Any way of extending the battery life of a notebook is appreciated, and the graphics-card-disabling facility on the Rock Pegasus 650 is one of the most novel we've seen.

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The 128MB ATI Mobility Radeon X700 can be turned off if you just want to work on a spreadsheet or Word document on the train, then switched back on if you want to play some games at home. We managed to get an extra half an hour from the battery with the graphics chip switched off, improving the MobileMark 2002 score from 111 to 141 minutes.

This would ordinarily be enough to impress us, but there's more. The 2.13GHz Pentium M 770 processor and 1GB of DDR RAM combined to help the Rock to a WorldBench 5 score of 93, and the graphics card (when it's switched on, of course) achieved some playable frame rates on Doom3 and Halo.

That the 15.4in widescreen only stretches to a resolution of 1,280x800 is slightly disappointing, but it is a very good display with an excellent, sharp image. It's not incredibly heavy but given its power this is intended to be a desktop replacement model, primarily.

Storage is covered by a 100GB hard drive and backup by a dual-layer DVD writer, and office suite software and an antivirus package are included in the excellent bundle.

Connectivity options are good, too. The Pegasus 650 can hook up to 802.11a/b/g networks and there's all the ports and connectors you'd expect.

Rock Pegasus 650: Specs

  • 2.13GHz Intel Pentium M 770 processor
  • Windows XP Home
  • 1GB DDR RAM
  • 100GB hard drive
  • 15.4in 1,280x800 TFT display
  • 128MB ATI Mobility Radeon X700 graphics card
  • 24x/24x/16x (CD-ROM/-R/-RW) 8x/8x/8x/2.4x/4x/4x (DVD-ROM/-R/+R/+R DL/-RW/+RW) drive
  • 802.11a/b/g facilities
  • 355x276x39mm
  • 3.3kg
  • Microsoft Works 8.0
  • Bullguard Antivirus 5.0
  • 3-year return-to-base warranty
  • 2.13GHz Intel Pentium M 770 processor
  • Windows XP Home
  • 1GB DDR RAM
  • 100GB hard drive
  • 15.4in 1,280x800 TFT display
  • 128MB ATI Mobility Radeon X700 graphics card
  • 24x/24x/16x (CD-ROM/-R/-RW) 8x/8x/8x/2.4x/4x/4x (DVD-ROM/-R/+R/+R DL/-RW/+RW) drive
  • 802.11a/b/g facilities
  • 355x276x39mm
  • 3.3kg
  • Microsoft Works 8.0
  • Bullguard Antivirus 5.0
  • 3-year return-to-base warranty

OUR VERDICT

A great notebook with some clever features, the Pegasus 650 is well worth a Gold award. We especially liked the option to turn off the graphics card, and the software bundle. The warranty is also much appreciated.

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