Dell releases first sub $1,000 Blu-ray laptop

Texas computer manufacturer Dell said Friday that it will start shipping its Inspiron 1525 notebooks with the build-to-order option for a Blu-ray drive.

Pricing with the Blu-ray drive added starts at $879. Users need to select the laptop with at least a 1.83GHz processor, and one of the 1525's non-Celeron processor models in order to add the drive.

The base Inspiron costs $499. To add the drive, the user must select the necessary processor and the Blu-ray combo drive, which adds $380 to the price. If the user desires, for an extra $200 the option to burn Blu-ray discs can be added.

Even at $1,079 with the burner added, the Inspiron is cheaper than any other Blu-ray enabled system on the market by far. As has been repeatedly said, price is one of the format's biggest negative qualities.

Other than the drive, the system includes a 15.4-inch widscreen display with 720p resolution, an HDMI port, and the option to select from a dozen different colors for the case.

Also, a Broadcom chip is included which incorporates that company's Media PC technology to make high-definition video playback possible on PCs with integrated graphics systems, Dell said.

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