Even as early as this morning, industry sources were quoting March 22 as the release date for Acer's revamped Timeline notebooks. Coming in ahead of schedule, however, Acer today officially unveiled its Aspire TimelineX 1830T thin and light laptop, as well as a handful of other models.
Built around Intel's Calpella platform, the TimelineX 1830T sports an 11.6-inch display and weighs 3 pounds. Acer didn't get too specific with the processor, saying only that it feature an Intel Core 2 Solo chip, but reports suggest it will come outfitted with Intel's Core i5 520UM CPU clocked at 1.06GHz.
Other accouterments include Wi-Fi, a pair of memory card slots, HDMI port, optical audio, three USB 2.0 ports, Bluetooth 2.1, and up to 8-hours of run time on the 9-cell battery (a step up from the 6-cell battery found on previous Timeline models).
Other specs are so far unknown, including RAM and hard drive capacity. So too is the price.
MSI is pretty stoked about the latest entry to its gaming notebook line, the 17-inch GE700. The new notebook couples an Intel Core i5 processor with ATI Radeon HD 5730 graphics (with 1GB GDDR3 memory), along with a few other noteworthy goodies.
Among them are two "cinema-class" speakers and a subwoofer, an HD webcam capable of 720p video up to 30fps, two hard drive bays for up to 1TB of storage, MSI's exclusive GPU Boost technology (switch between the integrated and discrete graphics solutions), HDMI output, eSATA, 4-in-1 memory card reader, 802.11a/b/g/n Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and Windows 7 Home Premium.
MSI put a bit of attention into the GE700's styling, including a "super-cool exterior" with a glossy black finish. You'll also find luminescent touch-sensitive hotkeys.
Mushkin doesn't make the headlines too often, but the high-end memory maker this week announced one more addition to its Blackline series, the Blackline 4GB DDR3-2000 kit.
The new dual-channel kit sports Mushkin's now-familiar Blackline Frostbyte heatspreaders, but it's what's under the aluminum that counts. Mushkin rates its memory modules at 2000MHz with fairly tight 7-10-8-27 latencies at 1.65V.
This ranks as Mushkin's fastest DDR3 kit to date, although not the fastest on the market, and also the company's tightest-timed 2000MHz kit.
Mushkin says the new kit will be available soon for $180.
Targeting the value segment, MSI this week announced four new additions to its C-series (Classic series) notebook line. The new models consist of the 16-inch CR600 and 15.6-inch CR620-030, CR620-033, and CR620-031.
All three 620-based models are built around Intel's Arrandale platform and tout either a Core i3 or i5 processor. Each one also comes equipped with 4GB of DDR3 memory, and either a 320GB or 500GB hard drive. Those who opt for the CR620-033 will also get a Blu-ray DVD combo drive.
The CR600 comes with Nvidia's GeForce 8200M graphics, and like the rest, it also boasts 802.11b/g/n Wi-Fi, HDMI out, 1.3MP webcam, a raised chiclet keyboard, and Windows 7 Home Premium.
All models are available now at Newegg with pricing starting at $530.
Huron River, which, like Calpella, will support Core i3, i5, and i7 processors, and will be based on the 32nm Sandy Bridge architecture. It will be made up of dual-and quad-core processors supporting Intel’s Turbo Boost and Hyperthreading. It will have faster integrated graphics and support for 1600MHz DDR3 memory.
Huron River options look to include a WiMAX chipset, Wireless Display support, and Bluetooth.
Good news for IT admins. Intel last week announced a new vPro platform for its Core i5 and i7 processors designed to make remote maintenance and management of PCs an easier task in the enterprise.
"Businesses, particularly those that haven't purchased PCs for several years, face a computing environment that no longer handles the applications many workers and IT are adopting," said Rick Echevarria, vice president, Intel Architecture Group, and general manager, Business Client Platform Division. "The integration of intelligent performance along with smart security and cost-saving manageability features in the Intel Core vPro processor family provide IT and SMBs a no-compromise platform. We also are excited about how Intel vPro Technology gives IT the flexibility to look at client virtualization, consumerization and rich cloud applications"
The new platform based on Intel's Core vPro processors consists of the new Intel Q57 Express chipset, Intel 82577LM Gigabit Network Connection for notebooks, and Intel 82578DM Network Connection for desktop PCs.
