For years I owned an Apple MacBook Pro which changed into not anything however trouble. I eventually changed it months ago with a Sony VAIO Z. In this article, I shall examine the 2 notebooks.

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Before I start, I have to note that the MacBook Pro changed into a 2.4GHz Core 2 Duo 2008 refresh version costing £1300 whilst new, with a 4GB RAM and 7200 RPM tough power upgrade. The VAIO Z is a custom build from the Sony Style Store, the VAIO Z V collection missing the DVD power and with a regular tough pressure in preference to the quad SSD of its extra pricey X series brethren. On top of this model, I introduced a £30 (considering that multiplied to £50) upgrade to from 2.4 GHz to two.53 GHz Intel Core i5 processor and the £50 (given that elevated to £70) 1920×1080 pixel display screen in place of the standard 1600×900. This added the smaller VAIO to £1400, a boom of £a hundred.

I’ll spoil the comparison between the two up into categories:


I opted for the £50 upgrade to the 1920×1080 (Full HD) show on the 13.1″ VAIO Z, and while the gamut is absolutely much better than the 15″ MacBook Pro (on par with or perhaps even barely better than my HP LP2475w monitor you see it with to the left), the overall HD resolution is just an excessive amount of for a thirteen.1″ display screen. By comparison, the 2 inches large MacBook Pro handiest had a 1440×900 screen, and that felt an excessive pixel density at the time! The DPI settings in Windows 7 to alleviate the problem really, but placing a higher DPI comes with its personal toll – incompatibility with some software, Dreamweaver CS4 to name one out. As you may see from the screenshot, for most of Dreamweaver’s interface, the DPI settings don’t have any impact (they have to make UI elements and textual content bigger) however inside the homes bar at the bottom the larger size causes some of the alternatives to be cut off the display. Other programs have smaller troubles inclusive of pixellated icons and UI elements.


The 2.53 GHz Intel Core i5-520M processor in the VAIO without a doubt is a slight enhance over the two.4GHz Intel Core 2 Duo of the MacBook, however, it truly is to be expected, two years have passed since the MacBook changed into delivered out. To be sincere, it is tough to evaluate overall performance as the MacBook become running Snow Leopard and the VAIO of the route is going for walks Windows 7, so the working device probably has greater of a power on perceived performance than the processor.

The barely faster 7200 RPM drive within the MacBook helped the snappiness no quit, so I’m quite sure an improvement from the 5400 RPM force to an SSD might assist the VAIO no stop.

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Both laptops were geared up with 4GB RAM, which never seemed enough inside the MacBook and seems to be even more of a burden on Windows 7. With Photoshop, Illustrator, Dreamweaver and Firefox open, the device slows to a crawl. The VAIO Z has a clever little transfer to swap between the Intel incorporated photos (okay for internet browsing) and the onboard NVIDIA GT 330M 1GB pictures, and an ‘Auto’ position that switches to the incorporated photographs while on battery energy. It’s with some trepidation that I offered another laptop with NVIDIA portraits, seeing that it is their fault my MacBook died, but whatever. They’ve likely constant that issue now. I’m now not a gaming character, so I’ve not given the NVIDIA chip a big exercising, however for some purpose Photoshop CS4 appears to lag at the VAIO. Even with not anything else open (to take away RAM because of the reason), easy stuff like scrolling around a picture or zooming has a pretty nasty postpone. The same moves were once buttery easy on the MacBook, and are not nearly so awful on my computing device. Odd. Another pretty huge hassle is that with the photos transfer to the automobile, the computer holds off switching the photos if something is the use of it that might be suffering from the switch. Sometimes this cutoff comes into action with no apparent reason, refusing to exchange snapshots, and sometimes the cutoff fails to paintings, causing the laptop to crash and bluescreen, or at least, force close something software was using the pictures. I’m getting a bit bored stiff of Photoshop crashing and losing all my work simply due to the fact I unplugged the computer, so now the transfer is quite a great deal permanently set to NVIDIA only mode. Great concept and the battery lifestyles is a piece better while the usage of the included graphics, but the implementation of the OS is my no manner seamless.


The foremost promoting factor (and the cause it turned into so pricey in comparison to its competition) of the VAIO is its weight. At a claimed 1.Three pounds rather than the 2.6 of the MacBook, it’s a great deal extra high-quality to hold the round in a bag. Slipped in a satchel, you slightly note it is there (unless you also throw within the bulky power supply and its 3 pin lead). By evaluation, the sporting the MacBook round result in a few pretty stiff shoulders. The chicklet keyboard at the VAIO is ace – very robust with properly spaced and positioned keys. The sense could be very just like an Apple desktop keyboard. The trackpad, however, is not. It’s a chunk too small, the click buttons are too close, making your thumb cramp, and the real pointing action – horrible. The cursor jumps around apparently at random. Multitouch zooming thru pinch exists, however, best in a few software program (no longer Creative Suite) and with a totally jerky movement. It’s difficult to type about the MacBook’s keyboard and trackpad considering the fact that they simplest worked intermittently after about a yr (the ribbon cable would not live in its connector), but once they labored, the trackpad turned into a satisfaction. Pinching and scrolling round Photoshop documents turned into better than a mouse, and I have to believe it to be even better in more recent MacBooks because of their large glass trackpads. The carbon fiber lid at the VAIO is fairly strong considering its thickness, and impressively skinny, and the thick aluminum block that paperwork the chassis offers no flex. It’s a disgrace to the plastic shell beneath the aluminum block which forms the bottom, as this is very cheap feeling as compared the entire steel shell of the MacBook. It’s full of holes, vents, and stickers like a reasonably-priced laptop, and appears without a doubt out of the area on something costing £1400. The wi-fi switch on the lowest front is a silly addition – you bump it to off each time you flow the pc, they should look ahead to it to reconnect. Why would you even want to turn off the wireless anyway?


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I’ve got a chunk of a love-hate courting with the VAIO Z. It might be a lot better if those little niggles were sorted, and I’m still now not positive it feels worth the £1400. I suppose it’d gain greatly from 8GB RAM and an SSD, so I’ll look at it while the costs for DDR3 come back down. I’m also planning to improve with Creative suite CS5 inside the very close to destiny, so hope to be able to kind of the troubles there. I do not experience at ease operating on this kind of small display screen, I plenty select my computing device with its gargantuan electricity and plenty of computing device area so I can’t assist thinking if I ought to have made do with a cheaper pc. I sold the VAIO online without ever having seen one, which turned into possibly a big mistake, but with the MacBook dead, I wished a laptop – fast. That did not even exercise session so nicely – it took Sony nearly a month from ordering to construct the custom computer and get it to me. At least they kept me well informed as to the progress, and I by no means have to visit a pretentious Apple ‘Genius bar’ once more.