Sony VAIO VGN-T140P/L Notebook Review
As you might guess, here at
PCstats we like computers... things with 'gadget' value, and tiny electronic
devices in general. When something comes along that can fulfill all of these
cravings, we tend to take notice. Such was the case when this lovely little Sony laptop arrived.
This is the kind of device
that can produce paroxysms of tech lust in anyone, never mind the gear heads
among us. The navy blue and silver Sony VAIO VGN-T140P/L laptop is the size of a
hardcover book and weighs only a little over three pounds. It packs a weighty
list of features, beginning with a DVD/CDRW combo drive and a massive WXGA
(1280x768) resolution on its tiny, shiny, 10.6" widescreen LCD. The outer shells
(lower and upper) of the notebook are made from aluminum, and typical of Sony,
the build quality is very solid. Its retail price hovers in the range of $2470CDN
Now that IBM is out of the laptop making business, Sony is one of the few
'boutique' laptop makers left. Traditionally, Sony laptops have not been
business favourites, so now would be an excellent time for the company to make a
move in this direction. We were eager to see how the VAIO VGN-T140P/L fared in
||Sony VAIO VGN-T140P/L Notebook
Speed: 1.1GHz, Intel Pentium M CPU
Core: 90 nm
Quick start guide, power cord & AC adaptor, battery.
Further Technical Details:
- 1.10GHZ Intel Pentium M
Processor Ultra Low Voltage 733 (2MB L2 Cache, 400Mhz
- Intel Centrino 855GME/ICH4-M
chipset w. Intel Extreme Graphics 2
512MB DDR333 SO-DIMM, upgradeable to 1GB (one memory socket)
WXGA TFT LCD display (1280x768) w. Xbrite
PRO/Wireless 2200BG (802.11b+g) wifi, Intel 10/100 Ethernet LAN,
- 2.5" Ultra DMA 66/100, 40GB (4200rpm) hard drive
- DVD/CD-RW combo
- Audio AC'97 2.2, built-in dual speakers and microphone,
Dolby Virtual speaker/headphone
- I/O Ports: 1x PCMCIA, 2x
USB 2.0, VGA, IEEE 1394a, Mic in, Headphone, RJ11, RJ45,
- 56K v.92 Fax/modem
- 4-8.5 hrs battery life w.
- Weight: 3.04 Lbs
- Size: 10.7"
x 1.34" x 8.1"
|Contents of Package:|
Unfortunately, over the course of testing the VAIO
VGN-T140P/L, we ran into a major issue which halted the testing
process until a replacement unit was acquired. Sony did resolve this
issue quickly for us though, and we were able to finish the review without any
further incident. But, the VAIO VGN-T140P/L does get one big red check mark against
it for frying halfway through the review.... now, let's begin.
Features and Specs
Intel's newest Pentium M ultra-low voltage line of chips, packaged with
the 'Centrino' integrated wireless architecture, finally enabled laptop
manufacturers to make viable ultra-portable systems based on the Pentium
4 CPU. The Pentium M's tiny profile and better performance/power usage
ratio has brought the world of tiny laptops much closer to the
The VAIO VGN-T140P/L sports a 1.10GHz Pentium M
'733' Ultra low voltage processor. Based on a 90nm process, this chip uses a
400Mhz FSB and like all 90nm process Pentium M chips, comes equipped with 2MB of
level 2 cache memory. The Pentium M is the
fastest currently available in Intel's 'ultra low voltage' mobile line and should provide
plenty of grunt for this tiny laptop.
Like other Pentium M processors, the clock speed does not
truly indicate the amount of work it can do relative to traditional desktop processors,
so don't let that scare you off. The Pentium M is the reason
that Intel decided to drop the Gigahertz measurements from its processors and switched
to a meaningless 'Performance Rating' figure instead.
The Intel 855GME chipset provides connectivity with the
Centrino architecture. The ICH4-M Southbridge handles the integrated
video courtesy of Intel's Extreme Graphics 2 chip, and a fairly standard array
of I/O abilities which we'll detail a bit later.
As you would expect, it also supports a good set of power saving abilities
which work in concert with the processor to save precious battery life, typically by
dropping processing speed down substantially when on batteries. More on this later also.
The VAIO notebook ships with 512MB of DDR memory, 64MB
of which is shared with the onboard video. The memory can be expanded
up to 1GB in
total, though there is only one SODIMM socket. A smallish 4200RPM
40GB hard drive provides storage. The Intel Extreme Graphics 2 engine
provides excellent image quality and DVD playback, along with some (mostly theoretical)
For older 3D games (from
a few years ago) it should be adequate, for current games
it is extremely poor. This VAIO is not intended to be
a portable gaming machine, so don't even bother trying to use it
The Lithium-Ion battery snaps into the rear of the notebook (model VGP-BPS3), and carries a capacity of 7.4V / 7200mAH. It weighs about 0.66 pounds, and according
to Sony figures, will offer a run time of about 4-8.5 hours with a full charge.