The Mini Notebooks of Microsoft - All Under $700

Written by:  KateG • Edited by: Michele McDonough
Updated Nov 17, 2009
• Related Guides: Macbook Air | Windows | Windows XP

The increasing popularity of the MacBook Air is just another sign that lightweight laptops are all the rage. If you're looking for a mini notebook of the Windows variety that won't break your budget, check out some of these models.

Nowadays, it seems as if everything is getting smaller and smaller. Most cell phones are smaller than the hand that is holding them, planners have gone from notebooks to a desktop file, and computers are shrinking to ever smaller and lighter models.

When most people think of an ultra lightweight notebook, the first thing that comes to mind, no doubt, is the MacBook Air. This most recognizable of micro-sized laptops is undoubtedly cool and thin enough that you can fit it into an interoffice mail envelope, but that cool comes with a more than $2000 price tag. That's a serious investment in funds if you plan, on say, taking it to a college campus or traipsing it through a string of airports.

Don't give in to sticker shock just yet. Today we are going to look at some Windows-based options for ultra lightweight (weighing about 2 pounds or less) laptops and none of them will cost you over $700 to own. So without any further fanfare, let's meet each of the models you might be going home with.

MSI Wind U700

The MSI Wind U700 will cost you just about $500 to bring home if you want it with Windows, and about $100 less if you want a Linux model. This XP-based baby has a 10-inch display screen (1024 x 600 for those of you who prefer to do the measuring in pixels), an 80 GB hard drive, 1 MB of RAM, and an Intel Atom CPU. It is fully ready for your wireless connection, and it comes with a choice of three colors: white, black and pink.

The Asus Cee PC100

This model boasts the biggest display of the three notebooks in this review, but it's only by a small margin with a 10.2 inch screen. Still, it's in the 1024 x 600 pixels department if you are counting. This baby only comes with an 80 GB hard drive in the more expensive model which is, coincidentally, the only one that runs Windows XP. The price tag on this model is right at the $699 limit mentioned earlier. If you are looking for Windows, don't be fooled into going for the $649 model. That one runs Linux.

The Acer Aspire One

The Aspire One is most likely the only brand in this whole article that the average home-user has actually heard of. This model has a price tag of about $500 and runs Windows XP. The screen is noticeably smaller than the other at only 8.9 inches (still 1024 x 600 pixel resolution). This model has two different choices for memory. You can either get a standard 80 GB hard drive or an 80 GB solid state drive.

All three of these options come with Windows XP, 80 GB hard drives, and 1.6 GHz Atom CPUs made by Intel. This means your real deciding factors will be screen size and cost. Keep that in mind when dealing with commission-based sales people. Happy shopping!

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