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Showing posts with label Laptops. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Laptops. Show all posts

Sunday, February 19, 2017

Tips & Tricks: 10 things to consider while buying a new laptop

We all know that latest smartphones are capable of performing many computing activities however laptops are never out of work. You still need a laptop for more 'serious' computing capabilities at work, gaming or for leisure.



In case you are planning to buy or upgrade to a new Laptop, below are some key things you should consider.

Also Read: Detailed review on Xiaomi Laptop - Macbook Air look alike with Intel processor, 16GB RAM for $480


10 Key Things To Know When You Upgrade Your Laptop/Notebook

 

1) Screen Size:


This is one of the major selection criteria if you are planning to buy any laptop. Screen sizes may vary from lightweight 12 to 14-inch and even 15.6 / 17 inches. However with designs do come some trade-offs like – with smaller screen, the keyboard might be smaller or battery life and performance may be impacted. Most popular screen sized laptops are 15.6-inch which are suitable for graphics video editing, gaming and designing. The powerful laptops are typically of 15.6-inch or 17-inch sizes. For frequent travelers or mobile users, 12-14 inch laptop fits the bill due to light weight.


2) Design: Conventional or Hybrid


Many modern days laptops comes with flex mode, tablet convertibles/ hybrids, 360 rotatable and keyboard detachable (touch enabled). However these new laptops comes at a price tag – again if you need laptop for generic need – conventional laptops are good, however if you are too much into travel and presentations, reading on the go – than convertible laptop can be used.

3) Connectivity Options:


Many older laptops models comes with several ports like S-video, VGA, Firewire, multiple audio jacks, USB ports and so on. However, modern day laptops are so much smaller, you mostly get a very less USB ports, limited HDMI and a card reader slots. Some ultra-thin designs have even fewer USB ports and collapsible Ethernet ports. The latest tech fad is to dump Ethernet and video out entirely and go for USB type C ports (which will be universal and multipurpose).

Hence if you have connectivity issues at home or work and would need LAN cables, you may go for conventional Laptops. However if your home/ work place is fully WiFi enabled, 4G or Bluetooth compliant, you can go for ultra-thin laptops.

Also Read: Review of Lenovo Air 13 Pro

4) Drives:


Optical drives are bulky, so they've been dropped away within most models today. However, you'll still find 15.6-inch laptops with optical drives if you need one. The major trend is a shift to flash-based storage (SSDs) as compared to hard drives (HDDs). Flash storage is more costly but can be much smaller, lighter and offers better speed.

5) Touch Enabled Laptop:


These devices does reflect a lot of benefits especially for digital users who are more touch-savy, it will be easier to scroll through webpages, reading eBooks, large folders, photos and long documents. Windows 10 interface is optimized for touch and you can download many touch-optimized apps. However for traditional users, you can still opt for keyboard and mouse, you'll save money by dropping the touchscreen.

6) Battery Life:


This is one of the serious selection criteria. Old school Laptops had a battery life of 2 to 3 hours. However in today’s world, bare minimum battery life of 5 to 6 hours is desirable however for a full-workday without plugging in, you need 8 to 10 hours of battery life, for which you still have to pay a premium. Specially in India, where 24 hours electricity is still an issue, long battery life is always key consideration.

7) Graphic Cards:


Laptops can come with 3 kinds of graphics cards viz. Cohesive graphics chips, discrete graphics cards and some which have switchable graphics (to auto switch between internal and discrete graphics).

For regular use of documents, web, multimedia and basic games, integrated (cohesive)graphics are going to do just fine. If your main purpose is gaming or professional graphics video editing, then you should get a notebook with dedicated graphics card. Switchable graphics will conserve power if you're only doing basic use.

Also Read: Exclusive Review of  Hybrid Notebook - HP EliteBook Revolve 810 G2


8) Operating System: 


The OS impacts the overall cost of any laptop – You can buy a laptop without an operating system as it is a major cost saving – and run it on Linux or other open-source alternatives if you are familiar – Xubuntu, Ubuntu, Red Hat, Puppy Linux are few to name.

