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Maximum PC Staff Aug 10, 2011

Sony VAIO L Series VPCL214FX/W

At A Glance

CONE OF SILENCE

Great screen; USB 3.0; good-looking; HDMI out.

CONE OF FROST

Really, really slow; no discrete graphics.

Aesthetically, Sony’s VAIO L Series all-in-one pleased us the most. Its sides and back are white plastic, the new “in” look for PCs this year, and the matching keyboard and mouse make this system a nice fit in any environment.

The VAIO L Series is wall-mountable, making it a perfect media viewing station.

If only the hardware and performance matched the sleek exterior. Sandy Bridge chip or not, the mobile 2.1GHz Core i3-2310 part left the VAIO L Series hunched over gasping for air throughout our tests. Because all-in-one systems trade performance for form factor, we use our 2007 benchmark suite to test them, but that mattered none here. Sony’s performance was slow, taking 100 percent to 200 percent longer than the other two systems reviewed here to move through our ProShow Producer, MainConcept Reference, and Photoshop tests. And Sandy Bridge’s integrated graphics were no match for Call of Duty 4, putting up single-digit frame rates. If you’re looking for a web browser or media player, that’s no problem, but for more GPU- or CPU-intensive tasks, you’ll need more muscle.

The VAIO L ships with a Blu-ray player, Wi-Fi, two USB 3.0 ports, three USB 2.0 ports, a TV tuner, and a webcam on the front. We appreciate the presence of an HDMI-out port on the back of the unit. The 24-inch (1920x1080) LED-backlit touch screen bears special recognition; large, vibrant, and without much bezel, it’s everything we want in an all-in-one display.

While the hardware is underwhelming, the $1,400 price does make this a more affordable option for modest, everyday usage.

$1,400, www.sonystyle.com

SPECS

Sony VAIO L Series VPCL214FX/W
Price $1,400
CPU
2.1GHz Core i3 2310M
GPU
Integrated (Sandy Bridge)
RAM
2GB
HDD
500GB
Screen 24-inch

 

 

BENCHMARKS

Sony VAIO L Series VPCL214FX/W
ProShow Producer (sec) 1,470
MainConcept (sec)
2,542
Photoshop CS3 (sec)
166
Premiere Pro CS3 (sec)
1,380
Call of Duty 4 (fps)
6.8
THE VERDICT

Sony VAIO L Series VPCL214FX/W

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