DVD burners, desktop chips in new Toshiba notebooks

Toshiba America Information Systems has released two new notebooks with DVD-R/RW burners designed for home use as desktop replacement machines, it said Tuesday in a press release.

The new additions to Toshiba's Satellite series, the 1955-S805 and the 2455-S305, feature desktop processors from Intel Corp. Home users are increasingly turning to notebooks as they look to replace their aging desktops, and can get comparable performance to high-end desktop systems in notebooks too large for the business traveler, according to analysts.

With multimedia applications also on the forefront of many PC vendors, desktop replacement notebooks are becoming more like consumer entertainment devices than their thin-and-light counterparts designed for truly mobile travelers or field workers.

Toshiba has already released a desktop replacement notebook with a DVD burner, the 5205-S703, and Apple Computer also has put DVD recording technology into some of its new Powerbooks. But the new Satellite notebook is less expensive than Toshiba's older 5205-S703 and Apple's 15-inch Super Drive Powerbook, which costs $2,799 with the same amount of memory and storage, according to Apple's site. Sony also sells a notebook with a DVD burner for around $2,500.

The Satellite 2455-S305 comes with a 2.4GHz Intel Pentium 4 processor, 512M bytes of SDRAM (synchronous dynamic RAM), a 60G-byte hard drive, a GeForce4 420 Go graphics card from Nvidia Corp. with 32M bytes of video memory, a 15-inch display, and a DVD-R/RW drive for US$2,099. It is available immediately from Toshiba's Web site and retail stores.

The 1955-S805 comes with a 2.53GHz Intel Pentium 4 processor, 512M bytes of SDRAM, a 60G-byte hard drive, a GeForce4 440 Go graphics card with 32M bytes of video memory, a 16-inch display, and a DVD-R/RW drive for $2,299.

Australian pricing and availability is yet to be announced.

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