Much has been made about Intel's Ultrabook concept, which is supposed to mesh tablet-like features with notebook performance in a highly portable form factor. The big hurdle is getting retail pricing below $1,000, and it's proving no easy task. In the meantime, system builders are bridging the gap with powerful notebooks that are highly portable, yet fall just a little shy of Ultrabook status. Such is the case with MSI's new X460 and X460DX laptops.
Ah, the bang for buck angle. It's one of the reasons AMD stays relevant even when it has a hard time catching up with Intel in performance, and it's the tried and true method for piecing together a system on a budget. It's also the angle MSI taking with its new CR430 multimedia laptop built around -- drum roll please -- AMD's E-450 accelerated processing unit (APU).
Puget Systems announced last week the creation of Puget Labs with grand plans to test and benchmark products, publish the results for all the world to see, and offer up explanations as to why a particular brand of RAM or hard drive or videocard or whatever didn't make the cut for one of the boutique builder's systems. Puget's goal is complete transparency between the system builder and its customers, and by taking this approach, we felt it was only a matter of time before the fireworks start to fly. It took just two days.
There are some things you just shouldn't do with your notebook. For example, it's not a good idea to whack a burglar over the head with your Core i7 notebook (use your Macbook instead), nor should you lug it around in heavy rain, through sand storms, acidic environments, or in high or low pressure areas. If you have trouble avoiding any of these situations, buy life insurance because you're an accident waiting to happen. With your your leftover coin, boutique system vendor AVADirect hopes you'll also consider a rugged notebook or tablet like GD Itronix's new GD8200 or GD3015.
Dell decided it was time to revamp its wardrobe and the first thing to go were those old digs the OEM's consumer laptops were known to sport (Studio series notwithstanding). The new Inspiron 13z and 14z laptops bring a fresh look to the table, along with an ultrathin profile and second generation Intel Core processor options of the i3 and i5 variety.
Lenovo has come up with a business-ready all-in-one desktop the company figures would make a perfect fit for large businesses, schools, and government workers alike. It's the ThinkCentre M71z, an AIO built around Intel's second generation Core processor family and with interactive touchscreen options and videoconferencing features, like a 2MP built-in webcam and digital array microphone.
Imagine for a moment a boutique system vendor turning down a batch of solid state drives or particular brand of graphics cards, not because of price, but based on internal testing and benchmarking. Now take it one step further and imagine that same system builder publishing the results of its internal testing for all the world to see. System shoppers would love it, hardware makers would probably detest the idea, and Puget Systems plans to set the process in motion.
Lenovo has come out with a new line of monitors dubbed the LS Series. With these new displays, Lenovo intends to give small-to-medium businesses (SMBs) features "crafted to their unique needs," such as bright images and touch-enabled navigational control. In the same breath, Lenovo also announced its new professional grade ThinkCentre Edge 71 desktop family available in tower and small form factors.
It's already the first week of August, and if you're a student, that means back-to-school shopping is just around the corner, provided you haven't already stocked up on supplies for the coming semester. Boutique system vendor iBuyPower wants to help, though not with pencils, notebook paper, or any of that jazz. Instead, iBuyPower is taking direct aim at student gamers with the launch of its new Gamer Power BTS11 system.
iBuyPower just launched its new Professional Series line of workstations with modern powerhouse amenities like second generation Core i7 and Xeon processors, hardware RAID options, and Nvidia Quadro graphics cards. There are three baseline configurations to choose from, including the Professional Series Z68, Xeon, and X58, each one fully customizable with off-the-shelf hardware.