MSI Launches A Light Version Of The Wind U230

MSI [LON:MSI] seems to be heading for a new niche in the netbook category. They have launched a new light version of the Wind U230 netbook. It has more or less the same specs that the original U230 has but with some crucial differences. The main difference is the display, which at 11.6″ is smaller than the original 12.1″ display. This causes the entire package to shrink a bit, making it more compact and supposedly light.

The internals stay more or less the same. It is still an AMD MV-40 Neo powered machine with 1.6GHz of processing power. The whole AMD chipset contains an integrated ATI Radeon HD 3200 graphics chip, enabling it to decode HD video and also afford an HDMI output. Given the better than average graphics performance, the battery life is going to take a hit.

The U230 Light, despite being smaller, is actually better equipped when it comes to the other options. Unlike the original U230 which comes with Windows 7 Starter Edition, it comes pre-installed with the more expensive Windows 7 Home Premium Edition. This model is available only in two colors — Black or Gray.

Since MSI has chosen to go with AMD, they get to install more RAM and hence this model comes with 2GB of RAM and a 250 HDD storage option. For connectivity it has a WiFi-n module to offer, which ensures a high-speed WiFi connection wherever it is available. Sadly though, there seems to be no option for Bluetooth.

As for ports, other than the HDMI mentioned earlier it has a card reader, 3 USB ports, 1 VGA out and the usual audio in and out ports. The 6-cell battery is good for only 4 hours, which is the trade off that you have to make for the better graphics performance. The US price is $400, keeping it above the average netbook pricing and clearly pointing at the fact that MSI is indeed gunning for a bridge market.


Limited Edition MSI Los Angeles Dodgers Netbooks Now Available

MSI Wind U135 Dodgers

MSI Wind U135 Dodgers

Limited Edition MSI Los Angeles Dodgers All-in-One PCs and Netbooks Now Available to the Public

MSI Co-founder Henry Lu to Throw out Ceremonial First Pitch to Celebrate MSI Night at Dodger Stadium

LOS ANGELES, CA – July 8, 2010 – The Los Angeles Dodgers and MSI announced today that the Wind Top AE2220 All-in-One PC and the Wind U135DX Netbook will now be available to the public in a special Dodgers limited edition. To mark the occasion, MSI co-founder Henry Lu will join Dodgers’ Casey Blake and Hung-Chih Kuo to officially unveil the All-in-One computers.  In addition, Lu will be throwing out the ceremonial first pitch on July 9th in celebration of MSI Night at Dodger Stadium.

Dodger fans can expect to start seeing the limited edition PCs on shelves at select La Curacao store locations from early July. In addition to their availability at retail, MSI will be giving away three All-in-One PCs and three Netbooks on MSI Promotional Night (July 9) at the stadium. From July 9 – August 9 fans will also be encouraged to enter a photo contest showcasing their Dodger spirit. The five selected winners who demonstrate the most spirit will receive an All-in-One PC and Netbook courtesy of MSI.

“We have had a chance to work with the new Wind Top All-in-One PCs here in the front office and they are absolutely amazing,” said Dodgers VP, Steven Spartin. “The fans are going to love the ease of use, design and most of all the speed in which these new PCs operate.”

The partnership forged between MSI and the Dodgers in March saw the Dodgers front office completely outfitted with the new All-in-One computers. The MSI Wind Top AE2220 all-in-one PC combines theater-like multimedia capabilities with the processing power for the most demanding applications. It features a 21.5-inch screen with 16:9 widescreen display, full HD (1080p) resolution and high-fidelity 5.1-channel SRS Premium Sound. Powered by NVIDIA ION graphics and the latest Intel® Core 2 Duo/Pentium Dual Core processors, it can effortlessly run HD movies, resource-hungry applications and sophisticated 3D games. The AE2220 also incorporates MSI’s exclusive graphic interface, enabling users to take advantage of “One Touch” convenience to browse the Web, edit images, use VOIP software, play music, and much more.  For more on the partnership between MSI and the Dodgers:

Another computer fans will soon enjoy is the ultra-portable Wind U135DX Netbook, part of MSI’s award-winning Wind series. Its super light weight – just 2.6 pounds and long-lasting battery life make the Wind U135DX ideal for those who are looking for a lightweight, affordable Netbook, whether for work or play while on the go. The unit also features Intel’s most advanced ATOM processor, N455 and TDE technology to enhance overall performance. The stylish and classy Wind U135DX boasts a power-saving 10-inch LED backlit screen with 1024 x 600 resolution, resulting in richer, crisper colors and better readability while word processing and surfing the Internet.

