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Dual Core Atom & ION2 Netbooks Imminent

Gordon Kelly


Dual Core Atom & ION2 Netbooks Imminent

Intel's weedy Atom has come in for a lot of abuse since it first appeared on the scene and by contrast Nvidia's ION chip takes a lot of credit for papering over the shortcomings. So what if both suddenly upped their game?

That appears to be what is on the cards with eeepc.it reporting a spec leak for the new Asus Eee PC '1201N' netbook (pictured) shows it could be the first dual core Atom netbook on the market. By contrast Nvidia reports it will have second generation ION architecture ready to go before the end of the year.

Looking at the CPU side of things first and the 1201N appears to read like the netbook many have always wanted with a 1.6GHZ Intel Atom N330 Dual Core processor backed up with Nvidia ION graphics, 3GB RAM, a hefty 320GB HDD and Windows 7. The machine's 12in display will likely see many question whether it is really a netbook at all, but I suspect consumers don't care if the price and battery life are right.

If you're impressed by ION however you should be thrilled to bits by ION2 since Fudzilla writes that Nvidia's chipset boss has confirmed it will ship to manufacturers before the end of the year. ION2 allegedly has double the number of shaders of ION and should bring substantially improved performance. That said, whether manufacturers can turn around ION2 in time for graphically dazzling netbooks by Christmas seems very doubtful.

Still, if you do receive a netbook under your Christmas tree this year you can feel warm and fuzzy inside knowing impending next generation architecture will make it a laughing stock within a month or two. Season's greetings!


via eeepc.it (Translated)



October 13, 2009, 2:57 pm

just wondering when they gonna increase the screen resolution from *x600


October 13, 2009, 3:46 pm

this model will have a 1366 x768 as many of other new models do.


October 13, 2009, 7:07 pm

Isn't batterly life going to be badly affected with these new dual core processors?


October 13, 2009, 7:23 pm

@HK - good point. We've seen battery life skyrocket to 8 to 12 hours on recent netbooks, so if adding a little extra power to them brings it back down to 5/6 hours I think that's a compromise many could live with.


October 13, 2009, 7:55 pm

Finally a netbook worth having. Hope to see dual core CULV after this, I'm sure Ion 2 supports them so maybe Acer or Dell will have one out with CULV rather than Atom.


October 13, 2009, 8:43 pm

From the spec sheet it says 8 hour and recently asus netbooks have been fairly accurate but it will still have a real world battery life of about 5 hours. I will be surprized if this does come out with an atom 330 since it breaks many of intels 'rules' and many no-name netbooks which were reported to recieve some 330 goodness end up with an N270. Its also worth noting that this is a nettop processor (no N in front of it) like the atom 230 as opposed to a netbook processor like the N270/N280. Please can they just add a fricking touchscreen to the thing -its not that hard and it doesn't cost much more.


October 13, 2009, 11:27 pm

I got my NC10 a year ago for £275 and its seen plenty of use. My biggest bugbear is screen res and awful useless graphics but I knew about them limitations when I bought it. I would flog my NC10 for a ion2 powered netbook in a heartbeat...well, for the right price. Cant have them releasing it at £400 or anything stupid


October 14, 2009, 2:56 pm


Netbook "rules" are there by Microsoft so companies can't put XP onto non-Atom systems. With Windows 7 it stops being a problem so the term netbook just means "small laptop under £300".


October 14, 2009, 7:47 pm

Thats not the issue at all we all know about those rules. I'm talking about the fact that intel doesn't want to sell any atom 330's for use in netbooks - they think that they should use the CULV range instead if manufactures want to create a better than your average netbook experience.


October 15, 2009, 2:10 am

lets face it the atom should be put up against a wall and shot,i use an nc10 res and gpu no problems its the useless cpu.


October 15, 2009, 8:43 pm

since samsung example is selling the x120 with an intel su2700 cpu and with GMA 4500 graphics for around 470 pounds, i would be very (pleasantly) surprised really if asus doesn't ask 400 pounds or even more for this one...

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