Notebookcheck

Review Sony Vaio Fit SV-F1521V6EB Notebook

Sascha Mölck (translated by Liala Stieglitz), 12/12/2013

Average. The Vaio comes with all components that a versatile laptop should have in form of a Core i7 processor, GeForce GPU, Blu-ray burner, and a 1 TB hard drive. Our test report reveals whether Sony has placed a recommendable 15.5-inch all-rounder in its product line.

For the original German review, see here.

An all-round laptop is expected to cope with most application scenarios, and to look good at the same time. This seems to apply to Sony's laptop at first glance. It offers a lot of storage capacity, a gaming-suitable GPU, and the laptop can even play Blu-ray discs. Our test report exposes whether the Vaio is compelling as a whole.

We used Lenovo's IdeaPad Z510 (Core i5-4200M, GeForce GT 740M) and HP's Pavilion TouchSmart 15-n010sg (Core i7-4500U, GeForce GT 740M) to classify the laptop. The latter device features a touchscreen.

Case

Both the Vaio and the IdeaPad are completely made of plastic. Hewlett Packard uses aluminum parts besides plastic for its Pavilion. Sony's laptop features a matte-black casing. The designers just did not restrain themselves with the display bezel and dug out the gloss varnish.

The base unit makes a rigid impression, but also exhibits a weakness that we often encounter in many laptops: the base unit can be warped slightly on the keyboard's left and right. The stiffness is still acceptable, although the build gives reason for complaint. A cracking noise is produced when we press the upper and underside of the front corner with two fingers. The lid can be twisted too easily, and the back can be pressed to such an extent that image distortions are generated. The hinges keep the lid firmly in position, but wobble a bit. Opening the lid with one hand is possible.

Basically, the casing is overall satisfactory. Nevertheless, we would have expected more from a laptop priced at almost 900 Euros (~$1239). It could have been more robust, and metal components would also be possible in this price range.

The Vaio's casing is comprised of plastic.
The Vaio's casing is comprised of plastic.
The lid can be dented easily.
The lid can be dented easily.
There are two small maintenance covers.
There are two small maintenance covers.

Connectivity

All three comparison laptops provide today's standard interfaces. It is good that all three have two USB 3.0 ports, which make speedy data transfer between two external hard drives possible. Neither the Vaio nor the Pavilion sport a VGA out. The user will have to use an HDMI-to-VGA adapter should this interface be needed (price: approx. 20 Euros, ~$27). The Vaio features NFC technology (near-field communication). It allows wireless data sharing between two devices over a short range (a few centimeters). The module is located in the wrist rest's right area. NFC is primarily known for cash-less payments via a smartphone.

The Vaio's interface positioning is unfavorable. The ports are found in the front area on both sides. Also, the ports are submerged into the casing, and thus the plugs should not be too thick because they would not fit otherwise. We, however, did not have any problems; even our HDMI cable with a plug thickness of approximately 12 mm could be inserted.

Left: Kensington lock slot, power socket, Gigabit Ethernet, HDMI, 2x USB 3.0, microphone-in, headphone-out
Left: Kensington lock slot, power socket, Gigabit Ethernet, HDMI, 2x USB 3.0, microphone-in, headphone-out
Right: 2x USB 2.0, Blu-ray burner
Right: 2x USB 2.0, Blu-ray burner
Front: Memory card reader
Front: Memory card reader

Communication

The Wi-Fi chip in the Vaio is the BCM43142 from Broadcom, and it supports the Wi-Fi standards 802.11 b/g/n. In addition to Wi-Fi, the module also supplies Bluetooth 4.0. We did not experience any problems with Wi-Fi transmission. Although the signal strength often fluctuated within a radius of approximately 15 meters around the router (2 to 5 bars), we did not notice any interruptions or slower transmission speeds. This is, however, not a standardized test. Realtek's RTL8168/8111 Gigabit Ethernet chip can be used for cabled network connections. The built-in webcam renders a muddy picture in a maximum resolution of 1280x720 pixels.

Accessories

A few printed instructions and a quick-start poster come with the laptop. No additional accessories are included.

Windows 8 (64-bit) is preinstalled as the operating system. An installation DVD is not included, and therefore the laptop buyer should create backup media immediately after purchase. This would, for example, make it possible to reinstall the system after exchanging the hard drive. Sony includes a corresponding tool that is part of the preinstalled Vaio Care software, which is opened via the Assist button. This button also turns on the laptop when pressed in a shut down state, and opens a menu that enables accessing various repair and recovery functions, as well as the BIOS.

