So I've installed 32 bit mint 13 KDE on my acer netbook, which has the infamous cedarview architecture. It's definitely the best mint version I've tried yet, and I've tried them all now except cinnamon ... I will probably never install a gnome 3 based desktop shell ever again. Kde is just more polished. The power management is better. It's actually no slower than mate and barely slower than xfce.
Lots of linux people seem to feel you can't use kde on a 1Gb netbook. Horse pucky.
Yes, it takes up more ram mint or xfce but less than unity, which is a pretty bubblehead by comparison. Plus, in kde you can painlessly set it up top bypass compositing effects when going fullscreen. Try that with compiz ...
One thing I'm wondering about is that when I select opengl under desktop effects setting, it always seems to set it back to xrender. This is more a matter or curiosity than a problem. It's a netbook, I didn't get it for high performance stuff.
I kind of suspect it's because when you install the cedarview driver packages from synaptic it also holds the version of the kernel and associated headers, but I'd be interested in hearing any other more infofrmed views.