However for easy usage, Windows is still the most popular OS used by Corporate and Home users and is cheaper to buy a laptop bundled with an operating system rather than buying a standalone operating system later.

For niche users, you have an option to select Mac OS which comes at a premium and runs only on Mac Devices. These laptops are most expensive in today’s market.

10) Configuration (Processor - RAM - HDD):


Today, users can select from two processors – Intel and AMD. Intel still rules 90% of laptop world. For conventional users, they should go for Intel Core i5 or i7 processor (Dual or Quad core), with minimum 4GB/8GB RAM and 500 GB HDD. These laptops starts from Rs. 35,000 upto Rs. 1.5 Lacs.

We would not recommend, Intel Celeron M; i3 as they are slowly fading out.

However if you want very basic version, you can get a laptop on Atom Processor, 2/4 GB RAM and 256/500 GB HDD and is available from Rs. 15,000 to Rs. 30,000. You also have an option to buy a Chrome Laptop - which runs on Google's Chrome OS ( Cloudbased ) and is available for as little as Rs. 15,000.

Even Macbooks come in similar configuration but are very expensive due to hardware durability and UI. Macbooks are lightest of all laptops and comes with very long battery life.


Hope our post intrigued some questions and made you better informed today. Feel free to reach out should you have any questions and feedback on ReviewsToday.




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Monday, September 26, 2016

'Pixel 3' or Bison: 'Andromeda' OS based Google Laptop - 10 Key Things To Know


On October 4th, Google is all set to launch the new Pixel flagship phones, Google Home, and a few other hardware gadgets. We may also hear some software announcement including all new OS called ‘Andromeda’, a version of Android. Andromeda is Google’s effort to modify Android using elements from Chrome OS. Google is perhaps testing Andromeda with the HTC-built Nexus 9, as reflected in Android Open Source Project. Infact Google is planning a 'Pixel 3' laptop running the 'Andromeda' OS for release in Q3 2017.


Also Read: Review of Mi Notebook Air 13.3-inch & 12.5-inch variants


10 Key Things To Know About Pixel 3/ Bison Laptop from Google 

1) Bison will be first brand-new device which will sport Google's combined Android / Chrome OS 'Andromeda' operating system in a laptop form factor.

2) It is going to be an ultra-thin laptop with a 12.3" display, which can be converted into Tablet as well.


Prototype - Pixel 3 (Similar to Surface Pro)


3) The Laptop will powered by Intel m3 or i5 Core processor with 32 or 128GB of storage and 8 or 16GB of RAM.

4) The laptop will also feature two USB-C ports, a 3.5mm jack and a fingerprint scanner.


Also Read: Review of Lenovo Air 13 Pro


5) Laptop will be loaded with many sensors and will come with stylus support (a Wacom pen which will be sold separately), stereo speakers and high quality quad microphones.


Screenshot- Open Android Project


6) The battery will last around 10 hours.

7) Keyboard will be backlit, and the glass trackpad will use haptic & force detection just like Macbook.

8) Laptop will be 10mm in thickness, considerably thinner than the Apple ultra-portable.




9) Bison will cost about $799 onwards.

10) Laptop will be commercially available only post 2017 Q3. 


Stay Tuned to ReviewsToday for more upcoming reviews & news.

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Tuesday, August 2, 2016

Review: Lenovo Air 13 Pro


Introduction

Looks like it is a season of Air which is raining. Xiaomi's Mi Notebook Air was launched recently and in less than a week it has a new competitor none other than Lenovo. Xiaomi’s Notebook specifications caught world’s attention for the price it was being offered. But now, Lenovo has now launched the Air 13 Pro laptop sporting the specifications which are mostly similar to Xiomi Mi Notebook Air. 





