View Full Version : Deciding which laptop to buy - Sony Vaio ?

16-03-2007, 12:29 PM
Want to buy a laptop which will be secondary usage to our PC so do not want to spend a lot. Will network it wirelessly to the PC.

Uses will be -
checking web re purchases - so that Mrs Misty and I can both be involved when necessary
play DVD's
perhaps music, (though our stereo, iPod suffices in the main).

Our local PC store has this

Sony VAIO VGNC12GPW Laptop

Microprocessor: Intel Celeron M Processor 430 (1.73 GHz)
Chipset:Intel 945GM Express Chipset
Processor system bus:533 MHz
Memory bus:533 MHz
Cache memory:L1 Cache: 64 KB L2 Cache: 1 MB (on CPU)
Main memory:512 MB DDR2 SDRAM (upgradeable to 2 GB) 2 SO-DIMM slots (pre-installed memory uses 1 slot)
Hard disk:80 GB (HDD Recovery Storage:7 GB, C:40 GB, D:Remain) Serial ATA, 5400 rpm
Optical drive DVD+-RW/+-R DL/RAM Drive. Max.Read(DVD-ROM, DVD+-R:8x / DVD+R DL, DVD+-RW:6x / DVD-R DL:4x / DVD-RAM:5x / CD-R, CD-RW, CD-ROM:24x) Max.Write(DVD+-R, DVD+RW:8x / DVD-RW:6x / DVD+-R DL:4x / DVD-RAM:5x / CD-R, CD-RW:24x)
Graphics accelerator:Intel Graphics Media Accelerator 950
Video memory:128 MB
Display:13.3-inch wide (WXGA: 1280 x 800) TFT colour display (Clear
Bright LCD:Single lamp, Standard View
Interfaces:USB 2.0 x2, iLINK (IEEE 1394)S400(4pin), S-Video Out connector, Network (RJ-45) connector (100BASE-TX/10BASE-T), Headphone jack (stereo mini), Microphone jack (stereo mini), Monitor connector (Analogue RGB, Mini D-SUB 15 pin), Modular (RJ-11) connector, Docking Station connector, Memory Stick Slot (Standard/Duo size, MagicGate, PRO, High-speed data transfer compatible) Compatible Memory Cards: Memory stick (Std/Duo size, MagicGate, PRO), SD Memory Card, xD Picture Card, Multi Media Card
Bluetooth / Wireless LAN:Bluetooth standard version 2.0+EDR, Output: Max +6 dBm, Frequency: 2.4 GHz. Integrated Wireless LAN IEEE 802.11b/g, Data rate: Maximum 11 Mbps (802.11b)/54 Mbps (802.11g), Frequency: 2.4 GHz
Modem:V.92 and V.90 compliant
PC card slot:ExpressCard/34 x1
Audio:Intel High Definition Audio compatible, 3D audio (Direct Sound 3D support), Built-in stereo speakers
Keyboard/input device:ca 19mm Key pitch / 2.5mm Key stroke, 86 Keys, Intelligent Touchpad
Battery:VGPBPS2C (supplied) Lithium-ion battery: Up to 2 hours of use (Actual battery life may vary under use)
Dimensions (WxHxD):329.6 x 36.7 - 37.2 x 235.6 mm
Weight:Approx. 2.3 kg (including supplied battery)

Celeron chip be okay ? Doesn't have Vista - but I think at this stage that could be a plus. It does have XP Professional (which it includes encryptation, I understand) which could be a plus. Other comments ?

The special price is $1686 which includes a "free" (if such a thing !) digital camera - Sony DSCW50 Cyber-shot. Now I have checked that model out and it seems ideal for our needs. Was going to get a digital camera anyway and this is 6 mega-pixels, 3 X optical zoom etc. However although the camera is attractive I want to make sure that the laptop is pretty right for our needs and not be too swayed too much by the overall package.
Misty :confused:

16-03-2007, 12:50 PM
Without going into too much detail for your needs that laptop wll do the job easily.
Haven't heard anything bad about the Vaio so I would say go for it if you like it.

Yes you can get better, maybe even cheaper but if this is what you want its at a fairly good price.

