updated 11:35 pm EST, Wed January 4, 2012
LG intros Z330 and Z430, notebooks, AIO in Vegas
LG formally threw its hat into the ultrabook ring beyond Korea on Wednesday night with two new models joined both by regular notebooks and an all-in-one. In a sense of pride, LG calls the 13-inch Z330 (already in Korea) and 14-inch Z430 "Super Ultrabooks" for their passing the minimum requirements Intel set in the category first defined by the MacBook Air. The Z330 is consistently 0.58 inches thick and 2.67 pounds, well under the limits, while the category-breaking Z430 is still 0.78 inches thick and a heavier but still close 3.3 pounds despite the larger screen.
Part of the achievement comes through Shuriken panels, which lets LG use very thin bezels and shrink the total footprints to those of 12-inch (Z330) and 13-inch (Z430) notebooks. Either has a brushed metal cover that conspicuously recalls the MacBook Air as well as the similarly brushed ASUS Zenbook series.
Both are high-speed. Either uses a low-voltage Core i7 processor and the "latest" SATA 3-based solid-state drive as main drive, letting them boot in 10 to 12 seconds. The Z430 has room for a 500GB drive to give it the storage of a regular notebook.
Among conventional notebooks, the 15.6-inch P535 is thin and light for its class at 0.95 inches thick and 4.85 pounds, even as it takes up the profile of a 14-inch notebook and carries a 3D display. LG currently gives it a 2011-era Core i7, but does outfit it with newer GeForce GT 630M video.
The equally 15.6-inch A540 can't boast thinness but does have a glasses-free 3D display, 4.1-channel surround, and quad Core i7 processors. A GeForce GT 555M gives it enough power for most games, 3D movies, and a bundled 3D movie editor.
At the tail end, the V300 all-in-one desktop is unique among all-in-ones in having both glasses-free 3D and an IPS panel; the technique gives it accurate colors while still allowing for cheap-to-run and comfortable 3D footage. The 23-inch, 1080p system runs on 2011 Core i7 processors and supports multi-touch input with a particularly accurate three-camera system.
The entire range of PCs should ship worldwide before the end of March, although whether or not that includes the US is uncertain. LG doesn't usually feed systems to the US, but it does serve Canada.