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11/30/2006
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Review: Asustek And Micro-Star Let You Work In The Laptop Of Luxury

Asustek adds pink leather notebook to its S6 line for the holidays; Micro-Star's M677 Crystal Collection is adorned with Austrian crystal.

Want to work on your next spreadsheet in style? Want to turn heads on your next cross-country flight? Or do you just want your computer to be as stylish as your Prada bag or your BMW convertible? Then laptops from Asustek Computer and Micro-Star International might be what you're looking for.

Asustek's S6 Series are powerful machines with Intel Core 2 Duo LV2400 processors and 1,024 Mbytes of memory--and they're wrapped in leather. The notebook is encased in hand-embossed leather and sports a jeweled hinge and a polished keyboard. The S6 Leather Collection was launched this fall. And in time for the holiday shopping season, a limited-edition pink leather notebook has just been added to the high- end line.

"It's not for everybody," a company spokesman says. "We're thinking this would be perfect for the top executive or high-end salespeople who want to look impressive when they walk in the room. For some people, looks are critical."

The leather notebook comes in three colors--caramel, brown, and pink--with Bluetooth 2.0, which transmits three times faster than the standard Bluetooth for increased connectivity and synchronization between digital devices. A range of input/output ports offers dynamic data transfers and storage, including five USB ports, S-video TV-out port, and express card slots. The machines also have a Net4 Switch Utility, which detects available networks in the surrounding environment and allows users to select and make switches anywhere. The technology is designed to offer smooth connection transitions on the go.

For those looking for a bit more flash, Micro-Star's bling-bling notebook might be just the ticket.The M677 Crystal Collection shows off a logo inlaid with 120 pieces of Austrian crystal. But don't let the sparkle fool you--it's a powerful machine. The M677 uses an Advanced Micro Devices TurionT 64 X2 processor, DDR II memory chips, and a 5,400-rpm high-speed hard drive.

The notebooks will ship first in the European and Asian markets, probably starting this month, a Micro-Star spokesman says. He notes that the crystal designs are slowing down production and that will keep the laptops out of the U.S. market at first.

Asustek's leather notebook has a suggested retail price of $2,499; Micro-Star hasn't provided pricing yet for its crystal-adorned model.

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