Total linux novice here.
I've tested Ubuntu, then Mint Live CDs -- Gnome and XFCE -- and now PCLINUXOS.
I decided to try the latter because I've had problems with weird screen junk (see my other posts here). With PCLINUXOS (Live CD) I haven't had any of that. XFCE Mint was better than Gnome Mint in that regard, but I still had random junk adhering to my desktop.
Another reason I thought I'd check it out is that it looks like it's very easy to install it on a flash drive. With Mint, it's complicated (for me), and persistence (saving one's settings) is impossible right now, as I understand it. I'll be checking that out after my next backup.
I like the way Mint looks better...maybe I'm just allergic to the color blue. Something about the KDE environment makes me feel as if I'm in a cubicle in a highrise (even though I'm not).
I noticed that the PCLINUXOS CD comes with Fluxbox, an alternative window manager. No blue stuff there! That was very different. I kind of liked it.
Maybe I can try PCLINUXOS with Gnome? Not sure if that's possible. I have a lot to learn.