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Sony Service And Quality


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I bought a Sony laptop ('S' series) almost two years ago. The screen developed a problem within about nine months - white vertical lines obscuring half of the screen. Sony repaired it free of charge as it was still under warranty.

Now the same problem has occurred again and also the hard drive has failed - double whammy. Sony says repair will cost around 15,000baht. I am reluctant to pay this considering the laptop is less than two years old and the screen problem is a evidently a recurrent one.

It seems my options are:

  • have it repaired at Sony
  • have it repaired elsewhere (not sure that the screen could be done elsewhere though)
  • buy a new laptop

Apart from this, the laptop has been fine - usb ports are a bit loose and the cover fell off the LAN jack.

Would appreciate any advice.

Many thanks!

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My sister had a Sony Vaio laptop. Had it "repaired" about 4 times by Sony and other repair companies; big waste of money, each time within a few weeks something else had melted down (RAM, Video Card, Mobo you name it).

I wouldn't touch a Sony laptop with a 10 foot pole.

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Really sorry to hear about the laptop, I've always been too poor/cheap to buy a Sony. My current Compaq is 6 years old next month and is still perfect despite the best efforts of my sonthumbsup.gif

If I was in your situation, I wouldn't throw good money after bad but I wouldn't lose money selling it either; I'd buy another laptop and replace the Sony's HDD to use it with the living room TV (unless you have one already). I've a 40" Samsung LED and despite it being an internet 'Smart' TV, the best web-use is hooking it up to laptop/desktop and using a wireless/bluetooth keyboard and mouse. Whether for work, gaming, surfing or video calling, nothing beats the computer/tv combo. You'll need a dedicated computer for this and a laptop with a broken screen is the perfect candidate.

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".... two years ago............. Sony says repair will cost around 15,000baht."

I would say that it is hardly ever worth paying for an out of warranty repair on a laptop, unless it's just the hard drive or CD/DVD drive.

In your shoes I would bin it and start again.

One other possibility, as mentioned, may be to use the laptop with an external monitor, assuming that you dont need to carry it around, of course. Your lines are much more likely to be screen-related than video card related, and so you probably wont have the problem at all with an external screen.

I use my laptop with an external 23in monitor all the time. External keyboard and mouse too.

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Many thanks for your replies. I am indeed going to get a new laptop. Love the idea of using it with the TV or a large monitor. I would never have thought of that and certainly will give it a go. After this experience, I may look for a laptop that's cheaper and see if I can get a longer warranty (my old fujitsu had a 3 year warranty).

Many thanks again!

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FWIW, I have a Sony VAIO SZ laptop purchased March 2008. The fan began making a loud noise some 6-8 months ago, and after looking at repair options with Sony I decided it would be cheaper to try to ruin it myself than to give $$$ to Sony to ruin it (I had a bad experience some 6 years ago trying to have a small laptop repaired by Sony). So, having found a step-by-step DYI on the internet, I successfully replaced the fan three months ago . . . and I only had two small screws left over :). Then a month later the optical disk drive wouldn't open unless I put a pin in the little emergency opening hole. Again, I replaced the optical drive myself. On a very expensive laptop that is only three years old! I found out later via the internet that the fan problem on Sony laptops is pervasive.

So, never again will I buy a Sony. I never had problems with Compaq but now they are extinct. I bought the "cadillac" Sony to avoid problems. Guess it will be less expensive to just buy a low-cost laptop next time and toss it out when it fails. :blink:

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Interesting comments.

I cannot speak for Sony laptops, but I have found the their service on other items to be excellent.

Changing a hard disk should be a DIY job, unless you are a total clutz with a screw driver?

The screen is another matter.

All in all I am inclined to agree withe Dump and Buy new brigade. :angry:

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Astral said: "Changing a hard disk should be a DIY job, unless you are a total clutz with a screw driver?"

I wish it were that easy but it isn't to replace a hard disk in a Sony VAIO SZ series laptop. Steps are:

Step 1. Remove screw center bottom of laptop

Step 2. There are two latches securing the keyboard. They are located above the F2 and Insert keys.

STEP 3. Using a small screwdriver press on the locking latch above the Insert key and lift up the right side of the keyboard

STEP 4. Do the same with the second latch and lift up the keyboard from the laptop base.

STEP 5. Place the keyboard upside down on the palm rest so you can access the cable connector underneath. In order to unlock the cable connector move the black clip about 2 millimeters towards the touch pad. The clip must stay attached to the connector base. If you break the connector, you'll have to remove the motherboard. Work very carefully.

STEP 6. Release the keyboard cable. Remove the keyboard and replace it with a new one if needed

STEP 7. Remove three screws on the laptop bottom securing the palm rest and also the three screws on top securing the palm rest.

STEP 8. Unlock the touch pad cable connector and release the cable. In order to unlock the connector simply lift up the right side of the locking clip with your finger nail.

STEP 9. Release the touch pad cable and remove the palm rest assembly.

Now you can get to the hard drive in the lower left hand corner under the palm rest

STEP 10. Remove three screws securing the hard drive assembly. Disconnect the hard drive cable connector from the motherboard.

STEP 11. Remove the hard drive assembly from the laptop. If you are replacing or upgrading the hard drive you'll have to transfer the mounting bracket and cable from the old drive to a new one.

Of course if the original hard drive is undamaged and you want to copy the image to the new drive you will need some equipment and software to do that also.

Oh, and there are different length screws also, so one needs to get the right length screws back in the proper positions.

Sony doesn't make it easy to change the hard disk! Both my Dell and my Compaq Presario I had years ago just slipped out the side. No disassembly. Not so with my current Sony VAIO.

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Yesterday, whilst browsing new laptops I found a lovely Acer model with i3 processor for 15,000 baht! So for the cost of repairing the old one I can have a brand new one with superior specs! And if it goes crazy within a couple of years - who cares?

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Yesterday, whilst browsing new laptops I found a lovely Acer model with i3 processor for 15,000 baht! So for the cost of repairing the old one I can have a brand new one with superior specs!

Makes sense to me.

The snake oil vendors repair shops will probably not be so keen though.

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