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Laptops work as HD-DVD, Blu-ray players

MSI and Asustek announce hybrid PCs

Two manufacturers have announced laptop PCs that hook up to HD (high definition) TVs. The laptops then use their internal high definition optical drives to operate as either Blu-ray Disc or HD-DVD players.

At Computex in Tapei today MSI is displaying laptops with HDMI (High Definition Multimedia Interface) outputs. This way, the laptop doubles as an HD-DVD or Blu-ray Disc player on the family HD TV.

Most of the laptops at MSI's Computex booth, including the PR210, RR210, GX610, GX710 and ER710 models, have AMD Turion 64x2 dual-core processors and ATI graphics chips. The GX710 and ER710 are high-end laptops with 17in display screens. Most of the other laptops have 15.4in screens. The company showed two laptops, the GX600 and GX700, with Intel Centrino Duo processors and Nvidia graphics chips.

MSI is still testing HD optical drives, and will let users choose what kind of drive they want in their device, an MSI marketing manager said.

Asustek has also produced laptops with HDMI outputs. It is using only Intel and nVidia chips in its laptops. The ASUS G1S comes with a 15.4in screen, an Intel Centrino Duo processor and nVidia graphics chips, while the ASUS GS2 comes with the same chips and a 17in screen. They retail for $2,000 or less, depending on specifications, an Asustek official said.

The company's Lamborghini VX2 notebook PC, developed in conjunction with Lamborghini also has an HDMI output.

Most of Taiwan's other major PC makers, including Foxconn and Giga-Byte Technology did not show laptops with HDMI slots. Foxconn said it will have one out by the end of July.

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