Name                            Wind Top AE2220
Operating System          Genuine Windows® 7 Home Premium
CPU                             Intel Core 2 Duo T6600 (2.2GHz)
Chipset                         NVIDIA® ION™ Graphics Processors
LCD Panel                     21.5” (54.61cm ) 16:9, 1920 x 1080, Full-HD
Multi-Touch Screen
Graphics                       NVIDIA GeForce 9300 Integrated Graphics with 256MB VRAM
Memory                        4GB DDR2 800MHz
Wireless LAN                802.11 b/g/n WiFi
Hard Disk Drive              640GB SATA2
Optical Drive                  Double-layer DVD Super Multi
Speaker                        Two 5W 5.1-channel surround speakers with SRS Premium Sound

Name                            Wind U135DX
Operating System          Genuine Windows® 7 Starter Edition
CPU                             Intel® Atom™ N455 (1.66GHz)
Chipset                         Intel® NM10
LCD Panel                     10” WSVGA 1024×600
Graphics                       Intel® GMA3150
Memory                        1GB DDR2 667MHz
Hard Disk Drive              250GB SATA
Wireless LAN                802.11 b/g/n WLAN
I/O Port                         USB 2.0 x 3, VGA (15-pin, D-Sub) x 1
Webcam                       1.3 MP
Dimension                     10.24″ x7.09 ” x0.78″
Weight                          2.6lbs (6-cell battery)

MSI Shows Off Sketchbook Concept And Preapares Wind U160DX

MSI recently showed off a band new netbook concept called Sketchbook. Simply put, it is a combination of a netbook scale computer with a graphic tablet that allows you to sketch on the go. Whilst it is true that the market already has a lot of touchscreen tablets that are used by graphic design, architecture and other professionals, this new design can potentially make the cost come down.

But since you cannot rely on the graphic tablet for key-based entry and the the display is not a touchscreen, MSI has added a swivel to the base. This way, you can turn the base to reveal the keypad on one side and the graphic tablet on the other. This of course makes it one fat puppy of a machine but it might be worth it if they actually build and sell it at a lower price. [read]

MSI’s Wind U160 has a lot of fans and it is not only because it is excellent Hackintosh material. It’s stylish looks and great components have made it one of the most popular netbooks that are currently available. MSI’s competitive pricing of course also helps a lot. And now the company has decided to upgrade this model and make it a DDR3 enabled device.

The new model will be called the Wind U160DX and will be featuring the DDR3 N445 Atom processor from Intel. Other than this one significant change, everything else will remain the same. Everything but the price, in all likelihood because this is a newer component that they are using and they are probably paying more for it themselves.

Intel’s DD3 N445 (1.6Ghz) and N475 (1.83GHz) Atom processors have not been formally announced yet but it seems to be available to the manufacturers already. We are likely to see new updates at the Computex event that is happening early next month.


MSI Releases Wind U135 Model To Celebrate Sales

U135_all-300x198MSI must be pretty chuffed with themselves for making the Wind line of netbooks. They are mostly known as a component manufacturer before they came out with the Wind to ride on the big netbook wave of the last two years. The Wind has been pretty successful and has sold millions. This has caused MSI to commemorate the success by releasing a new Wind model. It is called the Wind 135 and it has some real muscle for a change.

Okay, so when I say muscle, do remember that I mean it in a netbook way. That means that it has something extra as opposed to just a new look. The U135 is powered by a chip from Intel’s new Pine Trail series Atom processors. There is a choice between 160GB and 250GB HDDs when it comes to storage, which is pretty nice to have on a netbook. Also, the keys are supposed to be 20% bigger and that can really make a difference in how good it feels when you are using it on a regular basis. Netbook keyboards have always had small keys to conform to the form factor, so we will take anything that is bigger than the average. So this is actually a worthwhile feature to talk about.

The power consumption has also come down. It now consumes only 7 watts of power. With the optional 6-cell battery, you can really make your netbook last well beyond your entire working day.

Other than these features, everything else is pretty much what you expect them to be. There is 1GB of DDR2 memory, the screen is 10″ and you get Windows 7 Starter Edition. There’s a 1.3MP webcam, 3 USB 2.0 ports and 4in1 card reader slot. That last one is actually another really useful feature. You can get it for around $310-$330 on Amazon.

