It took me a week to find some review about Sony Vaio YB series before I bought it 2 weeks from this ultraportable notebook arrived in my country, Indonesia. I always dream for having a Sony Vaio series, they have some amazing style and default brand image, Elegant and Pricey. Elegant in design, material and everything. Sony always took care of their product carefully, they always have a modern style of all their notebook.
Before I want to buy this notebook, I used to have a HP Mini 210-1014 series which I bought about a year ago. This HP Mini series helps me a lot for my work, study, and everything but gaming. It is very handy, small, light (only 1,5 kg with battery). But about a month ago, I faced a problem about my current study in Computer Programming, They required a screen resolution about 1024×768, while my HP Mini and other netbook only have a resolution of 1024×600. It makes my program doesn’t work properly and it annoyed me somehow. Then I started to find a new worth notebook. My concern is the weight itself, and the options goes to ASUS UL30VT or SONY VAIO YB15AG.
ASUS UL30VT has all the notebook performance and battery life, it also has the ultraportable one for a gaming notebook, which only weigh about 1,7kg with battery. The specification of this notebook can be found here. The things attracts me a lot are the weigh itself, the battery life it self (about 7-12 hours of use), the dual graphic cards (GeForce G210 and Intel X4500 MHD, switchable), and it has a 13.1 inch screen with resolution of 1366×768. Very nice one right?
But a week after having the reviewed of ASUS UL30VT products that makes me want it a lot, Then I am amazed of one Sony Vaio Product Y Series. They use an AMD chipset and the newest AMD Platform of processor code name Zacate ( AMD Dual core processor E-350 1.6 GHz) and with internal AMD RADEON Graphics series HD 6310 with new technology using FUSION and good GPU score. The weigh amazed me once again with only 1.46kg (battery included) which has a 11.6 inch screen with resolution of 1366×768. WOW, with that specification, Sony gives us a good price. You can find the specification detail of Sony Vaio YB15AG here.
Sony VAIO YB15AG Silver
Processor : AMD Dual core Processor E350(1,6 GHZ)
OS : Genuine Windows 7 Starter 32 bit (English Version)
RAM : 2GB DDR3 SDRam
HDD : 320GB HDD
VGA Card : AMD Radeon HD6310
Display 11,6″; WXGA
Wifi 802.11 b/g/n
Camera Motion Eye 0.3MP
Sony Vaio series has a special identification of their logos, The VAIO in their lid, the power button on the right hand (the green light – very nice appearance), The AC input cable (on the left hand), The keyboard style, and the ‘motion eye’ webcam. You can have a look at the measurement picture I attached above. It have WebCam of 0.3 MP, SD Card slot, Memory stick duo slot, 3 USB Port, VGA Output, HDMI Output, Headphone Output, Microphone Input, a kensington lock, and an Ethernet port. The weight itself says about 3.23lbs (with standard battery) means of 1.46 kg. Very light, even compared to my HP Mini 210-1014 series which weigh 1.5kg. The sexy rounded metal hinges light up orange (for sleep) or green (for powered on) and give the VAIO YB a futuristic look and feel. A metallic textured palm rest completes the space-age aesthetic.
At 11.4 x 8 x 1.25 inches and 3.2 pounds, the Sony VAIO YB isn’t MacBook Air-light (2.9 pounds). However, this notebook is lighter than other 11-inch Fusion ultraportables, such as the HP Pavilion dm1z (11.4 x 8.4 x 1.2 inches, 3.4 pounds) and the Lenovo ThinkPad X120e (11.1 x 8.2 x 1.2-inches, 3.4 pounds).
The battery pack given in this package is SONY Series VGP-BPS21B which has Li Ion battery of 3.500 mAH / 38 Wh. I used it in a gaming mode which can only have about 3hours and 40mins or less of heavy usage. It is not as good as the Sony said that with the standard battery has a battery life about more than 5 hours. But, for this matter’s, I am satisfied with it. You can have a longer battery life since you get the higher capacity of battery, but it is pricey. You can check the battery price at their website at www.sony.co.id
I checked myself of using this Sony Vaio YB series, I always open the notebook at 9 am and shut it down at night 11pm, It stays cool. Even in the room without air conditioned, still the cool one. I can compare it to my very hot netbook HP Mini 210-1014 series, It was very hot. I believe the HP Mini has a hot because of their lack of air ventilation plus the metal back casing. From the sources I took, the VAIO YB stayed so cool that we could barely tell it was on. After streaming a video at full screen for 15 minutes, we measured the touchpad at only 86 degrees Fahrenheit, the keyboard at a chilly 89 degrees, and the bottom at a maximum of 92 degrees.
