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Private_Miros

Advice on buying a travel laptop

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As the title mentions, I am looking for a travel laptop; and not a gaming laptop.

I would mostly use it as work station, but I wouldn't mind the ability to play "simple", not that graphic intensive games that I have on Steam (eg. This is the police).

Can anyone recommend something that is light and not too expensive (as I won't be using it that much)?

I gladly provide more input/criteria where relevant for your feedback (but the fact that I cannot provide this spontaneously is why I ask this question rather than just deciding on a choice myself).

Thanks!

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20 minutes ago, Assassin7 said:

Budget would be the first and most obvious question, if you have one. 

 

Not really an obvious question. I indicated not too expensive, because it won't see that much use. I'd like to see possibilities and the price range they are in before I set myself a budget.

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Dunno about budget or preferences, but some ultrabook would be fine (good battery and portability). I don't know what companies you have in BE, but i used amazon.de to narrow it down.

14", i5, and nVidia (for light game). I would go in that direction <14", i3/i5 and preferably newer gen (5/6) cpus for better integrated graphics. 

Lenovo U430Touch

Lenovo ThinkPad Yoga 14

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1 hour ago, Private_Miros said:

 

Not really an obvious question. I indicated not too expensive, because it won't see that much use. I'd like to see possibilities and the price range they are in before I set myself a budget.

Well in that case, as a travel/work laptop, you want portability and low weight, which would mean a 15" screen at most, probably smaller. You wabt long battery life, so integrated graphics, but that also means you will be compronising on power, so I personally would ignore anything with an AMD CPU, because they aren't very powerful on low end. So that would mean an i5 U series, or at least an i3. (I wouldnt touch anything personally with less than an i3, even if it was only for work)

On that note, have you considered an MS Surface? Because that actually fits all those specifications. I have a friend who has one and used it for all hos schoolwork last year, it was pretty good, and he also was playing Civ5/Hearthstone on it no problem. 

If not a surface, I hate HP, had nothing but problems with all HP laptops we, and several friends, have had in the past ~5 years (every single PC, literally 4 different models from different years, destroyed themselves in the exact same way, with the CPU fan and headsink just breaking, all around the exact same time in their lifespans - around a year old)  but as for other brands, I have had no other real issues. I hear good things about Toshiba, and I bought an ASUS which is extremely good. (and by FAR the best PC in its price range when i bought it) so find one that fits your taste.

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Here Miros polish up your german and knock yourself out:

 

http://geizhals.de/?cat=nb&xf=12_8192~1482_Intel~2377_15.9~2379_13~8150_NVIDIA~9_1920x1080#xf_top

 

I preselected certain features, that are a must have. You only need to choose which GPU you want (GTX960M starts at ~750€) and some other things like OS.

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Dunno what "Expensive" would mean to you, but Dell and Lenovo laptops $999 USD+ are usually some of the highest contenders for performance, spec, and reviews. I would put MSI up there, but MSI is purely for gaming.

My personal favorite is the Dell M2800 series and the XPS 15, but adder's lenovo selection is also good.

Most of the Mid-High tier Dells come with Standard SSD, i7 6700/i5 6600 and either 960M or the newer GPU models

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I have a surface pro 4 that I really like.  Great for travel.  Plays some basic games.  Very light and portable.  

I picked mostly middle of the road options (I5, 256G HD, 8G ram) and stayed under 1k.  You could adjust downward for a price savings.

 

It's not a "true" laptop, I know... but that also means I don't have to stow it during takeoff and landing.  The option to remove the keyboard is handy as well.  The touch screen is responsive and accurate, and fun with certain games.  

 

Only real issue I've had is the single USB port.  But I carry a 4 port hub for times when I need to expand.  

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34 minutes ago, _Dia said:

XPS 13 is unmatched imo. 

Dank XPS. Also in that range MacBook is also good. 

 

3 hours ago, Assassin7 said:

ignore anything with an AMD CPU, because they aren't very powerful on low end. So that would mean an i5 U series, or at least an i3. (I wouldnt touch anything personally with less than an i3, even if it was only for work)

 

978jMd2.jpg

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2 hours ago, Deusmortis said:

I have a surface pro 4 that I really like.  Great for travel.  Plays some basic games.  Very light and portable.  

I picked mostly middle of the road options (I5, 256G HD, 8G ram) and stayed under 1k.  You could adjust downward for a price savings.

 

It's not a "true" laptop, I know... but that also means I don't have to stow it during takeoff and landing.  The option to remove the keyboard is handy as well.  The touch screen is responsive and accurate, and fun with certain games.  

 

Only real issue I've had is the single USB port.  But I carry a 4 port hub for times when I need to expand.  

The thing is that it's quite expensive for the actual performance you get. It is absolutely awesome if you have a use for it (I do ALL of my lecture notes on it, literally haven't touched a piece of paper in months) but in this case a cheaper ultrabook might be the better choice just because of price. If the tablet/laptop combo and very high portability worth it for you, absolutely go for it though, awesome device and it can even play some games if you go with the i5.

