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Dell unveils latest 'budget' notebook

D520 more mid-range than low-end

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Dell this week launched its latest low-cost Latitude laptop, pitching the D520 at budget-conscious users. The company also touted the machine's dual-core Intel Core Duo processor, though to make the base price you'll have to put up with a lesser, single-core Celeron M chip.

The D520 is available with either a 14.1in, 1024 x 768 display, a 15in screen with the same resolution, or a 1,400 x 1,050 15in panel. In each case, the graphics come courtesy of an Intel GMA950 graphics core built into the notebook's chipset: a 940GML or a 945GM, depending on whether you choose a Celeron M or Core processor, respectively. The machine comes with at least 512MB of DDR 2 SDRAM clocked at 533MHz or 667MHz, depending on the chipset.

Dell is offering up to 100GB of Serial ATA hard drive storage, and buyers can pick a CD-ROM, DVD-ROM, CD-RW/DVD-ROM, or DVD±R/RW optical drive - or they can add a second HDD.

Each notebook ships with Dell's own 802.11g Wi-Fi adaptor, with Intel's latest 802.11a/b/g or a Dell 802.11a/g adaptor offered as upgrades. Ethernet (10/100Mbps) is standard, as is a 56Kbps modem, four USB ports, Firewire, S-video, VGA, audio out and a PC Card slot.

Prices start at $948 in the US. Dell UK could not provide a base price at the time of writing. ®

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