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Sony's portable HD studio: the VAIO AR190G

Sony's portable HD studio: the VAIO AR190G

Laptops used to be the redheaded stepchildren of the computer industry, forced to wait for hand-me-down technology that appeared months earlier on their desktop brethren. Oh, how times have changed. The Sony VAIO AR190G, announced tonight at a Sony event in New York and due out in June, is the first computer we've laid hands on--laptop or desktop PC--to feature an optical drive that can not only read Blu-ray Disc (BD) media, but write and rewrite on it--as opposed to the Toshiba Qosmio G35-AV650, announced earlier this month, which can read HD-DVD media but not write on it.

Being marketed as a portable, end-to-end HD studio, the Sony VAIO AR190G offers a pretty compelling set of A/V features to back up the claim: in addition to the BD drive, a 17-inch wide-screen display (WUXGA), an HDMI output, and a FireWire connection, you get a 2.0GHz Intel Core Duo processor, a midrange Nvidia GeForce Go 7600GT GPU with 256MB of VRAM, a 200GB hard drive, and a TV tuner.

We've been playing with the VAIO AR190G for the past few days. Check out our early impressions in our First Take.

We also shot some photos of it, which you can see in our slide show.