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7 hours ago, Assassin7 said:

Well in that case, as a travel/work laptop, you want portability and low weight, which would mean a 15" screen at most, probably smaller. You wabt long battery life, so integrated graphics, but that also means you will be compronising on power, so I personally would ignore anything with an AMD CPU, because they aren't very powerful on low end. So that would mean an i5 U series, or at least an i3. (I wouldnt touch anything personally with less than an i3, even if it was only for work)

On that note, have you considered an MS Surface? Because that actually fits all those specifications. I have a friend who has one and used it for all hos schoolwork last year, it was pretty good, and he also was playing Civ5/Hearthstone on it no problem. 

If not a surface, I hate HP, had nothing but problems with all HP laptops we, and several friends, have had in the past ~5 years (every single PC, literally 4 different models from different years, destroyed themselves in the exact same way, with the CPU fan and headsink just breaking, all around the exact same time in their lifespans - around a year old)  but as for other brands, I have had no other real issues. I hear good things about Toshiba, and I bought an ASUS which is extremely good. (and by FAR the best PC in its price range when i bought it) so find one that fits your taste.

I've owned (and currently do) 3 asus laptops, and they're fantastic.  No hardware issues ever, and great build quality and looks.  I dunno about Dell, but HP is trash, and my acer fucking fell to pieces in a year (aspire v nitro). 

 

As a matter of fact, the Q504ua I'm typing this on might suit your needs.  Core i5, touchscreen, 360 degree convertible, really thin and light and looks great.  The only negative is the 5400rpm HDD it comes with, but I just took it out of the box today and immediately put in an SSD.  I bought it at Best Buy today for $550.

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3 hours ago, Folterknecht said:

^

well he's right - but for the wrong reasons.

Well, going by desktop AMD, i would also assume that they are more power hungry than intel as well, but I dont know that so I didnt say it.

 

But I cringe when seeing a dual core AMD, especially one with a low clock speed like you see so often in laptops these days. You're basically asking for a slow ass PC.

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10 minutes ago, Assassin7 said:

Well, going by desktop AMD, i would also assume that they are more power hungry than intel as well, but I dont know that so I didnt say it.

 

But I cringe when seeing a dual core AMD, especially one with a low clock speed like you see so often in laptops these days. You're basically asking for a slow ass PC.

 

I simply loved E-350 APUs and constant user crying how Youtube is slow.

 

I mean everything below A8 is cancer. I have Acer A6 for multimedia only because of HD graphics and HW acceleration. It's useless for normal work, for me at least. 

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It may not fit your needs, but what the hey, at least you have the info: I recently picked up an Alienware 13" from a Dell outlet in UK. With shipping to Estonia, it cost me only 1375 EUR. What did I get?

13,3" Full HD IPS matte screen which has great viewing angles even in medium light. It is a bit smallish for longer gaming sessions, but workable.
i5 6500U 2c/4t 2,5GHz with 3,1GHz Turbo (which it sits at all the time when gaming)
16GB RAM
250GB SSD
and a GTX 960M 2GB (runs WoT at near maximum detail @ 45-65 fps)
Win 10 Home was installed

Other things of note: the batterylife is godlike (62WHr battery). I tried it out and could not believe my eyes. After tuning the power settings, I could watch Youtube for 10,5h straight. Twitch seems to be a bit more power hungry, but even then it lasted about 8 hrs.

It comes with RGB LEDs all over the place (keyboard, logo on the front, logo on the back, etc), which you can configure to your liking or turn off.

It weighs in at 2kg and it also comes with THE BEST cooling I've ever seen on a laptop this size. Both CPU and GPU get their own separate heatpipes, with their own radiator and fan. The air intakes have mesh filters. And for some games, the thing is barely audible. I mean, I played Borderlands on it over the weekend and you had to put year ear to the laptop to hear the fans working. During WoT sessions, especially after say 30 minutes or so, you can definitely hear the fans, but its a soothing hiss, not some ungodly high-pitched roar.

I bought it as a WoT-capable travel laptop, and it has lived up to almost all my expectations (60 fps constant in WoT would have been nice).

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14 hours ago, Folterknecht said:

Well you overpayed - 1000€ for a Dell Inspiron 7559

+40€ for an additional 8GB of RAM

+80€ for an M.2 250GB SSD

That, my friend, is a 2.7kg 15,7" laptop that has noise issues, build quality that is described as "creaky" "with uneven gaps" "protruding edges", and a "very glossy" screen on top of that.

It doesn't sound like a suitable travel laptrop at all. It's hard to carry along due to its weight, it takes up a lot of space, it gets noisy when you are trying to play on a bus or an airplane, it has such build quality that you can actually twist the frame by hand, it has large enough gaps that sand, dirt etc can get between the keyboard and the screen while in your travel bag, and on top of it very glossy screen means you have to use it in low light conditions to see anything at all. I would get it if you were only after stationary performance and had strictly limited budget for WoT, but like OP I too already have an epic desktop rig.

I would say for a good travel laptop, something like 2,1kg is the maximum and you should think twice if you plan on buying a 15,7" machine.

 

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