The time has come for each Windows PC manufacturer to announce its unusual and frequently convertible offerings for the launch of Windows 8 at the end of October. Sony's announcement of new Vaio laptops and desktops puts a square focus on touch and multipurpose use, with two brand-new desktop and laptop products, the Vaio Tap 20 and the Vaio Duo 11, as the centerpieces.
There are other, less exciting revisions as well: the E Series now offers a touch-screen aluminum E Series 14P, and the Vaio S Series now comes in burgundy red. We had a chance to test and review some truly interesting products, a quartet of Sony's latest PCs. Read all about them below.
Sony Vaio Tap 20
Sony's weird, and somewhat wild, gigantic 20-inch multitouch all-in-one PC is also a battery-powered tablet. Do you use it on your desk, or in your lap? Yes, and more. This 10-finger multitouch PC has its own stand, but is also made to lay on a table for group use. The oddest thing of all is this: the $999 Tap 20 actually works. Read our full review.
Sony Vaio Duo 11
Sony's eyecatching sliding-convertible Windows 8 ultrabook glides open into keyboard mode, or folds down into a 11.6-inch touch-screen tablet, complete with its own pressure-sensitive stylus. Under the hood it's a Core i5 ultrabook, but at $1,200 it's priced at the top of a crowded category. While there are certainly things to like about the Sony Vaio Duo 11, the design gets in the way of enjoying them. Read the full review.
Sony Vaio T13 Touch
The Vaio T ultrabook released this summer now has a touch-screen counterpart, which costs $899 for the updated touch display but otherwise functions similarly to the T we already knew. Does 2GB of extra memory and a Windows 8 touch display change the equation? Read our hands-on first take.
Sony Vaio E (17-inch)
No sir, there's no touch or crazy folding going on in this 17-inch Vaio: instead, this is a desktop replacement-type 17-inch laptop priced below $1,000. There weren't any 17-inchers in Sony's midrange line of E series laptops before, but this quad-core i7, AMD graphics-toting machine could be a good pick-up for some students. Read our hands-on impressions.
All of these systems will be available at the end of October, in time for the launch of Windows 8.