HP gets an Ion-powered HD Netbook

With an Nvidia Ion processor and a 1,366x768 pixel 11.6-inch screen, the HP Mini 311 looks to be the type of souped-up HD Netbook we've been waiting for.

HP

We said we noticed a recent trend of better-resolution HD screens showing up in Netbooks , and we like the direction. HP apparently does too, as its newly announced HP Mini 311 includes an 11.6-inch 1,366x768 pixel screen, a resolution that's standard in most laptops but not in most Netbooks. The extra pixel real estate is backed by an Nvidia Ion GPU--the same elusive processor we've been eagerly waiting to try but has been delayed in products such as the Lenovo IdeaPad S12.

The combination of the Nvidia Ion and an Intel Atom N270 processor should help push the Mini 311 to display 720p HD movies, and according to HP, it'll also output 1080p via its HDMI-out port. Other than the Ion and the higher-def screen, other details are mostly Netbook standard--although, in addition to the screen, the Ion, and the HDMI, the Mini 311's 1GB RAM is a speedier DDR3 instead of DDR2.

At a price of $399, it's also a really good deal for a Netbook. We already liked HP's Netbook line before this, but the Mini 311 could be something special (although it does lack 802.11n and Bluetooth). It comes in black and white.

    Mini 311 specs:
  • 1.6 GHz Intel Atom N270
  • Nvidia Ion LE graphics
  • 160GB 5400rpm HDD
  • 1GB DDR3 RAM
  • 802.11 b/g Wi-Fi
  • Altec Lansing speakers
  • 3 USB 2.0 ports
  • HDMI
The HP Mini 110's subtle patterns. HP

And, in other Netbook news, HP is releasing a more stylish Mini 110 with a design by Studio Tord Boontje, featuring white-on-white layers of flower and plant patterns. It's nice too, but we're a little more excited about the Mini 311.

About the author

Scott Stein is a senior editor covering iOS and laptop reviews, mobile computing, video games, and tech culture. He has previously written for both mainstream and technology enthusiast publications including Wired, Esquire.com, Men's Journal, and Maxim, and regularly appears on TV and radio talking tech trends.

 

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