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Business notebook computers are designed for users in small-to-medium and even large companies who want systems that will be used mostly by a mobile workforce and therefore have to endure the bumps and bruises of business travel. These systems usually weigh five pounds or less, and incorporate such safeguards as self-parking hard disks that can eliminate or minimize damage caused by minor bumps or drops. Important features include a fast processor, high-capacity hard disk and long-life battery. Communications features are also important, including a built-in Ethernet port for wired connectivity, and multiple wireless technologies like 802.11a/b/g/n Wi-Fi, a cellular modem and Bluetooth for short-range connectivity. Prices range from several hundred to thousands of dollars.
General purpose notebooks range from $250 netbooks with 10-inch displays to 17-inch desktop replacement notebooks with budget configurations in the $600 price range. These systems usually do not have a high-performance processor, discrete graphics or entertainment-oriented features like 1080p displays, Blu-ray drives or high-quality stereo speakers. These budget-priced laptops are intended for basic tasks like browsing the web, sending email, using Microsoft Office or similar productivity software, watching web-based videos, balancing your checkbook or playing light games. Most systems are equipped with 802.11a/b/g and sometimes 802.11n Wi-Fi and a number provide an internal a cellular modem and Bluetooth connectivity.
Multimedia notebooks offer higher resolution displays for watching high-definition video and usually come equipped with faster processors and mid-range discrete graphics for premium presentation capabilities. Most systems come with 15-inch or 17-inch HD displays, but there are some 14-inch premium entertainment notebooks that offer a better-than-average mobile multimedia experience. This category of laptops may also include "branded" stereo speakers and subwoofers that deliver theater-quality sound even when you're watching movies on the road. These systems typically cost several hundred dollars more than a general purpose laptop with the same size screen due to higher performance components and often extensive use of metal or alloy in the construction of the notebook.
Gaming notebooks are usually equipped fast processors, lots of system memory, massive hard drives for storing lots of video games, and sometimes even high-speed Solid State Drives (SSDs) for extremely fast system start up, and even faster game loading speeds. Until recently all gaming notebooks were either 17-inch or 15-inch desktop replacement notebooks since high-performance CPUs and the latest graphics cards required massive cooling fans and heat sinks to keep components from overheating. More recent alternatives include smaller ultraportable gaming notebooks with 11-inch screens. Prices for gaming notebooks range from just under $1,000 to more than $4,000 for some of the custom-built gaming systems.
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