On both sides of the multimedia buttons there are rather loud stereo speakers hidden under decorative grids. The speakers are close to the user, but get covered up with the user’s hands during work.
The exterior color scheme is continued inside. The bottom part is light silver, including the touchpad, with black margins on the right and left. The display bezel is black and has rubber pads for softer contact with the notebook’s bottom.
The display fastening mechanism is typical of large models. The hinges stand up above the notebook’s bottom, allowing you to unfold the notebook by a full 180 degrees.
The Precision M90 is equipped with a widescreen 17” display with a max resolution of 1440x900 pixels and an aspect ratio of 16:10 (WXGA+). The Precision M90 series may also come with a WUXGA display (1920x1200). The viewing angles seem large both vertically and horizontally. This model’s display lacks “glassy” coating typical of many other notebooks. It means you don’t have to care about ambient lighting when you sit down to work with your M90. The display offers 8 grades of brightness, which is quite sufficient for choosing a comfortable setting.
We measured the brightness and contrast of the notebook’s display using a Pantone ColorVision Spyder with OptiCAL version 3.7.8 software. We selected the highest brightness setting before that test and it remained almost unchanged when the notebook switched to its battery. The measured values of brightness and contrast aren’t high, although you wouldn’t think so after looking at the screen:
AC power source:
- 78.7cd/sq.m brightness, 40:1 contrast ratio
DC power source:
- 75.6cd/sq.m brightness, 42:1 contrast ratio
The notebook’s keyboard looks unusual. Considering the large area of the notebook’s bottom half and the professional positioning of the product series, it’s not clear why the manufacturer didn’t install a full-size version as there’s enough room left on both sides of the keyboard. There are 87 black keys here. The Arrow keys are lowered below the keyboard’s baseline to reduce the risk of your pressing them unintentionally. The Fn button is located at the bottom left of the keyboard, next to the Ctrl key, which is in the corner. This is convenient for people who are used to shortcuts like Ctrl+C or Ctrl+V. Numeric buttons and two Windows keys are available: the Windows Logo key is over one key on the left of the spacebar whereas the Context Menu key is placed in an unusual location, at the top, above the F9 button. The functional keys are smaller than others. Insert, Home, PgUp, Delete, End and PgDn buttons are placed in a single block at the top right. Print Screen, Num Lock and Pause are located in the same row with the Context Menu button above the functional keys (you should press them together with Fn to access their additional functions). The letters are painted white; the functional keys are blue.
The notebook’s touchpad is painted the color of its surroundings. The touch-sensitive area with vertical and horizontal scrolling zones is sunken a little into the case. There is a scrolling joystick between the touchpad’s buttons.