Sony VAIO VGC-LJ25GB
Not exactly a notebook: a portable PC for the home
- Good viewing angle for screen, Sound FLOW software is effective and easy, excellent speakers
- Touch-keys are easily activated accidentally, lacks video-out ports
This unit's interesting design and user-friendly Sound FLOW package are let down by a lack of the latest ports.
Price$ 2,799.00 (AUD)
The Sony Vaio VGC-LJ25GB is an interesting device that's stuck directly on the fence between notebooks and desktops. Its style is a mix of a desktop's form and a notebook's function — it's essentially an all-in-one PC that's designed to be used as a desktop. It has a handle and a battery, but these are mainly useful for transporting it from one room to another. Its keyboard is directly attached to the bottom of the screen and can be folded up when not in use.
The unit is designed for home use, with a focus on multimedia. Indeed, apart from its form factor, a key feature of the unit is Sound FLOW, which can be controlled by a series of touch-sensitive buttons on the right-hand side of the screen. Sound FLOW is an application for playing music that can be initiated by folding up the keyboard so that only the top part of the screen is visible. On the screen you can view information pertaining to any digital music or CDs that you're playing.
Although stylish and good in theory, the touch-sensitive buttons on the side of the screen are a little too sensitive and placed too close together: accidentally brushing against the front panel can activate several of the controls.
Although the design is a mix of desktop and notebook, the guts are purely the latter. A 2.1GHz Intel Core 2 Duo T8100 processor is accompanied by 2GB of DDR2 RAM, while a 5400rpm, 200GB Serial ATA drive provides storage.
Unlike its predecessor, the Sony VAIO VGO-LA38G, this unit doesn't feature an independent graphics card. Instead, it relies on an Intel X3100 integrated graphics controller, which isn't good for 3-D applications, as its meagre score of 556 in 3DMark06 attests. The VGC-LJ25GB has a 15.4in widescreen display with a native resolution of 1280x800, and it has wide viewing angles and bearable reflectivity.
In WorldBench 6, it recorded a score of 79. The score means that running typical office applications and multitasking can be accomplished with ease. However, graphics-intensive tasks such as 3-D rendering and intensive photo editing will take more time. In our iTunes test, where we convert 53min of WAV files into 192kbps MP3 files, the VGC-LJ25GB completed the task in 1min 21sec, which is a respectable time.
Overall, the unit is comfortable to use. Its keyboard is well-structured and effective, despite the keys being occasionally unresponsive with very little bounce. A small touchpad is integrated on the right-hand side of the keyboard and works well, although left-handed users may find it inconvenient.
The speakers on the unit are fantastic, given its size, and provide immersive sound for DVDs and music — heaven for users accustomed to the tinny reproductions of many notebooks. A dual-layer DVD burner comes in a slot, rather than a tray, format.
This unit doesn't have a HDMI connection, D-sub port, S-Video out port or a built-in TV tuner, despite the target audience being the home user. This is disappointing given the VGC-LJ25GB's price ($2799) and the fact that these points are of key importance for home entertainment.
The five USB 2.0 ports provided are enough for external peripherals and storage devices to be attached. A FireWire port is also present. For audio, you get a line-in port as well as an optical output connection, which is great for those with a compatible sound system. An ExpressCard/34 and a Type II PC Card slot are both present for expansion.
The VGC-LJ25GB can wirelessly network at the fastest speeds currently available thanks to 802.11 b/g/n capabilities, but the unit lacks Gigabit Ethernet and can connect to a LAN using only 10/100 Ethernet speeds A modem facilitates dial-up connectivity.
Join the PC World newsletter!
UE Boom 2 Bluetooth speaker
Epson WorkForce ET-4550
Epson EcoTank Expression ET-2500
Microsoft L5V-00027 Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard Desktop
Lexar® JumpDrive® S57 USB 3.0 flash drive
Linksys AC5400 MU-MIMO Gigabit router
Smart LED Bulb LB130
Everki ContemPRO Roll Top Laptop Backpack
Google Daydream VR headset
Huawei Mate 9
3SIXT Ultra HD Sports Action Camera
Lexar® Portable SSD
Logitech G403 Prodigy mouse
Lexar® JumpDrive® S45 USB 3.0 flash drive
Belkin MIXIT Metallic Lightning to USB Cable
Epson WorkForce DS-360W
Acer Swift 7
Dell Inspiron 5000 series 2-in-1
Dell XPS 13 laptop
Lexar® JumpDrive® C20c USB Type-C flash drive
Garmin Fenix Chronos smartwatch
HD Pan/Tilt Wi-Fi Camera with Night Vision NC450
HP Pavilion x360 13”
Lexar® Professional 1800x microSDHC™/microSDXC™ UHS-II cards
Surface Pro 4
Audio-Technica ATH-ANC70 Noise Cancelling Headphones
Blade 28 backpack by Arc’teryx
Most Popular Reviews
- 1 Oppo R9s Plus phone: Full, in-depth review
- 2 Samsung 2017 QLED Q7 TV: Full, in-depth review
- 3 HTC U Ultra phone full, in-depth review
- 4 Gigabyte Aorus GA-AX370-Gaming 5 AMD Ryzen AM4 motherboard review
- 5 Venom Blackbook Zero 14 laptop review
Latest News Articles
- More iPad screen sizes unlikely to stop slump
- Android struggling in tablets as Windows 10 2-in-1s come on strong
- Samsung unveils Galaxy Book, a Windows 10 tablet aimed at the Surface-curious
- Everything we think we know about Samsung’s Galaxy Tab S3
- Lenovo's ThinkPad P71 will work with HTC, Oculus VR headsets
PCW Evaluation Team
A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.
I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.
As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.
I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.
Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!
For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.
- First look at the Formula 1 2017 pit lane in Melbourne, Australia
- LG 2017 OLED and Super LED UHD 4K TVs: Hands-on review
- Oppo R9s Plus phone: Full, in-depth review
- What's the difference between an Intel Core i3, i5 and i7?
- Laser vs. inkjet printers: which is better?
- FTSocial Media ExecutiveNSW
- TPSenior Project ManagerVIC
- TPJunior Business AnalystQLD
- CCAutomation Developer - LinuxNSW
- FTHelpdesk TechnicianVIC
- TPBusiness AnalystQLD
- FTTeam LeaderNSW
- CCICT ManagerNSW
- TPNetwork AdministratorWA
- CCBusiness Analyst - ForecastingNSW
- CCBusiness AnalystQLD
- FTSenior Software Engineer x 2 - Adelaide Based (PV, NV2 or NV1 required)ACT
- CCDesktop Engineer l WollongongNSW
- CCApplication Architect - CloudVIC
- FTEUC Solution Architect l Large Transformation ProjectNSW
- FTICT Client Services ManagerQLD
- CCJava DeveloperVIC
- FTSecurity Solution ArchitectVIC
- TPJunior Software DeveloperQLD
- CCInfrastructure Project ManagerNSW
- CCTechnical Business Analyst (Security) - Finance - Contract - Sydney CBDNSW
- FT.Net Solutions DeveloperSA
- CCUnix Systems AdministratorNSW
- FTWeb Support LeadQLD
- CCIT Senior Business AnalystNSW