With AMD series E-350 CPU, AMD Radeon HD 6310 integrated graphics, You can see the score provided by LaptopMag for Sony Vaio YB series. It provides a good performance on most tasks. On PCMark Vantage, a synthetic benchmark that measures overall system speed, the VAIO YB scored 2,112. That score is less than the ultraportable notebook category average of 3,804, but in the neighborhood of other AMD Fusion notebooks like the HP Pavilion dm1z (2,198) and the Lenovo ThinkPad X120e (2,558).
PC Mark Vantage
Comparing The Vaio YB vs Vaio YA – The AMD vs Intel i3
Sony Vaio Reviewed by Other Users
Sony Vaio YB15AG – Video Review (GERMAN)
Sony Vaio YB15AG Playing Dirt 2
Booting Time compared to other series (Vaio Wins)
3D Mark Performance compared to other series (VAIO YB Wins)
WEI and Other test result.
1. VAIO GATE
Have you ever installed a Vaio Gate? Do you know what it used for? Vaio Gate is a software developed by Sony that has the same usage with the dock in MAC’s. It stores a shortcut, shows a rss reader for a particular time, and have a brilliant and nice user interface. By default, the gate has convenient shortcuts to all of the VAIO YB’s pre-loaded applications, including Internet Explorer 8, Arcsoft Webcam Companion, Evernote for VAIO, and a host of Sony utilities. Since there are more applications than can fit into a single row of icons, the shortcut labeled VAIO opens an additional sub-row of icons with even more Sony apps and settings. You can also add your own shortcuts to the dock by right-clicking on any program icon in Windows and selecting Add to VAIO Gate.
2. Sony Media Player and Gesture Control.
The Sony Vaio Media Player has a unique design of it’s own. It will detect your Media and defines itself to artist, album, and genre. The Photo and Video also can be accessed here. The most amazing product of this galery is a motion control / Gesture Control. With the use of Web Cam – Motion Eye, Sony has developed a Gesture control so when a user swipe their hands to the right, it will allow you to play the next song, when you swipe to left, it will play the backward and if you swipe down you can pause/play the music / pictures presentation.
3. Other Softwares (Assist Button, PMB Vaio Edition, and ArcSoft Webcam)
The Assist button will show you a screen like this, It allows you to check your computer performance as easy as possible. All your Vaio Status will be shown here. If you feel you have a slow performance on your Vaio, just visit the ‘Assist’ Button and click the system care to take good care of the problems. Feel free to try it. The most important things ever from buying a new Sony Vaio Laptop, You should burn/copy the recovery disk (includes driver and windows, and everything your vaio need). Go to the Recovery and Restore, and prepare the disk or USB sized minimum about 10 GB.
PMB for Vaio is an image editor for Vaio user. It is developed from a sony vaio corp. I haven’t use it a lot, but if there are any images in your harddrive, it’ will synchronized to their library. It is said that you can easily make a presentation, edit, or maybe make a slideshow film with amateur profiles with PMB for Vaio.
The next other thing is the ArcSoft Web Cam software. It has a capability that all webcam needs, to show images from the provided web cam. Some tools here is record video, take pictures, monitor mode. I just used a monitor mode where the function itself gives me a nice smile. It detects a motion, and in some sensitivity, it will record a motion. It is very useful to know who’s around your notebook. Nice one
I bought it a few weeks ago at Sony Center Indonesia in Pacific Place. It has 3 colors of Sony Vaio YB series, Silver, Green, and Pink. I took the silver one because it is the most appropriate one for men. The ultraportable and beauty inside makes me fall in love just for a while. With the performance of AMD series and affordable prices, I fell in love even more. The products inside the box only provide a standard battery, The VAIO YB series notebook, The charger, and the quick guide book. No soft case nor bag for this VAIO YB. I hardly find a soft case for this 11.6 inch notebook. The sony center themselves haven’t provided the soft case yet. And I believe it may be pricey if it is provided.
I Play games now, When I have the HP Mini 210-1014 series, I never play recent games. The performance of AMD Fusion technology is very nice. It is not the best for gaming laptop, but for the light weight and the price given, It is worth for me. Games I installed are COD 4 : Modern Warfare – Nicely performed at medium settings, Red Faction – Nicely Performed, F1 2010 – Nicely Performed, Lara Croft and The guardians of Light – Nicely Performed, COD : Black Ops – Laggy. An overview of in depth performance gaming result will be reviewed later, I just played some games of my own. Maybe the next article I’ll write about it. I am satisfy of SONY Product, The design is very sexy, you can check the other competitor design HP DM1Z, Lenovo Thinkpad x120e to see the design and quality.