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Sharp fine-tunes its desktop displays

The company announces a pair of flat-screen monitors with television capabilities and also unveils a new notebook computer.

Sharp Systems of America announced Monday a pair of flat-screen monitors with television capabilities and unveiled a new notebook computer.

The 15- and 17-inch liquid-crystal displays (LCDs) come with built-in TV tuners and remote control functions to allow for a wide range of uses, including gaming, security monitoring, television viewing and traditional computing activities such as word processing.

The company is pitching the larger monitor, the LL-M17W1, for video-heavy activities such as gaming (both console and PC), DVD viewing and video-editing. Its 1,366-by-768-pixel display allows people to watch TV on a small screen while working on PC applications, display a computer-aided design image, view a spreadsheet in a wide-column format or place two Web pages side by side. It's priced at $749.

The smaller display, the LL-M15X1, is meant for similar, if less intensive, uses and has a resolution of 1,024 by 768 pixels. It has a 350-to-1 contrast ratio, compared with a 600-to-1 ratio for the 17-inch model. It's priced at $449.

On the notebook front, the $1,399 Actius MC22 computer is aimed at consumers and home-office workers. When the notebook is linked to a desktop by a USB connector with SharpSync software, it automatically synchronizes preselected folders between the computers.

The Wi-Fi-ready (802.11g) notebook is powered by AMD's Athlon XP-M processor and features 256MB of double-data rate SDRAM, a 40GB hard drive and a CD-R/RW/DVD combo drive. It comes bundled with Microsoft's Windows XP Home Edition operating software and Sharp's proprietary DVD optimization software.

All of the products are available now direct from the company and through resellers and retail outlets.