Following a brief appearance at CES 2015, Lenovo's notebook collaboration with NEC is finally hitting Western shores as the LaVie Z and LaVie Z 360. Both 13-inch systems are largely the same as announced in January, striking an impressive balance between performance, features and portability, though they're ever so slightly heavier and a bit pricier than originally expected.
The standard LaVie Z comes in at 1.87 pounds, up from the 1.72 pounds we heard before, and will set you back $1,499 after an instant discount. Meanwhile, the LaVie Z 360, which adds a full 360-degree hinge system like the one found on Yoga laptops, tips the scales at 2.04 pounds and is $1,700.
For those keeping scores, the non-convertible LaVie Z is lighter than Apple's new MacBook, while the 360 model is virtually the same – the 12-inch MacBook is 2.03 pounds. Apple's laptop still has an edge when it comes to thickness as it's just 0.52 inches tall compared to the LaVie Z's 0.67 inches.
The key to the LaVie Z's weight is its use of a magnesium-lithium alloy for the chassis, which is supposed to weigh half as much as aluminum.
When it comes to specs, both models are equipped with 13.3-inch QHD (2560 x 1440) displays, an Intel Core i7-5500U processor, 8GB of LPDDR3 memory, a 256GB SSD, Intel HD Graphics 5500, 802.11ac wireless, and Bluetooth 4.0. You also get two USB 3.0 ports, one HDMI-out port, an SD card reader, Yamaha speakers and a 6-cell battery that should be good for 9 hours of use.
Both devices will ship with Windows 8.1 and are eligible for free update to Windows 10 when it launches this summer. The only other difference besides the hinge is that the 360 model comes with a touch screen.