PC Utilities (December '01)
There was a time when notebooks where the poorer cousins
of desktop models. In order to have portability, you had to
sacrifice power and functionality.
The Rock Sigma Si notebook turns this on its head and is
a portable device that frankly gives many desktop PCs a run
for their money. The feature list isn’t defined by what’s
included in the price as much as what’s not included.
At the heart of the PC is a powerful 1Ghz Pentium III processor.
Coupled to this is a Windows XP-proof 256Mb of RAM, and a
20Gb hard disk. The screen is a 14.1in TFT model that runs
at 1,024x768 resolution and the graphics chip is a 3D compatible
SiS 630S model that uses 4-speed AGP archilecture.
So far so (relatively) normal – the Sigma Si is a powerful
machine but nothing is out of the ordinary. It’s on the back
and sides of the unit that you see the miracles. For starters,
amongst the usual serial, single PCMCIA Type II, Parallel
and USB slots, you’ll find a FireWire IEEE 1394 port, then
on the side of the unit ia an 8-speed DVD-ROM drive that doubles
up as a 4x4x20 CD-R/RW drive. This truly is a genuinely multimedia
notebook. As you’d expect, DVD movie playing software is included
in the price, as is an older but no less useful copy of Adaptec
EasyCD Creator. You also get a built-in V.90 modem that doubles
up as a 100Mbits Ethernet port.
The notebook is a joy to use. The screen is bright and colourful,
and the keyboard has most of the keys in the right places
– we managed to touch type without hassle. The weight is an
As the cliché goes, we’ve saved the best until last. The
Sigma Si costs just £1,409 including VAT. For a notebook that
literally has everything this is a bargain. If you’re prepared
to do without the CD-R/RW functionality, and make do with
a standard DVD Drive, it will cost £1,174 including VAT –
The Rock Sigma Si Combo is a practical machine that concentrates
on doing everything well, rather than being a fashion victim.
A midrange price tag and high-end features makes this a very
||Rock Sigma Si
||Truly multimedia notebook
|| Intel Pentium PIII 1GHz
||14.1 XGA TFT
||8x DVD / 4x4x20x CD-RW Combo drive
|| Internal 56k modem
||Internal 10/100mbps LAN
||1 Year Collect and Return
||£1,409. (Inc. VAT)
PC Utilities Editors Choice
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