Product : Sony Vaio VGN-Z890
Price : $ 1799 and up (depending customizations)
Date : 11/11/2009
Rating : 4.25 / 5
Operating System Used in Review : Windows 7 Home Premium 64-Bit Edition
Pros : High quality construction. Attractive, Successful Patented Hybrid Graphics System (requires no reboot), lightweight and slim design. DDR3 Memory, great battery life, HDMI Connectivity with Audio Transmission, Windows 7, Very Portable.
Cons : Same outdated video card as previous VGN-Z790 model, highly priced. Lots of bloatware, slightly fragile design, quiet speakers.
Key Takeaway : The VGN-Z890 does not offer any substantial changes from its predecessor, the VGN-Z790, but when a laptop is already this good, it is understandable. This laptop is still one of the most powerful ones in his weight class.
Model : VAIO VGN-Z890
Processor : P9700 2.80GHz
Color : Premium Carbon Fiber
Display : 13.1 "widescreen XBRITE-DuraView LED Backlight (1600 x 900 resolution – 16: 9 aspect ratio)
Memory : 4GB (2GBx2) DDR3-SDRAM-1066
Camera : Motion Eye camera / microphone
Wireless : Intel WiFi Link 5100AGN 802.11a / b / g / n 2.4 GHz; A2DP Bluetooth
Video Card : Hybrid: 256MB NVIDIA GeForce 9300M GS / Intel GMA 4500MHD with Intel Clear Video Technology (Requires no reboot to switch between both)
Hard Driv e : 320 GB SATA Hard Disk Drive (7200RPM) G-Sensor Shock Protection
Optical Drive : CD-R / RW DVD-R / RW + – (DL) Plays / Burns CDs / DVDs
Battery : Standard and Extended
Connects : 2-USB 2.0, VGA, HDMI (audio / video), SD / Memory Stick Duo, Gigabit Ethernet Port 10/100/1000, modem jack, Firewire / IEEE / i.Link Connector (4pin), Headphone Jack, Microphone Jack, Express Card / 34 slot
Sound : Intel High Definition audio
Weight : 3.3 pounds
Dimensions : 8.3 "x 12.4" x 1.3 "(Length x Width x Height – Inches)
Warranty : 1-Year Sony Warranty
Miscellaneous : Built in Biometric Fingerprint Sensor. Windows XP downgrade offered.
The packaging of this product is within the same standard as the previous model. Depending on where you get it, it can be wrapped in a cardboard box, containing another cardboard box, and so forth. Like the previous model, there is not really anything of interest here … The laptop comes wrapped up, there is warranty / operating information, the rechargeable lithium-ion battery, and the AC Adapter.
Here I will again reiterate what the connections are. For being so small, the VGN-Z890 sure has a lot of useful connections.
USB 2.0, VGA, HDMI (audio / video), SD / Memory Stick Duo, Gigabit Ethernet Port 10/100/1000, modem jack, Firewire / IEEE / i.Link Connector (4pin), Headphone Jack, Microphone Jack , Express Card / 34 slot. "
SD Memory Card Slot
Memory Stick Duo media slot (MagicGate Functionality)
HDMI Connection Output (transmits audio / video)
USB 2.0 Port
Gigabit Ethernet Port 10/100/1000
Express Card / 34 Slot
USB 2.0 Port
Firewire / IEEE / i.Link Connector (4pin)
Note: The cord to recharge the battery is located on the side hinges of the laptop. We found this to be a bit of a pain, as you waste a lot of cord if your nearest outlet is located the opposite direction of your port.
Due to its small size of the screen, this laptop is easy to open up anywhere, including in airplanes (see how it caters to executives?) The VGN-Z890 has a 13.1 "widescreen LED display with a resolution of 1600 x 900 pixels. This display runs at a 16: 9 widescreen aspect ratio, which is perfect for watching movies. your LCD screen – something very needed for such a small and slim laptop.
The Intel P9700 is one of the best, energy efficient processors for a laptop this size, costing additional $ 150 to upgrade from the P8800. TheP9700 features 6mb of L2 Cache, and runs at 2.8GHz. It uses the 45nm architecture and runs at 28w, with a 1066 MHz FSB.
Once again, Sony opts to use the same hybrid video card system as before. The VGN-Z890 uses the 256MB NVIDIA GeForce 9300M GS and the Intel GMA 4500MHD with Intel Clear Video Technology. The patented hybrid system that Sony uses, allows you to switch between both video cards without having to restart your computer. The 9300M is able to run more demanding games, and applications, and the 4500MHD can run HD / Blu-Ray, while giving you a lot more battery life. Both cards are DirectX 10 compatible as well.
Benchmarks (GeForce 9300M GS Only)
3dMark 06 (1024×768): Min: 1615, Average: 1989, Max: 2357 points
Cinebench R10 (Shading): Min: 2270, Average: 2555, Max: 2870 points
FEAR Benchmark: Low Settings (640×480) No AA, low graphics: 308 FPS
Crysis Benchmark: Low Settings (800×600) No AA, low graphics: 27 FPS
Crysis Warhead Benchmark: Low Settings (800×600) No AA, low graphics: 35 FPS
World in Conflict Benchmark: Low Settings (800×600) No AA, low graphics: 70
Speakers and Sound Card:
The VGN-Z890 is stocked with a standard Intel High Definition Audio Card and standard speakers. Not really much to say here …
Wireless and Networking:
Sony offers many wireless and networking features. The VGN-Z890 comes equipped with a Gigabit Ethernet connection – offering blazing Ethernet speeds. The laptop features wireless N connectivity, and is able to connect to 802.11 a / b / g / n 2.4 GHz frequencies using the Intel WiFi Link 5100AGN card. This laptop also supports Verizon Mobile Broadband as an option and supports Bluetooth technology with stunning wireless reception and transmission speed. The Bluetooth was standard, and so was the A2DP.
Keyboard and Mouse:
The keyboard on the VGN-Z890 is unique to most laptop keyboards. The keys are not flushed together, and are spaced out. There are 82 keys, all of which are covered. The keyboard uses aluminum backing, which keeps the laptop light and durable. Although it is not indicated, the touchpad allows side scrolling as well.
When running the Mobile Mark 2007 Battery Test on the standard battery we received very acceptable scores. We were able to reach a battery life of 4 hours and 2 minutes with the GeForce card enabled. With the Intel integrated graphics, we realized a battery life 4 hours and 55 minutes.
Overall we were very pleased the Sony Vaio VGN-Z890. It is one of the fastest mobile laptops for its weight-class and size. We were extremely pleased with the keyboard and design. This laptop was very similar to its predecessor, and we had to dock points for that. Due to the fact that this laptop is still an excellent choice for executive, and travelers, I rate it a 4.25 / 5.