Engadget has the scoop on a trio of new notebooks from Lenovo, and one of 'em is an ultrabook. Dubbed the U300S, the ThinkPad maker's first shot at the ultrabook category measures just 15 mm thick and weighs a little less than three pounds. The system's chassis is machined from single hunk of aluminum, which has been sandblasted and anodized to improve scratch resistance. Lest you think the metal finish will look too much like a MacBook, Lenovo is offering a special edition clad in "clementine orange."
Inside its sleek metal body, the U300S accommodates Core i5 and i7 processors, 4GB of RAM, and up to 256GB of solid-state storage. The screen is a 13.3-incher with the expected 1366x768 display resolution, but there's no word on the kind of panel being used. Lenovo claims eight hours of run time for the system, which can charge its battery to 50% capacity in just half an hour. With prices starting at $1195, though, the U300S looks pricier than we were expecting for ultrabooks.
If you're hoping to spend a little less on a new notebook, Lenovo has a couple of cheaper models that don't fall under the ultrabook banner. The IdeaPad U300 and U400 start at $799 and $849, respectively, and Lenovo still calls 'em ultraportable. The 13.3" U300 is just over 18 mm thick and weighs 3.5 lbs, while the 14" U400 measures 23 mm thick and tips the scales at 4.4 lbs.
All three of Lenovo's new notebooks have conveniences like USB 3.0 and WiDi support. Only the U400 offers discrete graphics—a Radeon HD 5470M—and an optical drive, though. You'll apparently get seven hours out of the U400's battery, while the U300's is said to last for six hours. Expect to see the new family on retail shelves in October.
Although I really like the idea of a slim ultrabook decked out in bright orange, $1200 is pretty steep if the screen is nothing special. The standard U300 looks like a much better deal; it may be 3 mm thicker and 0.5 lbs heavier, but it also costs $400 less than the ultrabook.
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