Sony Launches Pricey Lightweight Vaio Notebook

The computer includes a Blu-ray disc player and an HDMI-out connector, and weighs less than three pounds.

The Vaio TT series, the successor to the Vaio VGN-TZ298N, has an 11-inch LCD screen with an LED back light for a brighter image.
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Sony on Tuesday launched an ultraportable Vaio notebook that includes a Blu-ray disc player, weighs less than three pounds, and is less than an inch thick.

The Vaio TT series, the successor to the Vaio VGN-TZ298N, has an 11-inch LCD screen with an LED backlight for a brighter image. The 1280-by-768 resolution is adequate for playing high-definition Blu-ray movies. However, since most people would prefer a larger screen, the Vaio TT has an HDMI-out connector for showing movies on a high-definition TV with a true HD resolution of 1,080p.

The notebook weighs 2.9 pounds and is available with up to two 128-GB solid-state drives arranged using RAID technology. The system is powered by Intel's Centrino 2 platform and is available with Windows Vista or XP. The latter is only available in select models.

As with the TZ298N, the Vaio TT is available with support for Sprint's EV-DO Rev A wireless data network, which would require a separate subscription contract. For people preferring a fancier color than carbon black, the notebook is available in silk black, champagne gold, or crimson red.

The Vaio TT starts at $2,000 with a traditional 160-GB hard disk drive and no Blu-ray disc player. The latter feature ups the price to $2,700, while the single solid-state drive model costs $2,750. Adding a second solid-state drive would likely bump the price to well over $3,000. The system will be available through Sony's online store and select retailers in the fall.

Sony's Vaio TT would compete with offerings from Hewlett-Packard, Dell, Apple, and other vendors. Sony, which launched three Vaio desktops this month, is marketing its latest system as the only 11-inch ultraportable available with a Blu-ray drive.