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A pair of Core Duo laptops from Sony

A pair of Core Duo laptops from Sony

A day ahead of Intel's Core Duo announcement, Sony debuted two new dual-core systems.

With the VAIO FE series, Sony offers a higher-end alternative to its FS series. In addition to an Intel Core Duo processor, the FE will have a new chassis with a 15.4-inch wide-screen Xbrite display, an integrated Webcam and microphone (for VoIP), Windows XP Media Center Edition 2005, and an optional integrated TV tuner. The total package will weigh slightly more than six pounds. The Sony FE series will be available in February 2006, starting at $1,700.

Sony's other dual-core system, the thin-and-light SZ series, has got us excited. It features a 13.3-inch wide-screen display and a host of business-focused features, including biometric security, hard drive protection, optional WWAN, a built-in Webcam, and Bluetooth. The SZ series will replace the CNET editors' favorite VAIO S series and will also come in an even higher-end, carbon-fiber configuration that weighs only 3.5 pounds. The basic configuration starts at $1,999, and the carbon-fiber version starts at $2,200. Both are expected to hit store shelves in February 2006.

Read more about Intel's new dual-core platform here.