My first laptop post was perhaps overly euphoric. There's an issue with the audio - plugging in headphones doesn't automatically mute the speakers. Thankfully, there's a solution, from linux-on-laptops.net The Acer Aspire 3680 entry noted that muting the "Surround" in the mixer, Kmix in my case, mutes the speakers, with sound still coming in the headphones. Also, the function keys - Fn-F8 for muting, Fn-DownArrow for decreasing volume and Fn-UpArrow for increasing - don't work. Another tweak which was required was to change the "Master Channel" by right-clicking and choosing 'Select Master Channel' - it was PC speaker, changed to PCM. This is so that now a single click on the Volume Control should be enough for controlling sound, without needing to open the full mixer.
Another nice link from linux-on-laptops was via the forum to this page - nice links to free audio software including Ardour.