Top rated ultraportable laptops: August 2011

Here are our ten top rated ultraportables for August 2011

There's no doubt that Apple's MacBook Air is the ultraportable laptop of choice for many people. However, at the top of our top rated list is its main challenger: Samsung Series 9. It's slim, light, a joy to use, it has good speed and connectivity features, and its matte screen is just beautiful.

Our list also includes Fujitsu's, Sony's and Toshiba's great, 'no compromise' ultraportables, which have full-voltage CPUs and built-in optical drives. If you're a gamer, you'll want to check out the little Alienware M11x R3, which packs lots of graphics power in an ultraportable frame. If you're a business user looking for something small and solidly built, then HP's EliteBook 2560p should be right up your alley.

About our ratings: A star rating is awarded to a product in quarter increments from one star to five stars. The higher the star rating, the better the notebook. Notebooks are evaluated on performance, features, build quality, ease of use, battery life and value for money.

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Notebook Series 9 (NP900X3A-A01AU)
4.50

1. Samsung Notebook Series 9 (NP900X3A-A01AU) ultraportable laptop

The Samsung Series 9 has strong build quality, a sleek design and many great features that make it comfortable to use. It's high price tag definitely makes it a luxury item, but if you want excellent mobility and usability in ...
Review Date: 8th May, 2011
RRP: $ 2,499.00
Editor's Choice
MacBook Air
4.25

2. Apple MacBook Air (13in, mid-2011)

Apple's latest MacBook Air still lacks replaceable components, still has an annoying glossy screen and remains relatively expensive. However, its performance upgrades with new Core i5 processors give it the extra grunt previous models were missing. Combined with a superb ...
Review Date: 5th Aug., 2011
RRP: $ 1,799.00
VAIO S Series VPCSA255GG
4.00

3. Sony VAIO S Series VPCSA255GG laptop

The Sony VAIO S Series VPCSA25GG is for suit-wearing business users who want something that stands out. It's thin, it's light, it has USB 3.0 and other nice features, and it has good CPU and graphics performance. It could use ...
Review Date: 8th Aug., 2011
RRP: $ 2,399.00
Portege R830 (PT321A-01L002)
4.00

4. Toshiba Portege R830 (PT321A-01L002) ultraportable laptop

Toshiba's Portege R830 is a great choice for business users who want something that's easily mobile, yet fully-featured and fast. It's not perfect -- it could use a better screen, a backlit keyboard and a quicker charging time -- but ...
Review Date: 29th May, 2011
RRP: $ 2,667.50
ThinkPad Edge E320 (129834M)
4.00

5. Lenovo ThinkPad Edge E320 (129834M) business laptop

It may have a plain design, but Lenovo's ThinkPad Edge E320 is so nice even Mac fans can appreciate it. It's a business laptop with an excellent keyboard and it costs well under $1000 in its standard configuration. However, it ...
Review Date: 17th Aug., 2011
RRP: $ 772.00
M11x R3
4.00

6. Alienware M11x R3 ultraportable gaming laptop

The M11x R3 is a little gaming laptop that you'll love. It looks good, it feels good and it performs very well. The only downside is that it's a little cramped due to its size.
Review Date: 22nd June, 2011
RRP: $ 1,799.00
ThinkPad X1 (1291-23M)
3.75

7. Lenovo ThinkPad X1 (1291-23M) ultraportable laptop

The ThinkPad X1 is the type of laptop that no reviewer wants to give back to the vendor. It feels solidly built and great to use, but it could be better. In particular, its touchpad needs refinement, it could use ...
Review Date: 26th May, 2011
RRP: $ 2,684.00
LifeBook S761
3.75

8. Fujitsu LifeBook S761 business laptop

Fujitsu's LifeBook S761 is a top laptop, that's for sure. It's small and light, yet well built and highly specced. We like it a lot but think it could use an SSD drive and a little less (or improved) pre-installed ...
Review Date: 28th July, 2011
RRP: $ 2,588.00
ProBook 5330m
3.75

9. HP ProBook 5330m business laptop

We think that the 13.3in ProBook 5330m is a very good notebook overall, thanks to its solid build quality, decent performance, backlit keyboard and useful security features. However, its battery life is too short and it lacks USB 3.0.
Review Date: 24th July, 2011
RRP: $ 999.00
EliteBook 2560p (QA086PA)
3.75

10. HP EliteBook 2560p (QA086PA) business laptop

This small business laptop has a lot of features for its size, and it supplies good performance via its full-voltage Intel Core i5 CPU. It could use some more standard features though, such as SSD, integrated 3G and USB 3.0, ...
Review Date: 9th Aug., 2011
RRP: $ 2,599.00
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