I’ve just tried out Linux Mint today, because I’m writing a FAQ (frequently asked questions) like thread for the deviantART linux forums. I wanted to test it and see how beginner friendly it is. In my opinion it’s very user friendly. It comes with nice hardware support and on my laptop (Thinkpad R51) it even comes with XGL out of the box. I think this could kind of be my new favourite distribution, because it uses Gnome and is using apt (with Ubuntu repositories) as the packet manager. My impression is, that Linux Mint also focusses on making it easier for people to use proprietary drivers and codecs. I’ve found Envy on the LiveCD and options to install Nvidia or ATI drivers with few clicks. That, in my eyes is a good thing. Userfriendlyness is a very important point. I even played with the thought of installing it and will maybe do so tomorrow.
Edit: I have installed it, like announced and I’m very satisfied so far.