Also Read: Macbook Air Alternative - Mi Notebook Air 13.3-inch & 12.5-inch variants



Getting to know about Lenovo's Air 13 Pro

Lenovo's Air 13 Pro  pre-registration is currently open at a price tag of CNY 4,999 (roughly Rs. 51,400), which is exactly similar to price of 13.3-inch Mi Notebook Air. However, after the pre-sale period ends the price for Lenovo's laptop will increase and will cost about CNY 5,499 (Rs. 55,400). The China-only laptop will be available in two variants: one with 4GB of RAM, 256GB SSD, and an i5 processor; and one with 8GB of RAM, 512GB SSD, and an i7 processor.





Also Read: Google Chromebook with 1TB storage - A Review



Build & Quality 

Lenovo has been known for sturdy laptops & computers. Before Lenovo took over, it was known as IBM Think-pad. The new Air model from Lenovo is quite decent for the price they are being offered. 

Processor & RAM: Variant 1 - Intel i5-6200U processor & 4 GB RAM; Variant 2 - Intel i7 Skylake processor & 8 GB RAM

Storage: Variant 1 – 256 GB & Variant 2 – 512 GB

Display: 13.3-inch IPS display

Weight: 1.29 KGs

Graphics Card: 2GB NVIDIA GT940MX

Sensors: Comes with fingerprint recognition (this feature is missing from Mi Notebook Air)

OS: Windows 10 



Overall Observation & Verdict

Xiaomi Mi Notebook Air miss on fingerprint recognition feature however the laptop does have the ability to unlock via the Mi Band 2, enabled by the laptop's Bluetooth v4.1 connectivity. On other hand, Lenovo is much bigger & respected Brand in Laptop market. Fingerprint recognition is a huge USP and the pricing is also quite competitive. We would love to see other brands like Sony, Dell, HP catching up soon with their Air models in future. We do not know when this model will be launched in India but hoping they do so soon. 


Also Read: Review of Hybrid Notebook - HP EliteBook Revolve 810 G2 

For more reviews, upcoming launches stay tuned to ReviewsToday.

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Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Review: Mi Notebook Air 13.3-inch & 12.5-inch variants

Introduction

We first reported that Xiaomi is working on Macbook Air type Notebook in December of 2014. Today Xiaomi announced its much awaited entry into the Laptop category, with its first notebook christened as the Mi Notebook Air - sporting all metal body. The major USP of the product is going to be its price tag that comes at half the cost of MacBook Air. The two models, a 12.5-inch display variant is priced at CNY 3,499 (about Rs. 35,300), and a 13.3-inch variant priced at CNY 4,999 (approx. Rs. 51,400).

The new Mi Notebook Air 2017

Getting to know about Mi Notebook Air

This is the first 13.3-inch computer ever from this Chinese maker that runs on Windows 10- Home and is lighter than Apple Macbook Air by 70 gm (at 1.28kg). 13.3-inch display variant of Mi Notebook Air bears a full-HD resolution, with a 5.59mm-thick bezel and appears about 11-percent smaller than the MacBook Air. The notebook is 14.8mm thick compared to the MacBook Air's 17mm thickness. The Mi Notebook Air's full dimensions are 309.6x210.9x148.8mm.
The 12.5-inch Mi Notebook Air variant is 12.9mm thin, and weigh in at 1.07kg, which is slimmer than the 12-inch MacBook's 13.1mm thickness, but heavier than the Apple MacBook.

Also Read: Review of Google Chromebook with 1TB storage


Build & Quality

13.3-inch Mi Notebook Air:


Processor: The 13.3-inch Mi Notebook Air is fueled by a sixth generation Intel Core i5 processor, coupled with Nvidia GeForce 940MX GPU

RAM: 1GB of GDDR5 VRAM, 8GB of DDR4 RAM

Storage: 256GB PCIe SSD. A second slot for an SSD drive is provided

Battery: 9.5 hour battery life, with the battery said to charge 50 percent in 30 mins

12.5-inch Mi Notebook Air:


Processor: Bearing a full-HD display, it is powered by an Intel Core M3 processor

