We can't expect much from an entry level SKU, and Intel's GMA X4500 IGP drags the Vista Experience Index down to just 3.8. The rest of the package fairs pretty well, but it still can't excel in any department.
We'll compare the DV5's Core 2 Duo T5800 to the recently introduced Pentium dual-core T4200 at the same frequency.
In Cinebench the T5800 shows it scales better, and scores higher in the xCPU part of the test, while the T4200 fairs better in the single-CPU test.
Surprisingly, the Pentium outperforms the Core 2 Duo in most Sandra CPU tests.
Memory bandwidth is what you'd expect from DDR2, average.
Futuremark 3Dmark 06
The 3Dmark06 score is irrelevant, and the CPU score is about 1% lower than the one scored with the T4200-based Acer we tested a few weeks ago.
The 320GB Fujitsu hard drive fails to impress. With an average speed of 46.5MB/s and a seek time just shy of 20ms, it's a bit slower than expected. CPU utilization is also pretty high.
Basically, the DV5 is a no thrills notebook that desperately tries to be different. In some respects, it manages to stick out from the mass of cheap 15-inchers, but it also has some shortcomings.
First of all, the glossy touchpad is pretty uncomfortable to use, and it can be downright annoying. The screen is also a bit disappointing. At 1280x800, it lacks a bit of resolution by today's standards, but that's the least of its problems. It's too glossy, and simply lacks brightness and contrast.
The design, especially in this limited edition finish, is a case of love or hate. But, in all fairness, it stands out in a crowd of cheap 15-inchers. Whether you like to stand out is up to you. Build quality is good, battery life and performance are average.
However, the best thing about the DV5 is the wide range of various configurations at relatively affordable prices. You can get it with ATI or Nvidia discrete graphics, and the SKU we had on test is a rather awkward one. You can even get a TV tuner and remote. Most DV5 ship either with AMD CPUs and HD3450/3650 graphics, or Intel CPUs and Geforce 9600M GT graphics. You can get an AMD based SKU with HD3450 graphics for as little as €450, which is pretty good value, but Intel-based SKUs with Nvidia graphics are pretty pricey, and frankly, not worth the bother.
If you're after a sub-€600 notebook and you don't mind the glossy finish, the DV5 is an interesting proposition. However, if you're willing to go for one of the pricier versions, with more powerful graphics and an Intel CPU, we believe you should look elsewhere.