It is also possible to swap Windows 8 for Windows 7 when preferred. Sony provides drivers for both Windows 7 and Windows 8 on its website.

Maintenance

Two maintenance covers are found on the Vaio's underside. One cover allows accessing the hard drive, and the other the working memory. The laptop features two working memory banks that are fitted with a 4 GB module each. Replacing the hard drive would not be difficult; 2.5-inch models with a height of either 7 or 9.5 mm can be used.

Warranty

A 24 month warranty is included on the Vaio, like the IdeaPad. Buyers of the Pavilion will have to be satisfied with a one-year standard warranty. The Vaio's warranty can be upgraded to three years for approximately 100 Euros (~$137), or four years for approximately 180 Euros (~$247).

Input Devices

Keyboard

The Vaio features an illuminated chiclet keyboard. The light has three settings: on, off, and on when a key is pressed. There are no function keys to change its state; the Vaio's control center always has to be opened for this. The keys have a size of almost 15 x 15 mm. They supply an overall short drop and clear pressure point. The keys' resistance could be a bit firmer, but that is a matter of taste. The keyboard yields a bit when typing on it, but we did not find that exceedingly annoying. Basically, the keyboard is acceptable for home use.

Touchpad

The Vaio's multi-touch ClickPad, i.e. a touchpad without dedicated keys because the entire pad is a button, has a surface area of 10.5 x 6.5 cm. Thus, there is enough room for using multi-touch gestures comfortably. The different gestures can be individually disabled or enabled in the pad's setup menu. Not all available gestures are enabled by default. The pad's sleek surface allows the fingers to glide over it easily. The pad has a short drop, and a clearly audible and palpable pressure point.

The keyboard features a backlight.
The keyboard features a backlight.
The touchpad supports multi-touch gestures.
The touchpad supports multi-touch gestures.

Display

Sony installs a glare-type, 15.5-inch screen that works with a native resolution of 1366x768 pixels. The Pavilion features a virtually identical model. Buyers of the IdeaPad are treated to a matte Full HD screen. The Vaio screen provides an average brightness of 214.2 cd/m², which places it in the upper midfield. The Pavilion's screen is much lower (142.6 cd/m²), while the IdeaPad (294.6 cd/m²) scores much better than both contenders.

210
cd/m²
204
cd/m²
213
cd/m²
207
cd/m²
228
cd/m²
206
cd/m²
211
cd/m²
223
cd/m²
226
cd/m²
Distribution of brightness
Information
X-Rite i1Pro 2
Maximum: 228 cd/m²
Average: 214.2 cd/m²
Brightness Distribution: 89 %
Center on Battery: 228 cd/m²
Black: 0.32 cd/m²
Contrast: 713:1
Sony Vaio vs. sRGB
Sony Vaio vs. sRGB
Sony Vaio vs. AdobeRGB
Sony Vaio vs. AdobeRGB

The Vaio screen's contrast of 713:1 and black level of 0.32 cd/m² are both compelling. The same is true for the Pavilion's screen (681:1; 0.21 cd/m²), but the IdeaPad's display is clearly defeated (327:1; 0.97 cd/m²). The screen cannot cover either the AdobeRGB or sRGB color spaces with 39.8% and 55.9% respectively. These color spaces are, for example, important in professional image editing.

The screen's average DeltaE 2000 deviation is 10 in state of delivery. No color achieves the target range of DeltaE smaller than 3. The screen exhibits a bluish cast.

CalMAN - ColorChecker
CalMAN - ColorChecker
CalMAN - Grayscale
CalMAN - Grayscale
CalMAN - Saturation Sweeps
CalMAN - Saturation Sweeps

It is quite possible to recognize content on the screen outdoors. However, the laptop has to be placed in a position that prevents reflections.

To put it kindly, the Vaio's viewing angle stability is very poor and equals those from the budget laptop sector. The horizontal angle is sufficiently wide, and allows several people to look at the screen. Changing the vertical viewing angle quickly causes image distortions though. Overall, we would have expected a better screen for a laptop price of just under 900 Euros (~$1239). A marginally higher-quality TN screen would have been the least.

Viewing angles: Sony Vaio SVF1521V6EB
Viewing angles: Sony Vaio SVF1521V6EB
The Vaio outdoors.
The Vaio outdoors.

