Sony’s latest mobile computing entry truly straddles the blurring line between netbook and notebook. The computer is light and über-thin — just 1.5 pounds with a standard battery and thin enough to barely contain a full-sized VGA output jack. Lest you think I’m exaggerating, here’s a shot showing the right side with VGA and Ethernet jacks.
So it’s light and skinny like most netbooks and it’s powered by an Intel Atom. But the display is a high resolution 11.6-inch unit capable of 1366 x 768. And this isn’t your father’s Atom platform — Sony is using the Z550 running at 2.0GHz paired with the Intel GMA500 / US15W Chipset for graphics. That graphics combo isn’t going to offer the capability of Nvidia’s ION package, but it’s better than the netbook standard. Whether you call it a netbook or a notebook, you can also call it pricey. The base model will set you back $1,299 if you hit the Sony Style site right now to get on the wait list.
Sony does offer a solid package here — not $1,299 worth in my opinion, at least not when looking solely at the specifications. But there is quite a bit to like when reviewing what’s available in the VAIO X:
- Extended battery that offers 12 to 14 hours and a standard batter for 2.5 to 3.5 hours — both are included
- Up to a 128GB SSD
- 2GB of RAM
- Card reader for SD and MemoryStick PRO
- Electro-static touchpad
- 802.11b/g/n, Bluetooth 2.1 +EDR, integrated 3G through Verizon Wireless, and a GPS receiver
- Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium
- Integrated webcam with face-tracking and microphone
Again, I’m not sold at this price but it’s typical for the Sony VAIO line. My initial thought when we heard rumors of this device was that it would use an Intel CULV chip for the price. Of course, Sony could refresh the line in three to six months and do just that or even go with Intel’s PineTrail platform. In the end though, $1,299 is a tough sell for a super thin netbook / notebook with these specs. At least for me it is. How about you?