MSI Wind hands-on suggests first proper Eee-beater

Crave UK has been spending some hands-on time with one of the key upcoming rivals to ASUS' Eee PC, the MSI Wind, and come away singing its praises.  They've also highlighted some neat hardware features, such as an overclock button that, when on mains power, automatically ratchets the CPU up by 20-percent.  On battery, the same button puts the Wind into an economy mode.  Further kind words are saved for the screen, which in its first iteration will be 10-inches and lacks any sort of distracting reflective coating. 

In fact, Crave go so far as to describe the Wind as potentially "the best mini laptop on the planet".  In the UK, the 10-inch version running Windows XP will cost £329 ($644), with pricing for the SUSE Linux version undisclosed but, inevitably, cheaper.  Despite being slightly heavy and larger than the Eee PC, the casing is slicker and the keyboard, always a crucial point on these budget notebooks, is according to MSI the same as featured on their "grown up" laptop range.

Where the Eee can sometimes appear toylike (though the larger 8.9-inch version less so than the original), the Wind does have the look of a normal notebook only smaller.  It's far more like the HP 2133 Mini Note in that respect.  Crave have just added their video hands on, so if you're in the market for a budget ultraportable then check it out.