Performance

Sony's Vaio Fit line could be seen as the successor of the former E-series. Sony offers innumerable laptops in a wide range of performance levels within the Fit product line - starting with entry-level models up to all-rounders. Our review sample is a 15.5-inch all-rounder. In addition to routine tasks, the laptop can also be used for playing up-to-date games. Our review sample is currently sold for approximately 800 Euros (~$1101).

CPU-Z
CPU-Z
CPU-Z
CPU-Z
CPU-Z
GPU-Z
GPU-Z
HWInfo
System information: Sony Vaio SV-F1521V6EB

Processor

The Vaio is equipped with an Intel Core i7-3537U processor. This dual-core model comes from the former Ivy Bridge generation. It is surprising that Sony did not install a Haswell processor. The Core i7 works with a base clock of 2 GHz. Its speed can be increased to 2.9 GHz (both cores) and 3.1 GHz (one core only) via Turbo. The CPU is a member of the ULV processors that run with a low voltage, which reduces the power consumption. Intel specifies a TDP of 17 watts for the Core i7.

The processor performed the Cinebench CPU tests with a stable 2.9 GHz. Overall, the Vaio's score is slightly lower than that of the Pavilion (Core i7-4500, GeForce GT 740M). The latter benefits from its somewhat stronger Haswell processor. The IdeaPad (Core i5-4200M, GeForce GT 740M) particularly stands out from its contenders in multi-thread applications because the installed processor works with higher Turbo speeds, and a higher base clock. The Pavilion and IdeaPad are on par in single-thread applications. Although all three laptops sport the same GPU, the IdeaPad wins the GL tests. The GPUs in the contenders do not run the tests at full speed.

Cinebench R10 Rendering Single CPUs 64Bit
4720 Points
Cinebench R10 Shading 64Bit
6312 Points
Cinebench R10 Rendering Multiple CPUs 64Bit
10352 Points
Cinebench R10 Rendering Single 32Bit
4278
Cinebench R10 Rendering Multiple CPUs 32Bit
7748
Cinebench R10 Shading 32Bit
6479
Cinebench R11.5 CPU Single 64Bit
1.14 Points
Cinebench R11.5 OpenGL 64Bit
35.31 fps
Cinebench R11.5 CPU Multi 64Bit
2.75 Points
Cinebench R15 OpenGL 64Bit
48.42 fps
Cinebench R15 Ref. Match 64Bit
99.6 %
Cinebench R15 CPU Multi 64Bit
247 Points
Cinebench R15 CPU Single 64Bit
104 Points
Help
Cinebench R11.5 - OpenGL 64Bit (sort by value)
Sony Vaio SV-F1521V6EB
GeForce GT 740M, 3537U, HGST Travelstar 5K1000 HTS541010A9E680
35.31 fps ∼29%
Lenovo G505s-20255
Radeon HD 8650G + HD 8570M Dual Graphics, A10-5750M, Seagate ST1000LM014 Solid State Hybrid Drive
29.44 fps ∼24% -17%
HP Pavilion 15-e052sg
Radeon HD 8550G + HD 8670M Dual Graphics, A8-5550M, Hitachi Travelstar Z5K500 HTS545050A7E380
26.58 fps ∼22% -25%
Acer Aspire E1-572G-54204G75Mnkk
Radeon HD 8750M, 4200U, TOSHIBA MQ01ABD075
37.85 fps ∼31% +7%
HP Pavilion TouchSmart 15-n010sg
GeForce GT 740M, 4500U, Seagate Momentus Thin ST500LT0 12-9WS142
40.61 fps ∼33% +15%
Acer Aspire V5-573G-54208G50aii
GeForce GT 750M, 4200U, Seagate Momentus Thin ST500LT0 12-9WS142
42.33 fps ∼35% +20%
Dell Latitude 3540
Radeon HD 8850M, 4200U, WDC Scorpio Blue WD7500BPVX-75JC3T0
43.3 fps ∼35% +23%
Lenovo IdeaPad Z510
GeForce GT 740M, 4200M, Seagate ST500LM000 Solid State Hybrid Drive
45.35 fps ∼37% +28%
Cinebench R11.5 - CPU Multi 64Bit (sort by value)
Sony Vaio SV-F1521V6EB
GeForce GT 740M, 3537U, HGST Travelstar 5K1000 HTS541010A9E680
2.75 Points ∼16%
Lenovo G505s-20255
Radeon HD 8650G + HD 8570M Dual Graphics, A10-5750M, Seagate ST1000LM014 Solid State Hybrid Drive
2.31 Points ∼13% -16%
HP Pavilion 15-e052sg
Radeon HD 8550G + HD 8670M Dual Graphics, A8-5550M, Hitachi Travelstar Z5K500 HTS545050A7E380
2.06 Points ∼12% -25%
Acer Aspire V5-573G-54208G50aii
GeForce GT 750M, 4200U, Seagate Momentus Thin ST500LT0 12-9WS142
2.45 Points ∼14% -11%
Dell Latitude 3540
Radeon HD 8850M, 4200U, WDC Scorpio Blue WD7500BPVX-75JC3T0
2.47 Points ∼14% -10%
Acer Aspire E1-572G-54204G75Mnkk
Radeon HD 8750M, 4200U, TOSHIBA MQ01ABD075
2.51 Points ∼14% -9%
HP Pavilion TouchSmart 15-n010sg
GeForce GT 740M, 4500U, Seagate Momentus Thin ST500LT0 12-9WS142
2.84 Points ∼16% +3%
Lenovo IdeaPad Z510
GeForce GT 740M, 4200M, Seagate ST500LM000 Solid State Hybrid Drive
3.25 Points ∼18% +18%

