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Best Laptops for Kids

Best Laptops for Kids

A reliable laptop can be a great tool for your child’s education.

As the number of jobs that relies on computers increases, it can be a great investment for your child future to learn essential computer skills. Not to mention, in today’s digital age many of your kid’s schoolwork is now done using a computer and the Internet.

mother and daughter using laptop

However, because kids, especially the younger ones, tend to damage things you don’t want to give them an expensive laptop right off the bat. Fortunately, many of the so-called educational laptops aimed for students use has very affordable prices.

The problem, though, is that the market is flooded with so many laptop models. The best laptops for kids can range from your typical 2-in-1 convertibles to the standard widescreen laptops.  Going over each of these laptops can be quite confusing especially if you have little knowledge about these portable gadgets. Hence, we have created this list to serve as a guide for parents and kids alike.

Top 8 Laptops for Kids of 2019

Image

Product

Specs

Availability

Feature 1

 

Acer Chromebook R 11

 

Feature 2

1.6GHz Quad-core Intel Celeron N3150`
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Feature 1

 

Apple MacBook Air

 

Feature 2

1.6 GHz Dual-core Intel Core i5
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Feature 1

 

Asus Transformer Mini T102HA

 

Feature 2

1.44 GHz Intel Atom x5-Z8350
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Feature 1

 

CTL NL61TX Educational Chromebook

 

Feature 2

1.6 GHz Quad-Core Intel Celeron
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Feature 1

 

Dell Inspiron 11 3000 Series 2-in-1

 

Feature 2

0.9 GHz Intel Core m3-6Y30
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Feature 1

 

HP Stream Laptop 11

 

Feature 2

1.6 GHz Intel Celeron N3060
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Feature 1

 

Lenovo Ideapad 120S

 

Feature 2

1.1 GHz Intel Celeron N3350
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Feature 1

 

Microsoft Surface Go

 

Feature 2

1.66 GHz Dual-core Intel Pentium Gold
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1. Acer Chromebook R 11

Acer Chromebook R 11 Convertible, 11.6-Inch HD Touch, Intel Celeron N3150, 4GB DDR3L, 32GB, CB5-132T-C1LK, Denim White
$398.32
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05/22/2022 08:51 am GMT

Convertible laptops, often called 2-in-1s, are becoming increasingly popular especially to younger people. The Chromebook R 11 is one such machine which can transform from tablet to laptop and vice versa just by folding and unfolding the unit. Kids will surely love this laptop’s colorful display and comfortable keyboard. Meanwhile, parents will appreciate all the value it offers in exchange for an affordable price.

Clad in elegant white chassis, the Chromebook R 11 has a vibrant 11.6-inches HD IPS display with 1366 x 768 resolution. At its heart is a 1.6GHz Quad-core Intel Celeron N3150 paired with a standard Integrated Intel HD Graphics. It has 4 GB of RAM and 32 GB HDD storage space.

These specs are slightly better than its competitors in the budget educational laptop segment.

The biggest advantage that the Chrome R 11 has, aside from being a convertible laptop, is the minimalist design that makes it portable. Hence, your child can take it to school on his or her backpack. Like in other Chromebooks, parents can set parental controls on this laptop so that their children will avoid dangerous sites.

The laptop also has access to some helpful apps that promote learning, aside from the usual file sharing platform like Google Drive and online tools like Google Docs. Web browsing is also quite easy with this laptop; hence your kids can do online research and even do a bit of multitasking when required.

This device also has a number of ports like USB 3.0 and 2.0, HDMI with HDCP, an SD card slot and a headphone jack. For connectivity, you have a dual-band Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 4.0.

However, this laptop also has a few hiccups of its own. The lid flexes, hence, it can easily be damaged when not handled carefully. The 9-hour battery life is good for an ultrathin but lags behind other Chromebooks which can last up to 12 hours. There’s also a noticeable noise when taking photos using the webcam.

Overall, the Acer Chromebook 11 is perfect for your grade-schooler who has more demanding schoolwork than just doing paperwork.

Display: 11.6-inches HD backlit IPS; 1366 x 768
Processor: 1.6GHz Quad-core Intel Celeron N3150
Graphics: Integrated Intel HD Graphics
RAM: 4 GB DDR3
Storage: 32 GB HDD
Battery Life: 9 hours
Weight: 2.9 pounds

Pros:

  • Quality build
  • Minimalist and portable design
  • Mid-tier CPU performance
  • Responsive touchscreen

Cons:

  • Chrome OS doesn’t work optimally for touch
  • A bit more expensive

 

2. Apple MacBook Air

Apple 13" MacBook Air Core i5 CPU, 8GB RAM (2017 Model 128GB)
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The MacBook Air is a laptop that can fit any lifestyle even that of grade school and high school students. If you have a more flexible budget, this affordable laptop offers great value in terms of performance and long battery life. If you are an Apple fan and you want to introduce your children to the brand’s digital culture, then the MacBook Air is the most inexpensive way to do so.

On board, this laptop is a 1.6 GHz Dual-core Intel Core i5 which you can turbo boost up to 2.7 GHz. It also has Intel HD Graphics 6000 card and 8 GB RAM. These components allow the MacBook Air to handle even the most demanding applications. For storage, it has a portable 256 GB flash.

The main benefit of using the MacBook Air is its comfortable backlit keyboard which has very responsive keys with shallow travel which makes typing much easier even during nighttime. This Apple laptop also has a superb battery life of up to 10 hours, which is more than enough if your child takes it to class for the whole day.

Another great thing about the MacBook Air is it has a USB 3.0 port, meaning you don’t have to buy a dongle. This is a feature you won’t see in any other Apple laptops. Furthermore, it has an excellent cooling system that effectively disperses heat and keeps it within a comfortable threshold. The newest High Sierra update has also improved the most important apps particularly those used for productivity.

The MacBook Air has plenty of ports including Mag-Safe 2 power, SDXC card slot and a Thunderbolt 2. It can also connect via Wi-FI and Bluetooth.

Aside from the expensive price, this laptop has inferior 13.3-inch LED widescreen with only 1440 x 900 resolution. It also uses a 5th generation processor instead of the newest 7th generation. It also doesn’t have a touchscreen technology which you would expect from most laptops in this segment.

Overall, the Apple MacBook Air is perfect for kids that are about to start high school as it can better assist them on more rigorous school work. However, you have to spend more money compared to your regular educational laptop.

Display: 13.3-inch LED-backlit widescreen; 1440 x 900 resolution
Processor: 1.6 GHz Dual-core Intel Core i5
Graphics: Intel HD Graphics 6000
RAM: 8 GB DDR3
Storage: 256 GB flash storage
Battery Life: 10 hours
Weight: 2.96 pounds

Pros:

  • Most comfortable Apple keyboard
  • Stellar battery life
  • Very portable
  • No dongles required

Cons:

  • Poor screen quality
  • Hefty price

 

3. Asus Transformer Mini T102HA

If your child is in the early years of schooling, but you want them to get introduced on how computers work, then the Transformer Mini T102HA is a good starting point. It’s a lightweight 2-in-1 laptop that has a durable aluminum chassis and a brightly colored case. Much like other convertibles, it comes with a screen cover that also acts as a trackpad and keyboard at the same time.

On the center of it all is a 1.44 GHz Intel Atom x5-Z8350 which you can overclock up to 1.9 GHz. Compared to other laptops, this may feel a bit underpowered, but it does simple tasks quite well.  It also comes with the usual Integrated Intel HD Graphics, 4 GB RAM and a satisfactory 64 GB of storage.

The Transformer Mini T102HA is hands down one of the least expensive convertible laptops that run on Windows 10 instead of the Chrome OS. The keyboard cover and stylus are also part of the package so you won’t have to buy them separately. While it does have a smaller 10.1-inch screen, the display quality is still good.

This laptop is also made of sturdy materials which ensure it won’t break easily from the misuse of your kids. Another unique feature that this laptop has is a fingerprint reader that at the back of the unit which adds a layer of security.

Not to mention, this laptop has enough number of ports such as microSD card, micro HDMI, USB 3.0 and a COMBO audio jack. The 2-MegaPixel camera is also a good addition. For connection purposes, you have the usual Wi-FI and Bluetooth 4.0.

However, the Transformer Mini T102HA also has a number of flaws. Its lackluster performance only allows basic computing tasks such as surfing the web, doing presentations, writing and drawing. While the battery life is excellent, charging it takes a long time. Finally, the trackpad is a bit inaccurate.

Overall, this is the best affordable 2-in-1 convertible laptop that can handle creative tasks such as drawing and editing images.

Display: 10.1-inch LED IPS touchscreen; 1280 x 800 resolution
Processor: 1.44 GHz Intel Atom x5-Z8350
Graphics: Integrated Intel HD Graphics
RAM: 4GB SDRAM
Storage: 64 GB HDD
Battery Life:
Weight: 1.74 pounds

Pros:

  • Affordable price
  • Comes with stylus plus keyboard cover
  • Has a fingerprint biometrics
  • Decent build quality

Cons:

  • Inaccurate trackpad
  • Low-performing CPU

 

4. CTL NL61TX Educational Chromebook

CTL NL61TX Touchscreen Extra Rugged Chromebook Touch 4GB 11.6" 1366x768 N3160 2.26ghz (NBCNL61TX)
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A lot of parents are worried about giving their young kids a laptop because of the chance that their little ones would break it. After all, most kids don’t take care of gadgets quite well. If you are one of these parents looking for a durable laptop at an affordable price, then look no further than the NL61TX an educational Chromebook from CTL. The lid of this laptop can withstand a pressure of 365 pounds, while the whole unit can resist a fall from a height of 27 inches.

Running the whole show for this laptop is a 1.6 GHz Quad-Core Intel Celeron processor paired with an integrated Intel Graphics. It comes with a 4 GB DDR and has a 32 GB worth of storage in its eMMC flash. While that may be too low, it’s fortunate that like all other Chromebooks you get a 200 GB worth of online storage on your Google Drive for two years. Since it’s a budget laptop, you can’t fret about its 11.6-inches IPS touchscreen that has a 1366 x 768 resolution.

The CTL NL6TX also as a unique feature that is hard to find in any other laptop. Its back doubles as a whiteboard where your kids can draw or doodle using dry-erase markers. This allows them to personalize their laptop and spark their creativity. The device also has a hidden carrying handle which they can easily pull-out for better portability.

Because of its low price, you can expect a few compromises from this laptop. The CPU doesn’t have a fan; hence its performance slows down once it gets a bit hot. The audio’s volume is too low to hear clearly even at its highest configuration. You also have the limitations of a Chromebook including the low storage space.

Overall, the CTL NL61TX is a superb choice for parents who are looking for a laptop that is both durable and inexpensive.

