Asus has announced yet another addition to its growing EEE PC family. The latest one, the EEE 1004DN netbook, comes with an optical drive while keeping the same features that made the EEE format such a success.
The netbook, which shares the same chassis as the S101, swaps the older N270 Atom processor for a newer 1.66GHz Atom N280 CPU which runs on a faster 667MHz FSB. Out goes the 945GSE chipset, replaced by the GN40 which should allow Intel to shave manufacturing costs.
The GN40 - which includes Intel's GMA X4500HD graphics module - should have enough oomph to handle 720p HD content but definitely no Blu-ray (anyway there's no Blu Ray reader).
Other specifications include a 1GB DDR2 memory, a 120GB 1.8-inch, 4200RPM PATA hard disk drive and nearly six hours worth of battery life.
This is partly possible because of the reduced power consumption of the GN40+N280 pair which also results into a slightly lower thermal design power rating of 2W.
The 10-inch screen, a LED backlight model, can display up to 1024x600 pixels, a 1.3-megapixel webcam, a pair of speakers and Bluetooth compatibility.
Expect the EEE 1004DN - which should weigh around 1.45Kg - to be on sale for around £350-£400. A great price especially as it includes a fingerprint scanner, a D-Sub connector, a card reader and an ExpressCard slot.
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So... What's the difference between netbooks and laptops by the way? There's not much to differentiate between this netbook and say, the Acer Aspire 2920Z, which is not only cheaper but also comes with a more powerful CPU, Windows Vista and more memory. Maybe Asus should stick to designing EEE PC 700 type laptops rather than trying to cannibalise the market share of existing sub-laptops.
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