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TNX-9500: the "world's cheapest laptop" live and hands-on

We were ready to fall in love with the Impulse NPX-9000 as soon as we heard the words "World's Cheapest Laptop," but now that we've got a review sample in our hands the bloom might be off this rose -- especially since the $199 wholesale price isn't even as cheap as the Dell Mini 9 on sale. On the other hand, there's something just delightfully janky about our Windows XP-powered unit, now labeled the TNX-9500 -- it beeped continuously for several minutes when we first turned it on, the 1GHz no-name processor seems less willing to run Internet Explorer than Richard Stallman on a bad day, and it took us several minutes to figure out that a loud howling sound was being produced by the always-on microphone feeding back through the speakers. Yet for some reason we were all smiles the whole time -- what can we say, we're suckers for cheap. Hopefully Impulse will stake a bolder claim to the title of "world's cheapest laptop" when production ramps up, since prices are expected to fall, but this particular unit actually can't get any cheaper for you -- we'll be giving it away soon. Check some shots in the gallery!