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Christmas Gift Guide

HP Mini 2140

HP Pavilion dv2

The HP Mini 2140 is a long-needed update to last year's Mini-Note 2133.
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With a brushed-metal chassis, it's sturdier than your standard plastic Netbook.
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We also really dig the ExpressCard/54 slot, a Netbook first.
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HP also uses this great and nearly full-size keyboard in its consumer-line Mini 1000.
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The biggest upgrade is that this line now has Intel's Atom processor, like pretty much every other Netbook on the planet.
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Another AMD-powered multimedia laptop from HP? Yeah, we yawned at first, too.
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The catch is that this is the first system to use AMD's new Athlon Neo platform, which is kind of a slightly upscale CPU for ambitious Netbooks.
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AMD is targeting the Neo at systems that are a little bigger and a little more expensive than a typical Netbook--hence this 12-inch HP.
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We'll come right and say it: We love 13-inch laptops. One point we're fond of making is that in a world where we have 7, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, and even 20-inch laptops, the 13-inch size is the biggest we'd consider carrying around on a regular basis, as well as the smallest we'd be able to use as a full-time work machine.
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We've always liked HP's snazzy dv-series designs, with their glossy finishes, metallic accents, and subtle imprint patterns. HP describes this new model as having, "an argyle-like pattern for subtle contrast to the liquid appearance of the metallic finish." Then again, matte black works for us, too.
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While the new dv3 is reasonably svelte, starting at 3.8 pounds and about 1.3-inches thick at its thickest part, we're most excited about the backlit keyboard--an extra we'd point out only comes with the more expensive $1,699 version of the 13-inch MacBook (and you can't even get the dv3's Express Card/34 slot in a 13-inch MacBook).
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