Sony VAIO LT VCG-LT28G review: Sony VAIO LT VCG-LT28G

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The Good Inbuilt Blu-ray. Attractive design. Good performance.

The Bad Ugly mouse. Poor rear shield. Expensive.

The Bottom Line We're still trying to work out who the target market for the highly expensive LT VAIO is. Design-crazed multimillionaires, perhaps.

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7.4 Overall

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It's tough not to look at the VAIO LT VCG-LT28G and think two things. Firstly, that Sony has once again outdone themselves in making a product that's probably superbly easy to track through shipping warehouses, but impossible for consumers to actually pronounce. Secondly, that it looks somewhat like an iMac. Then again, in the current marketplace, there are precious few design-centric, flat panel, all-in-one PCs, so the comparison is rather inevitable. Not that this stops Sony from claiming that the VCG-LT28G is "unconventional, unprecedented and ready to streamline your lifestyle". Whatever that means.

From a design perspective, though, it's clear that Sony's designers haven't just sat down with an iMac, a ruler and a CAD program, having been told "make us one of those". In real terms, the VAIO LT VCG-LT28G has more in common with Sony's own Bravia TV lines; the panel itself is surrounded by its speakers, which themselves "float" in a glass frame. The keyboard is wireless, not quite as flat as Apple's offering, but with a flip-over cover that both hides the keys (when being used as a media centre) and works as an impromptu mouse pad. The wireless mouse shares another factor with the iMac; it's a rather plain model that technically works but ultimately fails to excite.

If you were to tear into the VCG-LT28G with a Stanley knife, you'd ruin all that fine design, and kiss your warranty goodbye. You might also slice off some fingers — we really don't recommend it. Regardless, once you'd thrown away all the metal and plastic and cleaned up all the blood, you'd eventually find yourself face to face with an Intel Core 2 Duo Processor T8100 (2.10GHz), 2GB of RAM, a 500GB 7200rpm SATA drive and a 256MB Nvidia GeForce 8400M GT graphics card. Networking comes in the form of a Gigabit Ethernet port and 802.11n Wi-Fi. The optical drive in the VCG-LT28G is a Blu-ray writer with the following speeds: BD-R: x2 (single layer), x1 (dual-layer) / BD-RE: x2 (single layer), x1 (dual-layer) / DVD+R: x8 (single layer), x2.4 (double layer) / DVD-R: x8 (single layer), x2 (dual-layer) / DVD+RW: x4 / DVD-RW: x4 / DVD-RAM: x5 / CD-R: x8 / CD-RW: x8.

The floating display on the VCG-LT28G, despite its impressive size (643x418x178mm), is a 22-inch WSXGA+ (1680x1050) panel with an embedded 1280x1024 pixel webcam. As the VCG-LT28G runs Vista Home Premium, it's Media Center capable, and Sony includes Dual HD tuners on-board to take advantage of that.

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