Display: 11.6-inches IPS LCD touchscreen; 1366 x 768 resolution
Processor: 1.6 GHz Quad-Core Intel Celeron
Graphics: Integrated Intel Graphics
RAM: 4 GB DDR
Storage: 32 GB eMMC flash
Battery Life: 12 hours
Weight: 2.75 pounds

Pros:

  • Affordable price
  • Built to take on abuse
  • Easy to carry
  • Back doubles as a whiteboard

Cons:

  • CPU doesn’t have a fan
  • Poor audio quality

 

5. Dell Inspiron 11 3000 Series 2-in-1

Dell Inspiron 11 3000 Series i3147 11.6-inch Convertible 2 in 1 Touchscreen Laptop (Celeron N2840/4G/500G), Windows 10
$299.99
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05/22/2022 10:35 am GMT

Convertible or 2-in-1 laptops are quite a popular choice for helping your children get acquainted with computers. Because they are first exposed to smaller devices like mobile and tablet, it makes sense that they easily get used to something close to its size. The Dell Inspiron 11 3000 is a great alternative to the underpowered Chromebook. The laptop’s case also has several vibrant colors to choose from such as Bali Blue and Tango Red.

Running the show is a 0.9 GHz Intel Core m3-6Y30, which may seem underpowered at first but upon turbo boosting it can reach up to 2.2 GHz. On board also is an Intel HD Graphics 515 and 4 GB of RAM.

The most compelling feature of the Inspiron 11 3000 series is, of course, its large storage capacity of 500 GB. It also has a comfortable keyboard with shallow keys that require only 69 grams of actuation force. Thus, allowing you to type fast and with great accuracy. The Audio quality is also solid and its volume loud enough to fill a small room.

While this laptop has a so-so webcam, it bounces back in terms of a number of ports. Among them are microSD slot, HDMI, USB 3.0 and 2.0, SD card slot, HDMI and headphone/ microphone jack.

Despite all these positive qualities, this laptop also has several shortcomings. The display is dim and dull as compared to many of its rivals. It also heats up faster and can reach above a comfortable threshold. Finally, it has a disappointing battery life of only 5 hours.

Overall, the Inspiron 11 3000 Series offers a lot of value for a budget 2-in-1 laptop that has a Windows 10 OS.

Display: 1366 x 768 resolution
Processor: 0.9 GHz Intel Core m3-6Y30
Graphics: Intel HD Graphics 515
RAM: 4GB DDR3
Storage: 500 GB HDD
Battery Life: 5 hours
Weight: 2.8 pounds

Pros:

  • Low price
  • Decent performance for its price
  • Good audio quality
  • Has four colors to choose from

Cons:

  • Bottom heats up quite fast
  • Short battery life

6. HP Stream Laptop 11

HP Stream Laptop PC 11-y010nr (Intel Celeron N3060, 4 GB RAM, 32 GB eMMC) with Office 365 Personal for one Year
$289.95
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05/22/2022 10:31 am GMT

Flaunting a candy-hued exterior, the HP Stream Laptop will likely catch the eyes of your child. Behind its cute look, though, is a portable laptop that has a solid computing power that is complimented with a long battery life. If its showy façade won’t charm you, its affordable price tag surely will.

At its core is a 1.6 GHz Intel Celeron N3060 with an onboard Intel HD Graphics. It also comes with a 4 GB RAM and has a 32 GB eMMC flash storage, which is a common feature on most budget laptops. The overall build quality of its plastic chassis is good and feels durable at certain areas especially around the hinge.

Surprisingly, the Steam Laptop 11 has an unbelievably high-quality audio quality which is quite rare for a device at this price point. The dynamic dual speakers are quite loud and produce accurate sounds despite being placed at the bottom of the laptop. The 3.6 x 2.1-inches touchpad is also quite pleasant to use and responsive giving you great accuracy in terms of highlighting text and dragging flies.

The ports are also what you would expect from a low-priced laptop. It has headphone/ mic jack, USB 3.0 and 2.0, and a microSD. The full-sized HDMI connector is also a great bonus since it allows you to bypass the horrible display.

The HP Stream’s small screen size is both a bane and a boon. True, it’s small and portable, but the relatively low resolution the pictures in the screen always seemed bland and unexciting to watch.  The 32 GB flash storage is also quite disappointing since it limits the number of files and applications you can store.

Overall, this laptop is a great first laptop for your grade school kids; think of it as a budget training wheels.

Display: 11.6-inch screen; 1366 x 768 resolution
Processor:  1.6 GHz Intel Celeron N3060
Graphics: Intel HD Graphics
RAM: 4 GB
Storage: 32 GB eMMC flash
Battery Life: 8 hours
Weight: 2.5 pounds

Pros:

  • Excellent audio quality
  • Above-par performance
  • Cute design
  • Decent battery life

Cons:

  • Unimpressive display
  • Small storage space

 

7. Lenovo Ideapad 120S

Just because it is affordable, doesn’t always mean it will look cheap. The Ideapad 120S is one of those budget laptops that looks stunning enough to fool you that it’s an expensive gadget. The clean-looking gray chassis has a matte finish that can deceive you that it’s made of aluminum. Coupled with a long battery life and a pretty darn solid performance, this laptop is a good investment for your kid’s education.

Powering this laptop is a 1.1GHz Intel Celeron N3350 which can be turbo boosted up to 2.4 GHz. On board is an Intel HD Graphics 500 and 4 GB of RAM that gives the laptop its edge in performance against other laptops in the segment. The 64 GB eMMC storage is also double that of what you usually get from a budget laptop or Chromebook.

The best bit about this laptop is its ability to maintain its performance even in the midst of multitasking. You can open up to eight Google Chrome tabs, screen Youtube videos, and a Microsoft Word or Excel without experiencing lag or stuttering. Unexpectedly, this laptop also has a vivid audio quality which is loud enough to be heard across a small room. The built-in mic can also record sounds and your voice with great precision.

While it doesn’t have the same fancy ports that premium laptops have, this Lenovo laptop has the essential ones- two USB 3.0, USB type-C, an audio jack, a microSD, and an HDMI. The 0.3-megapixel webcam is also hardly decent, but even more expensive laptops also make compromises on this laptop component.

The IdeaPad 120’s 14.1 inches display is its biggest weakness. It has very poor color accuracy and with a resolution of only 1366 x768, the pixel density is too low that the display is a bit grainy. The flexy body is also prone to breaking and at the hands of kids the chances of becomes higher.

Overall, this PC is a great deal for parents who want to invest in a laptop that does more than a regular Chromebook, but at almost the same price range.

Display: 14.1-inches; 1366 x 768 resolution
Processor: 1.1 GHz Intel Celeron N3350
Graphics: Intel HD Graphics 500
RAM: 4 GB DDR
Storage: 64 GB eMMC
Battery Life: 8 hours
Weight: 3.24 pounds

Pros:

  • Sleek design
  • Faster Type-C charger
  • Above average performance
  • Great audio quality

Cons:

  • Washed-out display
  • Vulnerable flexible body

 

8. Microsoft Surface Go

Microsoft Surface Go (Intel Pentium Gold, 8GB RAM, 128GB) (MCZ-00001)
$244.00
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05/22/2022 12:24 pm GMT

If your kid is familiar with using the tablet, but you want him or her to start learning how to use the laptop, then you can never go wrong with the Microsoft Surface Go. While it’s almost double the price as that of your regular budget ultrabook and so-called “educational laptop,” the Surface Go offers a lot of value such as a larger and faster SSD storage, better graphics card and more.

Not to be outdone in terms of performance, the Surface Go, hosts, a 1.66 GHz Dual-core Intel Pentium Gold matched with an Intel HD Graphics. This combination gives the laptop a silky-smooth performance and even allows it to multi-task with ease thanks to an 8 GB RAM. Finally, the 128 GB SSD is its bread and butter that allows the whole system to boot and operate faster. Moreover, the file transfer rate of the Surface Go easily blows away that of Chromebooks that uses eMMC flash storage.

The Microsoft Go also has a bright and vivid 10-inches PixelSense touchscreen display with 1`800 x 1200 resolution which gives it denser pixels. Thus it can also double as a portable cinematic player especially because of its enjoyable audio quality.

Despite its small frame, Microsoft was still able to slip in a few ports such as a headset jack, microSD card, and Surface Connect point. Much like other 2-in-1 convertible laptops, it has two cameras- a 5MP front camera and an 8mP rear camera with an autofocus function.

However, this laptop also has a lot of compromises. The USB-C is the only port for your transferring data as it does not have the standard USB ports. The screen also may be too small to run some applications. Lastly, the Pentium Gold CPU may be prone to some lag when you output to an external display.

Overall, the Surface Go is a tablet slash laptop that us parents would definitely wish exist when we were students. In other words, if it’s good enough for parents, then your kids would find no problem using it.

Display: 10-inches PixelSense Touchscreen; 1800 x 1200 resolution
Processor: 1.66 GHz Dual-core Intel Pentium Gold
Graphics: Intel HD Graphics 615
RAM: 8 GB DDR3
Storage: 128 GB SSD
Battery Life:
Weight: 1.15 pounds

Pros:

  • Has facial recognition software
  • Excellent typing experience despite the small keyboard
  • Very Portable
  • Bright and color accurate display

Cons:

  • No USB 3.0 port
  • Expensive

Laptop for Kids Buying Guide

Things to consider when buying your kid’s laptop:

1. Ease of Use

Since kids are primarily the ones who are going to use the laptop, you want something that they can use easily. Choose a laptop that has a simple user experience. Convertible laptops that turn to tablets are an excellent choice since they use touch commands to navigate.

2. Durability

Kid’s often don’t handle electronic devices quite as well as an adult does. The chances of the laptop being damage increases if your kid needs to carry it with him or her to school during school days. Hence, pick a laptop that can withstand drops, hits and other types of abuses.

3. Compatibility to do Schoolwork

Some laptops have very high specs that they can be used to play addictive games. As such, you want a laptop that can do all the schoolwork despite having some features that premium laptops have. Among the best choices out there are Chromebooks which also has parental controls so your child won’t be able to access some dangerous websites.

4. Performance

Just because you have a limited budget, does not mean you will have to settle with low performing laptops.  Choose one that has a good CPU, RAM and plenty of storage. Make sure that the laptop runs smoothly and doesn’t stutter so you can ensure that your child won’t be interrupted doing his or her schoolwork by technical issues.

5. Value for Money

Lastly, you want a laptop that offers something extra. Because of their low cost, laptop manufacturers tend to compromise on the quality of some of the device’s components. Pick a laptop that has the fewest disadvantages especially in terms of display and audio quality.

With our today’s modern world becoming more centered on computers and the Internet, owning a laptop makes a lot of sense. This statement is applicable not only to adults, but to kids as well. It’s never too early, nor too late in this portable devices that can give your children an edge in school and maybe even in life.

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Best Laptops for High School Students

Best Laptops for High School Students

In today’s information age, everyone needs a laptop including high school students.

