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Having already taken a look Inside Mobile Penryn it's now time to take a closer look at the Penryn system used for our testing, the Zepto Znote 3415W. Always one to launch with the latest components as quickly as possible, Zepto has been offering Penryn CPUs in its notebook line-up for a while now, all at typically competitive prices and with plenty of configurability on offer too. So, how does this system compare to other 15.4 inch offerings?
As is typical of Zepto, the Znote 3415W is best described as functional. On the outside there's a simple two-tone black and dark grey gloss finish, while the rest of the system is wrapped largely in non-descript matt black plastic. Weighing 2.8kg it is relatively light for its size and the actual dimensions, 355 x 257 x 35.2mm (WxDxH), make for quite a pleasant form factor that's free of unnecessary bulk and feels a little slimmer and more svelte than you might imagine. Nonetheless, this is no style icon and though it's well put together, if you're after something with a little more character you're better off looking elsewhere.
However, what it lacks in superficial looks, it makes up for in inner beauty. As previously discussed it utilises a 45nm Penryn CPU, a T9300 that runs at 2.5GHz with an 800MHz Front Side Bus and 6MB L2 Cache. This is supported by 2GBs worth of 677MHz DDR2 RAM, with a fast 7,200rpm 160GB SATA HDD providing the storage. All combined it makes the Znote 3415W a very quick notebook, among the quickest we've tested.
Along with these base components you get a 512MB nVidia 8600M GT, while the 15.4in display has a fairly standard 1,280 x 800 native resolution and a glossy "high contrast" finish. Network connectivity is strong too, with Gigabit Ethernet as standard and Intel 4965 AGN wireless, though for a little less you could opt for Zepto's own Wireless-N adapter instead. Elsewhere on the system you'll find a 2.0-megapixel camera set into the bezel of the display, as well as a fingerprint reader below the cursor keys.
Amazingly, though, this isn't even the best configuration Zepto offers at this point in time. Since we got this system in for review Zepto has revised its pricing, so now you could get a similar system with a 200GB 7,200rpm SATA HDD and 4GB 677MHz DDR2 RAM for around £850 inc. VAT, which with Vista Home Premium 64-bit included is an absolute steal. This underlines one of the continuing strengths of Zepto machines, which offer great performance and flexibility for those who want to specify every aspect of their notebook.