MSI spills the beans on the X-Slim notebooks

With the popularity of netbooks in the current economy, many computer makers are rushing to offer consumers more of the low-cost and portable computers. Most of the major computer makers offer only a few netbooks in their product line, but some of the smaller companies are offering many different netbooks.

MSI is one of the smaller companies that are now offering several netbooks in its global product portfolio. At CES 2009, MSI was showing off its new MacBook Air clone that sported a very thin profile and a 13.4-inch screen.

MSI has unveiled the thin X-Slim notebooks already, but held back on much of the system specifications until now. Engadget reports that MSI has officially announced the complete specifications for the X-Slim X320 and X340 notebooks.

The X320 will use an Intel Atom Z530 1.6GHz processor and run Windows Vista Home Premium. The screen is a 13.4-inch unit with a resolution of 1366 x 768. Dimensions for the system are 8.8-inches L x 12.9-inches W x 0.7-inch H with an overall weight of 2.8 pounds with the 4-cell battery. The X320 uses the Intel US15W chipset with graphics via Intel GMA500. RAM is DDR2-667 up to 2GB and storage is to a 250GB HDD. Wi-Fi is integrated and 3G and WiMAX will be optional.

The X340 shares most of the same features including dimensions but uses an Intel ULV SU3500 processor and the GS45+ICH9M-SFF chipset. Graphics are via Intel integrated GMA4500MHD and the machine supports up to 4GB of DDR2-800 RAM. Storage for the machine is to a 320GB HDD and the machine lacks the 3G and WiMAX options of the X320, though it adds HDMI-out which the X320 lacks.

MSI also announced the specifications for the Wind U123. It will use an Intel Atom N280 at 1.66GHz and run Windows XP Home. The chipset inside the 10.2-inch machine will be the Intel 945GSE + ICH7M with graphics via integrated GMA950. The U123 will use 1GB of DDR2 RAM and the screen resolution is 1024 x 600. Storage for the U123 is to a 160GB HDD and the netbook ships with a 6-cell battery. Bluetooth and Wi-Fi are integrated and the machine measures 10.24 x 7.08 x 0.38 - 1.30 inches and weighs 2.98 pounds with the 6-cell battery.

Pricing for the X-Slim machines has also been confirmed with the X320 starting at $700 and the X340 starting at under $1000. Pricing on the U123 has not been announced. All of the systems are expected to be available in May.

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