Beyond the Specs
I'm not one to repeat long lists of specs, so if you're interested, check out the details on Sony's website. However, there are a few things that do jump out when looking at the S Series. First, the design of the laptop is outstanding, though I'll delve further into Sony's handiwork below. The model that I tested featured an Intel Core i5 processor and 4GB of RAM, which made it plenty fast for daily operations and multitasking applications. The included battery claims to provide enough juice for six hours of usage, yet the form factor remains very thin. Unlike many extended batteries that accompany today's mobile devices and laptops, Sony's optional sheet battery included for my testing adds weight and thickness, but doesn't alter the form factor too noticeably. It does double the expected battery life, and adds a little weight, but my only complaint was the flimsy tab that needed to be removed when connecting the extra battery. The S Series laptop has a ton of ports - 3 USB, HDMI/VGA out, and Ethernet all on the right side, and yes, despite being less than an inch thick, it still has an optical drive for those CD installs and DVD movies.
Sony's Magic Touch
Sony's Magic Touch
I like the Sony Vaio S Series for a lot of reasons. Sony's attention to design does not go unnoticed, and the S Series brings a new class of "cool" to the Ultrabook product market. However, the company backs up the pretty looks by making the laptop business friendly by keeping the machine thin and light, full featured, and able to pack in enough juice to stay energized for a transatlantic flight. Keeping the laptop in the Ultrabook category means keeping the price down. The S Series starts at $799 and the premium model that I tested starts at $1029. Not too bad considering a 13-inch Macbook Air will set you back $1249 for the base model. You can shop for the Sony Vaio S Series on the company's website, and they are currently running a promotion where you can get the extended sheet battery (a $149 value) included for free.
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