Do you rate Sony Vaio customer support?

  ade.h 13:21 22 Oct 05
Locked

The time has come to buy a new laptop for my business. I'm seriously considering Sony, in particular the FS315 click here

Before I jump in with both feet, I'd like to know what experiences, good or bad, people have had with Sony laptop support.

Reliability counts, of course, but what is most important is how you get treated when it does go wrong. I wouldn't be able to work effectively without a laptop for weeks on end while it sits in a service department somewhere. Like the Acer approach!

All positive and negative comments gratefully recieved. Thanks.

  Staffie 13:55 22 Oct 05

Can highly recommend Sony. I have had 2 sony vaio laptops and about to buy another from their new range about to be released. All have been 100% reliable. When I had a problem (of my own making due to inexperience) their support team spent a couple of hours on the phone with me guiding me through a complete restore. Hope this helps you make a decision.

  ade.h 14:10 22 Oct 05

Yes, it does. Thanks Staffie.

You say there's a new range out soon; is that imminent? Any info on the web that you know of? Naturally, the Sony Centre branch that I visited neglected to mention it!

  Staffie 14:48 22 Oct 05

Sony are bringing out quite a few new laptops presumably for the christmas Market, and on the click here website (click whats new) they are promising mid October shipping! Sony-style have given me good advice in the past when trying to decide what to buy too.

One or two of the range are already in the stores. I always buy from John Lewis (hope i'm allowed to say that) as they match prices and automatically give a 2 year guarantee, whereas sony only give 12 months. Good luck!

  ade.h 15:18 22 Oct 05

Thanks Staffie. I'd opt for JW as well, it's very good, but I don't know what its finance options are like (I'll check the website sometime). Dabs is historically a little bit more of a risk, but it's mostly okay and offers "buy now, pay next July" which is ideal.

The Sony website seems to be playing up at the moment; I'll try again later.

Thanks again.

I'll mark as resolved, but anyone with more comments to make is welcome to post them, of course.

  phoenix198 17:14 22 Oct 05

I've had a succession of Vaio laptops and desktops and currently have a Vaio RA104 Desktop, a VGC-M1 'all in one' and a K215S laptop.

I've had to use Sony's warranty services twice in the past and on each occasion the telephone and e-support systems have been responsive and quick. Once a support tech has talked you through the fault finding process and confirmed a hardware fault you get immediate confirmation of pick-up details, which is usually next working day - DHL courier. The courier brings a special padded container which is the correct size and shape for your particular system - you only dispatch the faulty item, not all the accessories, peripherals and software pack. The e-support system reminds you to retsore the hardware configuration to its OEM state i.e. remove any additional RAM.

On both the past occasions the systems turned round in about five to seven working days. In fact I've just sent my RA104 off to have its hard drive replaced, so I hope Sony's good record continues!

One other thing, if you do have a hard drive problem which requires replacement, Sony do not return the faulty hard drive - well, not free of charge anyway! This slightly worries me as I have a lot of sensitive and personal data on that drive, so I have specifically requested that they do so, albeit that I shall have to pay a nominal fee for the drive.

Hope this helps.

  ade.h 17:36 22 Oct 05

Thanks Phoenix. It looks like Sony is likely to be one of the better choices for business laptops.

I'll try to find out more about the latest models (I'm not sure if my preferred choice is one of them or a bit older) and make a final selection shortly.

  Danoh 17:54 22 Oct 05

on Tue 18th. Am using it to type this. No chance of trying out SONY's customer support yet.

In fact, where/what are the contact details for them?

Originally looking at 17" widescreen models but when I saw them up close, they are too large for frequent travel (plane, train, etc ~ would need 2 seats to use one!). I guess they are more desktop replacements.

Very pleased with the looks, weight & s/w bundle; Adobe Photo Elements 3, Premiere (video edit), etc.

Not so happy with the pre-installed trial s/w; e.g. MS Small Bus Edition clashed with my own MS Office suite and had to do a complete uninstall and clean-up before reinstalling MS Off.

Also, SONY do not provide any CDs/DVDs for reinstalling XP, etc. But there is a really nifty VAIO recovery utility. This enables you to backup the complete recovery partition (O/S, apps, etc) onto 2 DVDs or a single dual-layer DVD which is capable of a bare-metal restore, purportedly.

  Danoh 18:04 22 Oct 05

Oh, & another thing. Its the only system I've come across so far which comes with sensibly has 2 partitions as standard. The restore faclility even offers an option to resize the partitions with 3 fixed size choices; C drive 20/30/40 Gb (data will be lost in the process of course). I have used that facility twice already and it was faultless.

BUT, the wide screen means it can just about squeeze into a standard lappy bag ~ have to store the power adapter, etc in other pockets instead.

  phoenix198 19:37 22 Oct 05

You can access Sony's customer support via the Vaio-Link website click here.

You should have a link on your desktop or via the Vaio Update utility

  Danoh 23:04 22 Oct 05

Thanks phoenix198! I tend to delete desktop shortcuts... Started using it in anger straight away and its only now over the w/e that I've started to explore a bit.

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