System Performance

We did not experience any problems with the system performance. The system runs smoothly and without hitches. The PCMark benchmarks scores are correspondingly good. The Vaio lags behind the Pavilion (Core i7-4500U, GeForce GT 740M) slightly because it sports the weaker processor. The IdeaPad (Core i5-4200M, GeForce GT 740M) is far ahead of its contenders, which is due to its stronger processor and the installed hybrid hard drive.

The easiest way to increase the system's performance would be to install a solid state drive. We tried this. Our Crucial RealSSD C300 - 64 GB SSD let Windows boot faster, and the system was overall swifter. The PCMark benchmark scores also increased; the Vaio's PCMark 7 score improved by approximately 69% to 4807 points.

5.7
Windows 8 Experience Index
Processor
Calculations per second
7.1
Memory (RAM)
Memory operations per second
7.9
Graphics
Desktop performance for Windows Aero
5.7
Gaming graphics
3D business and gaming graphics
6.4
Primary hard disk
Disk data transfer rate
5.9
PC Mark
PCMark Vantage6970 points
PCMark 72844 points
PCMark 8 Home2948 points
PCMark 8 Creative2804 points
PCMark 8 Work4554 points
Help
PCMark 7 - Score (sort by value)
Sony Vaio SV-F1521V6EB
GeForce GT 740M, 3537U, HGST Travelstar 5K1000 HTS541010A9E680
2844 Points ∼43%
HP Pavilion 15-e052sg
Radeon HD 8550G + HD 8670M Dual Graphics, A8-5550M, Hitachi Travelstar Z5K500 HTS545050A7E380
1996 Points ∼30% -30%
Lenovo G505s-20255
Radeon HD 8650G + HD 8570M Dual Graphics, A10-5750M, Seagate ST1000LM014 Solid State Hybrid Drive
3062 Points ∼46% +8%
Dell Latitude 3540
Radeon HD 8850M, 4200U, WDC Scorpio Blue WD7500BPVX-75JC3T0
2627 Points ∼40% -8%
Acer Aspire E1-572G-54204G75Mnkk
Radeon HD 8750M, 4200U, TOSHIBA MQ01ABD075
2711 Points ∼41% -5%
Acer Aspire V5-573G-54208G50aii
GeForce GT 750M, 4200U, Seagate Momentus Thin ST500LT0 12-9WS142
2878 Points ∼43% +1%
HP Pavilion TouchSmart 15-n010sg
GeForce GT 740M, 4500U, Seagate Momentus Thin ST500LT0 12-9WS142
3034 Points ∼46% +7%
Lenovo IdeaPad Z510
GeForce GT 740M, 4200M, Seagate ST500LM000 Solid State Hybrid Drive
4214 Points ∼64% +48%

Storage Device

HD Tune
HD Tune
CrystalDiskMark
CrystalDiskMark

Sony installs a Travelstar 5K1000 hard drive from HGST. The hard drive has a capacity of 1 TB and spins with 5400 revolutions per minute. CrystalDiskMark recorded a read speed of 99.68 MB/s; HD Tune delivered an average transfer rate of 81.9 MB/s. The rates are acceptable, and correspond to the performance of most modern 5400 rpm hard drives. We were overall satisfied with the hard drive. It offers a lot of storage capacity and works sufficiently fast. Nevertheless, we would have expected a hybrid hard drive or alternatively an SSD cache for the laptop's purchase price.

