Lenovo puts Atom chip in fan-less desktop

Lenovo launched its first nettop with Intel's Atom processor for budget buyers.

Lenovo launched its first nettop on Tuesday, reaching out to budget buyers with an inexpensive, fan-less desktop designed for surfing the Web and other basic computing tasks.

The Lenovo H200 uses Intel's low-power Atom CPU to help the system consume less power than traditional desktops. Like netbooks -- the laptop equivalent of nettops -- it's designed for basic tasks like Web surfing and word processing, not to deliver the full multimedia experience of typical PCs.

The fan-less design of the H200 makes it Lenovo's quietest desktop, the company said. It runs the single-core Atom 230 processor with 512KB of cache, can have up to 2GB of RAM and comes with Windows Vista Home Basic. It will also include up to 160GB of hard drive storage, a DVD-R/W drive and Intel integrated graphics controllers.

The H200 is priced at US$399 with a 19-inch monitor and is available now through retailers and on Lenovo's Web site in the U.S. and some parts of Asia, including China.

Some users may wonder why they need a nettop, when netbooks that provide greater mobility and support similar applications can be had for $300 to $500. Kristy Fair, a Lenovo spokeswoman, said some users value a larger screen over the mobility a netbook affords.

"It's an affordable option for people looking for a package that has everything they need -- the desktop and the monitor," she said.

The company has also introduced more powerful desktops. The IdeaCentre K220 and K230 will be able to run Intel's quad-core processors and come with 64-bit editions of Windows Vista for faster computing. The K220 and K230 will support up to 4GB and 8GB of memory, respectively, and optional Blu-ray drives will be available.

The K220 and K230 will be priced at $449 and $499, respectively, and will be available later this month.

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