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The Macbook Air has inspired many geeks out there with its sleek profile, and even now it’s still a wonder to look at. It’s just so thin!

Well since then a few companies have tried to rival the Air in terms of engineering, and the latest is MSI with their X320 and X340, which is just as thin as the Macbook Air, but also much, cheaper.

MSI X340

However, for the price, the X320 comes with the highly undesirable Intel Atom, which at 1.6GHz is still quite pathetic and can’t run anything other than Windows XP and Linux well. The X340 tries to improve on this by bumping the processor to the recently announced Intel CULV designed to give better performance than the Atom but at a slightly reduced battery life (hey, that’s obeying the laws of physics right there!).

While the X320 retails for $699, the pricing for the X340 has yet to be revealed, but MSI promises to keep it below the magic four figures mark ($999 perhaps?). Okay, in terms of performance, this laptop delivers, being able to deliver 1080p videos without hiccups and running Vista just fine, assuming you have 2GB of RAM to bring to the party. It also comes with 2 USB ports and headphone jacks – like the Air, no optical drives are included.

The screen is a generous 13.4 inches, giving a resolution of 1360×768, which is not as good as Apple’s Air, but quite impressive nonetheless. The X340 loses about an hour or two of battery life compared to the X320 due to all the performance, but you will still get from 4 to 6 hours of life out of this depending on the number of cells in your battery. Basically, it’s a netbook designed like the Apple Air, so all the caveats of a notebook remains compared to the Air, which is a full-fledged notebook.