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IBM revamps NetVista PC line

Big Blue revises its NetVista desktops and introduces the NetVista M series, placing the new model configurations on its Web site with no fanfare.

IBM has quietly updated its NetVista line of desktop PCs.

Big Blue this week revised its NetVista X series and NetVista A series desktops and introduced the new NetVista M series, placing the new model configurations on its Web site with no fanfare.

All three new PCs offer Intel's Pentium 4 processor and 845 chipset. The chipset, which began shipping in early September, allows PCs to pair the Pentium 4 with standard SDRAM memory instead of more expensive Rambus memory.

The X series now includes an embedded security subsystem that uses IBM's dedicated security chip and a software package for encryption and identification, among other functions. The new X series starts at $1,649 for a model with a 1.5GHz Pentium 4 chip, 15-inch flat panel display, 128MB of RAM and 20GB hard drive. Pricing for a model with the 17-inch flat-panel screen starts at $2,399.

The new M Series, starting at $1,149, was introduced as a midrange, corporate-oriented desktop, an IBM spokesman said.

The new line can be configured with a 1.6GHz, 1.8GHz or 2GHz Pentium 4 chip. The M series also packs IBM's embedded security subsystem. A 1.6GHz M Series can be had for $1,169 with 128MB of RAM, a 40GB hard drive and a CD-ROM drive. A monitor is not included in that price.

New A Series models are aimed at giving buyers a lower-cost option, the IBM spokesman said.

The A Series' base Pentium 4 system includes a 1.5GHz version of the chip, 128MB of RAM and a 20GB hard drive, according to IBM's Web site.

IBM begin shipping NetVista in May 2000. Shortly after, the company made the new PC line the main focus of its desktop PC division in an effort to help revitalize its Personal Systems Group.