My answersMy answers appear below.
Few questions for you:
1. What is your overall impression of the machine?
Very nice machine overall. I have not yet used the docking station, but the machine itself is very nice for work (Word, Exel) and surfing. I'm not a power gamer, so can't comment there. The screen is the main attraction for the system as it is bright, clear and very high resolution.
2. Satisfied with purchase?
Generally yes, however, it is a bit over priced.
3. What are you not satisified with?
I have a single bad pixel that goes red in areas of bright white or gray. The hard disk is about 25% slower than the newer 7,200 RPM drives. For the price, it should have come with 1Gig, not 1/2 Gig RAM. Upgrades look to be very difficult (to upgrade the second DIMM, you have to pry off the keyboard; there seems no easy way to get to the hard disk; the optical drive is not designed to swap out). The supplied power brick is quite large and heavy.
Also, I have been having some problems with DVD playback. Playback is choppy whenever there is a hard disk access. The picture freezes and likely drops a frame or 2 when this happens. I have defragmented the drive, run chkds, resized and made a fixed size the swap file, and a few other things. This has helped, but not completely eliminated the problem. I will next try adding more RAM and then reformatting the drive and reinstalling just the apps I want.
4. What third-party upgrades did you perform to enhance the system (HDD, memory, etc..)?
None yet, see 3 above.
5. Are you satisfied with the 64mb vram?
I don't have any applications that need more yet. Note that the GPU does run at a lower speed than in most other notebooks. You can fix this with 3d party utilities like radlinker, but by default, the GPU is slow (probably to reduce heat and power consumption).
6. Excluding price, would your purchase the machine again?
Probably. But there are new competitors arriving daily. So far, no one PC model has the screen quality to compete in a 17" wide screen form factor.
7. Any problems with machine, sony or retailer?
Just as noted above, the 1 bad pixel and the sometimes choppy DVD playback.