Array-CGH technology for the detection of submicroscopic copy number changes in the genome has recently been developed for the identification of novel disease-associated genes. It has been estimated that submicroscopic genomic deletions or duplications will be present in 5-7% of patients with idiopathic mental retardation (MR). Since 30% more males than females are diagnosed with MR, we have developed a full coverage X chromosome array-CGH with a theoretical resolution of 82 kb, for the detection of copy number alterations in patients with suspected X-linked mental retardation (XLMR). First, we have validated the genomic location of X-derived clones through male versus female hybridisations. Next, we validated our array for efficient and reproducible detection of known alterations in XLMR patients. In all cases, we were able to detect the deletions and duplications in males as well as females. Due to the high resolution of our X-array, the boundaries of the genomic aberrations could clearly be identified making genotype-phenotype studies more reliable. Here, we describe the production and validation of a full coverage X-array-CGH, which will allow for fast and easy screening of submicroscopic copy number alterations in XLMR patients with the aim to identify novel MR genes or mechanisms involved in a deranged cognitive development.