HGST Travelstar 5K1000 HTS541010A9E680
Transfer Rate Minimum: 46.5 MB/s
Transfer Rate Maximum: 106.5 MB/s
Transfer Rate Average: 81.9 MB/s
Access Time: 18.7 ms
Burst Rate: 194.3 MB/s
CPU Usage: 3 %

Graphics Card

The Optimus configuration made up of Intel's HD Graphics 4000 GPU and Nvidia's GeForce GT 740M graphics core is used in the Vaio. The Intel core is enabled in routine and battery operation. The GeForce GPU takes care of performance hungry computer games. Both chips support DirectX 11.1. The GeForce chip is a member of the mid-range. It works with a base speed of 980 MHz, which can be increased to 1058 MHz via Turbo.

All three comparison laptops sport the same GPU. Consequently, their scores in the 3DMark benchmarks should be very similar. However, the IdeaPad (Core i5-4200M, GeForce GT 740M) scores a bit better due to its stronger CPU. The Vaio consistently scores a bit worse than both the Pavilion (Core i7-4500U, GeForce GT 740M) and the IdeaPad. That is due to its slightly weaker CPU.

All three laptops generally do not max out their potential. The graphic chips in all devices are connected to the graphics memory via a 64-bit line, which slows down the graphics cores extremely. They achieve scores that are partly below those of a GeForce GT 730M. Nvidia also offers a GeForce GT 740M that is connected to the graphics memory via a 128-bit interface. A correspondingly equipped laptop would be the Asus N56VB-S4050H (Core i7-3630QM, GeForce GT 740M). This laptop achieves roughly 30% better 3DMark scores.

3D Mark
3DMark 06
 1280x1024
9266 points
3DMark Vantage6073 points
3DMark 111888 points
3DMark Ice Storm52119 points
3DMark Cloud Gate5352 points
3DMark Fire Strike1059 points
Help
Sony Vaio SV-F1521V6EB
Intel Core i7-3537U, NVIDIA GeForce GT 740M, HGST Travelstar 5K1000 HTS541010A9E680
HP Pavilion TouchSmart 15-n010sg
Intel Core i7-4500U, NVIDIA GeForce GT 740M, Seagate Momentus Thin ST500LT0 12-9WS142
Lenovo IdeaPad Z510
Intel Core i5-4200M, NVIDIA GeForce GT 740M, Seagate ST500LM000 Solid State Hybrid Drive
Asus N56VB-S4050H
Intel Core i7-3630QM, NVIDIA GeForce GT 740M, WDC Scorpio Blue WD7500BPVT-80HXZT3
3DMark (2013)
3%
3%
35%
1280x720 Ice Storm Standard Score5211955133
6%
52373
0%
67664
30%
1280x720 Cloud Gate Standard Score53525466
2%
5375
0%
8226
54%
1920x1080 Fire Strike Standard Score10591065
1%
1147
8%
1269
20%

Gaming Performance

The CPU/GPU combination of the Vaio ensures that most games can be played smoothly in the native resolution of 1366x768 pixels in medium quality settings. Our three comparison laptops achieve fairly identical frame rates. Again, the IdeaPad has a slight lead because it sports the strongest processor. Like in the 3DMark benchmarks, the three laptops remain behind their possibilities due to their graphics memory only connected via a 64-bit interface. A direct comparison with the Asus N56VB-S4050H proves this.

Other laptops are available should more focus be placed on gaming. For example, the aforementioned Asus N56VB. It is within the same price range of the other laptops. A much stronger device would be the Lenovo IdeaPad Y510p. It features a Core i7-4700MQ processor, and a GeForce GT 755M SLI array (= 2 graphics cards). The laptop is sold for approximately 1050 Euros (~$1445) with a matte Full HD screen. A slimmed down version with a Core i5-4200M and only one GeForce GT 755M core is available from 750 Euros (~$1032). It also features a matte Full HD screen, but does not include a Windows operating system.

