Sony’s Vaio Z Employs an External Graphics Card for Gaming Power

One of the more tedious things we’re subjected to as PC gamers is upgrading graphics cards. You’ve got to pop open your case, unplug cables, drag out your old card and insert the new one, all without forgetting to ground yourself. After all, you don’t want to short out that shiny new card, right?

Although this isn’t a ton of work, it is tedious. Wouldn’t it be easier if the video card was on the outside? The new Sony Vaio Z makes that happen. A new laptop built on a thin form factor, the Vaio Z employs a new docking station that contains not only hard drives, optical drives, and connections for additional displays, but also holds the graphics card itself.

The utility of such a system should be instantly apparent. You can travel around (work, school, whatever) during the day, and once you get home, you can connect your docking station and get your gaming fix.

The base video card for the system listed on Sony’s site is an AMD HD6650M, which honestly isn’t all that much of an upgrade over the Intel onboard graphics, but if Sony offers more options, or if users can supplement their own high-end cards, then the sky really could be the limit, and laptops could suddenly be kick-ass gaming machines.

You can take a look at the new Vaio Z at the Sony Europe site. No word yet on when it might hit the US.

Sony’s choice of GPU is a little uninspiring. The AMD HD6650M will be better than the Intel graphics, but not by much. It may bode well for the future, though, if the idea proves popular. Light Peak certainly has the bandwidth to support high end graphics power, so who knows?

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4 Comments on Sony’s Vaio Z Employs an External Graphics Card for Gaming Power


On July 7, 2011 at 11:54 am

I have seen this done through heavy molding but I think this idea may have some foundation to it. I think it’s great. Laptops won’t get nearly as hot either.


On July 7, 2011 at 11:56 am

lol… that’s supposed to say modding. (Shakes fist at auto correct)


On July 7, 2011 at 4:10 pm


still integrated


On October 12, 2011 at 7:50 pm

They should have done this a long time ago..the technology is there.

However if a gamer wants to game he doesnt want a laptop. You can’t upgrade processors.

Fail for gaming anyways. Say you spend $1500 to get a good quad core(mid range for pc) It will be outdated in a year. Even being able to upgrade graphics cards there would be no point…although with an externally cooled case like that for a gfx card is a good idea.