Hands on: Toshiba's NB200 netbook

We think the Toshiba NB200 is the sexiest netbook yet

Toshiba's NB200 netbook.

Toshiba's NB200 netbook.

Toshiba today launched what we think is the sexiest 10.1in netbook on the market: the copper-coloured Toshiba NB200. This little netbook is aimed at the premium end of the market, where style and form are just as important as portability and functionality.

The Toshiba NB200 is the sexiest netbook we have seen to date. It has a beautiful copper-coloured, reflective spine with the power button located in the centre. It uses a chiclet keyboard, similar to the ones seen on the Sony VAIO VGN-Z17GN/B and the ASUS Eee PC 1004DN. There is no release date yet for the copper version of the NB200, and no price either.

Textured lid: The lid is a darker tone than the rest of the notebook and it has a textured glossy finish. The process to get the lid looking the way it does is called injection mould rolling, or IMR. The netbook has a silver-coloured 6-cell battery

Specifications: While the copper-coloured NB200 is sexy, it’s still a netbook so you won’t be able to use it for any taxing tasks. In fact, its configuration is underwhelming when you consider it doesn’t even have Gigabit Ethernet or 802.11n networking. You get a standard Intel Atom N280 CPU with a clock speed of 1.6GHz, 1GB of DDR2 SDRAM, a 160GB hard drive (no solid-state storage), Mobile Intel GMA950 graphics, and Windows XP. Its 10.1in screen has a native resolution of 1024x600, and it’s lit by a fluorescent tube instead of an LED backlight. You also get Bluetooth and a webcam.

Stand-out features: It may not have the fastest, most impressive configuration we’ve seen in a netbook, but the NB200 has a few features that make it stand out. Because it has a conventional spinning hard drive, it employs 3G drive guard technology, which can detect movement and park the heads in case you get a little too rough with it. It comes with face recognition technology that allows you to log on by posing instead of typing a password. The netbook has sleep-and-charge USB 2.0 ports, which allow you to charge your USB devices even when the NB200 is switched off (including the iPhone), and it has synchronisation software that allows you to sync your PC or main notebook with the NB200.

It has a full-sized keyboard with isolated keys, a very roomy touchpad and separated left- and right-click buttons. The keyboard takes a little while to get used to, but the touchpad is smooth and responsive.

Ports:The left side of the Toshiba NB200 has D-Sub, microphone, headphone, Ethernet and USB ports, while the front has an SD memory card slot. The screen is glossy, so you’ll have to adjust the angle when using it in a bright room or outdoors.

The right side has a Kensington lock port, power port and two more USB 2.0 ports. You can also see that the status lights have been placed on the front of the Toshiba NB200, rather than on the attractive spine (save for the power button and light).

The black, white and blue NB200 netbooks will hit the market before the copper-coloured model. The black models are the NB200 (PLL25A-00C002) and NB200 (PLL25A-00D002), which both have 3-cell batteries and are identical in every way except hard drive capacity — they have a 120GB and a 160GB hard drive, and cost $749 and $899, respectively. The white model is the NB200 (PLL20A-00P001) and the blue model is the NB200 (PLL20A-00Q001). The white and blue models are identical to the black models except they have 6-cell batteries, Bluetooth and 160GB hard drives.

Optical drive: Toshiba offers an optional USB 2.0-based external DVD burner to match your NB200.

Take a closer look at Toshiba's NB200 netbook in our slideshow.

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