MSI Wind12 U230

msi-wind-u230_00Intel’s competitors are finally catching up to Intel, slowly but surely. The MSI Wind 12 U230 is a netbook that runs on the new Congo platform. This new processor is supposed to consume about 60% less than ‘standard netbooks’ by which they probably mean Atom by Intel.

The U230 uses a 1.6GHz processor with RS780MN and SB610 chipsets. That means you have full HD support along with DirectX 10 support. Graphics is worked through the ATI Radeon HD 3200.

Early reviews has put this as performing quite well against Intel Core 2 Duo models, which is actually a huge achievement. And seems to allow basic casual gaming, which is another big plus over most current Atom-based netbooks that do not have the ION chipset.

Another good news is that the platform supports up to 4GB of RAM. So if you are considering running 64Bit systems on the device, you might want to have a look at this. The battery life is pretty low but then that can be overlooked because of the U230’s form factor.

This netbooks from MSI has a think form factor that is a lot like the U200 or U210. So to maintain the thin profile, the battery has been skimped upon. IT still gives you 3 hours of battery life which is not too bad.

The display will surely please you. At 12.1” and 1366×768 pixels, it is completely ready to handle your HD viewing needs. You get to choose from various different SATA HDD sizes and there is also a 4-in-1 card reader. There’s an HDMI port, if you have been wondering about that and there are the usual set of ports like VGA, USB and audio in/out.

If you want more battery you can go for the optional 6 cell batter but it will probably stick out of the bottom.

MSI Wind12 U230 Runs On AMD Athlon Neo X2

msi-u230-wind-MSI is pushing the boundaries between standard netbook and standard notebook with their new model – the Wind12 U230. This is a new offering that MSI is flaunting around the Internet. It is not your typical Atom netbook if only because this runs on an AMD Athlon Neo X2 chip. It also has a 12.1” display that has a native resolution of 1,366×768. The keyboard is described as a special ‘de-stress’ keyboard that will supposedly keep you from stressing your fingers.

The Athlon Neo X2 chip on this netbook/ultraportable clocks at 1.6GHz and apparently gives you a better performance than the comparable Atom chip. Another factor to take into consideration is the battery life. The MSI Wind12 gives you only four hours of battery life, whereas other comparable models often touch 5 hours and some around 6 hours. This short battery life will be a definite let down for those who are looking to buy this device. It might also affect how popular this model proves to be.

Other features include a 1.3megapixel webcam and a 160GB HDD. The official weight is 2.9 pounds, which is okay and it will be running Windows 7 Home Premium. For some reason, MSI highlights the fact that the copy of Windows will be genuine. No word on pricing yet.

While there is no apparent resistance in the market regarding non-Atom netbooks, they generally tend to confuse prospective buyers. This is because there is a distinct difference in the internal architecture and manufacturers want to highlight that. But in doing so they tend to confuse people as to why their netbook is better than Atom netbooks. But other than running the Neo, this new netbook is average at best with a below average battery life. So it might not sell as well as MSI thinks it will.

MSI Wind U100/U120/U123 specifications added

Specifications for these three MSI netbooks were added to our database:

MSI Wind U115 Hybrid

MSI Wind U115 Hybrid

MSI Wind U115 Hybrid

The first MSI Wind has been quite a hit amongst the netbook-ing crowd. It was small, inexpensive and had good, stable features for the price. It became even more popular when the hackers found out that it was the perfect machine to build a portable Hackintosh out of. There were some drivers missing at first, like the ones for the wireless but then those drivers were ‘accidentally leaked’ in to the community by someone from MSI.

All of that is in the (not-so-distant) past now as we hail the new Wind – the Wind U115 Hybrid. This little netbook has a new claim to fame. It supports super long battery life extension by hybridizing storage. It carries one traditional spinning platter hard drive and a smaller, more efficient SSD. The idea here is simple, the OS is installed on the SSD and the hard drive is used for storage. You keep things plugged in while you are near a power outlet and use both storages. Then when you are on the move without a power source nearby you can use a built-in switch to completely turn-off the HDD and run the system off the SSD for surfing and emailing et al. Result: instant battery life boost.

So how well does this work in the real life? Pretty well actually. The logic behind it is very sound indeed. SSDs do use a lot less power because it is all a big hunk of non-moving circuitry inside. MSI claims that it can run continuously up to 12 hours on a single full-charge. For once the company estimate is close to what it s like in real life, as users have found out. Your system also runs blazing fast as a nice side effect of the SSD.

The trade-off? SSDs are expensive, so you have to choose between a 8GB or 16GB SSD model. The starting price is $350.