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Voodoo offers laptop with upgradeable graphics

'Gamebook' debuts with ATI Mobility Radeon 9600

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Canadian notebook maker Voodoo has released what it claims is the first mobile PC with a modular, upgradeable graphics sub-system.

Voodoo's VoodooPC Envy M:460 is based on ATI's top-end mobile product, the Mobility Radeon 9600. The graphics chip contains 64MB of 333MHz DDR SDRAM dedicated graphics memory and drives the machine's 15in SXGA+ LCD.

Image copyright Voodoo

The Mobility Radeon is fabbed at 130nm and was the first DirectX 9 mobile part. It provides four rendering and two vertex engines, all based on ATI's second-generation pixel and vertex shaders. It offers 12 pixel shader operations per clock cycle and full precision floating point maths. The chip supports AGP 8x. It can operate at 1V courtesy of ATI's PowerPlay power-saving technology, which adjusts the graphics sub-system's clocks and voltage according to workload, lower the LCD refresh rate when necessary and can increase the chips performance when it detects the host system can cope with the extra heat generated.

The notebook - which Voodoo calls the 'Gamebook', which shows exactly where it's pitched - is powered by a 2.6GHz Pentium 4-M. It contains 512MB of DDR memory, a 60GB hard drive and a DVD/CD-RW combo optical drives.

For LAN gaming, the M:460 offers built-in 56Kbps modem, 10/100 Ethernet and 802.11a and b Wi-Fi.

If Voodoo's other Envy notebooks are anything to go by, the new machine will be available in a range of motor racing-inspired colours, including Range Rover Black, Silverstone Blue, Lamborghini Yellow, Imola Orange, Ferrari Red and, natch, British Racing Green.

They'll even print a personalised graphic 'tattoo' on the lid for you - if you've got an extra $400 to spend.

Voodoo did not reveal pricing as we went to press, but we note that the company will ship its machines in the US and worldwide. ®

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