July 10, 2013
- Ultrathin and lightweight design
- Comfortable keyboard
- Good-looking HD display
- Excellent battery life
- Limited ports
- Limited SSD capacity
Vizio, while typically known for their HDTVs, has continued their reach into the laptop market with the new CT15T-B0. It has an extremely thin design, good battery life and an absolutely beautiful 1080p HD display. But it is quite expensive, has a limited solid-state drive and limited ports.
The design of the Vizio CT15T-B0 is very minimal yet striking. The lid is made of gunmetal aluminum and has a matte finish that some stylish beveling. On the laptop's bottom, there is a rubberized black finish which ensures you have a solid grip on the rather thin and lightweight chassis. It measures 14.9 x 9.9 x 0.7-inches (wdh) and weighs 4.8-pounds.
When you open the laptop, the whole interior is also aluminum and it really looks a lot like an Apple MacBook Pro. The keyboard has slightly oversized keys and it has a very comfortable touch. While the key travel is rather shallow, it doesn't have a negative impact on comfortability. We did not like, however, that the keyboard is not backlit. The touch pad is one solid piece and doubles as a click pad instead of having discrete click buttons for left and right clicking. The touch pad sensitivity was very responsive and performing Windows 8 multitouch gestures worked well.
The 15.6-inch display has a native resolution of 1920 x 1080-pixels, which is full high-definition resolution. It is also an IPS (In-Plane Switching) panel, so you get crisp and bright images. We were really pleased with the overall image that CT15T-B0's display offered, especially while watching streaming HD media.
The display also doubles as a touch panel, so interacting with Windows 8's touch-friendly interface is more intuitive than if you only had a mouse. The touch screen's responsiveness was quite good. However, because of the large on-screen resolution and the 15.6-inch screen size, sometimes it is hard to accurately click items on the screen because of their small size.
For ports, you get a rather slim selection, even by the Ultrabook standard. There are only two USB 3.0 ports, an HDMI-output and a headphone jack. There is no Ethernet and no built-in memory card slot. Wireless connectivity includes both 802.11n and Bluetooth.
Internal components within the Vizio CT15T-B0 include an AMD A10-4657M (2.3GHz) CPU, 8GB of RAM, a 128GB solid-state drive and discrete AMD Radeon HD 8670M graphics. The 128GB solid-state drive limits you somewhat if you handle large size files. It would have been nice to have a 256GB drive, especially since the laptop is on the pricier side.
A PCMark 7 benchmark turned in a score of exactly 3,000, which is right on par with the category average, albeit the lower side of average. In real-world use, we didn't notice any slow downs or hiccups while watching streaming HD video. Gaming performance is actually good enough to play some (but not higher-end) 3D games, but not at extreme settings.
Battery life is one of this laptop's definite strong suits as we were able to get just shy of 7.5-hours, which is almost 3 hours more than the Ultrabook category average.
For more Windows 8 Ultrabook reviews, visit our Notebook & Ultrabook Reviews page.