As computer skills become more relevant to many of today’s job and even simple day-to-day tasks, owning a portable laptop is the right step for your kids. This is doubly true for your high school students who significantly have more schoolwork than before.

Because they are now more responsible compared to when they were in primary school, you can give your high schooler more sophisticated notebooks. After all, your child deserves nothing more than the best laptops for high school students today.

Top 8 Laptops for High School Students of 2019

Image

Product

Specs

Availability

Feature 1

 

Acer Aspire E 15

 

Feature 2

8 GB DDR3
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Feature 1

 

Apple MacBook 12

 

Feature 2

8 GB DDR3
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Feature 1

 

Acer Swift 3

 

Feature 2

8GB DDR4
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Feature 1

 

Dell XPS 13

 

Feature 2

16 GB DDR3
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Feature 1

 

HP ProBook X360

 

Feature 2

4GB DDR3
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Feature 1

 

Huawei MateBook X Pro

 

Feature 2

16 GB DDR3
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Feature 1

 

Lenovo Ideapad Miix 320

 

Feature 2

4 GB DDR3
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Feature 1

 

MSI GV62 8RE

 

Feature 2

8 GB DDR4
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1. Acer Aspire E 15

Does your high school student need their old laptop to be replaced with a better notebook? Then the reasonably priced Acer Aspire E 15 is your first choice because it gives you and your child the best bang for the buck. While it’s not as aesthetically pleasing as premium laptops, its sturdy black plastic, matte lid, and a faux brushed aluminum deck have a reliable build quality.  This thing is also sure to impress buyers because of its HD display, balanced performance and ability to do a bit of gaming.

Inside this machine is a 1.6 GHz Intel Core i5-825OU processor matched with a Nvidia MX150 graphics card. This combination together with an 8 GB RAM makes it possible to multitask and even play some of the latest games at normal settings. Meanwhile, the 256 GB SSD also allows this system to boot faster than those with SATA and hard disks.

The best bit about this laptop is its large 15.6-inch screen that has a sharp 1920 x 1080 resolution with vibrant tones. It can produce a remarkable sRGB color gamut rating at 159 percent, which is way above the 94 percent average for many mainstream laptop models. However, the screen’s viewing angles are too narrow, and once you get to 45 degrees on any side of the screen the images begin to invert. On the other hand, the audio is loud and of decent quality.

Another great thing about this laptop is its long battery life of 9 hours.  It also has great heat management as it stays cool even when you have been using it for a long period of time.  In terms of port, it has everything you will ever need- three USB 3.0, HDMI-out, VGA-out, Ethernet, SD card reader, and a USB Type-C. Furthermore, it also has a DVD writer, which you don’t see often in this segment.

However, the Aspire laptop also has a few key weaknesses. The onboard webcam is grainy and produces images that have a lot of visual noise. The keyboard and touchpad also feel uncomfortable. The size of the laptop also makes it less portable than its competitors.

Overall, the Acer Aspire 15 offers superb performance and great screen quality without having to break the bank. It’s also the notebook that will give you the most value in the budget laptop category.

Display: 15.6-inch; 1920 x 1080 resolution
Processor: 1.6 GHz Intel Core i5-825OU
Graphics: Nvidia GeForce   MX150 with 2GB Memory
RAM: 8 GB DDR3
Storage: 256 GB SSD
Battery Life: 9 hours
Weight: 3.18 pounds

Pros:

  • Full HD resolution
  • Impressive battery life
  • AC Wi-Fi
  • Ready for light gaming

Cons:

  • A bit bulky
  • Low-quality webcam

 

2. Apple MacBook 12

Apple MacBook MJY42LL/A 12-Inch Laptop with Retina Display (Space Gray, 512 GB) OLD VERSION
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Love it, or hate it, there is no denying Apple’s MacBook is as relevant today as they were first released in 2006. Since then, not much has changed about the look and feel of this 12-inch laptop but some of its parts were upgraded with the latest components. While it has a small 12-inch screen, the 2304 x 1440 resolution display is simply gorgeous because of its high pixel density.

At its core, the MacBook 12 is a 1.2 GHz Intel M3-7Y32 which you can turbo boost up to 3.0 GHz. It also comes with an Intel HD Graphics 15 coupled with an 8GB of RAM, which makes every video and image look clear and smart. Furthermore, it has plenty of SSD storage space at 256 GB.

The best thing about this laptop is its unique owning experience and quality build. It’s hard not to enjoy the thinness and feather-like weight that a MacBooks have. This laptop also has a very comfortable keyboard that is now backlit and an accurate glass-coated trackpad, which are quite hard to find on other laptops of its size. More importantly, it has an average battery life of 8 hours, which is enough juice if your child wants to work on it unplugged.

Macbook also has four stereo speakers which pump loud tunes that can easily fill a small room.  However, the sound quality is bland like most notebooks as it only has a few millimeters where you can put in the audio chambers. For connectivity purposes, you have the latest Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 4.2.

Despite these noble accomplishments, the MacBook also has a few disappointing traits. The ports are only limited to a USB 3.1 Type-C and a headphone/ microphone jack. It also has a 480-pixel camera, which produces low-quality images.

Overall, this laptop is a perfect study partner if your child prioritizes looks and performance above everything else. Be prepared to shed out a few hundred dollars more, though.

Display: 12-inch Retina IPS; 2304 x 1440
Processor: 1.2 GHz Dual-core Intel Core M3-7Y32
Graphics: Intel HD Graphics 615
RAM: 8 GB DDR3
Storage: 256 GB SSD
Battery Life: 4 hours
Weight: 2.03 pounds

Cons:

  • Still more expensive than its rivals
  • Lacks important ports

 

3. Acer Swift 3

Acer Swift 3, 8th Gen Intel Core i5-8250U, NVIDIA GeForce MX150, 14" Full HD, 8GB LPDDR3, 256GB SSD, SF314-52G-55WQ
$1,099.00
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05/22/2022 09:16 am GMT

Gone are the days when the most attractive thing about a budget laptop is its price. Today, even the most affordable notebooks have upped their game by offering improved performance, portability, display and other essential traits buyers are looking for. In this regard, the Swift 3 seems to be ahead of its competition by offering a well-balanced laptop that even your high school student could not say no to.

Living up to its name, the Swift 3 has a very fast 2.5 GHz dual-core Intel Core i5-7200U processor which you can turbo boost up to 3.1 GHz. It’s also equipped with an Intel HD Graphics 620 mated with an 8GB DDR4 RAM. Moreover, it comes with a 256 GB SSD storage that allows it to boost up fast. These components easily allow this machine to cope up with your high schooler’s demanding schoolwork.

The Swift also has a vivid 14-inch HD screen with a resolution of 1920 x 1080 which has wide viewing angles. However, the display’s brightness seemed a bit lacking and the color gamut is below the average on its segment. In contrast, your kids will certainly love typing in this device thanks to its comfortable island-style keyboard and easily accessible touchpad. The backlit keys have excellent travel and great tactile feedback which are suited for typing over a long period of time.

The Swift 3 also has a slightly better 720 pixel HD webcam, which will be useful during group chat or Skype calls. It also has plenty of ports including legacy ports like USB 2.0 and 3.0s and an SD card slot. It also has HDMI, headset jack and a USB 3.1 Type-C. Beneath the directional keys is a fingerprint scanner that works together with Window’s Hello login.

While the Swift 3 is a lovable device, it also has a few turn-offs. The silver colored fascia is sleek but doesn’t distinguish itself from other laptops. In other words, it lacks the charm to compete with other laptops you will likely see in most coffee shops. It also isn’t future-proof as it only has a USB Type-C, while others have Thunderbolt. Finally, it has a below average battery life of only four hours.

Overall, this laptop will appeal for parents and high school student who prioritizes performance overlooks. If you want more tasks to get done, then the Swift 3 is your laptop of choice.

Display: 14-inch FHD ComfyView IPS; 1920 x 1080 resolution
Processor: 2.5 GHz dual-core Intel Core i5-7200U
Graphics: Intel HD Graphics 620 mated
RAM: 8GB DDR4
Storage: 256 GB SSD
Battery Life:
Weight: 3.53 pounds

Pros:

  • Speedy 8th gen i5 CPU
  • Lots of ports for connectivity
  • Comfortable keyboard
  • For its price has SSD storage

Cons:

  • Generic design
  • Poor battery life

 

4. Dell XPS 13

Dell XPS13 XPS13-9343 13.3-inch Ultrabook Computer (2.2 GHz Intel Core i5 Processor, 4 GB DDR3 SDRAM, 128 GB Solid State Hard Drive, Windows 8)
$699.99
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05/22/2022 09:54 am GMT

If you want to invest in a laptop that can still be relevant in the next five or more years, then the Dell XPS 13 is one of the best option currently available. It’s definitely one of the best laptops on the market for its gorgeous design, impressive performance, elegant display, and futuristic components. Heck, your high school student can even bring this laptop with him when he goes to college.

Powering this one-of-a-kind laptop is a 1.8 GHz Quad-core Intel Core i7 -8550U processor which you can overclock up to a whopping 4.0 GHz. Its paired up with a 16 GB RAM and overloaded with a1 TB SSD storage. Moreover, it comes with a 13.3-inch ultra HD Infinity Edge touchscreen. The almost life-like display also has a 3840 x 2160 resolution, which easily beats many of its rivals in its price range.

The best part of the latest Dell XPS 13 is the addition of Thunderbolt 3 ports which can support four-lane PCI connections. With this feature, you can connect to a laptop with an external graphics card (eGPU) for some serious gaming experience. The Alpine White finish looks stunningly chic and may be worth the few extra dollars that it costs. In addition, this laptop also does well in keeping itself cool even when the user is multitasking or have opened way too many applications or browser tabs. The newest update now uses Gore thermal dissipation which has stronger heat dissipation.

The keyboard is also quite easy to use with just the right amount of travel and feedback. Meanwhile, the glass-coated touchpad is satisfyingly smooth and accurate. Additionally, Dell also moved the webcam to a more appropriate position for its new facial login feature. The 720 pixels widescreen camera and four-mic array also make it perfect for Skype calls. This laptop also has other ports aside from the Thunderbolt such as a USB-C 3.1, a micro SD reader and a headset jack.

Despite its many improvements, the laptop also has a few hiccups in its design. The webcam which is way below the screen still feels awkward and doesn’t provide the best angle during video calls. It can also use some USB Type-A ports for more external storage options. The device can also be loud at times especially when it’s hard at work.

Overall, the Dell XPS 13 brings about everything you and your high school student loves about a laptop- solid performance, great display and a lot of fresh components.

