Sony VAIO Tap 21 Multitouch Mobile Desktop Review
The Sony VAIO Tap 21 is a member of a small, but growing, breed of new PCs that straddles a line between traditional all-in-one desktops and tablets. The VAIO Tap 21’s specifications read like many modern desktop systems, and include an Intel Core i7 processor, hybrid storage, a decent amount of memory and full-blown Windows 8. But the machine is also surprisingly svelte, it’s got a full HD, multi-touch screen and it packs an integrated battery that gives users the ability to simply pick up the system and go. Of course, the VAIO Tap 21’s physical dimensions prevent it from being truly portable, but being able to move the system virtually anywhere and operate on battery power opens up a world of interesting possibilities, at home or work.
In addition to its potential mobility, the Sony VAIO Tap 21 can also be used in a couple of different configurations. The system stands upright—as you would expect—but its kickstand can also be folded all the way in, so the Tap 21 will lay flat on any surface. Couple its multi-touch capabilities with the ability to lay flat, and it’s hard to imagine two more people sitting around a Tap 21 collaborating in an app, gaming, or what have you.
We’ve got the full scoop on the Sony VAIO Tap 21 on the pages ahead. Before we dig in though, take a look at our test system’s specifications below to set expectations and then we’ll get on with the juicy stuff...
|Display||21.5 in Full HD, Triluminos Display for Mobile (1920 x 1080), 10-finger multi-touch support|
|Processor||Intel Core i7-4500U 1.80 GHz with Turbo Boost Technology up to 3.0 GHz|
|Memory||8GB DDR3L 1600 MHz|
|Hard drive size||1TB 5400 RPM hybrid drive|
|Operating system||Windows 8. Update to Windows 8.1 for free through the Windows Store.|
|Media drive||2-in-1 media card reader (SD/MS)|
|Audio||Intel High Definition Audio with ClearAudio+|
|Video||Intel HD Graphics 4400 with shared graphics memory|
|Ports||2 USB 3.0 (1 with Sleep and Charge), HDMI, Headphone output/Microphone input combo, RJ-45 (10/100/1000)|
|Battery||Lithium-ion (up to 2 hours, 30 minutes)|
|Camera||1.0 MP HD webcam|
|Wireless||802.11b/g/n • Intel Wireless Display (WiDi) capable (separate adapter required)|
|Dimensions||20.62 x 1.40-12.22 x 6.86-12.64 in (523.74 x 35.56-310.38 x 174.24-321.05 mm)|
|Weight||8.60 lbs (3.90 kg)|
|Other||Keyboard travel: 2.0 mm stroke and 19.05 mm pitch|
Sony VAIO Tap 21: Starting @ $999, As Configured - $1299
We should note that Sony offers the VAIO Tap 21 in a number of different configurations. The model we’ve got on tap for you’re here (no pun intended), is the mid-spec offering. It sports an Intel Core i7-4500U processor with Intel HD 4400 series graphics, but a lower-end Core i5-based model is also available, as is a Core i7-4558U-based model with Intel Iris 5100 series graphics. Multiple storage and memory options are also available. Our system packed in 8GB of memory and a 1TB hybrid drive, memory configurations up to 16GB and SSDs up to 512GB are also available. Sony even offers a number of different color combos for the keyboard and a carry case for the Tap 21, should you intend to travel with it often or want to spice things up a bit.