|Screen Size||15.4 inches|
|Processor||1.86 GHz Mobile Intel Pentium 4 Processor|
|RAM||1 GB DDR SDRAM|
|Hard Drive||100 GB mechanical_hard_drive|
|Graphics Coprocessor||radeon x600|
|Card Description||ATI Mobility Radeon X600|
|Graphics Card Ram Size||128 MB|
|Wireless Type||802.11 B/G, 802.11B|
|Number of USB 2.0 Ports||4|
Sony VAIO VGN-A690 17" Laptop (Intel Pentium M Processor 750, 1 GB RAM, 100 GB Hard Drive, Dual Layer DVD+/-RW Drive)
We don't know when or if this item will be back in stock.
Includes: lithium-ion battery, AC adapter, remote control, A/V Entertainment Dock, Windows XP Home with Service Pack 2, Photoshop Elements, Quicken 2005 New User Edition, WinDVD, Works 8.0, Norton Internet Security (90-day trial), & more. Sony VAIO(R) VGN-A690 Digital Studio Notebook - This notebook computer features a unique Entertainment Dock, which offers you the ability to enjoy A/V entertainment anywhere. With it you can watch and record television, and capture and convert analog or digital video. You even get 2 external speakers so everyone can enjoy! Built-in 802.11b/g/a Wi-Fi Adapter 17 Wide UXGA LCD with XBRITE(TM) Technology and ErgoBright Technology Native Resolution - 1920x1200 DVD Writer (write speeds) - up to 2.4x DL DVD+R, 8x DVD+R, 8x DVD-R, 4x DVD+RW, 4x DVD-RW, 24x CD-R/RW 100GB 5400RPM SATA HDD ATI Mobility Radeon X600 with 128MB of DDR SDRAM Integrated v.90 56k Modem Built-in Stereo Speakers 1 PCMCIA Type I/II Card Slot (CardBus support) Memory Stick Media Slot - supports Memory Stick, Memory Stick(R) PRO, & Memory Stick(R) DUO Entertainment Dock - built-in TV tuner, Giga Pocket MPEG2 realtime encoder, 4 USB 2.0, VGA, VHF/UHF TV, Printer, S-Video In/Out, DVD-D, Ethernet, Optical Out, RCA In/Out Ports - 10/100/1000 Gigabit Ethernet, VGA Out, Headphone, Microphone, 1 FireWire, 3 USB 2.0
Top Customer Reviews
I also like the fact it has a new 128mb video chip from ATI (X600) that supports PCI Express. This laptop has 1GB of memory, which I would recommend since 512MB is barely enough today. The hard drive also has plenty of space at 100GB and seems to be fast enough running at 5,400 rpm with SATA interface.
The Sony software for audio and video and editing seems pretty good and I haven't had any problems so far. One thing, I have Office Professional, so I deleted the lame 60-day Office trial package that came with the computer before I could fully access all the programs in my Pro suite.
One of the big selling points of the computer is its excellent 17" wide screen. Out of the box, it looks very good and I haven't even tried to optimize it yet. I'm thinking that the ErgoBright technology, while good for certain areas since it automatically adjusts brightness, compromises maximum picture quality. This feature could be defeated. Generally speaking, these types of auto adjustment features are best left inactive when viewing movies. I find this to be the case with widescreen TVs also. The docking station and speakers are also a plus. Sound from the speakers built into the laptop is only average. I haven't tried headphones yet or the speakers that come with the docking station and I can't yet vouch for the quality of the laptop's internal sound. However, I might pick up an Echo Indigo IO audio pc card. Laptop sound quality is generally average at best, and this add-on card could be a nice upgrade.
This computer is also very quiet, relatively speaking, which is very important to me since I don't like noisy computers. Overall, it is a well thought out design and Sony definitely didn't skimp on the components.
PROS: Gorgeous screen, relatively low heat during long bouts of use, good power management so you really can get 90-120 minutes out of it while on battery. The keyboard is also very robust (I'm a "hard typer" and typically wear through keyboards in a year - this one's never needed any work) and the Sony warranty is a good one (I fried a motherboard two months into owning it - replacement was quick and easy.)
CONS: Like seemingly all Vaios, it feels a little fragile - lots of plastic. In fact, I've got big white wear marks on the area to the left and right of the touchpad where constant use has worn off the silver paint. (Having said that, I have to also add that, other than the aforementioned cosmetic damage, I've never actually broken the thing, and that's with 12+ hours of use a day, every day, and near-constant travel.) I'm also not a big fan of the bundled software, but that's a minor gripe.
That did not happen. I will say I have always loved Sony products and I will continue to buy them, but getting my Sony repaired was a challenge.
Sony's repair team are rude and mean. I had to get on the internet and find numbers to Sony Corp (no one will give you the numbers) I was on a mission and I faxed a letter to all Sony's including Overseas. It worked!! I never heard from the repair center again, but I did receive a notice that is was a pleasure repairing my Sony. I haven't had any problems since.
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