Sony VAIO CA Series review

Cheerful and colourful family laptop, with Intel's latest Core i5

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Sony VAIO CA Series review: Conclusion

Sony vaio ca series

Sony's VAIO CA is one of the more colourful entries in the Japanese giant's laptop catalog recently. Actually, it's the most eye-catching device we've seen in months, although immediate reactions to the design are liable to vary between 'curious interest' and 'appalled double-take'.

Still, with Intel's Sandy Bridge technology on board, the VAIO CA is more than just a garish radioactive face. And with Sony's reputation for quality, we had high hopes for this laptop.

We liked

The Sandy Bridge Core i5 processor produces some typically stunning performance, with enough grunt to run all of your applications. This is backed up by the dedicated AMD graphics card, perfect for viewing and editing media and even some light gaming.

Build quality is as strong as ever. The VAIO CA's plastic chassis is as durable as it is colourful, while the backlit isolation-style keyboard is quiet and comfortable to use. A responsive beveled touchpad proves just as usable.

We also liked the VAIO CA's 14-inch Super-TFT display, which was suitably vibrant with strong contrast. An ambient light sensor automatically adjusts brightness levels, although the maximum brightness is still a little dim, and the glossy coating is reflective in light conditions.

We disliked

The powerful components have a profound effect on battery life, with the VAIO CA dying after just three hours (or even quicker when watching DVDs). This isn't a terrible result, but definitely below average for a modern laptop.

A mere 250GB of storage space is also limiting, so you won't be able to carry a large amount of media with you, especially if you've got lots of applications installed.

And of course the VAIO CA's bright design won't appeal to all tastes, but bear in mind that white and black versions are also available.

Verdict

There are better mid-range laptops available, but the Sony VAIO CA series is still an appealing prospect thanks to its strong performance and excellent build quality. Most attention is undoubtedly focused on the colourful design, and we're sure that many people will make their purchasing decision based on their immediate visual impressions.

Tech Specs

Product TypeNotebook
Green CompliantYes
Hard Drive Capacity320 GB
Processor ManufacturerIntel
Graphics Controller ManufacturerIntel
Graphics Controller ModelHD 3000
BluetoothYes
Wireless LANYes
Optical Drive TypeDVD-Writer
Graphics Memory AccessibilityShared
Maximum Battery Run Time6.50 Hour
HDMIYes
WebcamYes
Backlight TechnologyLED
WimaxNo
Product FamilyVAIO C
Operating System Architecture64-bit
Keyboard BacklightYes
Processor Modeli5-2410M
ColourBlue
Operating SystemWindows 7 Home Premium, Windows 7 Home Premium with SP1
Brand NameSony
Processor Speed2.30 GHz
Processor TypeCore i5
Screen Size35.6 cm (14")
Screen Resolution1366 x 768
Standard Memory4 GB
Cache3 MB
Processor CoreDual-core (2 Core)
Green Compliance Certificate/AuthorityENERGY STAR
64-bit ProcessingYes
Chipset ManufacturerIntel
Chipset ModelHM65 Express
Optical Media SupportedDVD-RAM/±R/±RW
Dual-Layer Media SupportedYes
Display Screen TypeActive Matrix TFT Colour LCD
WWAN SupportedNo
Wireless LAN StandardIEEE 802.11b/g/n
Bluetooth StandardBluetooth 3.0
Ethernet TechnologyGigabit Ethernet
Total Number of USB Ports4
Memory StandardDDR3-1333/PC3-10600
Height27.9 mm
Width341 mm
Depth235.2 mm
Screen ModeWXGA
Memory TechnologyDDR3 SDRAM
Product SeriesC
ManufacturerSony Corporation
Product ModelVPCCA2Z0E
Product NameVAIO VPCCA2Z0E Notebook
Pointing Device TypeTouchPad
Product LineVAIO
Aspect Ratio16:9
Manufacturer Part NumberVPCCA2Z0E/L.CEK
Manufacturer Website Addresshttp://www.sony.co.uk
Marketing InformationBeautifully finished

Stand out and be noticed. VAIO C Series are designed to be true style icons with a unique material finish that's like nothing ever seen before. Some models have increased transparency combined with a light emitting effect which reflects light within the material and emits it from the edge of the notebook. The ideal design statement for those looking to move on from just bold colours.

VAIO C Series is also available in subtle colours with increased surface transparency. Looks good by your side and complemented by a variety of colour-coordinated optional accessories.

Maximum Memory8 GB
Battery ChemistryLithium Ion (Li-Ion)
Package Contents
  • VAIO VPCCA2Z0E Notebook
  • Lithium Ion Battery
  • AC Adapter
  • Power Cord
  • VAIO International Repair Service Guide