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Some news, beaucoup reviews: The week in laptops

Dell started taking orders for the Inspiron Mini 12, Apple reportedly started looking into carbon fiber for the MacBook Air, and we posted a ton of laptop reviews. It's the week in laptops!

HP Pavilion dv3510nr
HP Pavilion dv3510nr: Editors' Choice winner

Dell scored a headline hat trick this week when it started taking orders for the Inspiron Mini 12, launched the 15.6-inch Vostro A860, and unveiled two special-edition Studio laptops. Runner-up Apple grabbed two headlines, from reports that the company is looking into using carbon-fiber materials in the MacBook Air, to rumors of Black Friday discounts on Macs.

Speaking of new Macs, Belkin went after the "switcher" market with a cable that moves files from a PC to a Mac.

Meanwhile, the One Laptop Per Child project, maker of the XO laptop, revived its holiday Give One, Get One program in the United States and expanded it to include Europe.

Here at CNET Laptop HQ, we reviewed the 13-inch Toshiba Satellite U405-S2874 and the 18-inch Sony Vaio AW125J/H, which quickly became our portable home theater favorite. (For more details, you can read our comparison of 18-inch laptops.)

We also looked at the HP Pavilion dv3510nr, which packs so many features and such great performance into its sleek, 13-inch frame that we gave it an Editors' Choice award. We also reviewed the Toshiba Satellite E105, which proved to be a solid, all-around laptop for home use. Both systems are part of Best Buy's Blue Label product initiative, which (so far, at least) seems to have some substance behind the marketing hype.

One common feature on the Blue Label laptops is a backlit keyboard, which we're seeing more and more often on new laptop models. So we rounded up all the laptops with backlit keyboards we'd reviewed in recent months.

Finally, after fruitlessly searching for the much-talked-about $300 laptop on Wal-Mart's Web site, Matt Elliott found it--as part of a $448 bundle. Now that's a sad trombone.

Have a great weekend!