Display: 13.3-inch ultra HD Infinity Edge touchscreen; 3840 x 2160 resolution
Processor: 1.8 GHz Quad-core Intel Core i7 -8550U
Graphics: Intel UHD Graphics 620
RAM: 16 GB DDR3
Storage: 1 TB PCIe SSD
Battery Life: 5 hours
Weight: 2.67 pounds

Pros:

  • Bright 4K display
  • Fast performing CPU
  • Better keyboard than previous editions
  • Small footprint

Cons:

  • Awkwardly-placed webcam
  • No USB-A port

 

5. HP ProBook X360

Purchasing a laptop for your kid who is about to start high school doesn’t need to break the bank. If you are short on money, at the moment, there are still plenty of affordable notebooks out there. Among them is the educational laptop ProBook X360 from Hewitt Packard or HP. This 2-in-1 convertible laptop is easy to use and is competent enough to do common schoolwork tasks such as taking notes and creating other school projects. Parents will also be relieved that this laptop is quite robust and passes the MIL-STD-810G standard meaning it can handle bumps and shortfalls without any problem.

On the inside, it runs on a 1.1 GHz Intel Celeron N3450 which can be overclocked at 2.2 GHz and is coupled with a 4 GB worth of RAM. It also has a built-in Intel HD 500 Graphics and 64 GB worth of flash storage. Everything about this laptop is pretty basic and minimalist including its 11.6-inch HD touchscreen which has a decent 1366 x 768 resolution. Furthermore, this thing is quite portable and very lightweight at only 2.98 pounds. Hence, your student can carry it to school by just stuffing it in a large backpack.

By flipping the keyboard to the display’s back, you can turn this laptop into a tablet which makes it easier to draw or write using the stylus. Flip the keyboard back again and you can use it as a laptop for typing. It also runs on the newest Windows 10 OS. The keyboard is also pretty decent and doesn’t create any annoying noises. The ergonomic 3.7 x 2.2-inch clickpad is accurate and responsive enough. The icing on the cake is its inexpensive price tag. You also have the usual ports such as two USB 3.1s, a USB 3.1 Type-C, micro SD reader, HDMI, and an audio combo.

The Probook x360, however, is not for the picky laptop users. The laptop’s performance is OK in terms of doing the basic computing tasks such as browsing the Internet, writing, doing presentations and other Office apps. But, you will be hard pressed at using more complex programs. The storage is also just enough, but the transfer rates are too slow compared to SATA hard drives and SSDs. You also have to purchase the stylus pen separately.

Overall, this laptop is your number one choice if you want a durable laptop that won’t burn your cash. It’s also a better alternative to Chromebooks in terms of performance.

Display: 11.6-inch HD backlit touchscreen; 1366 x 768 resolution
Processor: 1.1 GHz Intel Celeron N3450
Graphics: Intel HD 500 Graphics
RAM: 4GB DDR3
Storage: 64 GB eMMC
Battery Life: 10 hours
Weight: 2.98 pounds

Pros:

  • Rugged and spill resistant
  • Affordable price
  • Has the ports that count
  • Very portable

Cons:

  • Very basic design
  • Low storage

 

6. Huawei MateBook X Pro

After conquering the mobile phone market, the Chinese tech giant Huawei seemed ready to conquer the laptop industry next. The MateBook X Pro is one of its few laptop systems, but it’s already making a name for itself. The first thing you will notice about this machine is its unassuming looks, especially when the lid is closed. The aluminum casing covers much of its slim body. However, once you turn on the laptop it becomes an entirely different story. There is a reason they call it a “sleeper laptop.”

Inside its typical exterior lies a 1.8 GHz Quad-core Intel Core i7-8550U processor which you can turbo boost up to 4.0 GHz. It also has a dedicated graphics card in the Nvidia GeForce MX150, which is commonly found in most entry-level gaming laptops. To make things better, this thing also has 16 GB worth of RAM and 512 GB SSD storage. The MateBook X Pro is also much cheaper than most laptops that have the same specs and components.

The best feature of the MateBook X Pro, aside from its stellar performance, is its rich 13.9-inch LED touchscreen which has a 3200 x 2000 resolution. The high pixel density provides plenty of detail especially since it can produce 124 percent of the sRGB gamut. Furthermore, the display also emits an astonishing 458 nits of brightness, making it one of the brightest laptops on the market.

Its butterfly keyboard also provides a relaxed tying experience that is easy on the fingertips. The same can be said to its 4.7 x 3.0-inch touchpad which respond quickly to every finger gestures. Moreover, the unit has the right ports including a USB 3.0, audio jack, a USB-C 3.1 and a Thunderbolt 3 USB-C. The nifty 720 pixels webcam, which is hidden beneath a key in one of the “function” buttons, is unique and good for security. However, same as with the Dell XPS 13, you don’t get a good leveled angle during video calls.

With that said the MateBook X Pro is not entirely perfect and even has its own design flaws. It doesn’t have an SD card slot, which will be quite hard for photographers and videographers to use the laptop to edit their works. Its 7th generation Intel CPU is also outdated compared to what its competitors are using.

Overall, this laptop is a good alternative to pricier premium laptops that cost more than a thousand dollars. It’s also a good study partner that your high school student can take to college.

Display: 13.9-inch LED with a touch panel; 3200 x 2000 resolution
Processor: 1.8 GHz Quad-core Intel Core i7-8550U
Graphics: Nvidia GeForce MX150
RAM: 16 GB DDR3
Storage: 512 GB SSD
Battery Life:  8 hours
Weight: 2.93 pounds

Pros:

  • Beautiful and bright display
  • Crystal clear 3:2 touchscreen
  • Manageable battery life
  • Thin and sensible design

Cons:

  • Doesn’t have an SD card slot
  • Inferior webcam

 

7. Lenovo Ideapad Miix 320

Lenovo Ideapad Tablet / Laptop Miix 320-10Icr Z8350 Windows 10 Home 2Gb 64Gb (Renewed)
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At first glance, it’s hard to guess that the Ideapad Miix 320 is a 2-in-1 convertible laptop because how seamless the tablet screen is integrated on its keyboard. Instead of using magnet docking, this laptop uses a physical hinge to attach the keyboard and tablet together. The glossy matte-silver frame is also quite sturdy, while the whole unit can easily sit on your lap without toppling.

The laptop’s processor, a 1.44 GHz Intel Atom X5-Z8350 which can be turbo boosted up to 1.92 GHz, is also nothing to scoff off. It also has its own integrated Intel HD Graphics card and a 4 GB DDR3 RAM. For storage, you have a 128 GB flash, which is larger than most budget notepads and Chromebooks could offer. The 10.1-inch IPS touchscreen is quite detailed thanks to its pixel-dense 1280 x 800 resolution. And as expected from a small device, it has a long battery life of more than 13 hours.

The ergonomic design of this laptop even allowed it to have the right ports such as two USB 2.0s, mini HDMI port, a headphone socket, a micro SD slot and most importantly a USB Type-C. The tablet also has two cameras a 2 MP front selfie camera and a 5MP rear. The keyboard is comfortable to type on and had decent travel, but the keys feel cramped. The trackpad is decent but not as smooth as those in more expensive models.

Aside from that, the Ideapad Miix 320 also has a bit of disadvantage. Much like other detachable budget laptops, it is only good for light-duty tasks and gaming is simply a no-no. The audio quality is lacking especially for bass sounds. Finally, the FHD screen has low brightness and very reflective.

Overall, this laptop is a great bargain if your high school student needs a laptop for basic schoolwork such as taking notes, grabbing a screenshot of the whiteboard and writing.

Display: 10.1-inch FHD touchscreen; 1920 x 1080 resolution
Processor: 1.44 GHz Intel Atom X5-Z8350
Graphics: integrated Intel HD Graphics
RAM: 4 GB DDR3
Storage: 128 GB eMMC
Battery Life: 13 hours
Weight: 2.2 pounds

Pros:

  • Compact and very portable
  • Long battery life
  • Has a USB-C port
  • Affordable price

Cons:

  • Slow CPU performance
  • Cramped keyboard

 

8. MSI GV62 8RE

MSI GV72 8RE-007 17.3" Thin and Light Gaming Laptop GTX 1060 3G i7-8750H (6 Cores) 16GB 256GB SSD + 1TB Windows 10, VR Ready, Windows 10 64 bit
$1,999.11
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05/22/2022 11:41 am GMT

Many high school kids are into gaming nowadays and they can be positive or negative depending on how much time they spend on it. Like it or not, your high school student may want a gaming laptop that doubles as his school workstation. While most gaming systems cost a small fortune, there are other budget alternatives out there such as the GV62 8RE. Sporting an elegantly hair-brushed black chassis, this laptop’s exterior is not as flashy as pricier gaming rigs. Inside though, is a capable machine that can do more than just run games.

At the thick of it all is a 2.3 GHz Intel Core i5 8300H 8th generation processor that can be turbo boosted up to 4.0 GHz mated with a dedicated Nvidia GTX 1060. This combination provides the backbone of this system that also allows it to handle multitasking and more complex tasks such as light video editing. Furthermore, it also has an 8GB of RAM and a bountiful 1 TB HDD plus 128 GB SSD storage. You get all these nifty components for a laptop that has the same price range as the Dell XPS and Huawei Matebook X Pro.

Don’t forget that it also has a 15.6-inch matte IPS full HD screen with 1920 x 1080 resolution. While it has a decent brightness at 240 nits, the color gamut is pretty disappointing at just 72 percent of the sRGB rating. According to independent testers, the system is pretty solid as you can play Rise of the Tomb Raider in very high settings at 36 frames per seconds (fps) which is above the playable threshold of 30 fps.

The keyboard is also comfortable to type on plus it has LED backlight. In contrast, the touchpad is quite troublesome to use. The audio quality is pretty good and captures the bass and treble sound perfectly. This gaming rig also has the essential ports such as RJ45, USB 3.1, Mini Display Port, separate mic and headphone inputs, SD memory reader, HDMI, and a USB 3.1 Type-C.

However, there are also quite a few negative traits on this laptop. While it remains cool even when gaming, the cooling fan inside tends to be loud at times. The bottom part of the lid is prone to flexing even with just a tiny bit of pressure. Finally, it only runs for an average of two hours when unplugged.

Overall, the GV62 8RE is a great entry-level gaming laptop that your high school student can also use primarily for school work. Just make sure they are disciplined and know how to manage their time before giving this to them.

Display: 15.6-inch matte IPS; 1920 x 1080 resolution
Processor: 2.3 GHz Intel Core i5 8300H
Graphics: Nvidia GeForce GTX 1060 with 3 GB memory
RAM: 8 GB DDR4
Storage: 1B HDD + 128 GB SSD
Battery Life: 2 hours
Weight: 5 pounds

Pros:

  • Simple yet sleek design
  • Powerful CPU
  • Backlit keyboard
  • Bang for your buck

Cons:

  • Disappointing battery life
  • Lid flexes

 

Laptop for High School Students Buying Guide

To lift the burden of finding the best laptops in the market for your high schoolers, we have come up with this list. We have reviewed quite a number of laptops and have found the most reliable ones based on several factors. Among the traits we have considered are as follows:

1. Compatibility to do Schoolwork

High school curriculum has a demanding amount of schoolwork and you need a laptop that can keep up with more than just simple browsing and writing. As such, we went for laptops that can run a wide selection of academic-related programs.

