Lenovo Unveils First Workstations

The D10 and S10 ThinkStations are designed for professionals in data and graphics intensive environments.

Lenovo, which is expanding its PC offerings to try to grab a bigger slice of the computer market, introduced on Tuesday two workstations, the first new product group in the company's Think family of PCs since it acquired the brand two years ago from IBM.

The D10 and S10 ThinkStations are scheduled to ship in January with processors from Intel that were built with the company's next-generation 45-nanometer manufacturing process. Both machines are designed for professionals in data and graphic intensive environments, such as computer-assisted design, engineering, oil and gas exploration, and digital content creation.

Lenovo was the third largest PC maker in the world in the third quarter, behind Hewlett-Packard and Dell. Lenovo's share of about 8.2%, however, is far behind HP and Dell, which have 19.6% and 15.2% of the market, respectively, according to IDC. Lenovo is strongest in its Chinese homeland.

To boost its market share, Lenovo is expanding its Think-family of computers, which the company bought in 2005 with the $1.25 billion acquisition of IBM's PC unit. Lenovo, best known outside of China for its ThinkPad business notebooks, plans to introduce early next year a new line of consumer laptops and desktops. Lenovo introduced its first consumer desktop in the U.S. this quarter.

The new workstations, which would go up against products from HP, Dell and others, would use Intel's most advanced processors, as well as Lenovo's own proprietary technology, such as its "dual-channel thermal system" that pulls air over processors for cooling, but has the same noise level as a standard desktop PC. The systems also contain Lenovo's ThinkVantage technologies for rescue and recovery and security.

The D10 is powered by Intel's quad-core Xeon 5400 series processor. The S10 will run Intel's dual-core Core 2 processors, including the Core 2 Extreme QX9650 with the latest graphics processor from Nvidia. The 45nm chips, which have higher performance at the same energy consumption as Intel's previous generation, are scheduled to ship to computer manufacturers this quarter.

Both computers are also equipped with dual Gigabit Ethernet connections, and multiple slots, bays, and USB ports for expandability. They also meet the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's latest Energy Star 4.0 specification for energy efficiency and recyclable components.

The new workstations will be available through Lenovo partners and its own Web site. Pricing starts at $1,199 for the S10 and $1,739 for the D10.

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