Sony VAIO S Series VPC-S111FM/S review: Sony VAIO S Series VPC-S111FM/S

Jammed into this Vaio are an impressive number of ports for its size, including mini-Firewire and even an ExpressCard slot, along with HDMI. That's a lot better than an equivalent MacBook Pro. All edges of the VPCS111FM/S are efficiently used, including the front end; there isn't much more space to include anything else. On top of this, the Vaio S111FM/S includes Bluetooth, a feature that's all too often omitted from retail configurations.

A 500GB hard drive and 4GB of RAM match what's also available on other Blue Label laptops from Best Buy, but the specs seem slightly more impressive in a laptop of this size. This is a fixed configuration notebook, but the memory can be expanded up to 8GB.

With its Intel Core i5 processor, the Sony Vaio S111FM/S performs with zip and can easily handle any form of video and a good deal of multitasking. In our benchmark tests, the Vaio performed similarly to the Toshiba E205-S1904 and Dell Studio s15z-2249CPN, varying by a few seconds here and there. Though both the Toshiba and Dell are cheaper by around $50-100, neither is as small as the Vaio. Onboard integrated graphics and Intel's HD accelerator lend themselves to great-looking video, but this Vaio's gaming capability is limited to casual games and browser-based experiences. For an average user looking for an excellent-performing processor for all-around use, the Intel Core i5 will serve nearly anyone well.

Juice box
Sony Vaio VPCS111FM/S Avg watts/hour
Off (60%) 0.36
Sleep (10%) 0.81
Idle (25%) 13.46
Load (05%) 50.98
Raw kWh Number 54.41
Annual power consumption cost $6.18

Annual power consumption cost
Sony Vaio VPCS111 FM/S
$6.18 
Asus G73jx
$14.98 

The Sony Vaio VPCS111FM/S ran for 3 hours and 26 minutes on its six-cell battery using our video-playback battery drain test. That's less than what the Toshiba E205 and Dell Studio s15z achieved, but in a smaller body with a smaller battery that's not much of a surprise. We'd prefer a longer battery life on a 13-inch system, especially one without discrete graphics. Considering how much users of this laptop will want to be streaming video wirelessly, it'll be a good idea to operate with an AC outlet not too far away.

Under the Blue Label program, this Vaio is backed by an extended two-year warranty in addition to 30 days of Geek Squad support. Sony technical support is accessible via a 24-7 toll-free phone, and Sony's website provided easy to find manuals, tutorials, and driver downloads. Retail outlets may try to sell you additional warranties, but we don't recommend them.

Multimedia multitasking test (in seconds)
(Shorter bars indicate better performance)
Asus G73jx
666 
Sony Vaio VPCS111 FM/S
749 

Adobe Photoshop CS3 image-processing test (in seconds)
(Shorter bars indicate better performance)
Asus G73jx
113 
Sony Vaio VPCS111 FM/S
118 

Apple iTunes encoding test (in seconds)
(Shorter bars indicate better performance)
Asus G73jx
153 
Sony Vaio VPCS111 FM/S
156 

Video playback battery drain test (in minutes)
(Longer bars indicate better performance)
Sony Vaio VPCS111 FM/S
206 

System configurations

Sony Vaio VPCS111 FM/S
Windows 7 Home Premium (64-bit); 2.26GHz Intel Core i5 M430; 4096MB DDR3 SDRAM 1066MHz; 128MB (Dedicated)/1755MB (Total) Intel GMA HD; 500GB Toshiba 5400rpm

Sony Vaio VPCF115 FM/B
Windows 7 Home Premium (64-bit); 1.6GHz Intel Core i7 720QM; 6GB DDR3 SDRAM 1066MHz; 1GB NVIDIA GeForce GT 330M; 500GB Samsung 5400rpm

Asus G73jx
Windows 7 Home Premium (64-bit); 1.6GHz Intel Core i7 720QM; 6GB DDR3 SDRAM 1066MHz; 1GB ATI Mobility Radeon HD 5870; 500GB Seagate 7200rpm

Dell Adamo XPS
Windows 7 Home Premium (64-bit); 1.4GHz Intel Core 2 Duo SU9400; 4096MB DDR3 SDRAM 800MHz; 128MB (Dedicated)/1759MB (Total) Intel GS45; 128GB Samsung Solid State Drive

Find out more about how we test laptops.

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Where to Buy

Sony VAIO S Series VPC-S111FM/S

Part Number: VPCS111FM/S

MSRP: $1,049.99

See manufacturer website for availability.

Quick Specifications See All

  • Operating System Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit Edition
  • Installed Size 4 GB
  • Weight 4.4 lbs
  • Optical Drive DVD±RW (±R DL) / DVD-RAM - fixed
    DVD±RW (±R DL) / DVD-RAM - fixed
  • Graphics Processor Intel HD Graphics
    Intel HD Graphics
  • CPU Intel Core i5 430M / 2.26 GHz
    Intel Core i5 430M / 2.26 GHz
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