low med.high ultra
Anno 2070 (2011) 94.653.428.8fps
Tomb Raider (2013) 88.842.923.9fps
GRID 2 (2013) 12171.444.9fps
Sony Vaio SV-F1521V6EB
Intel Core i7-3537U, NVIDIA GeForce GT 740M, HGST Travelstar 5K1000 HTS541010A9E680
HP Pavilion TouchSmart 15-n010sg
Intel Core i7-4500U, NVIDIA GeForce GT 740M, Seagate Momentus Thin ST500LT0 12-9WS142
Lenovo IdeaPad Z510
Intel Core i5-4200M, NVIDIA GeForce GT 740M, Seagate ST500LM000 Solid State Hybrid Drive
Asus N56VB-S4050H
Intel Core i7-3630QM, NVIDIA GeForce GT 740M, WDC Scorpio Blue WD7500BPVT-80HXZT3
Lenovo IdeaPad Y510p-59400120
Intel Core i7-4700MQ, NVIDIA GeForce GT 755M SLI, Seagate ST1000LM014 Solid State Hybrid Drive
Tomb Raider
-0%
9%
36%
348%
1024x768 Low Preset88.887.5
-1%
97
9%
111.4
25%
1366x768 Normal Preset AA:FX AF:4x42.942.7
0%
47
10%
57.9
35%
164.6
284%
1366x768 High Preset AA:FX AF:8x23.923.9
0%
25.9
8%
35.3
48%
122.1
411%

Emissions

System Noise

We measured a noise level ranging from 30.3 to 31.9 dB in idle mode. These rates are acceptable in view of the laptop's available performance. The IdeaPad (30.9 to 32.4 dB) and the Pavilion (31.7 to 32.7 dB) are roughly on par with that. The Vaio's noise increased to 38.5 dB during medium load (via 3DMark06) and 40.1 dB in full load (stress test via Prime95 and Furmark). Thus, it places itself between the IdeaPad (37.6 and 39.1 dB) and the Pavilion (42.8 and 45.9 dB). We should mention the Vaio's quiet Blu-ray drive from which we ascertained a maximum noise level of 32.7 dB.

Noise Level

Idle 30.3 / 30.3 / 31.4 dB(A)
HDD 31.9 dB(A)
DVD 32.7 / dB(A)
Load 38.5 / 40.1 dB(A)
 
    30 dB
silent
40 dB
audible
50 dB
loud
 
min: , med: , max:    Voltcraft sl-320 (15 cm distance)

Temperature

Sony's Vaio SV-F1521V6EB in the stress test.
Sony's Vaio SV-F1521V6EB in the stress test.

While idling, the surface temperatures of all three laptops are within an acceptable range. The TouchSmart's temperatures all clearly remain below 30 °C. The devices all surpass 40 °C in several areas, but that is tolerable.

The CPU ran the stress test (Prime95 and Furmark run for at least one hour) with 2 GHz in both AC and battery mode. Speeds of 2.7 to 2.8 GHz were only reached in the first 4 to 5 minutes. However, the GPU always worked at full Turbo speed (1058 MHz), regardless whether on AC or battery power. We reran 3DMark06 directly after the stress test. The score was identical with that in the laptop's cold state. The CPU's temperature settled to approximately 67 °C in AC mode.

Max. Load
 41.4 °C39.8 °C24.7 °C 
 39.4 °C44 °C23.3 °C 
 33 °C33.2 °C26.7 °C 
Maximum: 44 °C
Average: 33.9 °C
24.7 °C28.6 °C41.9 °C
25 °C31.3 °C42.7 °C
27.7 °C26.7 °C36.2 °C
Maximum: 42.7 °C
Average: 31.6 °C
Power Supply (max.)  50.2 °C | Room Temperature 22.5 °C | Voltcraft IR-360

Speakers

The Vaio's stereo speakers are on the front. They produce a pleasant, rich sound that lacks bass. Speech is well-intelligible. Headphones or external speakers would be recommendable for a higher-quality sound experience.

Energy Management

Power Consumption

The Vaio consumes between 6.5 and 11.4 watts when idling. This makes it evident that an Ivy Bridge ULV processor is still used in the laptop. The Pavilion (4 to 7.4 watts) sports a Haswell ULV CPU, and is more energy-efficient. Even the IdeaPad's power consumption is marginally lower, despite a standard mobile processor (Haswell). The Vaio's power consumption increases to 39.2 watts during medium load (via 3DMark06) and 45.6 watts in full load (stress test via Prime95 and Furmark). Thus, it is roughly on par with the Pavilion (42.3 and 42.5 watts). The IdeaPad consumes the most power (57.9 and 55.4 watts) due to its standard mobile processor. The full load rate is lower because the laptop does not run at full speed.

