MSI Wind U120 Memory Options: Do You Want 1GB or 1GB?

MSI Wind U120

MSI Wind U120

Yesterday, we caught word of the newest MSI Wind netbook for sale. It’s the U120, which doesn’t offer much more than the existing U100. The U120H does add integrated 3G and an option for an SSD drive, but the U120-series appears to offer less in the memory expansion department.

It could be that this was reported prior, but I don’t recall noticing that the U120 will only support 1GB of on-board memory. If true, that’s very different from the U100, which offers a DIMM slot capable of caressing 512MB, 1GB or 2GB of RAM.

jkOTR reader Hector pinged me with the first insights on this topic yesterday. He pointed me to some internal pics of the U120H which show us the integrated 3G module, but don’t show a slot for memory. Here’s a prime example:

MSI Wind 120H internals

MSI Wind 120H internals

You can plainly see that there’s no memory slot. Now let’s compare this to the pictures of my own MSI Wind U100 showing the memory slot:

MSI Wind U100 internals

MSI Wind U100 internals

There’s no memory in the slot, but you can see the place for it between the hard drive and fan.

Curiosity got the better of me and went back to the MSI Wind official product page. Here’s what I see for the U100, U120/U120H and for good measure, the U115:

  • The U100 shows “DDR2 512MB/1GB (Chipset supports up to 2GB)
  • The U115 shows “DDR2 533MHz, 1GB (By Module only) (Chipset supports up to 2GB)”
  • The U120 shows “DDR2 533MHz 1GB Onboard” as does the U120H

The chipset in the both the U120 and U120H is actually the same as the one used in the current U100, so this isn’t a limitation on the Intel platform used. It looks to me like MSI needed room for the 3G module and couldn’t re-use the existing board from the U100-series.

Is it a deal-breaker to have a fixed memory amount of 1GB? That’s a personal choice of course and I know that XP and Linux distros run fine with this configuration. Folks wanting to do the easy upgrade to 2GB of RAM in their netbook appear to be out of luck, however. It’s not so easy when there’s no place to put the memory.

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