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The Smallest of Them All: The P4/2400 Micro PC

Conclusion: Ultra Compact All-Around PC With High Performance Density

There's no question that Jadetec's Micro PC is among the smallest PC systems there are . It will fit into any briefcase and weighs a mere 3.5 lbs. In appearance and dimensions, it can be compared to a modern toaster as found in most households.

Defining the target group is not so easy. In terms of performance, the Micro PC comes out ahead of the top group of high-end notebooks. After all, the Pentium 4/2400, in conjunction with 512 MB of DDR266 memory, takes care of performance. As far as equipment goes, it features all the most important interfaces, such as USB 2.0, FireWire, SP/DIF, modem and network functions - and the additional 1 GBit connection is currently in a class of its own. An S-Video output is available for presentations.

That's why business customers, for example, could use this device when commuting between an organization's subsidiaries and headquarters, or when at their home office. You have to make sure that monitor, keyboard and mouse are available, however. At a price of just shy of $2000, the Micro PC is more suited to well-lined pockets, and it mustn't be forgotten that a well-equipped notebook with an integrated 14.1" screen can be had from a discounter for around $1300. One aspect of the Micro PC should certainly be noted: this computer is a sure eye-catcher in any office, not to mention when clients start discussing it. A notebook, on the other hand, is rather more mundane, regardless of its accoutrements and characteristics. To make the Micro PC even better, though, we have a suggestion. The quality and the finish of the casing are not exactly what the targeted premium customers will be expecting from a PC in this price range. How about a matte finish (coating) instead of the greasy gloss? In this segment, more than any other, the feel and look of a product play a decisive role. After all, the cultivated and discerning target audience will be looking for the equivalent of a fine glass of wine, not a beaker of tap water .

What's noteworthy in any case is that Jadetec is treading new paths with its Micro PC. Firstly, it's a combination of notebook and PC technology that allows the computer to be built so compactly. On the other hand, compromises in terms of performance had to be made compared with a hulking high-end PC tower. The integrated SiS graphics and its disappointing hard drive performance contribute to a less-than-satisfactory system performance. Nevertheless, we tried to deploy the Micro PC as a video-editing platform, and that works every time! There are weaknesses in rendering because the hard drive hinders better performance.