News Bits: 1-TeraByte Notebook Hard Drives, Intel Mobile Quad Core, Mac OS X Leopard Next Week

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Intel demos mobile quad-core at IDF Taiwan

Intel demonstrated an operational mobile quad-core processor today at IDF Taiwan. It will eventually be introduced into the notebook market. According to Intel the chip is still in its early stages of development – it came out of the fab three days ago. It will need a large cooling system – it has 840 million transistors and a TDP of 45W.

The chip will be branded as an Extreme edition and is part of the Penryn family.

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New Hitachi technology makes 1TB 2.5" drives possible

Hitachi today announced a new technology called CPP-GMR, which is the world’s smallest read-head technology for hard drives. They reduced the size of current recording heads by more than a factor of two; the new heads are 2000 times smaller than the width of a human hair. Hitachi expects to start using the technology in products in 2009 and hopes to fully exploit it in 2011. The company claims that 1TB laptop hard drives are now possible as well as 4TB desktop hard drives.

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Asus introduces G2K, A7K, and F7K gaming notebooks

Asus today announced three new laptops featuring AMD processors and ATI Radeon HD video cards: the G2K, the A7K, and the F7K. The highest-end model, the G2K, features the following:

  • AMD Turion 64 X2 TL-60 (2.0GHz)
  • 17-inch display
  • 2GB RAM
  • 200GB 7200RPM hard drive
  • ATI Radeon HD 2600 with 256MB dedicated
  • DVD burner
  • HDMI
  • 802.11b/g wireless, Bluetooth
  • Integrated 1.3 megapixel webcam
  • TV Tuner and remote
  • Windows Vista

The Asus A7K is also a 17-inch notebook but has more mild specifications.

(view large image)

It essentially has the same specifications as the G2K but features a Turion 64 X2 TL-56 (1.8GHz) processor and a 250GB 5400RPM hard drive. The F7K has the same chassis as the A7K but features a TL-58 (1.9GHz) processor and Radeon HD 2400 256MB graphics.

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Intel to design processor for OLPC

Intel is reportedly in the process of designing a new processor chip for the ultra low-cost laptop market. The firm should be able to have an OLPC-ready processor available in time for the next IDF in Shanghai.
Note that the architecture for the new processor is unique; it tried to adapt one of its current mobile processors for the task but could not. Be prepared to see the new processors on April 2 -3, 2008.

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Intel shows off new notebook ‘chiller

Intel is aware of the thermal limitations of laptops and has designed a new type of cooling solution to reduce temperatures. The firm showed off a notebook stand/docking station at the IDF in Taipei today that was co-developed with Embraco, a micro-compressor maker. The stand unit has three cylindrical compressors measuring 2cm in diameter and 10 cm long that drive coolant around the unit, which draws heat away from the laptop. The device works like a standard refridgerator. It can reduce the temperatures of the notebook by 10*C.

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Apple Mac OS X Leopard launch date October 26th

According to the release date for OS X 10.5, code name Leopard, the next update to the Mac OS, is set for October 26th. Apple is planning a launch party like the one they had for Tiger last year. It is not expected any hardware announcements would coincide with this launch, but the MacBook and MacBook Pro notebooks would start to be sold with this new OS on board. It is expected a refresh of the MacBook and MacBook Pro would take place in the first half of November.

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