2. Portability and Durability

Chances are your children are going to use the laptop while they are in their classroom. Hence, they need to be lightweight and easy to carry around. Thus, laptops that are very portable are highly favored. They also get plus points if they are of quality build and made of durable materials.

3. Battery Life

When it’s unplugged, a laptop is only as good as its battery life. Hence, we favored that aren’t only going to last you a day but also those that charge faster. An average laptop should last you anywhere between 4-6 hours depending on the screen’s size and other factors.

4. Performance

We also considered the CPU performance of the laptop and if it’s enough to tackle some of the most common tasks of a typical high schooler’s day. The faster its processing speed the better. It gets additional points if it has good connectivity and ample storage space.

5. Value for Money

Who wouldn’t want to have the most bang for their buck? We also gave special consideration if the laptop has good components and features to match its sticker price.

As a parent, it’s our duty to provide our kids with the right tools to ensure they get the most out of their education. Giving your high school student a reliable laptop can be a great advantage in his education. Whether it’s a budget or premium model, it can help them a lot to learn new things.

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Top Products

Best Laptops for Writers

Best Laptops for Writers

Writing can often be a demanding task that usually takes long hours and lots of patience and dedication. Whether you are a novelist, blogger, journalist, researcher or any other type of writer you know that you are only as good as the laptop you use.

A reliable laptop can make or break your writing productivity. However, with tons of laptops to choose from it can often be confusing which ones offer the best value and can fit into the busy lifestyle of a writer.

Hence, we have come up with this list of the best laptops for writers. The laptops we will be discussing here have the most important characteristics that any writer looks for in a laptop.

Top 8 Laptops for Writers of 2019

Image

Product

Battery Life

Availability

Feature 1

 

Acer Switch 3

 

Feature 2

4 hours
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Feature 1

 

Apple MacBook Air

 

Feature 2

10 hours
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Feature 1

 

Asus Zenbook UX310UA

 

Feature 2

4 hours
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Feature 1

 

Dell XPS 13

 

Feature 2

4 hours
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Feature 1

 

HP Envy 13t

 

Feature 2

9 hours
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Feature 1

 

Lenovo Think Pad T460

 

Feature 2

13 hours
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Feature 1

 

Microsoft Surface Pro 4

 

Feature 2

3 hours
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Feature 1

 

Samsung Chromebook 2

 

Feature 2

7 hours
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1. Acer Switch 3

Writers who are constantly on the go will definitely love the Switch 3, an affordable hybrid laptop that you can easily carry around. It weighs only 2.8 pounds and has just the right tools for your research and writing tasks. The 12.2-inches screen sports 1920 x 1200 pixel IPS LCD display which stays clear at most viewing angles.
Running things around for this laptop is a 1.10 GHz Quad-Core Intel Pentium N4200 which can be turbo boosted up to 2.5 GHz. It also has a decent 4GB RAM and a 64 GB storage space.

The keyboard cover is surrounded by sturdy matter fabric and has well-spaced keys that jump back quickly when struck. Furthermore, the keyboard has a good travel distance and suffers little flex when struck which is quite impressive for a 2-in-1 convertible laptop. Unfortunately, there is no backlighting so it requires a decent light source for nighttime typing.

It also comes with a nifty 5MP rear and a 2MP front camera. This thing also has its own stylus and some of the crucial ports- a USB 3.1 Type-C, a USB 3.1 Type-A, and Micro SD. For connectivity, you got the latest 802,11ac Wi-Fi and Bluetooth. Heat management is also excellent as the device does not get hot even when it runs at turbo boosted speeds over a long period of time.

Needless to say, you won’t be gaming on this device as its only equipped with an underpowered Intel HD Graphics 505. The hinge is also finicky which makes it hard to get the device in a standing position. Its battery life is also at a dismal 4 hours (mixed usage).

Overall, the Acer Switch 3 is a budget-friendly 2-in-1 convertible laptop that suits the lifestyle of any writer.

Display: 12.2-inches IPS LCD; 1920 x 1200 resolution
Processor: 1.10 GHz Quad-Core Intel Pentium N4200
Graphics: Intel HD Graphics 505
RAM: 4GB DDR3
Storage: 64 GB eMMC
Battery Life: 4 hours
Weight: 2.8 pounds

 

2. Apple MacBook Air

Apple 13.3" MacBook Air (Mid 2017, Silver)
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The most affordable way you can get into the macOS Mojave bandwagon remains to be the MacBook Air. While it just had a few upgrades since it was released three years ago, it still is relevant especially for writers who are Apple fans. Its 13.3-inch LED-backlit screen has a lucid 1440 x 900 resolution. However, it’s in dire need of an update if it wants to catch-up with competitors that have higher resolution screens and smaller footprints.

At its heart is a spirited 1.6 GHz dual-core Intel Core i5 which can be turbo boosted up to 2.7 GHz. It also has a nifty 8 GB RAM and, like most Apple laptops a flash storage instead of a hard drive. Furthermore, it also has a slightly more powerful graphics card in the Intel HD Graphics 6000.

What most writers really came for the MacBook Air, though, is its unrivaled keyboard. The thin keys have less than 1mm of travel and only require 74 grams of actuation force making it very responsive and comfortable to type in. Moreover, the easy-to-clean keyboard is also backlit, which makes night typing easier.

Another great feature of the MacBook Air is its 720 pixels HD camera which is quite useful for video calls. It also has numerous ports such as SDXC card slot, MagSafe 2 power and a Thunderbolt 2. It’s also the only Apple laptop that has USB 3.0s. For connectivity, you have the latest Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 4.0. Battery life is stellar at an average of 12 hours.

However, the MacBook Air’s design remains unchanged since it first saw the light in 2010. Many of its components are also outdated particularly the 5th gen Intel Core CPU. It also doesn’t have must-have USB Type-Cs and a lackluster screen.

Overall, the MacBook Air is quite suited for writers who value superb keyboard and portability.

Display: 13.3-inch LED-backlit; 1440 x 900 resolution
Processor: 1.6 GHz dual-core Intel Core i5
Graphics: Intel HD Graphics 6000
RAM: 8GB DDR3
Storage: 256GB flash storage
Battery Life: 10 hours
Weight: 2.96 pounds

Pros:

  • Outstanding battery life
  • Comfortable keyboard
  • Very portable
  • Has USB 3.0 ports (dongles not required)

Cons:

  • Lackluster screen
  • Outdated CPU

 

3. Asus Zenbook UX310UA

For writers who are looking for more than just a capable digital notepad, the Asus Zenbook is the perfect fit. Visually, it looks stunning with its metallic aluminum body. The concentric circles that surround the Asus logo are hypnotically beautiful. The sleek casing of this ultrathin laptop is matched with an astonishing 13.3-inches QHD screen which has a stunning 3200 x 1800 resolution which is noticeable at a 178 degree viewing angle.

Inside this Zenbook ultrathin is a powerful 2.5 GHz Intel Core i5-7200U matched with 8 GB of RAM which allows you to multitask with ease. Another great addition is the 256 GB SSD storage, which allows faster booting and better transfer rates than its HDD counterpart. The laptop’s graphics are pretty standard and uses an Intel HD Graphics 620.

The backlit keys, though, has a bend in the center which may take some time to get used to especially if you are used to rock-solid keyboards. Case in point, the Zenbook UX310UA’s keyboard has a 1.6 mm travel and a required actuation force of 81 grams. The touchpad, however, is a bit stiff and a hard to use.

When it comes to ports, this laptop has more than plenty. It has USB 3.1 Type-C, USB 3.0 and 2.0s, HDMI, and COMBO audio jack. The 0.9MP camera, however, is subpar and produces fuzzy pictures. Its battery life was tested to have, on average, only 4 hours.

Overall, the Zenbook UX310UA is perfect for writers who want better aesthetics and faster performance from their hardworking laptop.

Display: 13.3-inches QHD; 3200 x 1800 resolution
Processor: 2.5 GHz Intel Core i5-7200U
Graphics: Intel HD Graphics 620
RAM: 8GB DDR4
Storage: 256 GB SSD
Battery Life: 4 hours
Weight: 3.09 pounds

Pros:

  • Aesthetically pleasing design
  • Backlit keyboard
  • Solid CPU performance
  • Fast to wake up

Cons:

  • Small storage space
  • Short battery life

 

4. Dell XPS 13

Dell XPS13 XPS13-9343 13.3-inch Ultrabook Computer (2.2 GHz Intel Core i5 Processor, 4 GB DDR3 SDRAM, 128 GB Solid State Hard Drive, Windows 8)
$699.99
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05/22/2022 09:54 am GMT

Dubbed as the king of small laptops, the XPS 13 is a must-have for writers who want a complete packaged device. Dell has constantly been tweaking their flagship 13-inch laptop over the years. The newest edition now has a smaller 4 mm bezel and the webcam was moved on the center below the screen. Despite its changes, it retains the UltraSharp Infinity Edge display which has a striking 3840 x 2160 resolution.

Powering all those computing tasks is a 1.8 GHz Quad-core Intel Core i7-8550U which can be turbo boosted up to 4.0 GHz. Complimenting the CPU is the standard Intel UHD Graphics 620 and 16 GB RAM. The best component of the XPS 13 is its 1 TB SSD storage, which also allows it to boot faster.

The backlit keyboard on this laptop is also quite unique because it’s the first one to have a woven glass fiber on its keys. Moreover, the keyboard has also been coated in titanium oxide coating to make it shinier and have stronger stain-resistance. The chiclet keys are also enjoyable to type with and have a good actuation force of 72 grams and a travel of 1.2 mm.

Sweetening the deal is a Widescreen HD camera with 720 pixels which is quite useful when you need to have a Skype chat. This laptop also has some of the latest ports such as Thunderbolt 3, USB Type-C 3.1, headset jack and a micro SD card. It can run on battery alone for more than 4 hours.

However, the XPS 13 has a few issues of its own. While the screen is 4K, its color accuracy is slightly below average hence is not recommended for video editing and other image creation tasks. The webcam also has an awkward position resulting to a weird angle of you during a video call.

Overall, the Dell XPS 13 is an excellent choice for writers wants to spend their extra few bucks on a laptop that can offer the best value.

Display: 13.3-inches Ultra Sharp Infinity Edge HD; 3840 x 2160
Processor: 1.8 GHz Quad-core Intel Core i7-8550U
Graphics: Intel UHD Graphics 620
RAM: 16 GB DDR3
Storage: 1 TB PCIe SSD
Battery Life: 4 hours
Weight: 2.67 pounds

Pros:

  • Sleek and clean design
  • Vibrant screen
  • Remains cool all the time
  • Powerful CPU

Cons:

  • Lacks USB Type-A Ports
  • Awkwardly placed webcam

 

5. HP Envy 13t

While it’s more expensive than many of the other laptops on this list, the Envy offers a lot of value especially for professionals whose work involves writing. This laptop has everything that a writer can ask- long battery life, an alluring all-metal chassis and one of the best keyboards around. The 13.3-inches IPS screen has a stunning 1920 x 1080 resolution which also comes with backlight and anti-glare technology.

