Sony Type F VGN-FS22VB ~ Beautiful 15″ Notebook (SOLD)

“Wow this looks like new”, is what I thought when I first got it. It exudes quality.

Clean as new

It’s called the Sony “Type F” VGN-FS22VB. I guess they couldn’t just call it Leslie or Pikachu, but that’s a lot of letters and numbers. Plus I can’t help but wonder how they came up with those exact 3 letters. Anyway, the brilliant 15.6″ widescreen with high contrast and solid, dark blacks had me hooked. So kind to the eyes. It also came with a docking station that has more connectors than a suitcase full of netbooks combined.

The speed wasn’t exactly stellar, however.

I quickly maxed out the RAM, and then decided it deserves a faster CPU.

For some strange reason it only had a lowly 1.4Ghz Celeron.

I can imagine Sony staff arguing. “Let’s make a quality laptop!” “No it has to be cheap!” “Quality!” “Cheap”..”

With convenient docking station (lots of ports)

I wish they would have made up their mind. Like all things made by a comittee it ended in a compromise; a Mercedes with a lawnmower engine. Brilliant.

Getting hold of the CPU turned out to be a major hassle.

First of all the availability was not exactly great. It takes Pentium M CPUs, the fastest of which is 2.26Ghz. I tracked various offers on Yahoo Auctions for a week, and found that a 2.0Ghz Pentiom M goes for 2500, a slightly faster 2.13Ghz for 5000, and a 2.26Ghz for 7500. When available, that is.

Therein was the dilemma. Do I get a “kind of fast” 2.0Ghz CPU, or pay double for 5% more speed? Or triple for 10% more?

After minutes of thinking I arrived at the conclusion. “Sod it”, I thought, and went for the fastest one. The dude sent it uninsured so I was a bit worried, but thankfully it turned up after a couple days. Installing it was a snap. Mind you there wasn’t any of the usual dust buildup on the CPU fans. Either it wasn’t used much, or Sony has some kind of fairy magic that prevents dust from sticking to the fan. Having used it for a couple months now, I lean towards the latter.

SonyVGN-FS22VB Power Connector Cable PSU

The guilty SonyVGN-FS22VB power supply connector cable

One last niggle was the broken power supply connector. Physical damage, last owner tripped on the cord probably. (Tip: get a Mac notebook with a “magsafe” connector. Those are immune.) Luckily the socket wasn’t fixed on the motherboard, and was relatively easy to replace. There was just one replacement part available on all of the Internet… luckily it worked. I found I tend to attract the correct stuff to make PCs work. 😉
P.S. Just for a laugh I did ask for a repair estimate at the Sony store in Nagoya. They wanted 15800 yen just to take a look at it. Then they’d quote for the part on top of that. I guess they’d rather sell new stuff than do repairs.

Price: yen including shippingSOLD

Hours spent: 6+

Difficulty rating: 40% – the challenging part was getting hold of the CPU


PS. A useless bit of trivia: when researching this machine I found out by accident that VAIO stands for Video Audio Inter-Operation. I hope it doesn’t require an operating room.

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Hi, Sandor here. Thanks for visiting. Computer trouble in Japan? You've come to the right place!

I am 34 years old, and have been fixing computers since 1994, since before I finished high school. Then I got a degree in Computer Science, had my own PC shop, worked at a top laptop maker in England. Then I came to Japan; it's what I always wanted to do.

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