Sony’s Vaio T13 doesn’t turn into a tablet or do anything particularly exciting – it is, in effect, simply an updated version of last year's T13 ultrabook with a touchscreen bolted on. However, it provides good performance and a lightweight, portable design at a competitive price. See all laptop reviews.
The design of the T13 is fairly conventional, but it’s well built with a sturdy chassis made out of magnesium and aluminium (the keyboard panel is plastic, though). See Group test: what's the best laptop?
At 1.6kg it’s by no means the lightest ultrabook around but it's undoubtedly an ultraportable. You can pick it up quite easily with one hand, and it's just 19mm thick, so you can slip it into a backpack or briefcase and carry it practically everywhere without being weighed down.
We weren't all that impressed with the screen on last year's T13 due to the relatively narrow viewing angles. This touchscreen version is better: the panel is bright and sharp with better (but not great) viewing angles.
The 13.3in panel has a resolution of 1366x768, but that’s perfectly adequate for a screen of this size. It works well when watching video, and ensures that icons and other controls on the Windows desktop are large enough to tap on quickly and easily.
The size of the screen also means that there’s room for a large, comfortable keyboard and trackpad, and we found it pleasant to type this review. The only minor disappointment is the rather thin, tinny sound that emanates from the built-in speakers.
There are several models in the range, with a wide variety of build-to-order options. We tested the mid-range SVT1313C5E, with a Core i5-331U processor running at 1.7GHz (with Turboboost up to 2.6GHz), 4GB of memory and a 128GB solid-state drive.
In PCMark 7 it produced a respectable score of 4389, which will allow it to handle web browsing and office work with ease, along with more demanding tasks such as the occasional spot of video-editing.
Battery life was also very respectable, coming in at four hours and forty-five minutes of video streaming over Wi-Fi, so you should be able to get the best part of a full day’s work out of the T13 when running basic business software.
Gaming performance was a little disappointing, though. Running Batman: Arkham City at 1366x768 resolution with high graphics settings produced a score of just 11fps. Turning the graphics down to the lowest detail settings bumped that up to a barely playable 25fps, so the T13 is suitable only for Angry Birds and other 2D casual gaming fare.