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Laptops Reviews
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Sony Vaio E series SVE1511K1E laptop review

£499 inc VAT

Manufacturer: Sony

Our Rating: We rate this 3.5 out of 5

Sony's revamped 15-inch E series arrives. We look at the entry-level SVE1511K1E model. It may not have an Ivy Bridge processor, but can it still compete in the value stakes?

Sony’s Vaio E series has had a revamp for 2012 but this model (SVE1511K1E) is one of the cheapest in the range and lacks the latest Ivy Bridge processors of its more expensive bretheren. Still, it's hard to complain when it costs less than £500. See more budget laptop reviews

The Vaio SVE1511K1E has a reasonable specification of a second-generation Intel Core i3 processor and 4GB of RAM, a 750GB hard drive and a good quality 15.5 inch screen.

It has to be said that the Sony Vaio E SVE1511K1E seems like a rather chunky machine thanks in no small part to its somewhat fat edges. It is a little on the heavy side too, at 2.7Kg, the result being that it might not be the laptop to choose if you intend to take it everywhere with you. Build quality is up to Sony's usual standard though, and this could be a good choice as a family laptop.

See also: Laptop Advisor

The glossy finish to the 15.5-inch screen is far from unusual for consumer laptops, but this is one of the more reflective varieties and we found it very difficult to use with a light source behind us. It was, though, superb for watching video. The speakers were loud and quality was good.

Sony Vaio SVE1511K1E

Sony Vaio SVE1511K1E: performance

The integrated graphics didn’t have a negative effect when watching our test videos, but if you want to play games, then you may find the Intel chip limiting. Certainly our Fear benchmark returned only 13 frames per second at its maximum settings.

The SVE1511K1E's battery life of just over 6 hours in our MobileMark test is impressive for a laptop of this size, so if you need to be away from the mains for long periods, the Vaio should allow it.

Sony Vaio SVE1511K1E: connectivity and input devices

Sony has managed to include a single USB 3.0 port which opens up the possibility of high-speed data transfer to external devices, and this will appeal to those looking for a measure of future-proofing for their potential new peripherals.

While we found the isolated keyboard comfy enough to use, the trackpad disappointed. Its buttonless design is hard to get used to and we'd always prefer separate buttons instead of having to press down on the trackpad. Sony has incorporated gesture controls which can be used via the built-in webcam to help you control Windows Media Player, Media Gallery and Internet Explorer.

Set this up and you can pause, go back and forwards, and control volume. Some may find this something of a gimmick, others might feel it is useful.

Sony Vaio SVE1511K1E

Sony Vaio SVE1511K1E Expert Verdict »
Sony Vaio SVE1511K1E Scores 8.0 out of 10 based on 38 reviews
2.4GHz Intel Core i3-2370M
Intel HD Graphics 3000
15.5in (1366 x 768) glossy LCD
Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit
750GB SATA 5400rpm hard drive
4GB DDR3 1333MHz RAM
Gigabit ethernet
DVD SuperMulti drive
HDMI, VGA outputs
802.11b/g/n Wi-Fi
Bluetooth 4
1.31Mp webcam
Stereo speakers
Built-in mic
Stereo 3.5mm line-in, 3.5mm headphone/line-out
3 x USB 2.0, 1 x USB 3.0
SDHC/MS reader
100 x 57mm buttonless multi-touch trackpad
44Wh lithium-ion battery
371.9 x 253.3 x 15.3 - 35.1mm
2700g
1 year collect and return warranty
  • Build Quality: We give this item 7 of 10 for build quality
  • Features: We give this item 7 of 10 for features
  • Value for Money: We give this item 6 of 10 for value for money
  • Performance: We give this item 7 of 10 for performance
  • Overall: We give this item 7 of 10 overall

The Sony Vaio SVE1511K1E feels slightly clunky and we aren’t fans of the buttonless trackpad. The gesture control is something of a gimmick, too. Nonetheless this laptop is a decent performer - gaming aside - with a great screen for watching video and catch-up TV.

There are currently no price comparisons for this product.
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