You are 100% right that it wouldn’t cost twice as much to make a laptop with DVI out. Also, I’m not sure if all the 7600s have the HDCP protocol. From that press release I can’t tell if all 7600s have the PureVideo HD technology or if it’s only on special PureVideo HD enabled 7600 series cards. Especially since the press release was issued on June 9, while the 7600 has been around longer than that.
Keep in mind that a vast number of households don’t own a TV with a DVI input. Only DLP, plasma, LCD, HD-ILA, and newer high end tube televisions have DVI input. And I would even venture to say that most owners of DVI input televisions aren’t even using it.
DVI is really only valuable for HD content, and completely useless for 720p content, that’s just my opinion. So right now its value is somewhat limited unless you have HD cable or satellite or an HD video camera. But I could be wrong since I’m not 100% sure what HD content is available.
However I do own the Sony Vaio Digital Living System, model VGX-XL2 and think it is amazing. It’s supposed to provide HD audio and video through HDMI but only has the 6600GT. It seems to work though since I have downloaded some HD movies and they look great, much better than conventional DVDs. But you know what, even though the digital living system is essentially a moderately powerful desktop pc, in a fancy box, with a 200 disc cd/dvd changer and a really slick wireless keyboard with a built in touch pad, I hardly ever use any of the pc functions of it, aside from occasional web browsing. Maybe if I was really into gaming I would be singing a different tune. I tried playing civilization 4 on it and I just didn’t find it that fun. I couldn’t find a good was to see the screen unless I was sitting like 3 feet away, same thing for the sims 2 and Rome total war. The one game I really like on it is Flight Simulator. But those are about all the games I have tried so battlefield 2 or some of the other games that I keep reading about on this forum might be amazing. But I still highly recommend the Digital Living System. So depending on what you were planning on doing with it if you could hook it up to a television via DVI, don’t be heart broken you can’t. I think this set up would be ideal for hooking a dv8000 up to a television for gamming and pc use:http://www.notebookforums.com/thread154447.html
I think you’ll see a dv9000 or whatever they will call it within 9-12 months. And it will definitely have DVI out with the HDCP protocol, but it will also have either a BlueRay drive or a HD-DVD drive with it. And Hp will do this in order to compete with Sony and Toshiba. I just don’t see the DVI coming to the dv8000, maybe toward the end of its product cycle or in the next generation iteration, as HDCP supported DVI becomes more common. It’s really a mid level notebook, and isn’t geared toward power users, though based on its specs it looks very strong. But Hp will sell the majority of these units preconfigured through retail outlets, and for the price they won’t deck it out with all the best bells and whistles regardless of any additional cost.
Unrelated, have you checked out the customizable Sony Vaio AR series? For about $2300 you can get a nicely equipped one with a 7600GT. If I have problems or am not satisfied with the dv8000 I’m going to give it a try.