Power Consumption

Off / Standby 0.1 / 0.9 Watt
Idle 6.5 / 10 / 11.4 Watt
Load 39.3 / 45.6 Watt
 
Key: min: , med: , max:         Voltcraft VC 940

Battery Runtime

The Vaio's battery lasted for 5:45 h in idle mode. The IdeaPad (6:56 h), and particularly the Pavilion (8:06 h) achieve better runtimes. The idle mode is ascertained with Battery Eater's Reader's test, where the screen is set to minimum, the energy-savings profile is enabled, and the wireless modules are off. Sony's laptop shut down after 1:17 h of load. The IdeaPad (1:29 h) and the Pavilion (1:26 h) only last a bit longer. The load runtime is ascertained via Battery Eater's Classic test using maximum screen brightness, the high-performance profile, and enabled wireless modules.

The Vaio closed the Wi-Fi test after 4:08 h. Thus, it is positioned between the IdeaPad (3:27 h) and the Pavilion (4:26 h). Websites are automatically opened every 40 seconds, the energy-savings profile is active, and the screen's brightness is set to approximately 150 cd/m² for this test. DVD playback stopped after 2:39 h on the Vaio. The IdeaPad (2:43 h) is on a par, and the Pavilion (3:33 h) again presents the longest runtime. The DVD test is performed using enabled energy-savings profile (or a higher profile should the DVD not run smoothly), maximum screen brightness, and disabled wireless modules.

The runtimes of the three devices can be compared quite well because their battery capacities (Sony: 40 Wh; Lenovo: 48 Wh; HP: 41 Wh) are quite similar.

Battery Runtime
Idle (without WLAN, min brightness)
5h 45min
WiFi Surfing
4h 08min
DVD
2h 39min
Load (maximum brightness)
1h 17min

Verdict

Sony Vaio Fit SV-F1521V6EB.
Sony Vaio Fit SV-F1521V6EB.

Sony's Vaio Fit SVF1521V6EB offers a decent application and gaming performance. The computer provides a high storage capacity, and can boast with a Blu-ray burner. That also summarizes the laptop's advantages. The Vaio's purchase price is just under 900 Euros (~$1239), which is too high in our opinion. Sony should have delivered more to justify this price. A better screen with Full HD resolution, a hybrid hard drive, a higher-quality casing, and better battery runtimes: just to name a few examples. It is also inconceivable that Sony still uses an Ivy Bridge processor.

Lenovo's IdeaPad Z510 is interesting for users who want maximum performance. Of the three comparison devices, it achieves the best rates in our benchmarks. Another highlight of the Z510 is its matte Full HD screen. The laptop is available for 700 Euros (~$963), and makes the IdeaPad the lowest priced laptop among our comparison devices. HP's Pavilion TouchSmart 15-n010sg comes into question when the longest possible runtimes are needed. The HP laptop is priced at around 800 Euros (~$1101). Another alternative for the gaming segment would be the Asus N56VB because it achieves much higher frame rates than the other three laptops. Its price is approximately 800 Euros (~$1101) with a Core i5 processor or 900 Euros (~$1239) with a Core i7 processor.

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In Review: Sony Vaio Fit SV-F1521V6EB, model courtesy of Sony.
In Review: Sony Vaio Fit SV-F1521V6EB, model courtesy of Sony.

Specifications

Sony Vaio SV-F1521V6EB
Graphics adapter
NVIDIA GeForce GT 740M - 2048 MB, Core: 980-1058 MHz, Memory: 900 MHz, DDR3 memory, 64 bit line, ForceWare 331.82, Optimus
Memory
8192 MB 
, DDR3, dual-channel, two memory banks (both occupied)
Display
15.5 inch 16:9, 1366x768 pixel, Chi Mei N156BGE-L41, TN LED, glossy: yes
Mainboard
Intel HM76 (Panther Point)
Harddisk
HGST Travelstar 5K1000 HTS541010A9E680, 1000 GB 
5400 rpm , 880 GB free
Soundcard
Intel Panther Point PCH - High Definition Audio Controller
Connections
2 USB 2.0, 2 USB 3.0, 1 HDMI, 1 Kensington Lock, Audio Connections: headphone, microphone, Card Reader: SD, SDHC, SDXC, NFC
Networking
Realtek RTL8168/8111 Gigabit-LAN (10/100/1000MBit), Broadcom BCM43142 (b g n ), 4.0 Bluetooth
Optical drive
Matshita BD-MLT UJ272
Size
height x width x depth (in mm): 25 x 380 x 261 ( = 0.98 x 14.96 x 10.28 in)
Weight
2.5 kg ( = 88.19 oz) Power Supply: 210 g ( = 7.41 oz)
Battery
40 Wh Lithium-Ion, 14.8 V, 2670 mAh
Price
899 Euro
Operating System
Microsoft Windows 8 64 Bit
Additional features
Webcam: HD Webcam (1280 x 720), Speakers: stereo, Keyboard: chiclet, Keyboard Light: yes, Cyberlink Power2Go 8, Cyberlink PowerDVD, McAfee Internet Security (trial), MS Office 365 (trial), PlayMemories Home, Vaio Movie Creator, Vaio Gesture Control, 24 Months Warranty

