wind12 – PHP27.5K)

    nVidia GTX 280M SLI = 19,268 — high-end notebooks


  17. lolipown says:

    Everyone seems to be focused on the gfx department and ignoring the CPU department.

    How does the Athlon 64 X2 Neo compares to the Atom N280?

  18. Jhay says:

    The only downside with the HP mini 311 is it’s somehow handicapped WiFi.

    It will all boil down to personal preferences really.

  19. I want more comparison before settling down on who’s the best netbook for Year 2009

    Athlon 64 X2 Neo vs. Atom N280?
    ATI Radeon X1270 vs. nVidia GF 9400M?

    About mem, hdd, bt, wifi and others, there are some workarounds like upgrades and such stuffs.

    thanks yuga for giving us an option on what to buy this Christmas :)

  20. mindyq says:


    the unit used by the NotebookReview.com article is the single core version of the U210.
    AFAIK, the dual core U210 was released in the Philippines only.

  21. lolipown says:

    errm nvm.. should’ve google’d it
    to anyone interested on the Atom vs Athlon Neo:

  22. With Athlon 64 X2 Neo and ATI Radeon X1270?

    MSI Wind For The WIN! =)

  23. ron says:

    ATI Radeon X1270 vs. nVidia GF 9400M?

    should cuda and stream be considered in this comparison?

    AFAIK, with the ION chipset, you get CUDA as well which beefs up to a considerable degree video encoding, (among other things).

    i don’t know about the X1270 though.

  24. Israel says:

    I am still waiting for the ION offering from ASUS.

  25. lolipown says:

    hmmm looks like going for either netbook means a compromise on one department… guess that means I’ll be putting off my purchase again *sigh*

  26. jill says:

    To the stores, we’ll go. It’s HP, then. XD!

  27. Marc says:

    Remember kids, the 311 has the ION “LE” which based on Nvidia Graphics cards parlance means “Lousy Edition (aka crippled).” It’s different from the default ION chipset.

    So are there any benchmarks for the 9400M LE?

    The 9400M will beat the X1270 to a bloody pulp yes, but I don’t think the same can be said about the 9400M LE.

    My gut feel says that the two graphics chips are the same in performance. Though I need to see benchmarks of the LE to make sure.

  28. lolipown says:

    I’d have to agree with you Marc, both netbooks offer great improvements for their niche but people seem to be expecting more out of them.

    That in mind, it might be good for me to turn my sights back to notebooks, any good recommedations for a 13″ notebook? Aside from the MBP.

  29. manong says:

    know what’s the difference between ion & ion le?

    – directx10… what’s it??? what specs difference? DUH ZERO!!!


  30. paulc says:

    There is the difference.. up to 16 pipelines for Ion LE while 16 pipelines for Ion.

  31. manong says:

    which makes me think… hp mini 311 may not support vista/win7 bcoz of lack of dx10

  32. Marc says:

    I find it funny that HP puts a chipset that doesn’t fully support the features of the OS that runs on it.

  33. Marc says:

    Lolz. I take it back. XP pala si 311. It is supported. But that means you can’t really upgrade it to Vista or Win7.

  34. I decided on the MSI U210 because it was the best for the price. I made a dual boot with Vista and XP and it performs well with both operating systems. Contrary to what it says though you only get about 2.5 to 3 hours battery life. This isn’t really a problem for me but I do have two major complaints. First there is a noticeable bulge in the right half of the keyboard which causes flexing when typing. The second is the wifi card sucks. I downloaded the latest drivers for both XP and Vista but that didn’t help. I have to be within 15ft to get connected. I read somewhere that the wifi is powerful but my experience is the opposite. Maybe I got a bad unit and you may not have the same problems that I got, but I am very disappointed. I also know that there are no problems with the wifi on the Dell or Acer machines so you may want give those some thought. If you really want to get this netbook then wait until next year. Hopefully by then any bugs should be corrected.

  35. manong says:

    @Lindsay – belat? hehehe joke! nywy, cheaper doesn’t mean best price

  36. mindyq says:

    MSI U210 with Windows Vista is eligible for free Windows 7 upgrade. You just need to pay for the shipping cost of about 1000 pesos.

  37. lolipown says:

    Don’t you mean ‘cheaper doesn’t mean best value’?

  38. IC DeaDPiPoL says:

    -processor benchmark
    -Operating Time @ 40~60% consistent load
    -h.264 decoding preferably software that exploits the GPU’s abiity to decode 1080p video at 1920 x 1080
    -direct3d games fps (pic a 3-5 year old game & a recent game as sample)

  39. IC DeaDPiPoL says:

    sorry disregard previous post. Misposted ~_~

  40. ficz says:

    anu po ba tlga mas mgnda????

