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Dell takes on Mac mini with Studio Hybrid

updated 11:15 pm EDT, Mon July 28, 2008

Dell Studio Hybrid

Dell tonight leapt into the mini desktop business with the Studio Hybrid. The system is described as the company's "first step" in eco-friendly PCs and uses notebook components to dramatically reduce both its size and power draw; where a tower uses a 300-watt supply, the Hybrid uses well under 65 watts and is 80 percent smaller than even a mini tower, the company tells Electronista. The company also promises that the system "leaves the Mac mini behind" with the option of a Blu-ray drive for HD video, HDMI video out, an 8-in-1 card reader and the choice of a TV tuner.

Personalization is an extra advantage, the company adds: although several acrylic shell colors are available including Topaz and Ruby, the system can also be wrapped in a bamboo finish and changed on the fly through a swappable sleeve. The design can either sit horizontally on a desk or upright by using a special stand.

The system is also fast enough to be used as a main or home theater PC, Dell notes, where Atom-based computers like ASUS' Eee Box are better used as "vacation home terminals" or otherwise secondary machines.

Dell is still finalizing its trim levels but plans to undercut Apple and others in the class through price, with a $499 system coming equipped with a 1.73GHz Pentium dual-core processor, 1GB of memory, and a 160GB hard disk loaded with Windows Vista. Top-end models should scale up to a 2.6GHz Core 2 Duo with 4GB of memory, 320GB of disk space and both the previously mentioned Blu-ray option as well as 802.11n Wi-Fi and Bluetooth. An RF-based wireless keyboard is also a choice for across-the-room use.

The Studio Hybrid is available Tuesday from Dell itself and should be available through other channels during the fall.

By Electronista Staff
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  1. lamewing

    Dedicated MacNNer

    Joined: Aug 2004


    Very Nice Looking

    I really like the design...especially the bamboo exterior. The only problem I see with this system is that some folks simply don't want to run Windows, but instead Mac OS X.

    If this and the Mac Mini were equal in power and price, I would still choose the Mini simply because I can run both Windows and OS X.

  1. mgpalma

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Sep 2000


    How much for the Blu-ray

    option? I would imagine that would be a premium. And with DVI out who cares if you have to use a DVI to HDMI adapter? A card reader, ooooh. Seriously, having a TV tuner would be great, for some, and it looks decent enough, but like the previous poster points out-you have to run Windows. Bleck!

  1. Guest

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Nov 1999


    Couldn't agree more

    Awesome design and specs. If only it ran Mac OS X, which is the reason Macs are awesome computers.

    People forget it's the operating system that defines the system, not just specs or design. Most PCs are awesome, except they run Windows.

  1. Bobfozz

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Jul 2008



    An upside down mailbox! This is what Dell came up with. Jonathan Ive and Jobs will go on vacation and not worry about the Mac mini when they see this, whether it runs O X or not. Dell has NEVER got it and it's nice to see the famous bait switchers still don't. That's what would worry Apple, is if they ever got it. Windows or No. Apple's design awards are safe.

  1. Guest

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Nov 1999




    Comment buried. Show
  1. freudling


    Joined: Mar 2005




    "The Studio Hybrid is available Tuesday from Dell itself and should be available through other channels during the fail."

    Comment buried. Show
  1. mcdermd

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Oct 2004


    Apple did it already

    This looks like the power supply from 2000's Powermac Cube.

  1. DentalMac2

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Aug 2001


    I doubt the $499 price

    The design is interesting, though I still prefer my Mini. One cool design feature, though, is how the word 'Hybrid' on the face plate changes orientation like the iPhone display.

    Also, every time I price a Dell, adding simple features like 802.11n bloat the seemingly low base price. While business may need stripper machines and the ability to precisely option machines, the consumer doesn't.

  1. chadpengar

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Oct 2001


    not bad looking

    except for the Dell stamped on the side, it does not look that bad. But as already mentioned, it does not run OS X. It could be solid gold and serve me pizza and soda for dinner and would still suck if it did not run OS X.

  1. slapppy

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Mar 2008



    I thought I was looking at some old 1970's speakers...

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