Sony VAIO VPCEA290X: A Highly Customizable Laptop

The Sony VAIO VPCEA290X is a CTO (customize to order) laptop from Sony. When we first heard about these CTO laptops, we thought it was another way Sony could squeeze some money out of us. However, this is not the case here. This process actually allows users to customize a laptop to their exact needs. Whether they need a more capable processor, more RAM, a better video card, a larger hard drive, or just a few different colors and custom textures, they can use the CTO website to configure their laptop and order it.

The Sony VAIO VPCEA290X price starts at $769.99 for the base configuration. Let’s see what the basic setup looks like. First of all, it features an IntelĀ® Core i3-350M (2.26 GHz) processor which is quite capable and performed very well in our tests. We always tell our readers that small processors are better for laptops due to their lower power consumption. Laptops are made to be portable devices, not desktop computers. Next, we were impressed by the 4GB DDR3 RAM (2GB x 2), which runs on a 1066MHz Front Side Bus (FSB). The amount and speed of memory works very well with the processing power of the Sony. VAIO VPCEA290X.

Then the video card, an Intel Graphics Media Accelerator HD that is Intel Wireless Display Ready, comes in as a great addition and is capable of outputting true HD resolutions. We were a bit disappointed when we tested the hard drive. Unfortunately, at 320GB in size and spinning at just 5400 rotations per minute (RPM), the hard drive slows down the overall performance of the laptop. Although not drastically, one can feel the disadvantage of a 5400 rotations per minute hard drive when playing games and even running multitasking applications. However, if you require more space and speed, you can opt to have the 500 GB hard drive installed, which spins at 7,200 rotations per minute. It will cost you only $100 more.

By purchasing the Sony VAIO VPCEA290X, you also get free software that will come in very handy. For starters, the Genuine Windows 7 Home 64-bit operating system is one of the best available and you get it for free. Plus, for all your office needs, you get Microsoft Office 2010 Starter. And if you’re a designer and work with graphics, or just a Photoshop enthusiast, you get a complete Adobe Bundle. Also, the basic configuration comes with a Gunmetal Black color theme and does not have a keyboard skin.

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