Sony’s latest entry into their VAIO TR series is already pushing the limits on size.
If laptop PCs get any smaller, I’m going to have to buy new hands. As it is, Sony’s latest entry into their VAIO TR series is already pushing the limits on size. The TR3 weighs about three pounds and measures 10 inches in length and 7 inches in width, so it’s incredibly portable and perfect for people who need portable PCs. Despite that, I wouldn’t recommend it if you’re just going to sit in your apartment and check e-mail. Even writing this review on its tiny keyboard is annoying. But I don’t want to come down too hard on the TR3 because of its size. It’s a fantastic little machine that’s a traveler’s dream. Its 1GHz Pentium M processor is only moderately powerful, but makes up for it by actually fitting into your jacket pocket. The compact size and weight makes carrying it a breeze and the battery life is exceptional. I tested it out a few times and finally tweaked the settings enough to make it last almost four hours before shutting down. Sony’s Web site claims the battery lasts over seven hours, but I’m not sure how you’d do that without unhooking the battery and just using the base as a humming paperweight.
In addition to its size, the TR3 sports plenty of bells and whistles that make it stand out from the pack, the most notable being the tiny camera built into the top of the monitor. The camera takes low quality pictures and video, but its small size and placement makes it perfect for use as a webcam or during video chats or conferences. The DVD drive is exceptional as well and gets stellar video quality, though you’d better buy a nice pair a headphones because the one speaker is pretty terrible. And the included wireless card should make Internet connection a breeze–or so I would assume; the card wasn’t working in the machine I previewed. Bottom line: The Vaio TR3 is a wonderful, portable computer with exceptional battery life. It’s perfect for people on the go or those who just want to video chat with their friends. But I don’t recommend writing any reviews on its tiny keyboard, unless they’re as brief as this one.