Packard Bell unleash monster ixtreme Maestro dektop PC


If you actually own three devices that connect via Firewire, and you don’t happen to use a Mac, then the Packard Bell ixtreme Maestro is probably for you; all three of you.

It comes with up to 3TB of HDD; a choice of Core i7 processor, Intel Core 2 Quad or AMD Phenom II X4 quad-core processors and you’re unlikely to find yourself bottlenecking on the RAM with up to 12 GB of DDR3 to play with. There’s a Blu-ray combo drive, a piffling 10 USB slots, 2 x eSATA, HDMI and a multi-card reader too. So many holes, it’s a surprise the thing stays together.

You get a choice of NVIDIA GPUs, up to the full 1GB GeForce GTS250, plus there’s support for 7.1 surround sound with a SPDIF connector and an optional DVB-T tuner. I’d recommend a nice monitor to go with it.

It runs Vista, is all sleek and black and starts at £599 from this month. Expect the specced up version to cost one hell of a lot more.

Packard Bell

Packard Bell release first AMD based netbook


You may recall last month we told you that Packard Bell is back. We told you all about some of their new range including the netbooks dot m and dot s.

Well now they’ve gone and announced another netbook, the strangely named dot m/a. The dot m/a is the first netbook to come with an AMD processor – the single-core 1.2GHz Athlon 64 L110. That’s all great. Except it’s not really a netbook. It’s a small, entry-level notebook.

The specs support my argument – the screen is 11.6-inch with a resolution of 1366×768. It’s got a graphics card – the ATI Radeon X1270 and it weighs 1.25kg. That’s a bit too hefty for a netbook in my opinion.

Packard Bell even state that they keyboard is “as large as a regular notebook”. Err, that’s because it is a regular notebook.

Ok, so we’ve established it’s not exactly a netbook but what has it got going for it? Well, for £349, it’s not a bad budget option if you’re after a fairly compact notebook.

It’s got a 160GB hard-drive with 1GB of RAM – both of which are expandable to double their current size. It has a multi-gesture touch pad including pinch and flick for you iPhone fans and it’s got a 5-in-1 memory card reader. Like other Packard Bell releases it comes complete with Adobe Photoshop elements pre-installed. Bluetooth and 3G can be added at an extra cost.

It’s pre-loaded with Vista so presumably it would qualify for a free upgrade to Windows 7, according to the statement released by Microsoft yesterday. It’s available in black or red and with a three or six-cell battery. The six-cell should give four hours of battery life.

It’s out next month – get one direct from Packard Bell. Just don’t expect to receive a netbook.

Packard Bell are back! Get excited


Remember Packard Bell? Back when computers had 8 gig hard-drives, the internet was but a pipe dream, and WordArt was about the best thing you could do on your PC? You do! I’m glad, me too.

Well, the Dutch based company is back as a part of Acer, and with a snazzy new logo and some interesting products to boot.

Most interesting of all is it’s iMax-Mini nettop, which is actually just a revamped Acer Revo. But what it means is you get an Atom processor on nVidia’s ION platform, giving the iMax-Mini significantly more punch than most other nettops.

And because it comes with a motion sensor game control Packard Bell are seeing it as, “a rival to the Wii”, however outlandish that might sound. It’ll be available in the UK with a 19 inch monitor on broadband deals.


Packard also unveiled their high-end EasyNote TR85, a snazzy-ass notebook, featuring an edge-to-edge display, multi-touch trackpad and slot loading optical drive. And at just £599 with a feature-set and styling to make your eyes water, the EasyNote might hit right note with buyers.


And finally, the obligatory netbook: The 10.1 inch dot s and 11.6in dot m wield multi-gesture touchpads, Dolby headphone, optional 3G and six-cell batteries and though they’re hitting a market already saturated market, the fact that they come with Photoshop Elements 4 pre-installed might shift a few units.

GALLERY: Packard Bell lightens up with EasyNote Butterflies and dot netbooks

For the budget end of the Acer family, Packard Bell has announced some rather swish looking options in the notebook/netbook department today. The cost seems to be that they’re perhaps not quite as cheap as you’d expect from PB but then that might have more to do with the exchange rate than anything else.

Each comes with some kind of Dolby sound technology and 16:9 wide, LED backlit screens to save as much battery life as possible. All look like reasonable options but it’s the EasyNote TR85 I’ve got my eye on the most.

Click the pretty looking image below for a closer look at all four.