In this comparative review, we looked at products from some of the most influential and respected notebook manufacturers in the corporate market place. One conclusion that can be drawn is that these are not exactly compact devices. Even the lightest weighs around 2.5kg, which isn't something you'd really want to carry around in a briefcase for too long. But such bulk is inevitable, since these business notebooks are designed to be "desktop replacements". As such they must be strong, durable, powerful and feature-rich. As we found out when reviewing them individually, some fulfil this specification better than others, but all the notebooks we examined were, at the very least, well-made and robust.
For those users looking for the most stylish and compact of the notebooks we reviewed, it would be hard to ignore the Siemens Nixdorf Mobile 510.
In fact, it would be hard for anyone to ignore this notebook, especially if you were to start using it on a train. It has been well-designed and has a very light keyboard feel (which won't suit all users), coupled with a large screen and two modular bays that can be used either for batteries or for various different types of drive, such as a CD-ROM and a floppy drive. Such stylish design, however, does not come cheap.
Compaq's Armada 1700 is a little more grown-up than its predecessors.
There's now no need to plug various bits and pieces together - all you need is provided in the basic package, including a CD-ROM drive and floppy drive. Should you wish to swap the floppy drive or battery for a different module, you can do so, but you'll have to be prepared to lug around a considerable amount of weight.
IBM's ThinkPad 380XD is only slightly less bulky than the Compaq notebook, but it too offers good standard functionality. The choice of a trackpoint rather than glidepoint mouse device won't suit all users, but this is a very well-made machine. Like the Siemens Nixdorf PC, the Dell Inspiron 3200 D266XT has a more impressive screen than the other two, yet it weighs less. You can't easily use the CD-ROM drive and floppy drive at the same time, but that may not matter to most users.
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