The Gadget: The Sony VAIO LT is an attractive all-in-one that has a 22-inch, 1680x1050 widescreen display, BD-RW drive, integrated webcam, wireless keyboard and mouse, an external cable card tuner and Vista Media Centre, powered by a 2.5 GHz Core 2 Duo processor and 4GB RAM.
The Price: US$3300 as tested.
The Verdict: The Vaio LT is a solid computer with a lot of good features. It's easy enough on the eyes that it could be placed in a kitchen or bedroom (it can also be VESA mounted), but it is hardly underpowered. Blu-ray playback provided a nice picture, and watching HD via CableCard was crisp and clear. Rarely, if ever, did I experience slowdown while using many of the media features, showing the hardware is up to the task.
The integrated 1.3 MP webcam is up to par with similar offerings, and the speakers provide good audio in most settings. Despite its TV-esque appearance, there are no inputs for VGA or component video, meaning hooking up a game console or laptop is out of the question.
But looks and power come with a price. The low-end model does start as low as US$2000, but it only has a 1.6 GHz processor and 3GB RAM. The high-end model, with the Penryn processor, Cable card tuner and 4GB RAM, will run you US$3300. But as hardware alone, the VAIO LT is a solid choice for a media PC.