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Fujitsu-Siemens Amilo Pi 1536

A well-spec'd Centrino Duo laptop at an affordable price

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

Review It hasn’t been three months since Intel launched the Centrino Duo platform, and you can already find much-better-than-base specification machines for quite a bit less than £1,000. The Fujitsu-Siemens Amilo Pi 1536 is one such laptop, and it has a very well-rounded feature set and utilises some of the latest technology...

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Although the CPU specifications might not be the most impressive - it’s only got a 1.66GHz Core Duo T2300 - there’s enough power here for its target audience. Add to this 1GB of 533MHz DDR 2 memory in a dual-channel configuration (512MB x 2) and you've got a decent system. The chipset of choice is the Intel 945PM which is paired with an ICH7-M. The final part of the Centrino branding is an Intel PRO/Wireless 3945ABG adaptor which offers wireless access to 802.11 a, b and g networks.

The good news is that Fujitsu-Siemens has gone for a discrete graphics solution, fitting an ATI Mobility Radeon X1400 PCI Express-based MXM module with 128MB of dedicated graphics memory. If need be, the X1400 can utilise a part of the system memory thanks to ATI's Hypermemory architecture, to produce a combined maximum of 512MB of graphics memory. Using an MXM graphics module makes for an easy upgrade path for Fujitsu-Siemens, and a model with an Nvidia GeForce GO 7600 is expected later this year.

The Amilo Pi 1536 ships with no less than a 5,400rpm 100GB SATA hard drive with 8MB cache. And there's a multi-format DVD writer which will write to DVD±R media at 8x DVD±RW at 6x, DVD+R dual-layer at 2.4x and finally DVD-R DL at 4x.

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