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Asus' Z9000 Notebook Offers Road Warrior Pretenses

The Two Cs - CPUs And Chipsets

The Intel Pentium-M 1.7 GHz CPU powers the Asus Z9000. The 130-nm CPU is also referred to as "Banias". The Banias chip extends battery life by throttling the speed up and down depending on the processor's workload. The Z9000 also uses an integrated ATi chipset.

Why have an all-in-one integrated chipset? ATi with its integrated 9100 IGP graphics and chipset solution hopes to offer superior performance while increasing battery life. As you will see in the graphical benchmarks, the 9100 IGP cannot approach the speed of the ATI Mobility Radeon 9600, but may provide enough power for the casual gamer.

Here are the specs of the 9100 IGP:

The Unified Memory Architecture is commonly referred to as shared graphics memory. The graphics card takes some memory away from the main system. Our review unit has a total of 1024 MB of memory, but the 9100 takes 128 MB away. This leaves 896 MB of memory for WindowsXP. The UMA architecture lowers costs for notebook manufacturers by allowing them to use relatively inexpensive PC memory, as compared to graphical memory.