The centerpiece of this ultra-thin laptop is the capable 2.5 GHz dual-core Intel Core i7-6500U which is an 8th gen Intel processor. It’s mated with an 8 GB RAM and a useful 256 GB of SSD storage. The Intel HD Graphics 520, is OK but needs to be upgraded if you want to play some decent games.

The Envy 13t has also broken the prejudice that it’s hard to type in an ultra-thin laptop because of its shallow profile. This laptop’s keyboard provides an enjoyable typing experience thanks to its key’s having just 1.2 mm of travel and actuation force requirement of only 60 grams. Meanwhile, its buttonless touchpad is also highly accurate at going around the desktop and highlighting text.

Another stellar feature of the Envy 13t is its availability of two USB 3.0s. Many ultra-thins laptops have settled for slimmer connectors like USB-C, which it also has. Aside from these connections, this laptop also has a microSD card slot and an audio jack. The 720-pixel camera is also sufficient enough to make clear Skype calls. Furthermore, it also has a long battery life of 9 hours, on average.

However, the Envy 13t has minor design issues. The touchscreen display just won’t easily pop out of its keyboard, as compared to most 2-in-1 convertible laptops. The audio quality is also not that impressive.

Overall, the Envy 13t is a good investment if you want a portable ultra-thin laptop that performs great and has a long battery life.

Display: 13.3-inches diagonal IPS with Anti-Glare Backlit; 1920 x 1080 resolution
Processor: 2.5 GHz dual-core Intel Core i7-6500U
Graphics: Intel HD Graphics 520
RAM:  8GB DDR3L
Storage: 256 GB PCIe SSD
Battery Life: 9 hours
Weight: 2.9 pounds

Pros:

  • Very attractive design
  • More ports than its competitors
  • Great keyboard experience
  • Strong CPU performance

Cons:

  • The display won’t pop out of its keyboard
  • Subpar audio quality

 

6. Lenovo Think Pad T460

Lenovo Thinkpad T460 14-Inch Laptop ( Intel Core i5-6300U Dual-Core 2.4GHz, 8GB DDR3, 256GB SSD, Windows 7 Professional)
$259.00
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05/22/2022 01:45 pm GMT

If you don’t mind the extra bulk in your next writer’s laptop, then you will love the Think Pad T460. It’s considered as a business laptop and its credentials speak for itself as it has all the tools to help its user multitask with ease. This thing’s 14-inch screen has a 1920 x 1080 resolution and has good color accuracy. The matte touchscreen also eliminates some glare compared to its glossier counterparts.

Powering this business laptop is a 2.5 GHz Dual-core Intel Core i5-6300U mated with a 16 GB DDR3 RAM. This combination allows the computer to run smoothly even with multiple applications and browser tabs are open at the same time. Moreover, it comes with a standard Intel UHD Graphics 520 and a neat 256 GB SSD.

The Thinkpad T460’s curved keyboard provides a pleasant typing experience. The keys have a deep 2.33 mm vertical travel while requiring only 50 grams of actuation. It felt comfortable every time you hit the spill-resistant keys. Much like other Thinkpads, the T460 also has a pointing stick in the middle of the keyboard which you can choose to highlight text or navigate through Windows.

It’s built in 720 pixels webcam produces bright and colorful images perfect for Skype calls. This laptop also has plenty of ports such as audio jack, SD card reader, a SIM card slot, USB 3.0, Ethernet, HDMI, Display port and a Kensington lock slot. It does not, however, have the latest USB Type-C connector. Lenovo also installed it with a larger battery that now lasts up to 13 hours.

However, this laptop also has a number of issues that may turn away picky buyers. There are some minor design flaws such as it’s hard to open and always require two hands. The display is also not as color accurate and vibrant as its competitors. Finally, you are likely stuck with its current GPU.

Overall, the Lenovo Touchpad T460 is a reliable workstation which is still light enough to be carried around. If your work requires multitasking on a daily basis, choose this laptop.

Display: 14.1-inches
Processor: 2.5 GHz Dual-core Intel Core i5-6300U
Graphics: Intel UHD Graphics 520
RAM:  16 GB DDR3L
Storage: 256 GB SSD
Battery Life: 13 hours
Weight: 3.8 pounds

Pros:

  • Incredible battery life
  • Overloaded with ports
  • Comfortable keyboard
  • Durable Design

Cons:

  • Lacks GPU upgrade
  • Poor display quality

 

7. Microsoft Surface Pro 4

Microsoft Surface Pro 4 (256 GB, 8 GB RAM, Intel Core i7e)
$304.00
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05/22/2022 12:17 pm GMT

What’s a tablet doing in a list dedicated for laptops? Well, the Surface Pro 4 isn’t your typical tablet, neither is it your basic hybrid laptop. You can say that this gadget has found a perfect balance of both worlds. Moreover, it taunts a crystal clear 12.3-inch PixelSence display which has a 2736 x 1824 resolution. Bottom-line, you definitely will love watching movies and doing artistic stuff on this thing, aside from writing of course.

At its core is a 2.4 GHz dual-core Intel Core i5-6300U which can be turbo boosted up to 3.0 GHz. Matched with an Intel UHD Graphics 520, this combination is plenty enough to handle the demanding display aspect of this laptop. It also comes with an 8GB RAM and a fast booting 256 GB SSD storage.

Microsoft also has come up with a new Type Cover which is more rigid and thicker than the previous model. This allowed the evenly spread keys to have punchier feedback brought by deeper travel. The smooth glass trackpad is also larger which means you can drag, scroll, or drop items easier. Finally, the keyboard also has a fingerprint scanner which adds a layer of security.

This hybrid laptop also comes with two nifty HD cameras- an 8MP rear with autofocus and a 5MP front, both of which has 1080 pixels. It also has enough ports such as a USB 3.0, a mini display port, microSD card reader and a mic/ headphone jack. For connectivity, you got the latest 2×2 MIMD Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 4.0. You can also use the exclusive Surface Pen to take notes and do other artistic tasks.

The Surface Pro 4, however, has a very dismal 3-hour battery life which remains unsolved for years now. Although Microsoft has significantly dropped its price it’s still more expensive than many of its competitors. The Type Cover and Surface Pen are also sold separately.

Overall, the Surface Pro 4 is a must-have for writers who also want to do some mobile gaming or artistic tasks on the side.

Display: 12.3-inch PixelSense; 2736 x 1824 resolution
Processor: 2.4 GHz dual-core Intel Core i5-6300U
Graphics: Intel UHD Graphics 520
RAM: 8GB DDR3
Storage: 256 GB PCIe 3.0 SSD
Battery Life: 3 hours
Weight: 1.73 pounds

Pros:

  • Works great at being a laptop and tablet
  • Fast CPU performance
  • Comfortable keyboard with enjoyable touchpad
  • Lots of configuration options

Cons:

  • Doesn’t include the type Cover keyboard
  • Only one USB Port

 

8. Samsung Chromebook 2

Samsung Chromebook 2 11.6 Inch Laptop (Samsung Exynos, 4 GB, 16 GB SSD, Black)
$59.99
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05/22/2022 12:35 pm GMT

We are closing this list with the most affordable laptop for writers- the Samsung Chromebook 2. If you want to do research, write, surf the Internet and other computing tasks without having to burn a hole in your wallet, then this laptop fits the bill. However, because the manufacturers have to cut down its price, it sacrificed the quality of some of its components. The 11.6-inch screen with a 1366 x769, for example, looks dull and washed out.

It does make out for it though with a solid performance from its 2.58 GHz Dual-Core Intel Celeron N2840. While the Intel UHD Graphics 520 video card is pretty standard it shoulders its part well. The 2GB RAM is OK, however, you can expect to encounter some lag especially when multi-tasking. It comes with a 16 GB SSD which is better than HDD, but it could have been made larger. Hence, you can only install a few programs and have to rely on external devices, like flash drives, for extra storage.

The bread and butter of this laptop though is its keyboard which has a 1.33 key travel and actuation of only 50 grams. Typing on this keyboard feels satisfying as every key is clicky and reactive. However, because of its 11-inch frame, the island keys are a bit cramped. Although its touchpad is a bit small, it’s still responsive and easy to use.

This thing also has a 720 pixel HD webcam which is decent and useful for video calls. The ports are quite fewer with only a USB 3.0 and 2.0, microSD, HDMI, and mic/headphone jack. For connectivity, you have the latest Wi-Fi and a Bluetooth 4.0. Its battery life is above average at 7 hours.

Overall, the Chromebook 2 is a nice thin laptop that is budget friendly and very portable. If you aren’t too picky, then this one is definitely a bargain.

Display: 11.6-inches ; 1366 x 769 resolution
Processor: 2.58 GHz Dual-Core Intel Celeron N2840
Graphics: Intel UHD Graphics 520
RAM: 2GB
Storage: 16 GB SSD
Battery Life: 7 hours
Weight: 2.65 pounds

Pros:

  • Very affordable
  • Ergonomic design
  • Very portable
  • Decent battery life

Cons:

  • Sluggish when multitasking
  • Outdated ports and low storage space

 

Laptop for Writers Buying Guide

What writers should look for:

1. Comfortable Keyboard

It goes without saying that the keyboard is the most essential PC component for a writer since it’s the part we use most of the time. Its keys shouldn’t be stiff and too cramped as those gets in the way of fast typing. If you want to increase your Word per Minute (WPM) choose a laptop with a well-spaced keyboard and responsive keys.

2. Easy to Read Display

Even though you are dealing mostly with text and a few images or videos, the laptop’s display must be clear and bright. An easy to read display helps speed up the writing process.

3. Long Battery Life

Writers usually spend long hours on their computer especially if they are developing a good story. On average, laptop batteries can last 4-6 hours before recharging. We highly recommend a laptop with a longer battery life.

4. Portable

If you plan to carry the laptop around, then its weight and size can contribute a lot to its portability. Luckily, there are now thinner laptops which you can carry even in your backpack and even a handbag.

5. Powerful CPU and RAM

A lot of writers also do research before writing their articles. Hence, if you plan to multi-task you need a powerful CPU and a good amount of RAM to ensure things run smoothly.

Writing is a demanding activity that is not limited to writers alone. At some point, all of us have to write on a laptop whether it’s for recreational, academic or work-related purposes. We hope that our shortlist has provided you with the right information so you can decide which laptop is best for your writing needs.

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Best Laptops for Computer Science

Best Laptops for Computer Science

Computers are pretty much a prerequisite to every Computer Science undergrad for them to succeed in this course. Because laptops are more portable and can be carried to class they are much preferred over a desktop.