16-03-2007, 01:03 PM
Not bad

John H
16-03-2007, 03:45 PM
Misty, I have a Pentium M processor 900Mhz in my laptop (Fujitsu Lifebook, 3 or 4 years old). It is fine for my purposes, which are very similar to yours except I would add lots of travelling, and daily synced backups of the main computer via wireless. I am not sure what the relationship is between the Pentium M and the Celeron M - I would have thought mine was much slower. Mine came with WinXP Pro too.

I bought this thing because it is a small and light beast which is ideal for all the travelling I do, and has heaps of add on bays (PCMCIA, CF card, SD card etc). It has a 10.6 inch screen. I use it at home/work on the wireless network.

Apart from needing to up the RAM to 500Mb, it has been absolutely ideal, with one exception - it is just not possible to get things for it like replacement batteries. I imported it from USA, and that is part of the problem.

I have done quite a bit of research about replacing this thing when it eventually dies, and my first choice is the VAIO with the small screen (which is a little sister to the one you are looking at). Given my satisfaction with the lower specs of my Fujitsu, our similar needs (apart from travel), and based on my research for a replacement laptop, I would say your choice is spot on.

The VAIO has a great monitor, and your photos should sparkle on it.

16-03-2007, 05:24 PM
My choices:


17-03-2007, 12:31 PM
Hi folks
Many thanks for your feedback. Things changed quickly and radically yesterday and I have now made a different purchase.

Firstly there had been some mis-communication between the staff at the local PC store and myself. Probably because they were talking in Mandarin and I was talking in Kiwi/Scottish :D What I discovered was that the digital camera was a different model and did not have a Carl Zeiss lens - but instead a Sony lens (though it was 7.1 Mega pixels). Also I began to have real doubts about only a 13" screen.

I was later in the day in Harvey Norman who are having a big four day computer sale, starting yesterday. They had 15 refurbished models which all were sold yesterday. I bought for $1,299 a Toshiba Satellite P100 Core 2 Duo with 1.83 GhZ and a 17" screen.

It is really overpowered for what I think I will need (but who knows !!). I think that it is primarily a gaming machine. Once the battery is charged it can run for 2 hours the manual says (unless plugged in to the mains).

Was a bit nervous but then did not want to spend too much for a first laptop till we get used to it. There is plenty of room for growth anyway !!!!

Thanks for your help again folks. Believe me your feedback and support was definitely useful. Felt much more confident knowing you are there.
Misty :thumbs:

PS - Sorry to disappoint you PCTEK - good to know that Sony a good brand as I have to help a friend next in picking a laptop for him.

PPS - John H - we don't do a lot of travelling so the bigger size of the machine should not be too much of a disadvantage (or so Mrs Misty tells me)

17-03-2007, 08:24 PM
Hey Misty

Great Laptop for an awesome price! Wish i had done the same!

17-03-2007, 08:31 PM
That's an impressive price for a 17" lap top!:thumbs: Considering they are around 5k brand new.

17-03-2007, 09:56 PM
That's an impressive price for a 17" lap top!:thumbs: Considering they are around 5k brand new.
Not sure they are quite that much winmacguy ! Harvey Norman had a sticker saying something like - save $1,200. Still - not complaining ! ;)

17-03-2007, 10:22 PM
It is really overpowered

Woohoo!!! :thumbs::thumbs::thumbs:

17-03-2007, 10:43 PM
Not sure they are quite that much winmacguy ! Harvey Norman had a sticker saying something like - save $1,200. Still - not complaining ! ;)

A lot of PC 17" laptops that I have seen have been over 4.5K brand new (when not on sale). It may be that the one you have chosen was a pre- Vista clearance model hence the discounted price. So as I said, you have done well.

Like this one from Dick Smith
Toshiba Satellite P100/400 Notebook
Intel Core 2 Duo processor T7400, 2GB RAM, 200GB hard drive, DVD writer, 17” widescreen display, WiFi, 512MB discrete VRAM, 9-cell battery, Bluetooth, networking, Windows Vista Home Premium and more… 4698.00
Clearance product, stock is limited.