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Sony VAIO Y VPC-Y216FX 13.3-inch Ultraportable Laptop PC

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Sony VAIO Y VPC-Y216FX 13.3-inch Ultraportable Laptop PC

Sony VAIO Y

©Sony

The Bottom Line

Sep 16 2010 - Sony's VAIO Y offers up a colorful range of options for consumers looking at a 13-inch laptop. Performance is improved with the new VPC-Y216FX model thanks to the new ultra-low voltage Core i3 processors. What really sets the Sony apart from other ultraportables though is the wide range of ports including FireWire and ExpressCard. There are some minor issues that plague the design though including the display hinge that restricts how far back the display can be tilted and very narrow trackpad buttons that are difficult to use.
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Pros

  • Good Performance
  • Wide Range Of Peripheral Ports Including ExpressCard Slot
  • Available In Multiple Colors

Cons

  • Display Hinge Prevents Screen From Tilting Back Much
  • Trackpad Buttons Are Very Small

Description

  • Intel Core i3-330UM Dual Core Mobile Processor
  • 4GB PC3-8500 DDR3 Memory
  • 500GB 5400rpm SATA Hard Drive
  • 13.3" WXGA (1366x768) LED Backlit Display With 1.3 Megapixel Webcam
  • Intel GMA 4500MHD Integrated Graphics
  • Gigabit Ethernet, 802.11b/g/n Wireless, Bluetooth
  • Three USB 2.0, FireWire, ExpressCard/34, HDMI, VGA, SD Card Slot, Memory Stick Slot
  • 12.8" x 8.9" x 1.3" @ 3.9 lbs.
  • Windows 7 Professional, VAIO Suite

Guide Review - Sony VAIO Y VPC-Y216FX 13.3-inch Ultraportable Laptop PC

Sep 16 2010 - Sony has decided to go for the colorful route with its latest consumer oriented laptops. In the case of the VAIO Y ultraportable, consumer can choose between purple, fuchsia, teal, green, white, silver and black. These color choices really only apply to the back of the display panel as the rest of the laptop retains either a black or white frame and keyboard depending upon the color selection.

Powering up the new VAIO Y series laptops is the new Intel ultra-low voltage Core 2010 processors. In the case of the VPC-Y216FX, it uses the entry Core i3-330UM dual core processor. This provides it with a good boost of performance over the previous general Core 2 Duo processors but it still falls short of the standard Core i3 laptop processors. This combined with the 4GB of DDR3 memory should let it run most applications without too many problems.

Like many ultraportables, the Sony VAIO Y lacks an internal DVD drive. This is a bit disappointing given the fairly thick 1.3-inch dimensions at the hinge but it was probably partially cost motivated. Of course the lack of a DVD drive is not as much of an issue now with digital distribution and media. Storage is handled by a decently sized 500GB hard drive that should provide plenty of space for applications, data and media files.

The display on the Sony VAIO Y uses a fairly typical 13.3-inch size panel with a 1366x768 resolution. It uses the standard glossy coatings that are found on most consumer laptops. This means that the laptop can be extremely difficult to use in certain indoor lighting conditions and particularly outdoors. The graphics are handled by the Intel GMA 4500MHD integrated graphics that can be found on pretty much every ultraportable. This is fine for basic use and HD media viewing but lacks any performance for even casual 3D gaming.

Sony has two different battery sizes for the Sony VAIO Y but the standard one that ships with them is a six cell pack. The company claims that this should yield roughly six hours of typical usage. In video streaming tests, the laptop was able to run just under four hours before going into standby mode. This is fairly typical for a laptop with these features but it probably will yield a bit less than the claimed six hours with normal usage.

Sony continues to use their excellent isolated keyboard designs with the Sony VAIO Y that makes it very easy to type on and very comfortable. The trackpad is a bit of an issue with the laptop. The smaller desk and palmrest meant that Sony had to use very narrow buttons below the trackpad. This makes them hard to use at times.

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