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Nearly lost amid the clamor surrounding its launch of a new consumer touch-screen device, Hewlett-Packard on June 10 overhauled its notebook PC lineup with 16 new models in dozens of configurations aimed at both home and business users.

The massive refresh from HP’s Personal System Group  further distanced the world’s largest computer maker from rivals Dell, Acer and Lenovo, with some industry observers now declaring the Palo Alto, Calif., vendor’s lead in the desktop and portable computing space insurmountable. 

The new models, unveiled at HP’s "Connecting Your World" event in Berlin, include the business-class HP EliteBook, featuring the manufacturer’s patented DuraCase brushed anodized aluminum exterior wrapped around a light-but-sturdy honeycombed magnesium alloy chassis.

Built with corporate road warriors in mind, the “aircraft inspired” EliteBooks come standard with shock-resistant hard drives, spill-resistant keyboards, and security and productivity software such as HP QuickLook 2, HP SpareKey and HP File Sanitizer. For the energy- and ecology-conscious, the 4.7-pound, 14.1-inch EliteBook 6930p is Energy Star qualified, gets up to 15 hours of battery life and, when its days are over, is “highly recyclable,” according to HP.

“The EliteBook’s sleek, innovative designs combine a sophisticated look with the durability needed to withstand the evolving mobile work environment,” Ted Clark, senior vice president and general manager of HP PSG’s notebook global business unit, said in a statement. “Furthermore, HP has incorporated the right mix of hardware and software features to deliver a dependable business notebook PC that delivers enhanced security and improved ease of use in a stylish new package.”

Like all of HP’s new business lineup, the scratch-, dent-, ding- and twist-resistant EliteBooks offer a choice of either AMD Turion 64 X2 Ultra Dual-Core Mobile or Intel Centrino 2 processors. EliteBook power users can also add a second hard drive, a 2-megapixel Webcam with business card reader software, and ATI Mobility Radeon HD 3450 Graphics with 256MB of dedicated video memory.