Sony VAIO Fit Multi-flip 14A review
14 in 1,920x1,080 display, 1.9kg, 1.6GHz Intel Core i5-4200U, 8.00GB RAM, 500GB disk, Windows 8
We can’t fault Sony for trying to find new and innovative ways to make interesting laptop-cum-tablet hybrids, but not all of its experiments pay off. We largely liked the Sony Vaio Duo 13, with its novel hinge and outstanding battery life, but the tablet-laptop Sony Tap 11 failed to leave much of an impression.
The Sony VAIO Fit Multiflip 14A is the company's latest attempt to bridge the gap between laptop and tablet. Push the Multiflip 14’s screen from behind and it’ll flip over so that you can lower it over the keyboard, turning the laptop into a powerful Windows 8 tablet. The action is similar to that used by the Dell XPS 12. It’s a simple movement in theory, and one that Dell accomplished very elegantly, but the Multiflip manages to make it one of the most awkward and fiddly transitions we’ve ever seen. You need a decent amount of space at the back of the laptop to flip the screen smoothly, and you must lock the screen in place with a switch because the screen is likely to flip round again when opened if you don’t.
Happily, the Multiflip 14’s touchscreen is very responsive. Windows 8 gestures all worked perfectly and we were able to open and close internet tabs accurately, even at the Multiflip 14’s high resolution of 1,920x1,080 resolution. The screen’s image quality was also promising, as our colour calibrator showed it was displaying an impressive 95.2 per cent of the sRGB colour gamut. This is the highest reading we’ve ever seen from a laptop, even Apple’s Macbook Pro laptops, so you can be sure you’re getting one of the most accurate displays around. As a result, our solid colour image tests looked fantastic, with reds, greens and blues almost jumping out of the screen.
Sadly, it’s not all good news, as whites were surprisingly grey, which highlighted the screen’s poor viewing angles. We’ve seen this effect on other Sony laptops, such as the VAIO Duo 13 and the VAIO Tap 11, and we are disappointed that the Multiflip 14 is the same. Indeed, there was a noticeable shift in contrast that cast a grey shadow across the top of the screen when we tilted the screen back.
Unfortunately the Multiflip 14’s contrast levels weren’t much better. Even though we measured a good contrast ratio of 708:1 with our colour calibrator, all the our night shots in our high contrast test severely lacked detail. This is a real shame because it spoils an otherwise beautiful display.