A funny thing has happened in the mini-laptop space over the past few years. With the success of low cost ultraportable netbooks, it seems like virtually every notebook you see with a 10 inch or smaller display is a low cost, low power machine, typically with an Intel Atom processor. But that doesn’t mean the era of the high end mini-laptop is completely over. Panasonic’s new Let’s Note R9 series mini-laptop, for instance sports a 10.4 inch, 1024 x 768 pixel display. But unlike a typical netbook, it ships with an Intel Core i7 processor.
The laptop is available with a 1.06GHz Core i7-620UM vPro CPU or a 1.2GHz Core i7-650UM vPro processor. Even the slower chip can be overclocked to run at up to 2.13GHz using Inte’s Turbo boost technology.
The notebook weighs less than 2.1 pounds and packs a 3100mAh battery which Panasonic says is good for up to 7.5 hours of run time. It has 2GB of RAM, a 250GB hard drive, 802.11a/b/g/n WiFI, an SDHC card slot, VGA output, and 2 USB ports, and a PC Card slot. The computer ships with Windows 7 Professional. The notebook measures 9″ x 7.4″ x 1.7″ (at the rear).
The Let’s Note R9 will only be available in Japan at launch, and it won’t come cheap. The starting price is about 180,000 yen or just under $2000 US. The Let’s Note series will also include several 12.1 inch and 14.1 inch models.