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Sony VAIO C-Series review

Do Sony's dayglo laptops put style before substance?

Sony vaio vpc ca2c5e

The Sony VAIO C-Series is disappointingly run of the mill in terms of performance. Sony has created an all-rounder of a laptop that doesn't do anything spectacularly, and this wouldn't be so bad if it didn't have such a high (£719) price tag.

Even its own cheaper laptops – such as the VAIO VPC-EB3J0E/WI – don't score much lower in our benchmark tests.

The C-Series is capable when it comes to gaming, if nothing more. It's not going to stand up to a dedicated gaming laptop, such as MSI's GE700, but it happily chugs through most modern titles, provided their graphics settings are low enough.

It's more capable when it comes to video and photo editing, thanks to the Intel Core i5 processor. HD videos play flawlessly, too, and look absolutely amazing.

Sony vaio vpc ca2c5e

The single most disappointing thing about Sony's C Series is the battery life, or lack thereof. Battery Eater emptied a fully charged battery in less than an hour by stressing the computer as much as possible. This means gaming on the move is next to impossible, unless you want the computer to die more quickly than your character.

In real-world terms, we managed to get two hours out of the battery when word processing, and this was with Wi-Fi turned off. It's not great, and it seems Sony has designed the C Series primarily as a desktop replacement PC capable of brief trips out.

Taken as a desktop replacement, its usability and bright screen stand out, and it's perfectly capable of multitasking a word processor, media playback and web browsing. But most netbooks – such as Samsung's NC110 – are capable of this level of performance, and they cost a third of the price and have better battery life.

Benchmarks
Battery Eater: 62 minutes
3D Mark 06: 5031
Cinebench: 7732

Tech Specs

Product TypeNotebook
Hard Drive Capacity500 GB
Processor ManufacturerIntel
Graphics Controller ManufacturerAMD
Graphics Controller ModelRadeon HD 6470M
BluetoothYes
Wireless LANYes
Optical Drive TypeYes
Maximum Battery Run Time6.50 Hour
HDMIYes
WebcamYes
Backlight TechnologyLED
Product FamilyVAIO C
Operating System Architecture64-bit
Keyboard BacklightYes
Processor Modeli3-2310M
Operating SystemWindows 7 Home Premium
Brand NameSony
Processor Speed2.10 GHz
Processor TypeCore i3
Screen Size35.6 cm (14")
Screen Resolution1366 x 768
Standard Memory6 GB
Weight (Approximate)2.40 kg
Cache3 MB
Processor CoreDual-core (2 Core)
64-bit ProcessingYes
Chipset ManufacturerIntel
Chipset ModelHM65 Express
Dual-Layer Media SupportedYes
Graphics Memory CapacityUp to 512 MB
Display Screen TypeActive Matrix TFT Colour LCD
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 ModelVPCCA2C5E
Product NameVAIO VPCCA2C5E Notebook
Pointing Device TypeTrack Pad
Product LineVAIO
Aspect Ratio16:9
Manufacturer Part NumberVPCCA2C5E
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 VPCCA2C5E Notebook
  • Lithium Ion Battery
  • AC Adapter