Up to speed

New In­tel chips en­sure note­books are faster than ever, writes Mau­reen Shel­ley

Sunday Tasmanian - Tassie Living - - Tech -

ALIEN­WARE M17X Alien­ware, from $ 2199 www.alien­ware.com.au

Alien­ware says the M17x has the most pow­er­ful mo­bile graphic op­tions avail­able and the crisp, clear qual­ity is read­ily ap­par­ent.

The lap­top has op­tional 3D- ca­pa­bil­ity, with glasses in­cluded, from $ 2999 and it weighs 4.26kg. Colours are Ne­bula Red and Stealth Black and the rub­berised edges pro­tect the 17.3- inch full high- def­i­ni­tion LCD screen. The lap­top has an op­ti­cal drive, with an op­tional Blu- ray player, plus 8GB mem­ory and 1TB stor­age. It has a 2.1- megapixel high- def­i­ni­tion we­b­cam, wi- fi and Blue­tooth. For a big screen ex­pe­ri­ence, users could hook up the lap­top to a home the­atre.

ASUS ZEN­BOOK PRIME UX31A ASUS, from $ 1399

www.zen­book.asus.com

The Zen­book is a su­per- slim model with a 256GB solid- state drive. It has ditched the op­ti­cal drive and is 3mm thick at the front and 9mm at the rear. The cover has a spun- metal fin­ish and the alu­minium case makes it strong as well as beau­ti­ful. The 13.3- inch dis­play has 16: 9 as­pect ra­tio suit­able for widescreen view­ing.

The UX31A has two USB 3.0 ports that are up to 10 times faster than the pre­vi­ous ver­sion, a full high- def­i­ni­tion dis­play panel and Bang & Olufsen ICEpower au­dio tech­nol­ogy that gives it en­vi­able video and au­dio. Even the we­b­cam is high def­i­ni­tion. The bat­tery life is claimed to be 7.5 hours, while standby time is 22 days.

SONY VAIO E17 Sony, $ 1399

www.sony.com.au

The spe­cial edi­tion In­sp­iron pro­vides entertainment ca­pa­bil­ity at a value- for- money price. The alu­minium-lid­ded lap­top has curved cor­ners, metal palm­rest and a back­lit key­board. It has a high- def­i­ni­tion, 15.6- inch dis­play and we­b­cam plus Skull­candy stereo speak­ers and uses In­tel’s third- gen­er­a­tion Core i7 chip. Video and mu­sic play­back is ac­cept­able.

The test model had 6GB mem­ory and a 1TB hard drive, while 4GB of mem­ory and a 750GB drive are stan­dard. At 2.78kg, the lap­top houses a bat­tery that pro­vides more than five hours of power and it has an op­ti­cal drive.

DELL IN­SP­IRON 15R SE Dell, from $ 899

www. dell. com. au

The 17- inch entertainment note­book has two- tone colour­ing, a wrapped de­sign and a back­lit key­board. Sony has ex­tended its ges­ture con­trols to a range of apps and by swip­ing fingers left, right or down­wards, play­back of video or mu­sic will skip for­ward, back or pause. Vol­ume can be ad­justed by a clock­wise mo­tion. Ges­ture con­trols are avail­able with the me­dia gallery or Win­dows Me­dia Player plus while brows­ing the web, play­ing a DVD or us­ing Pow­er­Point. The pro­pri­etary sound tech­nol­ogy and Dolby Home The­atre sys­tem pro­duces clear, crisp au­dio. The E17 has a rapid wake- up fea­ture and re­sumes op­er­a­tion in less than two sec­onds, and it has the abil­ity to charge USB de­vices even when it is off. It has an op­ti­cal drive with op­tional Blu- ray player plus three stan­dard USB slots.

TOSHIBA SATEL­LITE U840W Toshiba, $ 1499

www.my­toshiba.com.au

The U840W Ul­tra­book stands out in a crowd, thanks to its wide screen. The 14.4- inch model has a 21: 9 high- def­i­ni­tion, cin­e­matic, back­lit- LED screen and can dis­play Pow­er­point pre­sen­ta­tions clearly and crisply. It has split- screen func­tion and comes into its own dis­play­ing games and movies.

The U840W has a two- toned case and is 20.8mm slim. The 500GB hard drive and a 32GB solid state drive are pow­ered by In­tel’s third- gen­er­a­tion i7 chip. The touchpad al­lows for ges­ture control. Weigh­ing 1.6kg, the U840W has three USB 3.0 ports, can trans­fer AV files, and it has wi- fi and Blue­tooth con­nec­tiv­ity.

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