On Monday Sony Electronics unveiled its new Vaio T Series Ultrabook and a new portfolio of Vaio PCs during its Vaio Expo Tour at the Sony Wonder Technology Lab in New York. This will be the first Sony Ultrabook to carry its Vaio branding whereas the Vaio desktop series will see "enhancements" to the E, S, Z and L All-in-One Series models.
"Thin and light is nothing new to Sony – we built the T Series Ultrabook from many of the same features as our amazingly thin and powerful ultra-premium VAIO Z Series, which has long exceeded Ultrabook specifications," said Mike Abary, senior vice president of Networked Technology and Services Division of Sony Electronics. "Our entire new VAIO portfolio incorporates the best technology from our innovative digital imaging, sound and TV divisions and unique features across all the models such as backlit keyboard and Sony's Rapid Wake technology."
On the Ultrabook front, the Vaio T Series features a stylishly slim magnesium and aluminum chassis housing a 13.3-inch display and the latest generation Ultra Low Voltage Intel Core processors. Consumers have the option of choosing an SSD for storage, or a hybrid drive which features the best traits of both HDD and SSD technologies. Other features include two USB ports (including a charging function for mobile devices), HDMI out, VGA, Ethernet, a Sony Memory Stick reader and an SD card reader.
Next up is the Vaio E Series, ideal for students and general consumers. Sony offers 11.6-inch, 14-inch and 15.5-inch models sporting an aluminum "wrap around" design with a diamond cut Vaio logo. The 11.6-inch model comes with an AMD processor, the 14-inch model comes with a 2nd-generation Intel Core processor, and the 15.5-inch model comes with a variety of 2nd and 3rd-generation Intel Core processors. All three have AMD Radeon graphics, whereas the two larger machines also provide a backlit keyboard.
Sony also revealed the Vaio E 14P Future Sounds My Connect Studio bundle in red and black wrap design featuring the My Connect Studio collaborative Technology, a unique software app envisioned by LL COOL J. It allows multiple artists and musicians to record, edit and produce new music together simultaneously in real time from anywhere in the world, helping to eliminate the geographical and economical barriers for musicians. “Multiple musicians a thousand miles apart from each other can record music together in real time," said LL COOL J.
Sony's updated Vaio S Series has been crafted in tough, weight-saving magnesium, aluminum and carbon fiber materials, and is now offered in 13.3-inch and 15.5-inch models. Both feature up to Intel's third-generation Core i7 processors (the 15-inch supports an i7 Quad Core processor), Nvidia graphics with up to 2 GB of VRAM, numerous HDD and SDD options, slot-in for optical drives (even Blu-ray), and options for QUAD RAID 0 technologies. Security is enhanced with TPM and Fingerprint Reader and fourth generation Hard Disk Drive Shock Protection Technology (Free Fall Protection Sensor and Axis Change Sensor). The larger 15-inch screen-size model even sports a Full HD (1920 x 1080) IPS Display.
Sony's premium mobility Vaio Z Series line is now stocked with an exclusive glossy carbon fiber Z Series Anniversary edition model. It features a durable, sleek chassis made of carbon fiber materials and weighing a mere 2.6-pounds. Other features include a Full HD display (1920 x 1080), SSDs in RAID, 3rd-generation Intel Quad Core processors, and an optional Power Media Dock which adds support for up to 3 external monitors and more. The Vaio Z also includes I/O port connectivity and Sony's unique Sheet Battery technology.
Finally there's the new Vaio L All-In-One. This AIO desktop is powered by the same tech used in its HDTVs: the Bravia Engine and the X-Reality chip. This means the compact rig is not only a great computer, but an awesome 24-inch LED-backlit multi-touch HTDV thanks to a built-in TV Tuner with picture in picture functionality. The L Series is available with 3rd-generation Intel Core processors (supporting up to i7 Quad Core), slot load DVD and Blu-ray Disc options, 1 to 3 TB hard disk drive options and Nvidia graphics options. A glasses-free 3D option will be available late summer 2012, Sony said.
The Vaio Series models come equipped with the latest Windows 7 operating systems and are eligible for the $14.99 Windows 8 Pro upgrade, Sony added. The offer is valid from June 2, 2012 to January 31, 2013.
As for pricing, here's the complete list:
E Series 11 - starts at $449.99 in Sharkskin Black and Seafoam White.
E Series 14 - starts at $549.99 in Sharkskin Black, Seafoam White and Seashell Pink.
E Series 14 Premium - starts at $699.99 in Black with Burgundy Red, White with Aqua Blue and Gunmetal with Vintage Gold.
E Series 14 Premium Boomdizzle Bundle - starts at $899.99 in Black with Burgundy Red.
E Series 15 - starts at $449.99 in Aluminum Silver, Sharkskin Black and Seafoam White.
T Series Ultrabook
T Series 13-inch - starts at $799.99 in Silver Mist.
S Series 13-inch - starts at $899.99 in Black, Silver, White and Pink.
S Series 13-inch Premium - starts at $1119.99 in Carbon Fiber Black, Carbon Fiber Gold and Carbon Fiber Gun Metal.
S Series 15-inch - starts at $999.99 in Black and Silver.
L Series All-in-One
L Series - starts at $1299.99 in Black and White.
Z Series - starts at $1599.99 in Black, Carbon Fiber Gold, Carbon Fiber Black and Premium Carbon fiber Black
The new Vaio computers will be available June at Sony retail stores (www.store.sony.com) and other authorized dealers nationwide. Starting prices are approximate.