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September 2003

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Letters, Addenda, Errata

Translation: Christian Hennecke

If you have any comments regarding articles or tips in this or any previous issue of the VOICE Newsletter, please send them to We are always interested in what our readers have to say.

July 29, 2003 - Our first letter of the month is from Michael J Cwik in regard toour review of Medion Multimedia Entertainment Notebook Titanium M1 in the February 2003 issue of the newsletter:
I looked over your review of the Medion laptop, would you say that it was a good deal, or worth your money or would it be cheaper or better to get an HP or Gateway laptop.
Mark Dodel responds:
Prices have dropped considerably since I bought my Medion. Since Intel came out with its Centrino chips, the now older P4s and the Athlon's are being deeply discounted. As I'm writing this there's an HP Athlon XP 1800+ for only $879 on, and lots of similar buys elsewhere. When I bought my Medion almost a year ago, it was a hell of a buy for $1499, especially compared to the IBM ThinkPads I was considering. I see Aldi's has a new Medion notebook model for $1499. This has a few nice features over mine, like DVD-RW, wireless LAN, and a higher native resolution, but I think that price point is too high now when you have all the other alternatives today unless you really want a DVD-RW. This is especially since its not one of the new Intel Centrino units that uses far less power and generates far less heat. But that DVD-RW alone might make it worth the extra price. I know I'd love to have one in my laptop.

Would I buy this same unit again today? Not at that price. But I'm satisfied with the laptop over all. I now have sound working well on it (Thanks to the UniAud driver, now supported by the Kiev.UA guys), so everything works except for the winmodem. My only complaints are the low native resolution (1024x768) and I hate the touch pad. (This last point is not directly related to the Medion. I keep accidentally touching the touchpad and that moves my cursor and screws up my typing. But even my wife keeps saying she prefers the trackpoint on our old Toshiba Satellite and she hates computers.) But to get a notebook without a touchpad, but with similar capabilities I'd have to spend a small fortune on an IBM ThinkPad with a trackpoint or maybe see if Toshiba still makes some models with their version of the trackpoint. As to overall quality, the one failing point so far in almost a year of use is that the plastic spacer block in both USB ports fell out. I've always found USB connectors as flimsy, but this is a real problem as it makes use of any USB devices even more problematic then usual. Does anyone know of a solution for this?

If you are happy running windoze, then it doesn't much matter what you buy so long as the unit has the features you want. If you plan on running OS/2-eComStation or Linux on it then you have to make sure the basic features will work - Sound, Video, PCMCIA and builtin LAN if any. I'd also prefer a with USB2 and as I said before a DVD-RW drive on it if I were buying one today. Almost all builtin modems are wintrash and a waste of silicon. For information about running an alternative OS on a notebook see the Notebook/2 site - or the Linux on Laptops -

Good luck on whatever you decide.


July 29, 2003 - Our last letter of the month is from Ray Murray in regard to an article several years ago on USB AND OS/2 in the November 1999 issue of the newsletter:
I just purchased a D-Link DSB-500 card. It came through with a D-Link (OPTi?) chip and is only OHCI compatible. There have been at least four versions of this card. Even the D-Link Web Site says that it is USB compatible, so one must be careful re: a chipset switch.

Below is taken from your page:

Here's a list of currently available PCI USB I/O Cards with VIA VT83C572 chipset which is Open HCI 1.0a compliant and compatible with Intel UHCI (Universal Host Controller Interface) V.1.1 register:
D-Link DSB-500


Also: A-Best and Amedia are bad links.

Jameco #155299 says VIA chip and UHCI but is it really?.


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