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Sony Intros Touchscreen PC/TV

The computer maker also announced a half-inch, 1.6 pound notebook with an 11-inch display.

Vaio L Touch HD PC/TV
(click image for larger view)
Vaio L Touch HD PC/TV
Sony on Thursday introduced its lightest notebook to date and unveiled a touch-enabled, all-in-one desktop that's built as an entertainment hub with PC, high-definition TV, and digital video recorder in one unit.

The Vaio L Touch HD PC/TV and Vaio X Series laptop run Microsoft's Windows 7, which is scheduled for release Oct. 22. Both Sony systems will have a starting price of $1,300 and are expected to be available starting next month.

Sony is the latest computer maker to announce new products to ride the marketing blitz expected by Microsoft with the release of its latest operating system. Many of the new PCs are expected to take advantage of Windows 7's touchscreen technology. Gateway on Wednesday introduced the ZX Series, which comprises three touchscreen desktops. Prices start as low as $720.

Sony's Vaio X notebook comes close to being a netbook, except for price. The system's lightweight carbon-fiber chassis helps in getting the weight down to just 1.6 pounds. In addition, the notebook is a half-inch thick and has an 11.1-inch LCD screen with an LED backlight. Sony claims the PC is the lightest notebook on the market today.

The X Series can get up to 14 hours of battery life, if a person is willing to pay extra for an extended-capacity battery. The standard battery can power the system for up to 3.5 hours.

Vaio X Series Ultra Light Notebook
(click image for larger view)
Vaio X Series Ultra Light Notebook
While Sony didn't provide details on the processor, a sales representative said the 2-GHz Intel chip is an Atom processor. Such chips are used in the majority of netbooks, which are mostly used for basic computing tasks. While netbooks are available for as low as $300, models costing around $500 typically provide better graphics capabilities.

The Vaio X Series includes built in support for Wi-Fi and Verizon Wireless broadband. The system also includes a 128-GB solid state drive and 2 GB of DDR2 system memory.

The Vaio L Touch PC/TV includes a 24-inch high-definition touchscreen and is available with a rewritable Blu-ray disc drive. Other options include a built-in TV tuner for connecting to a cable TV service and an over-the-air antenna. Other available features include an HDMI input for connecting to a cable box, satellite receiver, or PlayStation 3 video-game console.

The system has a built-in digital video recorder and includes up to a terabyte of storage, capable of storing up to 100 hours of HD television. The PC is available with either Windows 7 Home Premium or Professional, an Intel Core 2 quad-core processor, and an Nvidia GeForce series graphics processor. The Vaio L also has built-in Wi-Fi.

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