The premium brand goes for the budget buyer.
We usually associate Sony with the higher end of the market, so it was a refreshing change to see the VPCJ228 come in at half the price of the most expensive all-in-ones on the market. Aimed at budget users, Sony has obviously had to cut a few corners to deliver such a friendly price tag, but has it cut too many?
An Intel Core i5-2430M does most of the heavy lifting, with the meagre two cores offset somewhat by a healthy 3GHz maximum Turbo speed. The included 4GB of DDR3 memory is the bare minimum we’d accept for Windows 7, while the AMD HD6470M GPU performs almost identically to the Nvidia GeForce G520 used in other all-in-ones. In other words, great for HD decoding, not so great for gaming. Storage has also been pared back, with a single 500GB hard drive handling your long-term data. This hardware combo scored a respectable 2,015 in PCMark 7, around 20% slower than the fastest all-in-ones.
The exterior is slightly smaller, thanks to the 21in monitor it’s based on, but it remains quite a deep unit. Image quality is solid if unexceptional, though we do appreciate the full 1080p resolution used here. Touch accuracy was good in the centre of the screen, but started to drop off the closer we got to the corners. A standard DVD-RW drive is included, but sadly, there’s no TV tuner.
We’re left with the impression that this is a solid all-in-one at a great price. If you’re looking for a very simple desktop PC rolled into a single package, you could do a lot worse. We can’t help but think the lack of a $40 TV tuner is a strange omission, but it’s easily rectifiable with a USB dongle.Available from Sony, retailing for $1,399
.APC rating: 7/10