Sony updates slim entertainment Vaio desktop

Watching movies or television on a conventional PC is not the most comfortable activity, but Sony Electronics is trying to make it easier to keep a PC in the living room with an updated Vaio desktop model designed for small spaces.

Most desktop PCs are too large to fit in conventional entertainment centers or on top of televisions, but the Vaio PCV-W500GN1 is small enough to be used amid a television, stereo, cable box, or other common media devices, Sony said in a release Tuesday. It takes up less space than a 15-inch CRT (cathode ray tube) monitor, the company said.

Sony released the Vaio W series in 2002, and the PCs have enjoyed a great deal of attention from consumers in Japan and around the world. The new Vaio W comes with enhanced components and features, such as a PVR (personal video recorder) and DVD recorder.

The PC comes with a multihinged keyboard that can assume different positions. For example, when watching television or movies on the 17.5-inch widescreen LCD (liquid crystal display), the keyboard can be folded in half to cover the keys. The display goes to maximum brightness and the color is enhanced to boost the TV viewing experience when the keyboard is folded into this position, Sony said.

To use the new Vaio PC like a stereo, the keyboard can fold up completely, reducing the depth of the PC in half. The speakers mounted on the bottom of the keyboard are completely exposed in this position, which covers just about all of the LCD display except for a small portion that features a clock.

Three USB (universal serial bus) 2.0 ports and a IEEE 1394 video port are located on the side of the rear chassis for easy peripheral connections. The chassis sits behind the LCD screen, and is hidden from view when looking directly at the display. The entire package measures 20.4 inches wide by 12.1 inches high by 15.2 inches deep (51.8cm by 30.7cm by 38.6cm) with the keyboard open. The unit measures only 7.4 inches wide (18.8cm) with the keyboard folded up in the audio position.

The new Vaio comes in a fixed configuration with a 2.66GHz Pentium 4 processor from Intel Corp., 512M bytes of PC2700 (333MHz) DDR (double data rate) SDRAM (synchronous dynamic RAM), a 160G-byte hard drive, a DVD-RW/CD-RW drive, integrated graphics from Silicon Integrated Systems Corp. (SIS), and Sony's Giga Pocket PVR software. A remote control is also included.

It comes with Microsoft's Windows XP Home operating system. Several vendors, including Hewlett-Packard and Gateway, have released media-oriented PCs based around Microsoft's Windows XP Media Center Edition operating system, but Sony stuck with the basic version of Windows XP for this Vaio.

Sony expects to release the new Vaio desktop to select retailers and through its Web site (http://www.sonystyle.com) next month. It is expected to cost around US$2,000, a spokeswoman said.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Tom Krazit

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Cool Tech

Bang and Olufsen Beosound Stage - Dolby Atmos Soundbar

Learn more >

Toys for Boys

Nakamichi Delta 100 3-Way Hi Fi Speaker System

Learn more >

ASUS ROG, ACRONYM partner for Special Edition Zephyrus G14

Learn more >

Sony WF-1000XM3 Wireless Noise Cancelling Headphones

Learn more >

Family Friendly

Mario Kart Live: Home Circuit for Nintendo Switch

Learn more >

Philips Sonicare Diamond Clean 9000 Toothbrush

Learn more >

Stocking Stuffer

Teac 7 inch Swivel Screen Portable DVD Player

Learn more >

SunnyBunny Snowflakes 20 LED Solar Powered Fairy String

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Tom Pope

Dynabook Portégé X30L-G

Ultimately this laptop has achieved everything I would hope for in a laptop for work, while fitting that into a form factor and weight that is remarkable.

Tom Sellers

MSI P65

This smart laptop was enjoyable to use and great to work on – creating content was super simple.

Lolita Wang

MSI GT76

It really doesn’t get more “gaming laptop” than this.

Jack Jeffries

MSI GS75

As the Maserati or BMW of laptops, it would fit perfectly in the hands of a professional needing firepower under the hood, sophistication and class on the surface, and gaming prowess (sports mode if you will) in between.

Taylor Carr

MSI PS63

The MSI PS63 is an amazing laptop and I would definitely consider buying one in the future.

Christopher Low

Brother RJ-4230B

This small mobile printer is exactly what I need for invoicing and other jobs such as sending fellow tradesman details or step-by-step instructions that I can easily print off from my phone or the Web.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?