RAM: 4GB

Storage: 128GB SATA SSD alongside a second SSD slot

Battery: 11.5-hour battery life

Silver and Gold Color Variant of Mi Notebook Air

Other Common Features of 12.5-inch and 13.3-inch Mi Notebook Air

a) Laminated display to reduce glare, and edge-to-edge glass protection
b) Full-sized keyboard with backlit keys and a 1.3mm stroke depth
c) AKG dual speakers, and Dolby Digital surround sound
d) Sports Mi Cloud Sync, letting users sync their phone contacts, messages, gallery, notes, and other data
e) Connectivity options include HDMI port, two USB 3.0 ports, a USB Type-C port, and a 3.5mm headphone jack - no Ethernet port or optical drive
f) Unlock support via the Mi Band 2, enabled by the laptops Bluetooth v4.1 connectivity
g) Available in Silver and Gold colour variants
h) Users can also personalize Mi Notebook Air laptops with official sticker accessories for the hood
i) Accessories include a Leather Sleeve (CNY 299 or roughly Rs. 3,000), PU Leather Sleeve (CNY 99 or roughly Rs. 1,000), and Microfiber Sleeve (CNY 69 or roughly Rs. 700)

Also Read: Review of Hybrid Notebook - HP EliteBook Revolve 810 G2


General Observation & Verdict

The Mi Notebook Air is a great product from house of Xiaomi. However Macbook Air from Apple is targeted for niche and high end customers. Whereas Mi Notebook Air with its mid-price and affordability factor is aimed to drive volumes. None the less, if you are looking for a light-weight, sleek and Macbook styling under Rs. 50,000 – this laptop fits the bill.

Stay Tuned to ReviewsToday for more upcoming updates and reviews. 


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Monday, December 29, 2014

Review: Xiaomi Laptop - Macbook Air look alike leaked online with Intel processor, 16GB RAM for $480

Introduction


Xiaomi, world’s 4th largest smartphone maker, a name that resonates with great smartphones flaunting some amazing specs, that too at an affordable price, now plans to jump into personal computing devices arena as well, to take on laptop makers. The new leak from GizmoChina highlights rumored Mi Laptop along with its speculative price. The striking feature of this laptop is that it resembles Apple MacBook Air.
Mi-Laptop (Leaked Details from GizmoChina.com)

Getting to know about Mi Laptop

In the past there have been a lot of speculation about Xiaomi entering the PC industry as part of its next strategy. While Xiaomi's first laptop launch date is still not out, but if rumors are to be true, then the Chinese maker will add another feather to its arsenal.  The laptop in the leak showcases bright orange 'Mi' logo below the screen, while rear silver logo occupies same area like that inscribed on the Macbook Air laptops. The laptop sports a special orange colored function button that can take custom functions from the user.

Also Read: Review of Google Chromebook with 1 TB storage


Build & Quality

For a laptop’s success its specifications are the most important assets. Let’s look under its hood (based on the details provided in the leak):

Display: The laptop will chin a large 15-inch display with a full-HD (1080p) resolution

Processor : Mi Laptop will be powered by an Intel Haswell processor (Core i7-4500U)

RAM: With two 8GB dual channel memory modules, a very powerful 16 GB RAM will be on board to take on any complex processing at ease, making the laptop a kill machine.

Storage: While the storage details are not out, we would expect at least 250 GB out of the box

OS: To keep the price competitive, the laptop will run on open source operating system like Linux but exact version is not shared.

Also Read: The light weight Xubuntu 14.10 ( Free OS for any kind of PC/Laptop)

Design: The rumored laptop show akin design aesthetics to Apple Macbook's Air range, be it bezel size, color scheme, keyboard style, and other details.

Price: The laptop will be priced very competitively i.e. CNY 2,999 or $481 or Rs. 30,700 approximately).

Also Read: Review of a Hybrid Notebook - HP EliteBook Revolve 810 G2


General Observation & Verdict

Xiaomi has not announced anything officially and it is hard to ascertain if the company is actually developing a laptop. Though we all know Xiaomi has recently explored many new domains like fitness bands, air purifiers, tablets, modem categories, and hence entering into PC category will not be surprising and we won’t appalled to see new laptop from Xiaomi a reality next year. From design & specification and the price mentioned, this laptop will uproot other laptop players likes HP, Dell & Lenovo etc. The issue around Xiaomi has been its customer care and service center. We hope Xiaomi improves on this aspect as well along with the new products.

