Review after a month
I have been so busy that I never had a chance to post my impressions of this machine.
I use the machine for a variety of tasks: Work, DVD burning, Analog audio recording, Wireless, Light gaming. I also intend to do more photo and video editing with it.
First off, as much as this machine is big, I have no problem moving it around and using it on my lap. I'm typing this right now as I sit on my couch with the machine on my lap. Amazingly, it does not get too hot. I have yet to have to take it off my lap due to size or heat. Obviously, because of it's size, it is easier to use on a desk or table at times, but people should not be discouraged by the size if they want a "laptop", as well.
The screen is beautiful. DVD's are crisp and clean. The sound is far better than expected. Especially with tweaking eq settings, etc.
I have been thoroughly impressed with the quality and performance overall. I am not an intense gamer, but have played flight simulator, madden 2004, black hawk down and need for speed- all have been awesome. Performed without any flaws.
The only problems that I have had is that I needed to reinstall the sound driver (took about a minute with the application cd) after analog recorder stopped recognizing the sound card. I've also had an annoying high pitched whirl from the fan, at times. Blowing air into it seems to have made it better.
The fan is loud, but you get used to it. Obviously, it is a trade off for such a powerful machine that can remain cool enough to sit on your lap.
I have also found Gateway to be responsive to customer service inquiries. I had a number of shipping and upgrade issues and the company has been able to accomodate me every time.
For those wondering, it was a little less than two weeks from order to receipt of the machine.
As to all of those complaining about the ship dates and the companies response- I agree they could be a little bit more clear with the process. But, the machines are in demand because they are delivering a quality product. Sometimes you need to wait and be patient. It's better to wait upon a quality product than to go out and rush a purchase of this type based on impulse and immediate availability. I, too, questioned my decision to wait when I wondered where my machine was. I am very happy with my decision.