With all the talk of Core i7, Core i5, Intel's upcoming six-core Gulftown, and a plethora of swank X58- and P55-based mobos bombarding the market place, are you starting to feel left out puttering along on your LGA775 build? Well, you should be -- this is Maximum PC, after all. But outside of our niche of power users, LGA775 still reigns supreme, and by no small margin.
As Fudzilla reports it, LGA775 processors are the current king of the sales hill, accounting for a whopping 77 percent of sales. The dated socket won't be able to hold onto that pace throughout 2010, but by the end of the year, Intel expects LGA775 to still account for half of all processor sales.
So who's buying into socket 1366 and building high-end Core i7 foundations? Not many. Currently the least popular Intel socket of the bunch, higher end Core i7 chips only account for a measly 1 percent of sales.
Socket LGA1156, on the other hand, claims 18 percent of all Intel shipments and its market share is expect to grow to 44 percent by the end of 2010. And of course there's the ever-popular Atom series, which surprisingly only makes up for 5 percent of all Intel CPUs so far in this first quarter.
The new Core i5 and Core i7 mobile CPUs are already finding their way into some products. Panasonic has announced that the Japanese version of the Toughbook laptops, known there as Lets Note, will be getting some speedy new Nehalem-based processors. The new rugged (and a little ugly) offerings will come in four flavors.
The S9, N9, and F9 will have a Core i5-520M CPU. Screen sizes range from 12.1 inches (S9 and F9) up to the 14.1 inch screen on the F9. This screen will probably look quite nice with a resolution of 1440 x 900. The real gem here is the R9 model which will have a Core i7-620M, 250GB HDD, and 2GB of DDR3 RAM crammed into a chassis the size of a netbook. A 10.1 inch screen with that kind of power makes for a desirable ultraportable computer.
A Japanese launch is scheduled for February 17th. No word on if these PCs will find their way here. If you were able to get one of these, what would you pay for it?
Biostar today announced the release of its mainstream TH55B HD motherboard, which the company claims balances competitive pricing with "outstanding" overclocking performance.
The TH55B HD is a mATX board decked out with a black PCB, 5-phase X.D.C. solid state power design, high-end Japanese capacitors, and other manufacturing tidbits that have become buzzwords among enthusiasts.
Probably more meaningful to most is the inclusion of 4 DDR3 memory slots with support for 16GB of memory at up to 2000MHz (OC), a full-speed PCI-E x16 port, PCI-E x1 port, two standard PCI ports, 6 SATA 2.0 ports, and "Power" and "Restart" hotkeys. It also boasts HDMI, DVI, and VGA ports.
CES is just a few short days away, and in keeping with tradition, the rumor mill has been working overtime to try and leak announcements in advance of the massive event. In the laptop space Intel has been making our job easy since new Arrandale based Core i3 machines have been popping up for sale around the web, and the good news here is that they are much cheaper than we would have expected based on it being a new architecture. Canadian based retailer Future Shop is offering a Core i3 based Gateway machine for less than $700 USD, or for just $70 more, you can opt for the Toshiba Satellite with a slightly larger display.
Core i3 is the new budget platform from Intel offering most of the advantages of the Core i5 and i7 parts, with the key exception being a lack of Turbo-Boost. The Core i3's will also only come in a dual-core design, and will have slightly smaller caches than there more expensive brethren. Arrandale specific benefits include Intel's fastest integrated graphics solution which is now built directly onto the CPU, and Hyper-Threading support which will make a huge difference for applications that are heavily multi-threaded. The new 32-nanometer design also promises to be much more power efficient, always a plus where you're talking about laptops.
Let's just say now is a great time to be on the market for a new laptop, but I'd still hold out until CES if I were you.