Random Rants

Anything that tickles my fancy.

Sony VAIO VGN-SZ56GN: A review.

Posted by silverstag on May 30, 2008

I purchased a Sony VAIO laptop (VGN-SZ56GN) sometime back. December 2007 to be precise. I slapped in an extra 2 GB of RAM along with the defalut config. Couldn’t get my machine to utilise 4 Gigs of it and had to settle to 3 GB. The whole thing cost me 1,10,000INR. Did I blow too much on just a piece metal and silicon? No, I just wanted to feel rich and, that was totally worth every single buck.

Now, after almost 6 months of use, How good did my purchase turn out to be?

Here goes…

Good Stuff:

  • Display is very crisp and looks beautiful.
  • At 1.93 Kgs, the laptop is light and makes some other laptops look like breifcases.
  • The free, extra 2 years international warranty is welcome for a laptop of this cost.
  • You can run the laptop in two “Stamina” and “Speed” modes. Really nice if you want to save some juice.
  • I can play Crysis (Albeit, at a low fps). That should suffice my gaming needs.
  • The keyboard which uses the entire length of the laptop making it very comfortable for typing.
  • Trackpad is responsive and smooth.
  • Some nifty software is bundled with the laptop.

Bad Stuff:

  • Battery life is pathetic, and even more so if you’re running in “Speed” mode.
  • Built-in speakers aren’t that great but, that’s not much of a problem if you got some other speakers.
  • Just two USB ports isn’t good enough for me.
  • Comes preloaded with Windows Vista. More on that below.

So, why is preloading Vista a bad thing?

For one thing, I had purchased a copy of XP just before I bought the laptop. Talk about bad timing. And for other, If I try to dual boot Linux alongside Vista, my network connection starts acting up. The wireless router I use to connect to the internet keeps getting rebooted when I am using Vista. This doesn’t happen when I use Linux with XP. If I wipe out the Linux installation things start working fine again. Weird, huh!. Tell you what? It frustrates me not being able to run whatever I want on my laptop.

I need to find out why this is happening only when I run Vista with Linux. And, let me tell you Sony Customer Care wasn’t much helpful.

For now, I’m running Vista alone, since I don’t really need Linux except for satisfying my geek fantasies. 😉


4 Responses to “Sony VAIO VGN-SZ56GN: A review.”

  1. Syed Fraz said

    Nice review, really liked the way you presented it. Hope you continue on with reviews for other tech gadgets. Awaiting for more reviews…

  2. alexrander said

    Sony VAIO VGN-CR510E/P
    OK, u shouldn’t judge the entire laptop based on customer service. I mean come on, this laptop was a great investment. I had two compaq and an toshiba and this one beats them all. I have had no problems yet, but I just got this two weeks ago from best buy..great buy, highly recommended. The only problem is the speakers are a bit low, but I always buy external speakers so it doesn’t bother me at all. I love my laptop and soo many compliments..

  3. Jumlus said

    Sony VAIO VGN-NS235J/W 15.4-Inch Laptop
    I love the new laptop. It works fast, it’s not too big and didn’t have too much preinstalled things i had to take care of. And for the price, it was a bargain.

  4. debora said

    Sony VAIO VGN-CR409E/T 14.1-inch Laptop
    Beautiful, fast, packed with features and software and ready to go in minutes right out of the box, I fell instantly in love with the thing. And being a longtime Mac person it was a difficult decision to give a Window machine a try. So yes the sound is a little weak, surprisingly from a Sony object, and now I hope it doesn’t break in 3 weeks, as I read a lot about Vaio problems… In the meantime I see in it everything I need from a laptop. And Amazon offered an incredible price, free delivery that happened to be the next day. So far a top consumer experience for me.

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