While it is expected of a computer science undergrad to know his stuff, that being about computers, there are tons of laptops in the market to cover. The sheer volume of portable workstations currently available is enough to overwhelm even professionals in the computer and information industry.

For this reason, we have come up with a list of the best laptops for computer science students so they can allocate their precious time studying rather than hunting that one perfect laptop.

Top 8 Laptops for Computer Science of 2019

Image

Product

Specs

Availability

Feature 1

 

Acer Predator Helios 300

 

Feature 2

2.2GHz Hexa-core Intel Core i7-8750H
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Feature 1

 

Asus Vivobook Pro 15

 

Feature 2

2.8GHz Intel Core i7-7700H
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Feature 1

 

Apple MacBook Pro 15

 

Feature 2

2.9 GHz Hexa-Core Intel Core i9-8950HK
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Feature 1

 

Dell Inspiron 15

 

Feature 2

2.5-GHz Quad-core Intel Core i5-7300U
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Feature 1

 

Google Pixelbook

 

Feature 2

1.2 GHz Dual-core Intel Core i5-7Y57
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Feature 1

 

Lenovo ThinkPad E470

 

Feature 2

2.5 GHz Intel Dual-core Intel Core i5-7200U
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Feature 1

 

Microsoft Surface Pro

 

Feature 2

2.5 GHz Dual-Core Intel Core i7-7660U
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Feature 1

 

Toshiba Portege Z30-C-138

 

Feature 2

2.6 GHz Dual-core Intel Core i7-6600U
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1. Acer Predator Helios 300

A lot of computer science students are also serious PC gamers. If you are looking for a laptop that can do both gaming and programming, then look no further than the Predator Helios 300.

This entry-level gaming laptop from Ace has a solid performing processor and a dedicated Nvidia graphics card that makes it flexible to do more than just encoding and schoolwork tasks. There are also several configurations that won’t set you too far in your $1,000 budget. All of the components are also top notch and geared to increase your coding productivity.

Powering this budget gaming rig is a 2.2GHz Hexa-core Intel Core i7-8750H processor which can reach up to 4.1 GHz when overclocked. This thing also has a Nvidia GeForce GTX 1060 that provides stable frame per seconds (FPS) rates to most of the recent gaming titles.

Furthermore, it has a more than ample 16 GB RAM and 256 GB SSD storage that drastically improves its booting speed. To top it all, the system also has a vivid 15.6- inch Full HD screen with a 1920 x 1080 resolution. This component meets all of the requirements for you to enjoy today’s most popular games during your break from coding.

Aside from an impressive array of components that can fully support your programming endeavors, this laptop also has quite the looks. The aluminum and plastic exterior have a black metallic lid that is accentuated by two red stripes on the sides and a Predator logo on the middle. The backlit keyboard is also comfortable and very responsive with 1.6 mm of travel and 79 grams of actuation force. Because the keys are light and clicky, you can speed up your typing and coding which in turn saves you precious time. The 4.1 x 3-inch touchpad is accurate and responds to gestures quickly.

Gaming wise the dedicated card proves quite useful. According to independent testers, you can play Rise of the Tomb Raider in very high settings and end up with 67 FPS. Acer’s true harmony speakers are also loud but the sound quality is a bit lacking. This laptop also has plenty of ports such as headphone jack, SD card reader, RJ-45 Ethernet, HDMI, USB 2.0, USB 3.0 and a USB 3.1 Type-C. It also comes with a 720 HD webcam and 2 microphones.

However, this gaming system also has a few compromises that you should also consider. Much like other budget laptops, it gets too hot after a few hours of gaming, especially on its bottom. During this period, the cooling fans can also get loud. Lastly, the display has limited viewing angles and gets dim on the sides.

Overall, the Predator Helios is a great system for computer science students who want a workstation and a gaming rig in one system.

Display: 15.6-inch FHD ComfyView IPS; 1920 x 1080 resolution
Processor: 2.2GHz Hexa-core Intel Core i7-8750H
Graphics: Nvidia GeForce GTX 1060 with 6 GB memory
RAM: 16 GB DDR4
Storage: 256 GB SSD
Battery Life: 6 hours
Weight: 5.95 pounds

Pros:

  • Easy to upgrade
  • Can play games at high settings
  • Long battery life
  • Great value because of the GTX 1060

Cons:

  • Gets hot when gaming
  • Poor sound quality

 

2. Asus Vivobook Pro 15

Two of the most compelling traits college students look for in a laptop are durability and performance. The Vivobook Pro is both sturdy and has a powerful CPU that makes it as the perfect programming machine wherever you go. Additionally, you can treat it as gaming system thanks to its dedicated Nvidia GTX 1050 card. Hence, if you are needed to relax and take a break from coding you can always treat yourself with a game or two of your favorite titles.

On board, this laptop is powered by a 2.8GHz Intel Core i7-7700HQ processor which you can overclock up to 3.8 GHz. It also comes with a 16 GB and 512 GB SSD that satisfies both fast gaming and coding requirements. The laptop’s 15.6-inch full HD screen has a wide view 1920 x 1080 resolution, which has a bit of large footprint but still provides an enjoyable gaming experience.

As you would expect of a laptop with such specs, the Vivobook Pro can easily pass many of the benchmark tests that you can throw at it. Based on independent testers review, you can play Middle Eart: Shadow of War in low settings at a respectable 62 FPS. Meanwhile, its average graphics score is recorded at 87 FPS.

The Vivobook Pro also has a head-turning design highlighted by its light gold finish over its metal and plastic housing. While it’s a bit heavy at 5.05 pounds, it makes up for the number of ports it has such as an SD card reader, USB 2.0 and 3.1, HDMI, RJ45 Ethernet, headphone/ mic jack and a USB 3.1 Type-C. Meanwhile, the island-type keyboard has responsive chiclet keys that allow fast typing and perfect for long coding sessions.

However, despite being a well-rounded system this laptop also has a couple of design flaws. The fingerprint scanner was placed inside the already finicky trackpad, which can get in your way of scrolling or clicking. Hence, you will have to buy a mouse for your convenience. The TN display also isn’t impressive and covers only 60-percent of the sRGB color gamut. Likewise, the 3 hour battery life is quite a let down.

Overall, the ASUS Vivobook is a pretty competitive programming laptop that has a reasonable price. It has a good quality build with an equally impressive performance.

Display: 15.6-inch Full HD Wide-View; 1920 x 1080 resolution
Processor: 2.8GHz Intel Core i7-7700HQ
Graphics: Nvidia GeForce GTX 1050 with 4GB memory
RAM: 16 GB DDR4
Storage: 512 GB SSD
Battery Life: 3 hours
Weight: 5.05 pounds

Pros:

  • Comes with a Nvidia GTX 1050 card
  • Solid CPU performance
  • Great punchy keyboard
  • Reasonable price

Cons:

  • Not very portable
  • Poor TN display

 

3. Apple MacBook Pro 15

The best laptop list of any kind is not complete without a representative from Apple. Despite its exorbitant price, the MacBook Pro is just hard to pass as a computer science student’s laptop especially if you have the money to spend on it. The laptop can easily capture any buyer’s heart with its pleasing looks, long battery life, and great performance.

This versatile laptop runs on a 2.9 GHz Hexa-Core Intel Core i9-8950HK processor which can be turbo boosted to a whopping 4.8 GHz. On board are an AMD Radeon Pro 560X with 4 GB memory and plenty of 32 GB worth of RAM with 2 TB SSD storage. That’s more than enough to handle any type of programming and even gaming.

This portable laptop also has a gorgeous 15-inch Retina display with a 2880 x 1800 resolution which easily beats the Full HD screens in this list. Apple has also added a True Tone feature which automatically adjusts the brightness and color tone of the screen based on the environment you are working in. It also has a Touch Bar, a tiny display between the touchscreen and keyboard that offers additional shortcut touch controls.

The butterfly-switch keyboard isn’t too shabby and has a decent travel of 0.7 mm while requiring 63 grams of actuation force. The quieter keys also have a membrane rests underneath which prevents debris from going inside the small gaps of the keyboard. The 6.3 x 3.9 inch is huge and responsive but doesn’t get in the way of the keyboard. The audio quality is also pleasant and something that even audiophiles will deeply appreciate. Much like every Apple product you have the usual USB-C, headphone and Thunderbolt 3. Needless to say, buy a dongle!

This laptop is almost perfect except for a few things other than its expensive price tag. While it does keep its cool even when it’s switched on for a long time, the underside gets warm quicker than the rest of its body. Also, the lack of USB Type-A ports is quite a hassle too.

Overall, the MacBook Pro is an excellent choice for computer science students whose parents are generous enough to spend almost twice or thrice the amount of a regular laptop.

Display: 15-inch Retina; 2880 x 1800 resolution
Processor: 2.9 GHz Hexa-Core Intel Core i9-8950HK
Graphics: AMD Radeon Pro 560X with 4 GB memory
RAM: 32 GB
Storage: 2 TB SSD
Battery Life: 10 hours
Weight: 4 pounds

Pros:

  • Excellent battery life
  • Stylish and very portable
  • Top-notch display
  • Can run games at high settings

Cons:

  • Requires a dongle
  • Expensive

 

4. Dell Inspiron 15

Gaming laptops are quite popular among computer science students because when they need a break from coding or their studies, they can easily play a quick diversion. While gaming systems are notorious for their towering price tag, that’s not always the case as seen in the Inspiron 15. This laptop has a powerful dedicated GPU which allows it to be VR-ready. The battery has also been improved along with other components while still being reasonably priced.

At the center of this machine lies a 2.5-GHz Quad-core Intel Core i5-7300U processor which you can turbo boost up to 3.5 GHz. Dell also equipped it with a Nvidia GeForce GTX 1060 Max-Q GPU that allows some serious gaming at high settings. Furthermore, this machine also comes with an 8 GB RAM and a 256 GB SSD storage. If you want to test out graphic-heavy programs you have created, you can somehow also test it out on this laptop.

The 15.6-inch Full HD IPS screen has a 1920 x 1080 resolution which produces a sharp image. However, it’s not very vivid as the display only has 70 percent sRGB color gamut which is a far cry from the mainstream average for gaming laptops. Nonetheless, the screen is quite bright at 233 nights and has a decent refresh rate. Based on independent tests, you can play Middle-earth: Shadow of War at its native resolution’s very high settings and get a comfortable 45 FPS.

The Inspiron’s island-style keyboard, however, feels a bit uncomfortable to type on. Each key has a 1.2 mm travel and requires 79 grams of actuation, which in turn means you, might occasionally bottom out. The keyboard is also placed far back to give room to the 4.1 x 3.1-inch touchpad. The audio quality is OK, but average at best. On the other hand, this thing has plenty of ports including HDMI, Ethernet, USB 3.0, headphone/mic, SD card reader and a Thunderbolt 3.0.

