We use cookies to provide you with a better experience. If you continue to use this site, we'll assume you're happy with this. Alternatively, click here to find out how to manage these cookies

hide cookie message
Ultraportable laptops & Ultrabooks Reviews
15,670 Reviews

ViewSonic ViewBook 130 review

£649 inc VAT

Manufacturer: ViewSonic

Our Rating: We rate this 3.5 out of 5

ViewSonic's ViewBook 130 is a half-price take on the MacBook Air – but will it have only half the style, performance and build quality?

ViewSonic's ViewBook 130 is a half-price take on the MacBook Air – but will it have only half the style, performance and build quality?

Screen quality of the ViewSonic ViewBook 130 is average for the type, a 13.3in high-gloss reflective widescreen, nicely LED backlit, that will - so to speak - lose its shine once you're forced to use the laptop near a window or overhead strip lighting.

There's some moderate massaging of the truth in the weightwatching department, since the company's listed 1.45kg spec was not matched by our lab scale's reading, closer to 1.53kg.

Much more troubling, we're not sure how ViewSonic measures its laptops' battery life, but we'd contend it's not with any industry-standard test. ViewSonic says: up to 8 hours. We say: less than 3 hours 20 minutes; in deference to our MobileMark 2007 Productivity tests.

Meanwhile in our application performance tests, the ViewSonic ViewBook 130 showed a usable turn of real-world speed, hitting 64 points in WorldBench 6. To give some context, that may equal last year's Samsung X360 ultraportable, but it's well short of an Air's score of 83.

On a subjective note, we found the Windows 7 Professional interface slower than we'd like, with less-than-snappy responsiveness as we moved around the operating system.

ViewSonic ViewBook 130 top view

Top view of the ViewSonic ViewBook 130... but it's not quite as metallic as it may look

Gaming possibilities are unsurprisingly limited by the low-power integrated Intel graphics in the ViewSonic ViewBook 130. We saw 6fps in our standard FEAR game test.

ViewSonic is strangely keen to promote the sound quality from the ViewSonic ViewBook 130's underslung stereo speakers, claiming them to be ‘meticulously reckoned [sic] and fine-tuned to output 20% more impact'. In reality, they're as thin and weedy sounding as most netbook's.

Overall build quality was solid feeling, and despite the ersatz plastic construction - sprayed silver to resemble real aluminium - it felt reasonably tough and flex-free.

NEXT: Our expert verdict >>

ViewSonic ViewBook 130 Expert Verdict »
1.3GHz Intel Core 2 Duo ULV SU7300
3MB cache
13.3in (1366 x 768) 16:9 LED-backlit glossy LCD
Microsoft Windows 7 Professional 32-bit
Intel GS45 + ICH9-M chipset
2GB (1 x 2GB) DDR3-1333 RAM
320GB 5400rpm SATA HDD
802.11b/g/n
3 x USB 2.0
Bluetooth 2.1 + EDR
1.3Mp webcam
built-in mic
Intel GMA 4500M graphics
HDMI 1.3, VGA
multi-card reader
ExpressCard 34 slot
multi-touch trackpad
1.3Mp webcam
audio in, headphone jacks
stereo speakers
31Wh removable battery
330 x 221 x 18mm
1527g
  • Build Quality: We give this item 7 of 10 for build quality
  • Features: We give this item 8 of 10 for features
  • Value for Money: We give this item 6 of 10 for value for money
  • Overall: We give this item 7 of 10 overall

Mock-metal plastic isn’t unusual in the sub-£1000 laptop price band but be aware that the ViewBook is trading on the prestige of a certain laptop hewn from more durable aluminium. Despite pretensions of mixing with the upmarket ultraportables, the ViewSonic ViewBook 130 is after all a relatively affordable thin ’n’ lightish notebook, and one that remains cool and mostly quiet in use. We can't help thinking that for the same money, some highly capable 15in laptops can be found elsewhere. But this 13in notebook has excellent connectivity options and slimmer style, leaving its biggest let downs an oversold touchpad and mediocre battery life.

There are currently no price comparisons for this product.
  • ViewSonic PJ260D review

    ViewSonic PJ260D

    ViewSonic clearly had business presentations in mind when it designed the 1.3kg ViewSonic PJ260D lamp-based projector.

  • ViewSonic VEB620 review

    ViewSonic VEB620

    The ViewSonic VEB620 is an ebook reader with 6in black-and-white e-paper screen and 2GB of onboard flash storage.

  • ViewSonic VP2365wb review

    ViewSonic VP2365wb

    The ViewSonic VP2365wb is an affordable monitor that provides a versatile, high-quality, 23in display that will be suitable for many businesses.

  • ViewSonic VX2235wm

    ViewSonic VX2235wm

    ViewSonic pulled out all the stops when designing the VX2235wm.

  • ViewSonic VX2250wm review

    ViewSonic VX2250wm

    The sub-£150 flat-panel displays sector has been receiving plenty of new blood in recent months. The 21.5in ViewSonic VX2250wm takes most of the best bits from what's already there, and melds them into a quietly impressive little screen.


IDG UK Sites

Where to buy iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus in the UK: Launch day price, deals and contracts

IDG UK Sites

Is Apple losing confidence in itself?

IDG UK Sites

Professional photo and video techniques for perfect colours

IDG UK Sites

How (and where) to buy an iPhone 6 or iPhone 6 Plus in the UK. Plus: What to do if you pre-ordered...