The systems are slated to ship in late June and, barring government action, will come with Windows 98, the company said.
The Vaio PCs are just 12 inches high but pack such features such as 3D graphics based on Intel's AGP (accelerated graphics port) technology, advanced audio based on PCI (peripheral connect interface) bus technology, a built-in modem, and in some cases a 5X DVD drive.
The $999 PCV-E201 comes with a 266-MHz Celeron processor, a 4.3GB hard drive, and a CD-ROM drive, while the midrange PCV-E203 uses a 300-MHz Celeron processor and includes 48MB of memory, a 6.4GB hard drive, a 5X DVD-ROM drive, and MPEG-2 Digital Video. The latter model is priced at $1,399.
At the high end, the PCV-E205 features a 333-MHz Intel Pentium II processor, 64MB of memory, an 8GB hard drive, a 5X DVD-ROM drive, and MPEG-2 Digital Video.
Also this week, Sony will introduce a three-pound notebook for $1,999, a combination that could hit the "sweet spot" for subnotebooks.
The announcement will comprise new 500 and 800 series models in its line of Vaio notebooks, as well as two new models in existing series, according to sources close to the company. Shipments will not begin until the June-July time frame.