Fujitsu-Siemens Amilo Pi 1536

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

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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