The netbook market is growing at an incredible pace. It seems that every manufacturer is releasing a netbook option. The HP Mini 1000 stands out as one of the best netbook options due its 92% of full size keyboard, screen options, and storage configurations.
The piano black, 2.23lbs netbook features two USB ports, Wi-Fi, bluetooth, 3G broadband, a choice of 10.2-inch or 8.9-inch LED backlit, flush glass screen (both offer a 1024×600 resolution), and SSD and HDD storage options.
HP’s Mini 1000 can be configured with Windows XP or Linux. All configurations use the Intel Atom N270 CPU, and the system can be customized with 512MB or 1GB of RAM. Graphics support is handled through the Intel GMA 950 onboard video.
8GB and 16GB SSD storage capacities are available or a 60GB (4200 RPM) PATA hard drive can be selected. The default battery is a 3-cell lithium polymer. The base configuration for the Mini 1000 is $399.99.
At 2.4lbs, Toshiba claims that the new Portégé R600 is the world’s lightest full featured laptop PC. The system packs quite a punch into the small package. Features include a durable magnesium thin and light design, up to 5GB RAM, 128GB SSD, integrated DVD burner drive, and as much as 8 hours of battery life. The Portégé R600 also includes the latest wireless connectivity options and fingerprint security. Of course, the Portégé R600 does not match the weight of some ultra-portables, but those notebooks do not include functionality present in the Toshiba system, such as an optical drive. The Toshiba Portégé R600 is priced at $2,399.
- Intel Core 2 Duo Ultra Low Voltage Processor SU9400 (1.40GHz) with Intel Centrino 2
- Mobile Intel GS45 Chipset
- Up to 5GB DDR2 RAM
- 128GB SATA Solid State Drive (SSD)
- Integrated DVD Super-Multi Double Layer Optical Drive
- 12.1” Widescreen, High Brightness LCD Display
- Intel GMA X4500 with 256MB Memory
- 802.11a/g/n Wireless and Bluetooth
- 0.3 MP Webcam
- Fingerprint Reader
- Spill Resistant Keyboard
- Microsoft Windows Vista
The ASUS G71 notebook was designed specifically for the gaming market. The machine emphasizes audio quality and video performance to offer a complete gaming experience. Features include an Intel Core 2 Extreme processor QX9300 (quad-core), DDR3 RAM, dedicated NVIDIA graphics, and a Blu-ray optical drive. The ASUS G71 offers three different processor speed options via the Direct Console 2.0 overclocking and configuration software. Gaming hotkeys are also provided that can be configured to launch a favorite game or execute in-game commands. Similar to the Dell XPS systems, the G71 also features a programmable lighting system that lights up and blinks during in-game events. The lighting options are configurable through the Direct Console 2.0 software. Pricing information has not yet been made available.
- Intel Quad Core QX9300 Processor
- Mobile Intel PM45 Express Chipset + ICH9M-E
- Intel WiMAX/WiFi Link 5100
- Windows Vista Ultimate
- Up to 4GB DDR3 1066MHz SDRAM
- NVIDIA GeForce 9700M GT with 512MB GDDR3 VRAM
- Intel Turbo Memory Technology with 2GB NANDFlash
- 17" WUXGA High Brightness Display
- 1 Terabyte Disk Space via Two 500 GB 5,400 RPM Hard Drives
- Blu-ray Optical Drive
- 2 MP Swivel Web Camera
- Built-in Bluetooth V2.1+EDR
The most newsworthy feature of the HP Elitebook 6930p is no doubt the 24 hour battery life the notebook boasts. Battery enhancements and power-saving hardware selections have been combined to yield this milestone achievement. The new battery option is 12-cell, ultra-capacity, and each hardware option has been hand-picked for its battery saving benefit, including an Intel SSD for storage and the highly efficient HP Illumi-Lite LED display. Other specifications for the notebook include Intel® Core™ 2 Duo processor P8600 (2.40 GHz), 14.1-inch WXGA+ display, up to 4GB RAM, LightScribe DVD+/-RW SuperMulti with double layer support, ATI Mobility RadeonTM HD 3450 graphics, 2 MP Webcam, Intel 802.11a/b/g/draft-n wireless, and built-in broadband.
Dell has announced a monster new Precision M6300 Mobile Workstation. The 17" notebook features a powerful quad-core processor, up to 16GB RAM, 1TB disk space via two drives in a RAID0 configuration, 1GB dedicated graphics memory, and an impressive LED-backlit display. Information on system weight has not yet been anounced, but from the specifications, 10lb+ would be a good assumption.
Building on the popularity of the ThinkPad X300 notebook, Lenovo recently released the sub-3 lb ThinkPad X200, which offers a perfect mix of portability and performance. The notebook is one of the first to use Intel’s new Centrino 2 platform to provide the latest technologies and a standard-voltage Core 2 Duo mobile Penryn processor, packed into a 12" form-factor with a 1280×800 display resolution. Of course, the X200 features the legendary ThinkPad keyboard, the best among laptops. For those who are not comfortable with a TrackPoint (pointing stick), the new X301 may be more preferable, but for the rest, the TrackPoint offers convenient navigation and allows for optimal usage of the available space.
Other features of the X200 include impressive battery life, up to 4GB RAM, optional SSD storage, 1.3-megapixel camera, convenient ThinkLight, and much more. Connectivity is provided through WiMAX, Wireless WAN, GPS, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and ultra-wide band radio.
The only other possible disadvantage of the X200 is that it does not include an ultra compact optical drive, like the X301. An optical drive can be incorporated with the Ultrabase, though.
The Lenovo ThinkPad X200 continues the consistently well-built ThinkPad series. For many, it provides the best combination of size and performance, for both convenient portability and enough power to perform nearly any work.
An important note for those who own a VAIO notebook. Sony has issued a massive recall of over 438,000 laptops sold between July 2007 and August 2008 due to overheating problems. Recalled models include Vaio VGN-TZ100, VGN-TZ200, VGN-TZ300, and VGN-TZ2000 series notebooks. If you own one, call Sony at 888-526-6219 or go the the online support site to get your replacement.
MSI is rumored to be introducing a new version of the MSI Wind U100 ultraportable notebook. The current MSI Wind release features an 80GB disk drive. However, the new edition will boast a 160GB drive. Interestingly, this enhancement seems to be fueled by Microsoft’s new 160GB minimum hard drive requirement for Windows XP licensing. This change may cause a number of other hard drive size increases in the ultraportable segment in the near future.
The Logitech V550 Nano is an innovative new mouse that offers a few significant features that would be useful to anyone that uses an external mouse with a notebook.
Most significantly is the 18+ month battery life, which is very handy for any wireless mouse. The battery is also USB-rechargeable. The mouse can be turned off to further conserve battery life, and boasts an auto-shutoff feature.
Another important feature is the small "Plug-and-Forget Nano-Receiver". The receiver is so small that it barely protrudes from the notebook, making it practical and convenient to always leave in place, ready for use.
The mouse features an easy to attach/remove dock that can clip to the notebook for hassle-free transport. With the mouse attached to a notebook, less time is required to pack-up and go since the mouse is already connected and ready.
The Logitech V550 Nano provides a 2.4 GHz wireless connection between the PC and mouse and new laser technology for smooth operation and ultra-fast scrolling on nearly any surface.
The Logitech V550 Nano cordless mouse for notebooks will soon be available for purchase from the Logitech site for around $59.99.