Apple’s new MacBook Pro is a remarkable laptop. It’ll be remembered for that searing display but there are many more reasons to admire it
It's not strictly an Ultrabook, but HP's Sleekbook is both great value and great to use.
Well-designed, distinctive and powerful enough for day-to-day computing, Acer’s Aspire S7 is everything we wanted from the Chromebook Pixel
Samsung’s improvements, combined with the price drop, make this an attractive netbook alternative. It’s at its best as a mobile or kids’ computer.
A good value netbook with the power to handle all but the most specialist of work and play tasks
True desktop performance in an almost portable size. Costly, but just about worth it for gamers with limited space
A beautiful Ultrabook maverick that confirms two HD screens can definitely be better than one
The Aspire S3 sets the bar high. With a better screen, more storage and USB 3.0, Acer’s Ultrabook would be perfect
Too expensive – but with a better screen it'd be a MacBook killer
WHAT TO LOOK FOR
1. Connections You can't have too many USB ports, and ideally at least one of them should be USB 3.0. Insist on HDMI, and view VGA as a last-resort back-up. FireWire, Thunderbolt (Intel's 10Gbps superfast I/O) and eSATA will expand your power-user options.
2. Interface Keyboards and trackpads are often taken for granted, but their quality and design really matter. Some keyboards play rotten tricks by swapping critical keys around, or omitting others altogether. If it's possible, gets hands on with the device before buying.
3. Operating system If you're already on board with Mac OS X it's unlikely you'll entertain the idea of switching to the fresh and colourful – but still fiddly – Windows 8. However, Apple doesn't do cheap laptops, so if your budget is tight it'll be Windows for you. Google's browser-based Chrome OS is another option.