Netbooks are fine for viewing websites and checking e-mail but not so great for editing photos, creating PowerPoint presentations, or watching high-def movies. The Lenovo S12 changes that, thanks to the NVIDIA ION chipset, the same chip used in the Apple MacBook. The S12 has only 1GB of RAM and a 160GB hard drive, but the chip makes it powerful enough to run Windows 7. Other perks include a 12-inch screen, a full-size keyboard, and up to six hours of battery life. Yet it has a decidedly netbook-like weight of 3.4 pounds. cost: $429

Published on: Oct 1, 2009