Sony VAIO S Series SVS1512ACXS 15.5-Inch Laptop (Silver) Review

Sony VAIO S Series SVS1512ACXS 15.5-Inch Laptop (Silver)

The Sony VAIO S Series SVS1512ACXS 15.5-Inch Laptop is high-performance computer packed into a small, stylish and fully flat case.

Available in a range of colours including the silver model pictured here, the SVS1512ACXS is small enough to be easily portable, yet powerful enough to get real work done on the move.

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The machine is built around a third generation, 2.2 GHz Intel Core i7-3612QM quad-core processor. Thanks to Intel’s Hyperthreading technology, the four cores are capable of handing up to eight simultaneous threads, greatly enhancing the CPU’s efficiency. The CPU is also capable of using Intel’s Turbo Boost technology to dynamically adjusting the speed of its cores, giving a little extra turn of speed when it’s needed most.

Despite having four cores, the processor’s power consumption is broadly equivalent to that  of dual-core processors, making it suitable for use in smaller laptops (like the SVS1512ACXS) and offering an excellent trade-off between performance and efficiency.

Of course, the processor is only part of the balanced equation that makes up a well designed computer – RAM, hard drive and graphics all have their part to play, too. Sony has chosen to install 8GB of DDR3 RAM in this machine, which should be more than enough for it to cope well with the pre-installed copy of Windows 8, and multi-task even the most demanding of applications and productivity software with ease.

Similarly, the 750GB hard drive should be able to provide more than enough storage space for most users’ needs. However, should you need more, it is a simple matter to attach an external hard drive via one of the machine’s high speed USB 3.0 ports.

Pros :

  • Fast, Powerful Laptop
  • Plenty of RAM
  • Large Hard Disk
  • Small, Lightweight, Easily Portable
  • Windows 8

Cons :

  • Battery Life Is Shorter Than Some Ultrabooks

Graphics are handled by a hybrid solution that, like the CPU, makes a good attempt at balancing power consumption with impressive performance. Using NVIDIA’s Optimus technology, the machine automatically switches between integrated Intel HD Graphics 4000 for routine tasks, and NVIDIA GeForce GT 640M LE graphics with 1 GB of dedicated video RAM for more demanding situations.

As you would expect for a machine in this class, the usual selection of input / output ports and facilities are available on this laptop. Gigabit Ethernet and 802.11 b/g/n WiFi provide network connectivity, while Bluetooth 4.0 + HS makes it possible to connect to wireless peripherals such a mice and headsets.

An 8x multi-format CD/DVD drive makes it easy to back up your data, install software from disc or watch movies on the 15.5-inch Full HD LED-backlit display. Or, if you would prefer to see them on a bigger screen, the built-in HDMI port allows you connect to an HDTV or monitor. Alternatively, this machine supports Intel’s Wireless Display technology, enabling you to wirelessly stream videos, photos and music from your hard drive, home network, or the internet straight to a compatible HDTV. A VGA port is also provided for connecting to an older-style monitor or projector.

More conventional wired peripherals can easily be connected via the two high speed USB 3.0 ports and standard USB 2.0 port. Conveniently, you may also use the USB 3.0 port to charge cellphones, MP3 players and other devices, even when the laptop is alseep or shut down.

A Memory Stick Duo slot, a Secure Digital memory card slot, stereo speakers with Dolby Home Theater technology (v4) and headphone and microphone jacks round off the array of input / output ports.

This machine features a backlit keyboard, making it much easier to work in poorly lit environments. There is also a multi-gesture touchpad, allowing you to scroll with two fingers, pinch to zoom in and out of images, swipe to flip through pages or photos, and even rotate an image, amongst other things.

In summary, this is an impressively capable laptop in a surprisingly compact (10.06 x 14.97 x 0.95 inches) case. Weighing just 4.42 pounds, and with a battery life of up to 3.75 hours, it’s ideal for power users who need to get real work done on the move.

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