Watch out this space for more details in coming days as we plan to follow this story closely.

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Sunday, November 23, 2014

Review: Google Chromebook with 1TB storage

Introduction

Google is planning to pamper its customers by offering a free 1TB of data storage on its Google Drive cloud storage system to those who purchase a new Chromebook notebook this holiday season. The intent behind the same is to attract more buyers for Chromebook which has been relatively slow on its adoption worldwide. Users around the world still prefer Windows, Linux & Mac over Google’s pet OS Chrome.
1TB Chromebook

Getting to know about Chromebook Offer

Traditionally Google offers 100GB of free Drive storage with its line of Chromebook computers. However in today’s world 100 GB storage is just too little especially for those who work on large quantity of data & need more storage. To fix this arbitrage with 10 times the amount of storage for free (for a period of two years), the new Chromebook deal is really attractive. Google normally charges a fee of $10 a month for that much storage, which results in savings of $240 over the course of two year. Since most of entry-level Chromebooks are tagged around the $200 retail price range, your device is almost free if used over 2 years.

Also Read: A Hybrid Notebook - HP EliteBook Revolve 810 G2

Build & Quality

Chromebooks are light weight netbooks designed specifically for everyday use like browsing web pages, checking email and managing media such as images, music and video. For productivity purposes Chromebook uses Google Documents service for word processing and spreadsheets saved to Google Drive. It provides easy collaboration with others by making it easy to share specific document files with others. Google focuses on ease of use for Chromebook owners, with automatic updates and streamlined use, all at reasonable prices for entry-level models. However a world of caution, if you are a heavy users of graphics or gaming, it may not be good choice. Chromebooks have proven to be admirable substitutes to expensive laptops .

General Observation & Verdict

The new storage deal is available through Google Play Store, online, or select authorized stores. If you want to save on quick bucks and need a netbook just for daily use, Chromebook is best suited for you. Overall an impressive deal.

To buy Chromebook - Click Here

Do let us know if you liked our review and don't forget to like us on Facebook
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Sunday, July 20, 2014

Review: A Hybrid Notebook - HP EliteBook Revolve 810 G2

Introduction

HP EliteBook Revolve 810 G2: Copyright © 2014Reviews Today
Most of the corporate houses, firms and IT organizations are adapting mobile computing devices rapids as their workforce has become mobile and travelling like never before. The Desktops are being slowly replaced by smarter laptops, which have equally good configuration and are much lighter which allows end user to work from any location with ease. Some of the firms are now experimenting with next gen. computing devices to target their Gen Y employees. One of those devices is Hybrid Laptop. There are quite of them now available in market from Dell, HP & Toshiba etc. Let’s understand what a Hybrid Laptop is. Basically it’s a laptop cum touch enabled Tablet normally very light weight, easy to carry and high on performance. In our review today, we will be discussing on one such device HP EliteBook Revolve 810 G2 which is being loved by corporate gentry all over. We will tell you why.

Getting to know HP EliteBook Revolve 810 G2
EliteBook, the Revolve 810 G2 Tablet isn’t designed for regular patrons, but instead at business folks who are now looking for a laptop/notebook that can be converted into a touch enabled tablet with ease. With magnesium built, the make looks very strong and also makes it look striking. The maker HP says this hybrid devise had been designed to the MIL-STD 810G specification for shocks, temperature variations, particle exposure, and its keyboard is also spill resistant and its touchscreen is protected by sturdy Gorilla Glass.
The Quality Guidance
In spite of the robust 180 degree spin design, it’s not a completely walled unit, as the battery being easily replaceable from the bottom of the chassis. The removable battery also provides access to a micro-SIM slot, which allows the EliteBook Revolve to be constantly coupled while on the go. On the weight, the Revolve 810 G2 weighs at 1.38kg, which is substantial for an 11.6 inches device which will make you tired if you carry it for longer durations.
Feather touch Key Padeviews Today
You will encounter a Windows Home key at the top of the screen, while the right side of the unit contains volume buttons and sliders for the power switch and auto-rotate toggle mode. About various ports, you will notice that all of the ports for this device are located along the spine. Ports include Gigabit Ethernet, USB 3.0 (two of them), full-sized Display-Port, and the power connector.
On the left side you can see the tablet controls, as well as the docking connector.
The USB ports are located at the back and are not really visible when you use the Revolve as a laptop, best is to forget about them. It implies that if you have a USB dongle plugged in, and then you try to rotate the screen to get into tablet mode, you could end up thumping the USB stick. Some carefulness will be needed.
The rear has most of the ports. You get a couple of USB 3.0 ports, Gigabit Ethernet, Display-Port and power. The cable lock slot also exists in here.





