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Thread: Laptop for less than £700 - what's on the horizon and what should I be looking at?

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    Laptop for less than £700 - what's on the horizon and what should I be looking at?

    I've been doing some research around this area, it's for my mother-in-law who happens to be a programming lecturer, so she knows her stuff PC wise, but isn't to up on the latest hardware and options. She's going to be doing a lot of travelling this year having retired from her main job and is looking for a fully flegded x86 machine that is going to offer a proper computing experience (she'll be using it for work), have good battery life (I define this as 5 hours minimum during normal browsing), and is as light as possible.

    An ultra book seems like the ideal choice then, but which one?!

    Storage space is not an issue, so a 128Gb SSD would be ideal for speed, battery life and weight reduction. I want a machine that has a quality build feel to it, ideally with an IPS panel. This isn't going to be for gaming so the GPU isn't critical, but HD4000 or better would be preferable.

    Must haves I would say are:
    SSD drive, ideally 128Gb
    ULV Core processor (preferably an ivy bridge model, although sandy bridge is also acceptable if other factors are met)
    13" screen minimum (older people prefer bigger screens, so this is a good compromise I feel!)
    5 hour battery life
    Sturdy build quaity


    Prefer to have:
    IPS screen, ideally higher than 1366x768 but res is less of an issue. If not IPS, then at least a good screen with decent viewing angles. This seems to be the downfall on a lot of the cheap ultrabooks.
    Matte / anti-glare screen....another major issue in finding a suitable unit!
    Comfortable keyboard, i like the look of the one on the Lenovo Yoga 13 for example. Also a nice large track pad.
    Minimum 4Gb RAM (shouldn't be an issue I suspect)

    Not important:
    DVD drive
    USB3


    So far I've looked at:

    Acer Asipre S3
    Samsung Series 5 Ultra
    Asus S200
    Microsoft Surface Pro
    Asus Taichi
    Lenovo Yoga 13

    I had initially had the idea this should have a tablet option to it, but in retrospect this isn't important for her. A good quality ultra book is what she's needing. Can people point out some models I should be considering, or once which are going to be released in the next 2/3 months?

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    Re: Laptop for less than £700 - what's on the horizon and what should I be looking a

    Two that I like the look off that would meet your spec ( you don't mention budget) are:

    1) Macbook Air ( I have this so any questions I can help with)
    2) Asus Zenbook Touch U500VZ http://zenbook.asus.com/zenbook/

    That Asus is 15" - there is a 13" in that family as well
    Last edited by kmac; 08-02-2013 at 01:03 PM. Reason: Typo

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    Re: Laptop for less than £700 - what's on the horizon and what should I be looking a

    Budget is in the title kmac!

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    Re: Laptop for less than £700 - what's on the horizon and what should I be looking a

    Can you install Windows onto the Macbook Air? I need to be Windows O/S, maybe a Linux distro as well

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    Re: Laptop for less than £700 - what's on the horizon and what should I be looking a

    Quote Originally Posted by cptwhite_uk View Post
    Budget is in the title kmac!
    ooops so it is, my bad

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    Re: Laptop for less than £700 - what's on the horizon and what should I be looking a

    Quote Originally Posted by cptwhite_uk View Post
    Can you install Windows onto the Macbook Air? I need to be Windows O/S, maybe a Linux distro as well
    I am running my Macbook air with Windows 7 - no issues

    MAc OS is a Unix based OS anyway

    Air is over budget anyway - recently Amazon had a deal for the 13" Air at £868 so look out for that

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    Re: Laptop for less than £700 - what's on the horizon and what should I be looking a

    The Asus 13" Zenbook is within budget and reviewed here;

    http://www.trustedreviews.com/asus-z..._Laptop_review

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    Re: Laptop for less than £700 - what's on the horizon and what should I be looking a

    For £500 this looks like a real cracker, positive reviews generally as well:
    http://www.saveonlaptops.co.uk/Toshi...hopping#Images

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    Re: Laptop for less than £700 - what's on the horizon and what should I be looking a


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    Re: Laptop for less than £700 - what's on the horizon and what should I be looking a

    One of these...

    http://www.schtrade.co.uk/prod/lenov...-80gb-grade-b/

    And a new battery.

    Why buy modern tat, when you can get 2 year old top end for 130 quid.

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    Senior Member cptwhite_uk's Avatar
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    Re: Laptop for less than £700 - what's on the horizon and what should I be looking a

    Currently looking at upping the budget and getting the Samsung Series 9 NP400X4C...15" 1600x900 screen with 400 nits brightness and decent viewing angles for TN panel, i5-3317U (Ivy Bridge 1.7Ghz, with HD4000), 8Gb RAM, 15mm thick, 128Gb SSD, <10 sec boot time, light sensitive backlit keyboard, typical 7.5 hour battery time (range is 6-10 hours) 1.65Kg...beautiful design and backlit keyboard for £850ish (refurb class A1 with full warranty)


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    Re: Laptop for less than £700 - what's on the horizon and what should I be looking a

    Quote Originally Posted by cptwhite_uk View Post
    For £500 this looks like a real cracker, positive reviews generally as well:
    http://www.saveonlaptops.co.uk/Toshi...hopping#Images
    That's a great laptop for the price. The Acer Aspire S3 in your original list also worth considering

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    Re: Laptop for less than £700 - what's on the horizon and what should I be looking a

    I would Avoid Acer at all costs. They're build quality is utter garbage and they are amongst the highest laptops with fail rates.

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