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Dell intros Xeon box

Borrows a few ideas from Apple in the process

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Dell has hopped on Intel's Xeon bandwagon and announced a workstation based on the chip giant's latest CPU.

The Precision Workstation 530 supports all three Xeons - 1.4, 1.5 and 1.7GHz - in single or dual-processor configurations. As per other systems based on Intel's Xeon-oriented 860 chipset, the 530 supports up to 4GB of RDRAM and up to 292GB of Ultra 160 SCSI-based storage.

It contains three 32-bit PCI slots and a pair of 64-bit connectors. There's an AGP 4x slot too into which buyers can plug one of a range of high-end graphics cards from the likes of Matrox, Nvidia and ATI.

The most interesting aspects of Dell's new box are the leaves it takes from Apple's book. There are two USB and a 1394 (aka FireWire) port. OK, so these are fairly standard now, but the machine also sports a 'clamshell' design for easy - "no tools required", as Dell puts it - access to the internals, something Apple pioneered with the original Blue'n'white Power Mac G3 a couple of years back.

Pricing begins at $1799 and varies according to what you want Dell to put inside the box for you. ®

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