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The Vaio T13 is the first ultra-portable 13.3-inch ultrabook type of Sony. Its rich expertise with models like the Z Series, the Japanese manufacturer is able to do it better than the competition, while respecting the standards imposed by Intel (power, thickness, autonomy ...)? The answer is in this test ...

At the out of the box, the T13 looks so beautiful with its cover aluminum alloy and magnesium, whose finish is very sensitive to fingerprints. Once opened, it displays a good level of finish although it seems still a little less elegant than Dell Inspiron 1420 Battery.

We also noticed that the cover that protects the screen goes under the chassis when it is fully opened. It is therefore this part that rests on the back of the T13 when it is open (see photo above). This allows to take off a few millimeters of the surface on which it rests and promote air circulation unfortunate consequence: it is then the hinges morflent when pressed on the hull.

The keypad separate, despite a respectable size and well proportioned keys, we have not conquered. In fact, it offers extremely short strikes which almost gives the impression that you tap on a table. Its use is not the most pleasant.

The touchpad, however, made a good impression on us. If it is not very spacious, fully clickable offers a smooth ride and accepts all the multitouch features (zoom / un-zoom with two fingers and the scrolling 2, 3 and 4 fingers).

Webcam (720p) provides a detailed picture in bright areas but shows a strong tingling in dark areas. For optimum, so make sure to use it in a well lit room.

The Dell Latitude D630 Battery connector is compatible with current usage. The T13 has two video outputs (VGA and HDMI), RJ45 port, a card reader (supports SD and Memory Stick), a headphone and mic combo jack (Headset) and two USB ports (1 x 1 x 2.0 and 3.0). The lack of a dedicated microphone jack penalize probably not many people, but a third USB port on the right edge would have been welcome, especially since the two ports can be blocked by this one big USB stick for example.

Positive, even when pushing its components with heavy applications or several benchmarks, the Sony T13 is quiet enough to go unnoticed until there is a complete silence. Another advantage it gives off very little heat despite the thinness of the chassis (17.8 mm). Sony has done a great job on this part.

The display color rendering quite disastrous (delta E 12.8) only the use of a calibration profile can improve. The contrast displayed by the 13.3-inch slab is less good (230: 1). This is not even a notebook. Another black spot this screen, full brightness not exceed 180 cd / m². With such a brightness and a glossy coating on the screen has absolutely no chance to avoid reflections of direct light (sun lamp placed in his back ...). Finally, definition (1366 x 768 pixels) is fairly standard and can display characters legibly. Sony, however, a little late to this party because Asus has already happened in 1600 x 900 pixels on its 13.3-inch ultrabook (ASUS Eee PC 1005).

Honorable overall performance for the audio section. The speakers will not mark the spirits, but can broadcast a signal understandable and relatively clean. We do not ask for too much against in terms of power.

Side input-output measures are very good and the power should suit any headset or hands-free kit - remember that only a combo jack (headphone and microphone) is available.

Configuration tested:

Received test configuration includes an Intel Core i3-2367M, 4GB of memory, Intel HD 3000 graphics chipset and a 320GB hard drive backed by a 32GB SSD Express in cache. Unlike the rest of the test, which is valid for all Vaio T13 (see box below cons), only variant tested here is concerned with our comments on performance.

The embedded processor is a low-power variant of Intel's Core i3. It is a i3-2367M, less efficient than models like the i3-2330M. According to our measurements, which include, among others, 3D modeling, data archiving and full HD video encoding, it takes an average of 45% more time than the Core i3-2330M to do the same tasks.

Note that it is still more than 2 times faster than a processor Intel Atom or AMD E-450 found in netbooks and notebooks some very powerful. Without being the fastest, it therefore leaves some freedom in the choice of applications. Office and everyday tasks such as surfing the Internet remains a cakewalk for him.

The addition of SDS 32 GB Express Cache to support the hard disk of 320 GB delivers improved responsiveness, but also a start time of about 35 seconds, connect to Wi-Fi included. Time to extinction is him just 5 seconds.

As a reminder this SSD is not accessible to the user. This is the computer that controls and is used to store some data faster.

Games

No surprise on his skills in the game. Lack of a dedicated graphics card, it can launch a very limited number of recent titles like FiFA 11 in the native resolution of the Dell Vostro 1320 screen. Even on those, it will not be too greedy on the level of detail required (average at best) under penalty to bring down the frame rate. With regard to older titles like Half Life 2, the flexibility is greater.

If the T13 does not perfectly in games, the presence of the HD 3000 chipset, it provides however to decode 1080p videos smoothly.

Autonomy

Sony announced 7 hours, with our test procedure (720p video playback, screen at 100 cd / m², headphones plugged in and Wi-Fi off) the T13 has resisted 5:20. A correct value, coupled with a weight of 1.48 kg, it can travel easily. Its dimensions also allow to slip easily into a backpack.

Sony has provided a range of configurations to correct its T13. One tested here is the configuration the least powerful (sold around 750 euros).

It is possible to replace the CPU evaluated in this article more powerful models Dell Inspiron 1520 Battery (Intel Core i5-3317U or Intel i7-3517U). The amount of RAM may also vary between 4, 6 and 8 GB Finally, side storage, it is possible to stay on a HDD + SSD Express Cache and increase the capacity of HDD from 320 to 500 GB It is also possible to switch on only one storage provided by an SSD (128 to 512 GB). If one takes the highest configuration, the selling price of the T13 is now nearly three times compared to the first model.

For us, the evaluated configuration here that is offering the best price / performance ratio.

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