Dubai: Sony’s VAIO Flip 13A is an attractive ultrabook with its design and it has three modes – laptop, presentation and tablet.
The front and the inside are made of brushed aluminum chassis but the back is made of plastic.
The laptop is very thin and weighs 1.31 kilos.
The 13.3-inch with Full HD IPS panel is powered by Intel’s fourth-generation i7 processor at 1.80GHz and runs on Windows 8 Pro operating system.
It has 8GB of RAM and 256GB of solid state drive which is fast and wakes up in three seconds.
The laptop has a bit of flex, both at the bottom and the lid, due to its thinness. The laptop can bend when your hands are resting on the laptop. It is more flimsy than most of the hybrids in the market.
Sony is following Lenovo’s Yoga tablet design but with a premium look.
Sony has paid a lot of attention to the design. A rubber gasket wraps around the display to keep dust out of the edges.
Sony has used two hinges in the Flip series instead of the normal one hinge that connects the keyboard and the display. Sony has used the second hinge in the middle of the screen chassis and with a slight push the display can be tilted by realising the hinge lock.
When released, the screen can be tilted to 180 degrees. Even though it can be converted into a tablet, it is difficult for single-handed use.
Most of the ports on the laptop are on the right side – two USB 3.0, one SD card reader and HDMI. The power button is also located here. On the left side of the device houses the headphone jack and charging port.
The Full HD screen with 166 pixels per inch produces clear and sharp images with good viewing angles.
One advantage of this laptop when compared to others is that Sony has included an active digitizer pen. The pen is useful for some and it is accurate and can be used for taking notes in the tablet mode.
The Chiclet keyboard’s layout is good and spacious and it is backlight with ambient sensor. The flexing is also evident here and the keys are shallow.
The spacious Synaptics trackpad is accurate are gesture control works well.
The tablet houses an 8MP web camera (3264 x 2448resolution) at the back of the laptop and can be used when in the tablet mode.
The front houses a 1MP camera (1280 x 720 resolution) which is capable only for video chatting.
The speakers, placed on the two sides of the laptop produces crisp and clear sound. Sony’s propriety ClearAudio+ automatic sound quality optimization mode enhances the sound quality but volume is not loud enough to enjoy the songs. It also has a built-in dual microphone.
Sony has pre-installed software like Trend Micro Titanium Security trial version, VAIO Care, Norton Online Backup, ArcSoft Camera, SocialLife, VAIO Clip, trial version of Office 365 and VAIO Paper.
The gaming performance of the Intel HD 4400 graphics is a meager and those who prefer gaming experience should opt for dedicated GPUs.
Regarding connectivity, it has Bluetooth 4.0, WiFi and near field communication (NFC).
The non-removable battery lasted for six hours and 55 minutes in the WiFi browsing test with brightness set to fifty per cent, which is not bad. It is priced at Dh6,995.
• Attractive multi-flip design
• Decent battery life
• Digitizer pen
• Light chassis
• Laptop is flimsy
• No Ethernet port
• Keyboard with weak feedback
• A bit pricey
• Contrast could be better