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The best 11-inch ultraportable laptops

We pick the ultraportable highlights of this year from HP, Samsung, Apple, and others.

When the history of laptops in 2011 is written, it will be said that this was the year of the ultraportable (not to be confused with the Ultrabook). We've seen more 11.6-inch laptops than ever before, along with a handful of 12.1-inch and 12.5-inch alternatives.

Below you'll find a quick roundup of some of the best ultraportables of this year, along with a few high-profile near-misses. In the coming months, keep an eye out for more high-end models, such as the 11-inch Asus Zenbook UX21, which will start at $999.

HP Pavilion dm1z (fall 2011)
The original dm1z was one of the first recommendable products in this category. The fall update is a bit better all around. Read the full review.

Samsung Series 3 (11.6-inch)
One of the few ultraportables to use a more powerful Intel Core i3 CPU, the Samsung Series 3 looks sharp, but costs as much as a full-size laptop. Read the full review.

Lenovo IdeaPad S205
The Lenovo S205's keyboard is the best we've used on a laptop this size, but the design and build quality add some extra cost. Read the full review.

Apple MacBook Air (11-inch, Summer 2011)
This is by far the fastest ultraportable you're likely to find, but make sure it has enough storage space for you, especially on the least-expensive configuration. Read the full review.

Samsung Series 9 NP900X1A
This is the closest you'll get to the 11-inch MacBook Air in terms of design and thinness on the Windows side, but be prepared to pay a little extra. Read the full review.

Sony Vaio VPC-YB15KX/S
With typically sharp Vaio design and a large hard drive, this feels like an upscale step up from entry level 11-inch AMD-powered ultraportables. Read the full review.

Looking for specs and pricing? Compare these laptops head-to-head.

Editors' note: This story was originally posted on September 8, 2011, but has since been updated with additional products.