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Sony Vaio E-Series VPC-EH1J1E review

Barry de la Rosa
24 Jul 2011
Our Rating 
Price when reviewed 
479
inc VAT

The EH1's design can't hide the fact that its Pentium processor is under-powered, and it also lacks USB3 support

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The Sony EH1J1E is typical of Sony's budget laptops. Although it doesn't come in a range of garish colours (there's a choice of white, black and dark blue) it has an interesting texture on the lid and wrist-rest: a faceted design like the surface of a large gem. It's the first laptop we've seen for a while with a Pentium processor, in this case a B940 running at 2GHz.

Sony Vaio EH1J1E

The Pentium is Intel's budget range, and the B940 doesn't look impressive on paper. Its two cores aren't effectively doubled by Hyper-Threading, and it doesn't support Turbo Boost for brief increases in clock speed. As a result, its score of 30 overall in our multimedia benchmarks wasn't much of a surprise.

A score of 52 in the image-editing test shows it's fast enough for single-threaded applications, but the scores dropped to 31 and 22 in the multi-threaded video-encoding and multi-tasking tests, so demanding applications such as HD video editors won't run too quickly.

Sony Vaio EH1J1E right port

Graphics performance is what we'd expect at this price. The integrated Intel GMA 3150 chip can just about handle HD video content, but it wouldn't run our Dirt 3 benchmark. You might find it runs old 3D games, but newer titles are unlikely to work.

As with many laptop screens, the EH1's has a glossy finish that makes colours more intense but reflects light sources. If you're not looking at the screen square on, contrast suffers due to poor vertical viewing angles, so you'll have to position the laptop and tilt the screen carefully. Overall image quality was average: the backlight wasn't entirely even and a bit dim.

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