 

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Sony installs a Blu-ray burner in the Vaio.
Sony installs a Blu-ray burner in the Vaio.
A number pad is also available.
A number pad is also available.
The hinges...
The hinges...
...keep the lid firmly in position.
...keep the lid firmly in position.
There are two small maintenance covers.
There are two small maintenance covers.
The Vaio features two working memory banks.
The Vaio features two working memory banks.
Replacing the hard drive is no problem.
Replacing the hard drive is no problem.
The burner can be removed.
The burner can be removed.
The battery weighs 215 grams.
The battery weighs 215 grams.
It has a capacity of 40 Wh.
It has a capacity of 40 Wh.
The power supply weighs just under 210 grams...
The power supply weighs just under 210 grams...
...and has a power output of 65 watts.
...and has a power output of 65 watts.
A close-up of a back corner...
A close-up of a back corner...
...and a front corner.
...and a front corner.
The NFC sensor is installed in the right part of the wrist rest.
The NFC sensor is installed in the right part of the wrist rest.
The keys have a short drop.
The keys have a short drop.
The speakers are on the laptop's front.
The speakers are on the laptop's front.
The Vaio outdoors.
The Vaio outdoors.
Sony preinstalls various apps.
Sony preinstalls various apps.

Similar Laptops

Devices with the same GPU

» Review Asus VivoBook S451LB Notebook
Core i5 4200U, 14", 2.2 kg
» Review Asus X550LB-NH52 Notebook
Core i5 4200U, 15.6", 2.256 kg
» Review Asus AsusPro P750LB-T2057G Notebook
Core i3 4010U, 17.3", 2.67 kg
» Review Update HP Pavilion 15-n213eg Notebook
Core i5 4200U, 15.6", 2.3 kg
» Review Lenovo IdeaPad Z710 59393211 Notebook
Core i5 4200M, 17.3", 2.9 kg

Links

Compare Prices

Pro

+Good application performance
+Decent gaming power
+High storage capacity
+High-contrast screen
+Blu-Ray burner
+Keyboard backlight
 

Cons

-Screen's bluish cast
-Poor battery runtimes
-No VGA out
-High price

Shortcut

What we like

The application and gaming performance, as well as the high storage capacity.

What we'd like to see

A better, higher resolution screen and a higher-quality casing.

What surprises us

Sony demands a lot of money for an average laptop.

The competition

HP Pavilion TouchSmart 15-n010sg, Lenovo IdeaPad Z510, Acer Aspire E1-572G, Acer Aspire V5-573G, HP Pavilion 15-e052sg, Dell Latitude 3540, Lenovo G505s-20255, Toshiba Satellite C55-A-1D5, Lenovo IdeaPad S500 Touch, Toshiba Satellite L50-A-10Q, Toshiba Satellite S50-A-10H, Asus N550JV-CN201H, Lenovo IdeaPad Y510p.

Rating

Sony Vaio SV-F1521V6EB
04/16/2014 v4
Sascha Mölck

Chassis
55 / 98 → 56%
Keyboard
67%
Pointing Device
75%
Connectivity
58 / 95 → 61%
Weight
60 / 67 → 85%
Battery
78%
Display
70%
Games Performance
76 / 93 → 82%
Application Performance
63%
Temperature
83%
Noise
90 / 95 → 95%
Audio
50%
Camera
38 / 85 → 45%
Average
66%
72%
Multimedia *
Weighted Average

> Notebook / Laptop Reviews and News > Reviews > Review Sony Vaio Fit SV-F1521V6EB Notebook
Author: Sascha Mölck, 2013-12-12 (Update: 2013-12-18)