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37 of 39 people found the following review helpful
on March 19, 2003
My wife and I were seeking a LCD-screen computer for my son's room. I introduced her to the Sony W-Series desktop - which is a big hit in Japan - and she was immediately impressed. She liked the clean lines and the keyboard which folded up to be even less obtrusive. The clincher for her, though, was the PC which was built into the back of the screen - which eliminated both the bulky tower on the floor -- and the messy cable cables streaming out of it.
The Sony W-series looks great. It doesn't clutter up my son's room which, heaven knows, is already cluttered enough as it is. He enjoys doing his homework - and playing computer games - on it. The sound from the built in speakers is excellent. And the wide-screen display is wonderful for watching DVD movies.
The computer comes with four USB and two FireWire connections. Since the mouse connects via USB, these ports fill up quickly. (I plan to use a compact Linksys USB hub when I run out.) The FireWire ports are also of the smaller four-pin variety. Since most of my FireWire devices use the six-pin plugs, I needed to purchase a six-to-four pin conversion cable from Belkin (who, like Amazon, has everything).
The W-Series also has a Memory Stick slot, which I use to transfer large files from my Sony Vaio desktop (which also has a reader), and amongst my home and office laptops, where I've installed Sony Memory Stick PCMCIA card adapters into all of them. The W-series also has a pair of LAN ports, which I don't use, and a PCMCIA card slot which I'll probably employ to add 802.11 b or Bluetooth capability later. For those of you (like me) who don't know how to open up the back of your desktop to add these features, being able to do so via a PC card slot is definitely a plus.
Since the keyboard is attached to the bottom of the screen, the LCD sits a little lower on the desk than a free-standing unit, which my son doesn't notice. It's much like using a laptop (which was our other alternative) - but with a desktop's easier-to-use keyboard and mouse! The mouse, incidentally, is of the optical variety, so tracking is extremely smooth and accurate. And the screen tilts down slightly, which is nice when I want to watch DVD movies - while sitting in an easy chair in front of it!
The Sony W-Series computer is a big hit. I can tell because my son enjoys using it; and my daughter (who is a few years younger) wants one too!
If space efficiency - and aesthetics - are important considerations for you (as they were for us), the Sony W-Series might be just the ticket. My family loves it!
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23 of 23 people found the following review helpful
The PCV-W20 is one awesome integrated desktop. Sure it's pricey, but you get a lot of features plus Sony's award-winning styling. The widescreen 15.3" (measured diagonally) LCD is beautiful and has excellent contrast ratio. The CPU is actually 1.8Ghz, not 1.9 (which doesn't exist), but it's still fast. Sony apparently optimizes the system so it feels as speedy as a 2.4Ghz Dell Dimension 2350 or 4500.
Unlike most other one-piece PCs, this one has all the ports loaded: three USB 2.0 ports (but one already taken by the optical mouse), two 4-pin i.Link/IEEE 1394 ports, one line-in port for hooking up an audio input source (e.g., a portable CD player or MP3 player), two PC Card slots, and one Memory Stick slot. Modem and ethernet are built-in, so you can surf web either way you want. You also get a DVD-ROM/CD-RW combo drive, but no DVD burner.
The W-series is really designed for family users who don't need to tinker with the system, so the biggest downside for us geeks is that you can't expand the system easily. For example, you can't put in a bigger hard disk, although you can get an external USB 2 or IEEE 1394 hard disk, or use an IDE hard disk with an external enclosure kit (e.g., ADS Pyro). You also can't upgrade the graphics card, which means if you are into the latest 3D games, you are out of luck. And you can't put in an internal DVD burner; instead you'll need to get an expensive external one (usually at a one-hundrd dolr premium).
Specs aside, the W20 is a pleasure to use. The keyboard does suffer from Sony's annoying policy of doing away with the insert/home/delete/... keys, and the arrow keys are cramped with the main keyboard which makes them hard to use. But that's about the only gripe. As mentioned before the system is speedy, and Sony bundles the system with a generous offering of software titles. The user experience is very positive, so if you can afford it, this is a highly recommend system for your home.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on May 1, 2005
I just got this computer yesterday, and even though by today's standards, 1.8 GHZ is pretty slow, you can't tell! Of course, I'm not one of those that has to have the latest in computer technology. That being said, I am in love with this computer! I also own a standard desktop computer (also a VAIO) and I can see myself using this one more often. I love the screen, and the fact that the keyboard folds up into the screen to save space (and keep my cats off the keyboard!) It is so easy to hook up; it took me a total of 5 minutes, and I was online and ready to go! All in all, this computer is a fantastic buy, it's great to look at, and is perfect to have around as a second computer (for when your husband won't get off of his computer game). Granted, you can't do any major gaming on this, but that's not why I wanted it anyway.
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on September 28, 2004
As you can see its a great computer the only flaw really is that it dont burn dvd's, Great for watching movies by your self or with a friend, it has pretty loud speakers so you could also play music pretty loud,it is adjustable so if your with 2 friends and they always talk you could put your headphones on and they could listen to it through the speakers on the computer. Its good for games and yes you can get a full screen with games you just have to set it right. It can store a lot of music kinda like having an mp3 player in your room(now for the flaws) but if you are limited a real small space its kinda hard to store it all the time, its not wireless unless you get a card and a wirless modem, for it being its size it should be thinner and you cant hook up your ps2 or your game cube to it. but if these flaws dont obtain to you its a great computer to have remember you can always add on to it with external drives
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on March 21, 2006
Expensive , but wonderful design, until the monitor goes out after 2.5 years, and it will cost $800 for a new one. Sony parts are out of this world in price, and most repair people say it will cost more that it's worth. It doesn't have any place to add another monitor to even check it out.
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1 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on June 16, 2003
AWESOME GREAT COMPUTER. I'M ALMOST 9 BUT THIS IS MY SECOND COMPUTER AND IT WORKS WELL. AND LOOKS GREAT!
THE ONLY SMALL BAD THING IS THAT WHEN YOU PLAY COMPUTER GAMES IT DOES NOT HAVE A FULL SCREEN.
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