Product News: Business laptops


16 May 2006

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We preview the latest batch of notebooks for the business, educational and personal market: Dell Latitude D520 (pictured), Apple MacBook Pro and HP Compaq 9400 and 6300.

Dell Latitude D520
What is it? Notebook PC
Price: from €961

Sporting a revamped design, Dell’s latest notebook for small businesses and the educational market is cased in a durable magnesium alloy frame. It can be supplied with the choice of processor — either Intel’s Core Duo or Celeron M processors. Customers can also choose between 14.1-inch and 15-inch displays, with Wi-Fi networking an additional option. Four different hard drive capacities are on offer, from 40 to 100GB.
The Latitude’s dual-battery configuration means it can be used for a whole working day without needing a recharge. Depending on spec, the unit weighs around 2.38kg. The D520 is compatible with existing Latitude notebook accessories available since 2003, including batteries, docking stations, optical drives and power adapters.

Apple MacBook Pro
What is it? Portable computer
Price: €2,929

Apple’s new portable comes with a 17-inch widescreen LCD display that is said to be one third brighter than previous models.
It is the first of Apple’s MacBook Pro range with PCI Express, a serial ATA hard drive and the ATI Mobility Radeon X1600 for fast graphics rendering in 2D and 3D.
Powered by the Core Duo chip, the laptop has 2MB of Smart Cache, L2 cache that can be shared between both processor cores as needed. Improvements to the machine’s frontside bus and memory means that, at 667MHz, it runs faster than any previous Mac notebook, Apple claims.

HP Compaq 9400 and 6300
What are they? Business laptops
Price: €1,910 and €1,087

HP’s latest Compaq 9400 and 6300 notebooks run Intel Core Duo processor technology and have select models that come with built-in network connectivity over 3G. The HP Compaq nx9400 has a 17-inch widescreen display and 3D graphics features.
Thin and lightweight, the 6300 is available with a choice of processors, including the Intel Core Duo, as well as a number of wireless options. The laptops start at €1,910 and €1,087 respectively. Both models have layers of security protection for keeping data safe, including a software suite called HP ProtectTools, a fingerprint reader and an integrated smart card reader.
HP has also introduced an Ultra-Capacity Battery (€216), a 12-cell lithium-ion battery that works across the company’s business notebook range and which is said to extend the laptop’s independent operating time to a further 10 hours.

By Gordon Smith