  41. timtimpogi says:

    haha…I found an article about the GPU of HP Mini 311…Read nyo muna and then consider…


  42. Hi Yuga,

    A few things. Spec-wise, I would go for MSI Wind U210. The single-core Athlon Neo MV-40 performs significantly better than the Intel Atom N280, what more the dual-core Athlon Neo X2 L335 which the MSI Wind U210 has?

    One thing to take into consideration is that synthetic benchmarks won’t give you a feel of how much more snappier superscalar out-of-order processors, like the Athlon Neo, are compared to in-order processors, like the Intel Atom. In instances where the benchmarks end up with, say, a 10% or less difference, I guarantee you that the difference in real applications will be huge. Synthetic benchmarks, are, after all, meant to simulate a specific set of instructions given in a specific set of order.

    I have to agree though that HP Mini 311’s GPU is significantly more powerful than MSI Wind U210’s. That will soon change when MSI Wind U230 is released which replaces the chipset with AMD’s renowned M780G chipset that offers not only better battery life, but significantly better performance that can easily rival the ION chipset. Lastly, what’s the use of having a gaming GPU that’s bundled with a basic processor aside from playing HD videos?

    Looks-wise, however, the HP Mini 311 wins hands down. I also know that HP laptops that carry the HP brand itself are more durable and better built than anything MSI will probably ever sell in the market. The HP Mini 311 should also trump the MSI Wind U210 when it comes to battery life due to the fact that the Athlon Neo is still based on the older, and more power hungry, 65nm SOI fabrication process.

    Which one would I go for? Well, the MSI Wind U2310 is available without an OS for less than PhP 22,000. Most Linux distribution now works with out of the box support for even the most exotic hardware (like 3G modems and such) and a multitude of Windows-equivalent applications. You can’t go wrong with OpenSUSE or Mandriva if you want to dive into the world of Linux. :-)


  43. Blue Lucero says:

    it is still too early to decide which is a better machine as ion le was recently blown out to be capable of dx10 and such a machine hasnt been tested against the dualcore u210.

    most available info to date show just the ion le 311 vs the single core u210.

    package-wise go for the u210 if you want to save money, go for the 311 for forward-usability as it has more powerful architecture and the u210 is not overclockable (yet?)

    then again better netbooks are on the horizon.

    save your money.

  44. ian says:

    what is the average battery life for the hp mini 311 when screen is at low brighness? i hope it’s more than 5 hours…

  45. felix balete III says:

    i will vote for the HP as it was the test unit at nVidia website for its ION platform it can play games like CoD 4, LfD, portal with medium-low specs…but as long as you upgraded the ram to 3GB so you can run it to good speeds and run even windows 7 at good speeds..

    this is link to their site with a demo video with the specs used

    intel atom 230 CPU
    1GB ddr3
    and the nVidia ION

  46. Harvey says:

    Why is it that my msi u210’s display adapter says ” standard vga graphics adapter ” ? isnt it supposed to be ati radeon?

  47. sLiCkyWoRm says:

    @ Harvey – download the appropriate ATI Drivers .. it should solve the issue ..

  48. NineSwordz says:

    Sir Yuga, can I buy this HP mini 311 WITHOUT the OS? And where can I buy these here in Metro Manila?

  49. NineSwordz says:

    Oh, and without the External DVD+RW? Is it possible? just checking my budget.. =)

  50. TRiAD says:

    I beg to disagree that the Intel Atom is superior over AMD Athlon Neo L335.

    Although Atom has Hyper-Threading and a slightly higher clock rate compared to Neo, they have some drawbacks: Hyper-Threading may give performance advantages compared to Single-core processors, It’s nothing compared to real dual core processors since HT only emulates a dual core processor.

    The atom is also critisized for its weak architecture. It is important to take note that the Intel Atom is half the performance of the Celeron at same clock speeds http://laptoping.com/intel-atom-benchmark.html

    I believe that Intel really needs to fix their atom processors to keep in par with the competition: AMD Neo X2. They will have to redesign the atom so it will support dual-core, 64-bit capability, and improve their performance per clock.

    AMD Neo is the better choice for now. Intel, I am waiting for what you can throw against AMD.

  51. 1wzw9fsja says:

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    Both parents are on a plane that left Pakistan Thursday morning, said a government recognized, Noor Malik. The abscond is expected to show up in Birmingham Thursday afternoon.www.gafasraybans.eu

    For the sake of Malala, who has been powerless to say because a tube has been inserted into her trachea to defend her airway, bloated after her gunshot offence, the adjacency of folks members purposefulness surely be a comfort.

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