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Top-rated reviews of the week (photos)

Here are a few of CNET Reviews' favorite items from the past week, including the Dell Streak 7, Panasonic Lumix DMC-GH2, and the iPhone 4 for Verizon.

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CNET Reviews staff
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1 of 10 Josh Miller/CNET

Apple iPhone 4 (Verizon Wireless)

Here's our weekly roundup of the new products CNET reviewers liked best.

Apple iPhone 4 - 16GB (Verizon Wireless)

Editors' rating: 4 out of 5

The good: The Verizon iPhone 4 offers a hot-spot feature not available on AT&T's device. Performance was better in most regards.

The bad: The Verizon iPhone 4 lacks world roaming and the ability to access voice and data simultaneously. The hot-spot feature didn't work with all devices.

The bottom line: The Verizon iPhone 4 has much in common with its AT&T counterpart, but varying features and different performance give it enough room to stand apart. It won't vastly change your iPhone experience, but we welcome the consumer choice that it brings.

Read CNET's full review
Check the Verizon site for preorder availability, $199.99 with plan

See also: 32GB version of the Verizon iPhone 4

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2 of 10 Josh Miller/CNET

Astro A40 Wireless System

Astro A40 Wireless System

Editors' rating: 4 out of 5

The good: Great 5.1 to 7.1 surround simulation; fairly easy to set up; comfortable and lightweight headset; wireless audio transmission; completely adjustable/removable boom mic; customizable volume levels; optical in/out; can work with any headphones.

The bad: Pricey; not exactly fully wireless; some items sold separately; no direct solution for multiple console connections.

The bottom line: While a bit pricey, the Astro A40 Wireless System is easily one of the best virtual surround-sound gaming headset systems we've ever tested.

Read CNET's full review
Starting at: $279.95 from 1 store

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3 of 10 Sarah Tew/CNET

Asus U36JC A1 laptop

Asus U36JC A1 - Core i5 460M 2.53GHz - 13.3" TFT

Editors' rating: 4 out of 5

The good: Thin magnesium-alloy frame; powerful Core i5 processor in a 13-inch laptop; Nvidia Optimus automatic-switching graphics; USB 3.0 port; sturdy construction.

The bad: Not a next-gen Sandy Bridge Intel processor; battery life is good, but not great; no optical drive.

The bottom line: The thin, powerful Asus U36JC-A1 packs a lot of computer under its slim 13-inch hood, but some might want to wait for next-gen Intel processors to sweeten the deal.

Read CNET's full review
Starting at: $949.99 from 8 stores

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4 of 10 Josh Miller/CNET

Dell UltraSharp U3011 monitor

Dell UltraSharp U3011 LCD monitor

Editors' rating: 4 out of 5

The good: The Dell UltraSharp U3011 has incredible performance, tons of connection options, and enough OSD features to satisfy most professional artists.

The bad: The Dell UltraSharp U3011 has a higher price than other 30-inchers.

The bottom line: The Dell UltraSharp U3011 is an impressive monitor and the most feature-rich 30-incher out there.

Read CNET's full review
Starting at: $1,299.00 from 1 stores

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5 of 10 CNET

Dell Venue Pro (T-Mobile)

Dell Venue Pro (T-Mobile) - 8GB

Editors' rating: 4 out of 5

The good: The Dell Venue Pro features an attractive design with a large, sharp display and comfortable keyboard. The smartphone runs smoothly on a 1GHz Snapdragon processor.

The bad: The smartphone is large and heavy. It doesn't support the T-Mobile HSPA+ network. Call and speakerphone quality could be better.

The bottom line: The Dell Venue Pro is a well-built and smooth-running Windows Phone 7 device, but its large size will be a turnoff for many.

Read CNET's full review
Starting at: $449.99 from 1 store

See also: 16GB version of the Dell Venue Pro
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6 of 10 Sarah Tew/CNET

Panasonic Lumix DMC-GH2 dSLR

Panasonic Lumix DMC-GH2 (black, with 14-40mm lens)

Editors' rating: 4 out of 5

The good: Excellent video quality; articulating display with generally good touch-screen interface; variable frame-rate movie mode.

The bad: Annoying AVCHD-imposed limitations for video; no way to lock AF area on touch screen; middling battery life.

The bottom line: It's speedy, feature-packed, and an excellent ILC for shooting video, but to consistently get really good photos out of the Panasonic Lumix DMC-GH2 requires shooting raw.

Read CNET's full review
Starting at: $1,499.95 from 2 stores

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7 of 10 Sarah Tew/CNET

Asus U41JF-A1 laptop

Asus U41JF-A1 - Core i3 380M 2.53GHz

Editors' rating: 3.5 out of 5

The good: Solid performance; includes switchable discrete graphics; slim body.

The bad: Two-tone body doesn't come off as high-end; lots of competition in this price range.

The bottom line: The Asus U41JF is a workmanlike but uninspiring 14-inch laptop that offers decent performance and graphics and excellent battery life, but costs nearly as much as a MacBook.

Read CNET's full review
Starting at: $798.00 from 7 stores

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8 of 10 Josh Miller/CNET

Dell Streak 7

Dell Streak 7

Editors' rating: 3.5 out of 5

The good: The Dell Streak 7 tablet offers dual-core processing, 4G network compatibility, Adobe Flash 10.1 support, front and rear cameras, and an inventive reimagining of Android 2.2.

The bad: Dell's Stage interface doesn't make up for the stale operating system. Screen quality and responsiveness are not as good as they could be.

The bottom line: The Dell Streak 7 polishes Android 2.2 to a tablet-worthy shine, and is the first to deliver 4G compatibility--but it's not enough to distract us from the incoming wave of Android 3.0 tablets.

Read CNET's full review
Starting at: $449.99 from 1 stores

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9 of 10 Josh Miller/CNET

HTC Mozart smartphone (unlocked)

HTC Mozart (unlocked)

Editors' rating: 3.5 out of 5

The good: The HTC Mozart boasts a sleek design with a solid, brushed aluminum body. The Windows Phone 7 device has surround-sound technology and an 8-megapixel camera.

The bad: No option for expanding memory. Camera quality is disappointing.

The bottom line: The HTC Mozart is a beautifully designed Windows Phone 7 device that offers good performance, but fails to deliver on one of its hallmark features.

Read CNET's full review
Starting at: $598.82 from 1 store

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10 of 10 Josh Miller/CNET

LG Optimus V smartphone (Virgin Mobile)

LG Optimus V (Virgin Mobile)

Editors' rating: 3.5 out of 5

The good: The LG Optimus V is a slim and simple Android smartphone. It ships with Android 2.2 and features Wi-Fi, GPS, EV-DO Rev. A, and a 3.2-megapixel camera. It is also affordable.

The bad: The LG Optimus V does not have hot-spot tethering, nor does it have Flash video in the browser.

The bottom line: The LG Optimus V is a great entry-level Android smartphone if you want to go the prepaid route.

Read CNET's full review
Starting at: $149.99

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