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Gateway Goes Gaming
Gateway isn't about to be boxed out of the gaming and digital media market. Not if its new FX510 series of desktop PCs has anything to do with it. A 21-inch wide-screen high-def LCD monitor comes standard with the top-of-the-line $3,000 FX510XL, along with 2 Gbytes of RAM, 1 terabyte of storage, and 3.2-GHz Intel Pentium D dual-core processors. Top two models have nVidia GeForce 7800 GTX graphics.
Hewlett-Packard has tweaked its Pavilion dv8000 Series notebook PC to make the 17-inch high-def display even brighter with BrightView dual-lamp technology. It has doubled the storage, up to 240 Gbytes, with dual hard drives. And QuickPlay 2.0 plays DVDs or MP3 files in seconds--no need to boot up the PC. All those features are optional and bump the base price from $1,050 to $1,500. It also packs Intel's Centrino Duo mobile technology.
As home computers morph into tidy storage bins for digital copies of music, movies, and photos, more companies are coming up with their own boxes. The $1,500 shoebox-size m5e Mini Media Center PC from Blueado comes with a DVD burner, TV tuner, and 200 Gbytes of storage. The Microsoft Media Center keyboard makes it easy to access online content. Other perks: 54-Mbps 802.11g wireless networking and two front USB ports.
ThinkPad now has a less expensive little brother. Lenovo's new C100 notebook ($600) and two desktops, the J105 ($350) and J100 ($500), are cheaper than the other popular machines Lenovo builds. Built-in tools such as automatic updates, simplified network connectivity, and a one-button system for virus recovery are designed to catch the eye of the cost-conscious.
Another Dual Corer
Add Fujitsu to the list of PC makers using Intel dual-core processors, now available in its flagship LifeBook N6410 notebook with Centrino Duo mobile technology. The 17-inch display and ATI Mobility Radeon graphics controller have beefed up the entertainment value. With a $1,650 base price, the N6410 delivers up to 2 Gbytes of dual-channel 667-MHz memory and the largest hard drive around: a whopping 320 Gbytes.
Small, with a sleek design, Shuttle's XPC doesn't have to be hidden under a desk. Its brushed-metal finish actually adds a certain je ne sais quoi to a living room, a good spot to show off the home entertainment prowess of the $1,300 SD36G5M, a full computer that surfs the Web and plays DVDs and TV, and comes with Intel's 945G Express Chipset.
Micro Mini Excel
If a 5-inch screen is big enough for you to work on an Excel spreadsheet or PowerPoint slide, then DualCor Technologies' cPC may be the smart phone-tablet PC combo for you. The $1,500 device is the first portable PC to simultaneously run Windows XP Tablet PC Edition 2005 and Windows Mobile 5.0 operating systems.
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