Sony VAIO Z Series ultraportable laptop
The Sony VAIO Z is a marvel of thin-and-light performance computing, but only elite shoppers need apply
- Tiny chassis
- Great performance
- Great screen
- Keyboard isn't great
- Too expensive
At $3999, it's impossible to judge the VAIO Z Series without considering its price. It's small, light and very powerful, but at the end of the day it's just way too expensive.
Price$ 3,999.00 (AUD)
Buy now (Selling at 2 stores)
- For Sony Vaio Vgn-fe41s Vgn-fe41z Vgn-fe41zr Se... 60.00
- Vaio Vpc Z Series 13.1 Laptop Carry Case Sleeve... 66.52
Thin and light laptops with uber specifications don't come along too often. The Sony VAIO Z Series is one such laptop that weighs only just over 1.kg, yet it also includes a configuration that can even put most desktops to shame. The problem? It costs $3999!
We're not sure who can afford to spend so much on a laptop, but the fact is, if you can afford it, you'll get one of the most powerful super-light laptops on the planet. Its CPU is an Intel Core i7-2620M that runs at 2.7GHz, and it also comes with 8GB of RAM and 256GB worth of storage space. That storage space is special: it's two 128GB solid state drives that have been set up in a RAID 0 array, so it's very fast. Using CrystalDiskMark, it obtained a read speed 478 megabytes per second (MBps) and a write speed of 301.5MBps.
You can use this laptop for everyday office work tasks, but it's also powerful enough to crunch tougher tasks such as video editing and file compression. It took only 37sec to finish our Blender 3D rendering test and 52min to convert a DVD file to a 1.5GB Xvid file. These results were obtained when using the Sony's dock as the main graphics processing device.
The VAIO Z is unique in that it offers an AMD Radeon HD 6650M graphics adapter as part of an external docking device. This device also includes a Blu-ray drive and some more ports: Gigabit Ethernet, VGA, USB 2.0, USB 3.0 and HDMI. It's designed so that you can get even more performance out of this laptop when you're at home or in the office by using the AMD graphics, and maxmise battery life by using the integrated graphics when you're on the go -- it lasted 3hr 27min in our rundown test.
A backlit keyboard is present on the VAIO Z, and while it looks nice, it's not very comfortable. It feels too shallow to type on and some of its keys are smaller than others, which can lead to many typos. The touchpad isn't great either. That's one of the most disappointing things about this laptop, the fact that it's so expensive, yet very comfortable to use at all times. Other annoyances include an overly loud fan when the processing load is high and very hard and pointy edges on the chassis, which can sometimes dig into your wrists as you type.
Join the Good Gear Guide newsletter!
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Samsung's Galaxy Alpha review: A peek into the Galaxy S6
- 2 Samsung Galaxy Note 4 review: The busiest, biggest and best Samsung phablet
- 3 Aldi's $279 Bauhn Sphere review: Disappointing
- 4 Nokia Lumia 735 review: Perfectly ordinary
- 5 Bowers & Wilkins P5 (Series 2) review: For elegant sound
Best Deals on GoodGearGuide
Latest News Articles
- Obama signs legislation allowing regulatory e-labels for smartphones, wearables
- WD TV (2014 Personal Edition) review: Big screen fun
- Pressure mounts in Europe for strict net neutrality
- Windows tablets available for under $100
- Use Uber? Snapchat? Google Maps? Now Twitter knows
GGG Evaluation Team
First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.
For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.
The Fujitsu LifeBook UH574 allowed for great mobility without being obnoxiously heavy or clunky. Its twelve hours of battery life did not disappoint.
The screen was particularly good. It is bright and visible from most angles, however heat is an issue, particularly around the Windows button on the front, and on the back where the battery housing is located.
My first impression after unboxing the Q702 is that it is a nice looking unit. Styling is somewhat minimalist but very effective. The tablet part, once detached, has a nice weight, and no buttons or switches are located in awkward or intrusive positions.
- FTPartnership Manager - MediaNSW
- CCTech Support | IT Services Firm - Ad hoc Projects - Port Augusta / Whyalla AreaSA
- FTAccount ExecutiveNSW
- FTStudio Design ManagerVIC
- CCStrategic Partner ManagerNSW
- FTProgram Manager - Integration & SolutionsNSW
- FTDigital Account ManagerNSW
- CCTech Support | IT Services Firm - Ad hoc Projects - Echuca AreaVIC
- FTMarketing Solutions ManagerNSW
- FTSEO Content ExecutiveVIC