Yes the screen is REALLY DIM!!
I just got my Acer 8204LWMi today and am sooo disappointed in the screen brightness or lack thereof.
I am returning it ASAP!!!
Of the laptops I have personally seen and used, i rate this the lowest in brightness:
1. Sony Vaio Xbrite (glossy and very bright)
2. Toshiba Tecra M2 (adequately bright)
3. Dell Inspiron 9200 (standard screen not TrueBrite)
4. Acer 8204LWMi
The screen is sharp on detail and the high resolution is great. But unless you live in a cave or work only at night, you will think it is too dim. I mean, really really dim. I thought my Dell 17" Inspiron was dim, but this has to be dimmer.
Also, the viewing angle is REALLY bad. Maybe this is a side effect of the dimness? You don't even have to tilt the screen to see the effect - if you just move your head around up/down side/side a little you will see part of the screen looking as if in shadow. This is totally unacceptable.
I bought mine from Buy.com and am going to return it. I want a duo-core - maybe i will get the IBM Lenovo or Sony Vaio, not sure yet. I just know i can't live with this dim screen.
I had read one review before purchasing where a guy said the screen was dim but he said a BIOS update helped. I went to the Acer site and got the latest BIOS dated 3-13-06 and tried to flash but it wouldn't, it said i already had the latest. So don't believe that story. It is just a bad screen or not enough power to it.
It's really a shame. The laptop looks and feels great and fast and i'm sure i would have gotten to like a lot of things about it.
Too bad, Acer - you ALMOST had a killer product
(This notebook is in the Acer 8200 series)