The hinge that rotates the screen is a tough one overall; In tablet mode, the in-built magnet keeps the screen planted resolutely against the ground/surface.

Other Features

With a display of 1366x768, the screen has wide viewing angles and good overall quality. The display was crisp, sharp and bright colored. The Screen size is about 11.6in , which just mask reflections superior than a larger screen.
When using this device as a tablet, the screen was receptive. Text didn’t look that sharp (like those of iPads). User comfort is great despite the notebook being such as small size. The keyboard was easy to type on for long periods of time. The touchpad gave more of a confined feeling since it is only 91x47mm, though we adjusted to it in the end. We simply adored the feel of the keyboard’s keys. They are very feathery soft and are backlit.




Performance and battery life

As for performance, the EliteBook Revolve 810 G2 comes in following configuration ether Core i3, Core i5 or Core i7 fourth-generation, ultra-low voltage, dual-core CPUs, and up to 12GB of DDR3L SDRAM (4GB is soldered onto the board and there is one slot for expansion). Storage comes at 128GB, 180GB or 256GB solid state drive (SSD). For our review we used EliteBook with a Core i7 CPU, 8GB of RAM, and a 250GB SSD.
Top class business look of Revolve
Its performance was swift throughout and device really reciprocated well. Even while the Revolve was processing 3D graphics, it didn’t get overwhelmed at all. The frame became slightly warm when we used the Revolve in our lap but that did not pass any discomfort to us.
Battery life was not too dilapidated overall during our tests. For normal usage, the 44 Watt-hour battery lasted close to seven hours.
Other cult features of the HP EliteBook Revolve 810 G2 Tablet include NFC, Bluetooth 4.0, TPM 1.2, a vPro chipset, and 802.11ac Wi-Fi. One of the key miss is the fingerprint reader or a Smart Card slot.
In case you are power-point /presentation savy, you will have to order a separate adapters to connect VGA Projects/other Screens as there is not VGA port in the notebook.

CHEAT SHEET

Features
Description
LCD Size
11.6"
Processor
Intel Core i7-4600u 3.3GHz
Memory
8GB
Hard Drive
256GB SSD
Resolution
HD (1366x768)
Camera
Yes
Slots
MicroSD slot, Micro-SIM
Wireless
Intel Dual Band Wireless-AC 7260 802.11ac/a/b/g/n 2x2
I/O ports and connectors
(2) USB 3.0 ports; (1) RJ-45 (Ethernet) port; (1) Displayport, (1) headphone/ microphone combo jack; (1) side docking connector; (1) power connector
Keyboard
Backlit
Pointing Device
Touchpad (HP calls it Clickpad)
OS
Windows 8.1
Warranty
3 year
Bluetooth
4
Dimensions
11.22 x 8.35 x 0.8 in.
Weight
3.04 pounds
External video
DP
Battery
44Whr
Battery/Average life
HP claims 8 hours +
Battery Warranty
3 year
AC adapter
45W

General Observations
In nutshell, complete package device which gives you dual functionality of both notebook and tablet tasks. Very easy to use and light weight adds to its class. It’s a fun device for all business users especially those who travel extensively. Its price of $1600 or INR 90,000 puts in the same company as many high-end touch-enabled Ultra-books and is stiff competitor to MacBook for the price range.

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