Is the Sony SB "business-class" quality?

Discussion in 'VAIO / Sony' started by exastify, Jul 8, 2011.

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  1. exastify

    exastify Notebook Enthusiast

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    I'm looking for a business class laptop and I've narrowed it down to a Thinkpad
    T420 or a Sony Vaio SB. They have pretty much the same specs for the price (in the way I want it), the only thing that differs and matters to me is the build quality and appearance.

    The Sony SB looks much better and is smaller and lighter, while the T420 is like a tank. So I was wondering, would you consider the Sony SB to be of business-class build quality? I'm really attracted by the looks of it, compared to the thinkpad. However I'm afraid after 2 years it's going to break and Sony will screw me over in support.
     
  2. chroma_cg

    chroma_cg Notebook Consultant

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    not sure if it matters to you but hinge is wabbly on the SB and not very tight
     
  3. KCETech1

    KCETech1 Notebook Prophet

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  4. ctdw

    ctdw Notebook Guru

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    I just purchased a Vaio SA and it's safely business-class quality (not sure about SB). I have experience with numerous Lenovo and HP notebooks and feel that the quality of this unit is on par with those (and in some cases better).
     
  5. KCETech1

    KCETech1 Notebook Prophet

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    consumer lines or business class laptops? My SA and Z felt pretty meger on the quality comapred to most of the Bus class units from HP/Dell/Lenovo ive had over the years.
     
  6. ctdw

    ctdw Notebook Guru

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    Business class lines. My SA feels better built and more solid then my last two "T" series and I have seen numerous quality issues on HP Elitebooks (the latest edition seems better though).
     
  7. arth1

    arth1 a҉r҉t҉h

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    None of the Sonys are business class.
    For one thing, Sony has a way too short release cycle for businesses (who might want to buy more of the same model a year later, or a docking station two years down the road).
    And proprietary solutions preventing IT from duping standard installation drives they can quickly insert into a new computer and get the user up and running in minutes instead of days.
    And in the US, at least, you can't get them without a camera, which is a showstopper for some businesses.
    Then there's the warranty, which according to several posts here aren't what businesses mean by warranty. If a machine breaks, they want a new part fitted, not a monetary refund because the manufacturer no longer has spare parts for that model.
    Then there's a lack of workstation graphics. Only consumer graphics cards, even for the top models.
    How about docking stations with serial or other legacy ports? Nope, not Sony.

    A couple of the Sony models are "prosumer", and the rest are firmly in the consumer or fashion consumer categories. Only small companies that don't care, or those with clout enough to bully IT into buying whatever they say will get a Sony for business use.
     
  8. Rachel

    Rachel Busy Bee

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    I think that the OP is more interested in the actual build quality of the laptops.

    The SB series is meant to be made out of aluminum for the palmrests and the lid and base is made out of the magnesium-obviously there is no roll cage technology going on here. The SA is possibly carbon fibre reinforced plastics for the lid and AL/magnesium. I know the OP never mentioned the SA but it may be an alternative.

    This is what notebookcheck reported about the SB chassis
    Notebookjournal.de
    It's obviously not a Toughbook. There appear to be some issues with the hinges. Apart from that the build appears to be overall good. Business grade level? I would most likely say it is at prosumer level currently.
     
  9. Brianho1337

    Brianho1337 Notebook Evangelist

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    The SB isn't exactly a tank but it's a good troop transport if you want to make an analogy that way. It's only in extreme conditions (i.e. someone trying to smash your computer with a baseball bat) where the build quality of the SB might be an issue. I'd actually prefer the SB's build quality over the VPC-Z1.
     
  10. willysp

    willysp Notebook Consultant

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    I'll answer from my point of view regarding my SA. (I don't think the SA and SB are much different relative to your question). I am in my second week of carrying my personal SA instead of my company-supplied HP Elitebook on the road. It's a trial - I like the smaller, lighter form factor and SSD speed, but am wondering about long-term durability.

    For me, yes, the SA is business class - primarily because I support myself technically and, although I travel all the time, I take very good care of all the stuff I carry. (And I have a like-minded colleague who has carried a Z for a year or so and it still looks new.)

    But - for the average business user (esp. traveler), I'd say no due to the thin lid and loose hinges.

    The above is relative to durability.

    Regarding product life, no - Sony changes products too often.

    Regarding accessories like docks and batteries - yes.
     
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