What are the Macbook Air killers? (ultra-portables/sub-notebooks)

    I don't think the Air needs a killer as it hasn't really been born ... but what are the best subnotebooks out there?

    I'd say Panasonic W7, Sony TZ, Toshiba R500... what else?

    Also - is there any ultraportable with 100% compatibility with Ubuntu?


    ]This new Lenovo looks like it could be the thing - same old boring rugged IBM styling but good connectivity and features (12W dual-core CPU sounds great).

    Wish I had a couple of grand to spend on an ultraportable laptop :-(

    I think the TZ is a fantastic machine - I've had a TX for a few years now and to be honest, the Macbook release has made me appreciate the little TX even more. Older Sony ultralights were pretty garbage as they had virtually nothing onboard, poor performance and low batterylife - one of the users of this machine described it as a jigsaw, any time you wanted to use it properly you had to put it all together.

    The TR series was a massive step forward but the TX/TZ really put it up a step - these machines are very small, very light yet they have pretty much everything you need onboard. That includes an optical drive (rare in this class), LAN port, two USB, express card slot and VGA. Also unlike many other ultralights, the default battery is very good - the TX has a 7800Mah battery ( by comparison the heavyweight XPS 2/XPS M1710 only pack a 7200Mah battery) and even more impressively the extended battery is a whopping 13,000Mah. The Dell ultralights come with a much lower capacity battery as standard and can only manage to match the Vaio's default battery, no chance of matching the extended battery.

    I believe these machines work 100% with Ubuntu, there's occasionally a few niggles getting it all going with Ubuntu but from the threads I've read they seem to be running.

    While I may come across as somewhat of a Vaio fanboy, I have to admit I'm not a fan of Sony in general - however when looking at the market, the TX just stood out head and shoulders above everything else for its versatility. The UX is a different category completely but it's an even more amazing's only 4.5 inches and 500g yet it offers more onboard than the Macbook Air plus it has a dock connector which allows you to connect the UX to a docking connector or use a small dongle to get VGA, LAN and AV out when you need it.

    To give an idea of size, here is the UX sitting on the TX, then the XPS M1330 and the XPS M1710 below:

    Post a comment
      Top Discussions
      1. wharf comp - win a michael grant watch - email entry only22
      2. mail on sunday comp - win a £3,000 thomas cook gift e-card11
      3. computer active mag comp - win one of two y-cam protect alarm systems worth…44
      4. Win a Davosa Ternos Submariner Wristwatch worth £64578

      See more discussions