As tablets and smartphones gain in popularity, the laptop is still “it” for high end gaming, video streaming, and work. If you’re in the market, consider your needs, then select from the following to be the envy of all!
Apple MacBook Pro 13″ with Retina Display
Introduced in late 2013, this is the #1 pick. It provides reliable performance, “best-in-class” 13″ retina display (256 x 1600 pixels), a Haswell processor, and a good battery life for a full day’s work at 9.5 hours. Available with 4 – 16 gigabytes! Basic price $1,299.
For Those Who Can’t Decide, a Hybrid
Lenovo IdeaPad Yoga 2
Like the MacBook it has a Haswell processor. This newer model offers a crisper screen and flexible (but sturdy) hinge for use as a laptop or a tablet. The display may be as good as the MacBook. Great for web browsing, streaming video and the standard office functions. You’ll get up to 9 hours battery life. Basic price $999
Need a Long Battery Life?
Lenovo ThinkPad X240
With an extended battery life at 20+ hours, this one takes you on cross-country flights, long meetings, or off-road where charging stations are few and far between. The display is not high res, and the audio isn’t great, but if you’re looking for a workhorse that can get the job done this is it. Basic price $879
On a Budget?
HP Touchsmart 11z
Even on a budget, there is a laptop for you. The touch screen is nice and responsive, the display is decent, (you may find a bit of lag on the web). Battery life is okay at 6 hours. It looks nice, even though much of it is plastic, and the speakers, while not fancy, definitely produce sound sufficient for an evening movie, or background music. Basic price $400
Multimedia Your Thing?
Bright images and a wide viewing angle make this laptop perfect for watching movies. The quad speakers add a nice thump of bass (subwoofers and Waves MaxxAudio) approximating true cinema surround-sound! This one also has plenty of ports, and a 1080p touch screen. A little heavier than other notebooks, the nice aluminum touches keep it looking impressive. Perfect for gamers, and powerful enough to play BioShock Infinite. Basic price $1000
True Gamer Geek?
Considered the gold standard for gaming machines, Alienware 17 offers a full-HD display, customizable keyboard and “AlienFX” lighting, a Haswell Processor, and GeForce GTX 780M GPU. That means it’s fast! With a 17.3″ display you’re in the game! This is a sturdy piece of equipment with the weight to prove it, but you’ll be playing BioShock Infinite at 106 frames per second (fps) and World of Warcraft at 144 fps. Basic price $1700.
Know before you buy: research your options and your budget. Choosea laptop that’s going to be what you need!