Welcome to Reviews OnLine: Hardware Review: Sony Vaio PCG 705 Notebook
HardwareReview
Contents
Reviews
News
Archives
 
Sony Vaio PCG 705
Notebook Computer
by Jim Bennett (June 1998)

The Vaio is one of Sony's first new notebooks which combines contemporary design and technology with significant doses of entertaining multi-media features. The thin sleek case has a refreshing gray and lavender color scheme and generous sized keyboard, for a laptop, that makes typing with my extra large hands comfortable for longer periods. It's 5.5 pounds and 9 x 11 x 1.25 inch size allow it to fit into a brief case or medium size computer bag.

The unit's Intel 150MHz MMX Pentium processor , 16 MB RAM, 14 X CD-ROM, 33.6 kbps full-duplex modem kept things moving along at only moderate speed when first purchased. A RAM upgrade to 64MB was necessary to improve performance. The 12.1 inch color screen provides bright, vivid images with good color saturation. Multi-media highlights include MPEG1 video, which is Sony tuned, and supports full screen display of images taken with Sony's new digital Mavica camera that can be transmitted via a built-in infrared port at the back of the computer. The unit also takes advantage of today's multi-media, gaming and entertainment applications. You can even listen to audio CD's when the computer is in suspend or sleep mode.

This elegantly designed, consumer machine gives the impression that Sony took great care to make the machine easy to setup and use. It looks cool and has established the product platform for more advanced and ultra thin units such as the popular Vaio 505, 748 and 808 series. The user guide was well organized and laid out which facilitated a straight forward easy setup. Sony's 7X24 customer service, SOS software and telephone tech support perform remote diagnostics which helped keep this computer running smoothly.

In the peripherals department, CD, floppy disc, batteries smoothly fit into bays. They even supply a weight saver cover to protect the computer when a bay is empty. An optional docking station can accommodate 14 elements, including : video out, USB, mouse/keyboard, game port, line in/out, monitor , Ethernet and SCSI connections. Battery pack recharging and CD or floppy drives can be handled by the docking station as well. This accessory is available through Sony and other companies for about $100 to $200 depending if networking is required.

The Lithium Ion battery provides power for 2 to 3 hours when fully charged after 2.5 hours. Additional time can be obtained by purchasing a second battery pack at $250 for an empty drive bay. However, a little extra weight is added.

An on screen Communication Center feature allows easy access to place and receive calls and faxes, check messages and use your phone book including your Web browser.

In summary, this unit is a well thought system with good prospects for long term durability and ease of use. Its niche is multimedia and entertainment applications in a very stylish package.

Pros
Contemporary Design with attractive colors
Well laid out keyboard
Easy to Use

Cons
Base unit has too little RAM (only 16MB)

Copyright 1998 Jim Bennett All rights reserved.

   
Article Indexes
  Products Index
  People Index
  Events Index

Product Briefs
Desktop PCs & Servers
  Ergo Thunder Brick 2
Eizo FlexScan Displays
Future Power epower
HP NetServer LXr 8500
Meridian Snap! Server
Digital Cameras
  3Com HomeConnect
Agfa ePhoto 780c
Canon A5 Zoom
Kodak DC265
Minolta 3D 1500
Nikon D1
Olympus C2000
Sharp VN-EX1U MPEG4
Toshiba PDR-M4 & M5
Notebooks & Mobile
  3Com Palm VII
Fosa Mini Notebook
Pionex Elite
Quantex Celeron Laptop
Sharp Actius PC-A250
Sony F250/F290 Notebooks
Talontek MPC-2000
Mobile/Wireless Communications
  3Com 56K GSM Modem
Novatel Merlin Modem
Xircom Ethernet CompactCard
Mobile Software
  Etak Traffic Touch
DataViz Documents To Go
Softbook E-book System
Scanners
  Agfa SnapScan Touch
Visioneer Strobe Pro
Printers
  Brother MP-21 C Portable
Tektronix Phaser 780
Xerox 480cx
Software & Books
  Avid Cinema for Windows
Caere PageKeeper Pro
Corex Area Code Fix
Docent Outliner
Macmillan Office 2K Books
Paragon FoneSync
Symantec pcAnywhere 9.0
Sybari Antigen 5.5
V-Communications AutoSave
Projectors
  InFocus 330
Mitsubishi S120
Internet
  Club Photo
Intelliquis Traffic Builder
NETSilicon NET+Works
Panasite Web Builder
PhotoHighway.com
SuperCalendar.com
Storage
  Calluna 250 Mb PCCard
Castlewood 2.2Gb ORB
Iomega Clik!
Teac CD-W 54E
Batteries & Power
  Duracell Ultra Battery
Electrofuel PowerPad
Eveready Energizer ACCU
Graphics & Video
  Belkin USB Video Bus
Daeyang VR Headset
Kodak/Intel Picture CD
Nogatech USB TV
Number Nine SR9
Peripherals
  Logitech Cordless mouse
Raritan Switchman
Targus USB MiniMouse
 
 
Reviews OnLine Contents About Reviews OnLine Site Index Search Reviews OnLine Site Index Search Reviews OnLine