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Sony Vaio E laptops are portable Blu-ray players

Vaio E Series expands with 14 and 17-inch laptops

Sony Vaio E Series laptop VPCEA1Z1E - blue

Sony has announced new 14-inch and 17-inch Vaio laptops in its E Series, which incorporate Blu-ray drives and Quick Web Access buttons. 

Earlier this year Sony announced the E Series 15-inch laptops and has now expanded the range to include both larger and smaller models that it is pitching as ‘perfect for everyday browsing, blogging or simply enjoying your digital media collection’.

At the lower end of the E series range is the Sony Vaio E Series 14″ – which comes in gloss white or black, vivid pink, blue and lime green. 

The Vaio VPCEA1Z1E has a 1600×900-resolution 16:9 widescreen with LED backlighting. Sony claims that the screen has a scratch-resistant coating for durability. 

In addition to the Blu-ray drive that features on the black model, the VPCEA1Z1E has an Intel Core i3 processor and HDMI socket to connect to an LCD or plasma TV.

Check out Which? laptop reviews for full lab test results of more than 20 laptops, including 6 Best Buy laptops

Sony Vaio Care

Like other models in the E series range the 17-inch Sony Vaio E Series has an ‘Assist’ button to bring up Vaio Care – Sony’s own help function – which the company says is ‘a new and powerful software application that helps maintain performance and diagnose or troubleshoot problems’. 

The 17.3-inch Vaio VPCEC1S1E has a higher screen resolution, at 1920×1080 full HD, and a high-end spec with 500GB hard drive, 4GB of high-speed DDR3 Ram and a ATI Mobility Radeon 5000 series graphics card. Sony says it weighs 3.3kg including the battery.

By displaying full-HD video from Blu-ray discs the Sony Vaio E Series range offers an alternative to standalone portable Blu-ray players, such as the Panasonic DMP-B15 – see it in action in our first look video review. 

Both 14-inch and 17-inch E Series Vaios feature dedicated ‘Web’ buttons for one-click access to the internet from standby, which we’ll put to the test in our lab-based reviews to see how fast it is, compared to standard boot-up time.

The E Series laptops feature multi-touch trackpads, and the 17-inch models have three USB ports, and an additional high-speed eSATA/USB port for faster data transfer to connected devices.

If you’re not sure what features to look for a in a laptop, read our expert laptop buyers’ guide

The full Sony Vaio E series, including Vaio VPCEA1Z1E and VPCEC1S1E, will be available in the UK from May 2010.

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