Meanwhile, the laptop needs to have better heat management especially along the keyboard and the underside, which reached uncomfortable temperatures when gaming. The 720p webcam is also a bit disappointing because it takes grainy photos with dull color. It’s also a bit bulky at 6.99 pounds and is the heaviest in our list.

Overall, the Dell Inspiron 15 is a pretty solid system both for gaming and programming that is if you can live with some compromises.

Display: 15.6-inch IPS screen; 1920 x 1080
Processor: 2.5-GHz Quad-core Intel Core i5-7300U
Graphics: Nvidia GeForce GTX 1060 Max-Q with 6 GB memory
RAM: 8 GB
Storage: 256 GB SSD
Battery Life: 7 hours
Weight: 5.99 pounds

Pros:

  • Powerful GTX 1060 Max-Q
  • Excellent CPU performance
  • Affordable gaming portal
  • Plenty of ports

Cons:

  • Inferior display quality
  • Uncomfortable keyboard

 

5. Google Pixelbook

Google Pixelbook (i7, 16 GB RAM, 512 GB)
$1,699.00
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05/22/2022 07:30 am GMT

If you think that Chromebooks low-end laptops that primary and secondary schools require their students to have, think again. Google’s Pixelbook is considered as the most powerful Chromebook today and can go toe-to-toe with some of its more expensive counterparts. This laptop is also a great alternative for computer science students who want a portable workstation that won’t have them burning their own wallet or that of their parents. There is a catch though, this laptop is just as expensive as premium $1000 plus notebooks.

Running things around for the Pixelbook is a 1.2 GHz Dual-core Intel Core i5-7Y57 processor which can be overclocked up to 3.3 GHz. It is partnered with an Intel HD Graphics 615 and an 8 GB of RAM, which is both sufficient when coding. Meanwhile, the 256 GB SSD is a welcome feature which you will hardly see on other Chromebooks. These components are all decent to do simple programs and can accomplish other schoolwork that the course demands.

One of the main issues with many Chromebooks is their display. However, the Pixelbook broke away from the mold and offered a larger and pixel-dense 12.3-inch LCD touchscreen with a 2400 x1600 resolution. In fact, this laptop even got its name because of its high pixel density of 235 PPI. The Pixelbook can also run Android apps, which is what primarily separates it from other laptops that use Windows OS. Furthermore, the onboard Chrome OS gives its users a low-maintenance browsing capability that provides the fastest browsing experience.

This laptop also has a few ports such as a headphone/ mic jack and two USB-C 3.1. It also has a 720 webcam which you can use for Skype calls. The backlit keyboard is also fun to type in as they are well-spaced and have a nifty 0.8 mm travel with plenty of feedback. The large trackpad is also quite accurate and both sides have silicon wrist rests. Finally, since this is a Chromebook you get a stellar battery life of more than 10 hours.

On the other hand, this laptop also has a few disadvantages. First off, the Chrome OS is not that powerful compared to Windows and macOS. The audio quality is also not that stellar plus you have to buy the pen stylus separately. Moreover, it doesn’t have a biometric login that even cheaper Chromebooks have.

Overall, the Pixelbook is an excellent Chromebook workstation especially if you have previous experience with it. However, its premium price will make you think twice about buying it.

Display: 12.3-inch QHD LCD touchscreen; 2400 x 1600 resolution
Processor: 1.2 GHz Dual-core Intel Core i5-7Y57
Graphics: Intel HD Graphics 615
RAM: 8 GB DDR3
Storage: 256 GB SSD
Battery Life: 10 hours
Weight: 2.4 pounds

Pros:

  • Minimalist design
  • Excellent keyboard
  • Full Android app support
  • Pixel dense display

Cons:

  • Expensive for a Chromebook
  • The stylus pen is sold separately

 

6. Lenovo ThinkPad E470

Coming from a long history of business laptops from Lenovo, the ThinkPad E470 is suited to do almost every office related tasks. While that may be its primary function, this workstation can also be used for a number of other purposes including casual programming and even a bit of gaming. While it may look like a notebook that companies give to their employees, its performance and dedicated video card will make you throw away that prejudice.

The mid configuration of this laptop has a 2.5 GHz Intel Dual-core Intel Core i5-7200U which you can turbo boost up to 3.1 GHz. It also has a Nvidia GeForce 940MX paired with 8 GB DDR4 RAM which lets you play most gaming titles comfortably at normal or even very high settings. Moreover, it is also equipped with 256 GB SSD where you can store lots of files and applications. The clear 14-inch FHD IPS screen has a 1920 x 1080 resolution also as a large viewing angle.

Much like its predecessors, this laptop also has a sturdy case which is covered in matte, black plastic. The workmanship is also pretty decent as it looks clean and has well-rounded corners. As expected of a ThinkPad model, the keyboard is comfortable to type on thanks to its crisp but responsive keys. The 4 x 2.2-inch touchpad has been refined and now has better responsiveness and accuracy than previous units. Likewise, the device’s TrackPoint allows faster navigation.

You can also do a bit of gaming on this laptop. Based on independent tests, you can play BioShock Infinite on high settings at a comfy 43 FPS. Typical of a business laptop, this Thinkpad also has a substantial number of ports including two USB 3.0, a USB 2.0, DisplayPort, HDMI, SD card reader, and a headset jack. Sadly though, it doesn’t have the modern USB-C ports which could have made it future-proof. Meanwhile, its battery life comes at a respectable 5 hours.

The E470, however, also has a few drawbacks. For years, the ThinkPad has been known for its thickness and added weight compared to other more portable laptops. The laptop also has limited upgrade options based on its motherboard. The meager connectivity can also be quite troublesome given that it does not have a USB-C port.

Overall, the Thinkpad E470 is a good laptop that combines business and pleasure (as in gaming) at a very reasonable price point.

Display: 14-inch Full HD IPS; 1920 x 1080 resolution
Processor: 2.5 GHz Intel Dual-core Intel Core i5-7200U
Graphics: Nvidia GeForce 940MX
RAM: 8 GB DDR4
Storage: 256 GB SSD
Battery Life: 5 hours
Weight: 4.12 pounds

Pros:

  • Great display with large viewing angles
  • Durable build
  • Excellent keyboard and touchpad
  • Solid CPU and GPU

Cons:

  • Bulky and heavy
  • Poor upgradability

 

7. Microsoft Surface Pro

Microsoft Surface Pro (5th Gen) (Intel Core i5, 8GB RAM, 256GB)
$789.99
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05/22/2022 11:16 am GMT

Arguably the best 2-in-1 notebook today, the Surface Pro is definitely a must-have for any student regardless of their course. It’s a revolutionary piece of technology that started the convertible laptop category five years ago. Its portable performs fast, has a quality display and has everything you need in a study station to survive college. Microsoft has also been improving it year after year so you can expect it to offer the latest features on top of its elegant design.

At its heart is a 2.5 GHz Dual-Core Intel Core i7-7660U processor which can be turbo boosted up to 4.0 GHz. While it’s not ideal for gaming, the Intel Iris Plus Graphics 640 is more than up to the task, especially in terms of mobile gaming and coding. The system also has a 16 GB worth of RAM and 512 GB SSD storage.

The laptop’s 12.3-inch PixelSense IPS display with 2736 x 1824 resolution is simply a sight to behold. The screen produces sharp and colorful images that are almost life-like. It’s no coincidence, though, as the Surface Pro scores 140 percent in the sRGB gamut and has a brightness of 396 nits. Consequently, the audio quality is also quite pleasant although the volume is just above-average because of its size.

Microsoft also tweaked the signature type cover to better the typing experience. The keys now have 1.33 mm of travel and require 70 grams of actuation. The touchpad, though, is on the small side which means you might want to take advantage of the Surface Pen. As you would expect of a convertible laptop, its ports are limited to a USB 3.0, Mini Display, headset, and Surface Connect.

One of the most compelling issues that still persist is the device’s lack of a USB-C port. The type cover and the Surface pen are also sold separately. Lastly, while it has a battery life of more than 7 hours, it’s still below the category average.

Overall, the Surface Pro is pretty compelling to have for a computer science undergrad because it has everything you need and more. Great things do come in small packages!

Display: 12.3-inch PixelSense; 2736 x 1824
Processor: 2.5 GHz Dual-Core Intel Core i7-7660U
Graphics: Intel Iris Plus Graphics 640
RAM: 16 GB DDR3
Storage: 512 GB SSD
Battery Life: 7 hours
Weight: 1.73 pounds

Pros:

  • Very portable
  • Improved Surface Pen and type cover
  • Amazing display
  • Mobile gaming friendly

Cons:

  • Surface Pen wasn’t included
  • Lacks USB-C port

 

8. Toshiba Portege Z30-C-138

If you are more of the serious programmer type, you can never go wrong with the Portege Z30-C-138.  This business laptop has all the ports you need without the extra weight making it a mobile complete workstation. The components are pretty solid, especially the CPU, and its lack of a dedicated video card won’t tempt you to be distracted by other activities like games.

The Portege is run 2.6 GHz Dual-core Intel Core i7-6600U 7th generation processor which you can turbo boost for up to 3.4 GHz. It has a built-in Intel HD Graphics 520, has an 8 GB of RAM and a 256 GB storage which can get you through all your coding needs. The 13.3-inch screen only has a resolution of 1366 x 768 which produces a muted dull display.

Nevertheless, it’s the connectivity and a sheer number of ports that will really make you consider buying this thing. The Portege has everything including memory card reader, RGB port, HDMI, Ethernet, headphone/ mic jack, docking connector and three USB 3.0 ports (with one having a charge and USB sleep). It also has a full HD webcam that comes with dual microphones. For connectivity, you have Dual Band WiFi and Bluetooth.

Oddly enough, the chiclet-style keyboard is quite satisfying to type on since they provide excellent travel and enough springy feedback. However, the trackpad doesn’t feel as comfortable because of its poor multi-touch responsiveness and inaccurate trackpad gesture responses. The battery life also sits at just 5 hours, which is kinda OK for a business laptop of its size.

This laptop doesn’t present much value as far as gaming goes, but it can at least play some titles at its lowest settings. According to independent testers, you can play Heroes of the Storm at low settings and get a 55 FPS rating.

Overall, the Toshiba Portege is good for buyers who want a laptop that has all the ports and has enough juice on its trunk to power up some serious coding sessions.

Display: 13.3-inch HD TFT LED Backlit; 1366 x 768 resolution
Processor: 2.6 GHz Dual-core Intel Core i7-6600U
Graphics: Intel HD Graphics 520
RAM: 8 GB DDR3
Storage: 256 GB SSD
Battery Life: 5 hours
Weight: 2.65 pounds

Pros:

  • Offers tons of port and connectivity
  • Above average battery life
  • Strong CPU performance
  • Durable build

Cons:

  • Poor 1366 x 768 display
  • Annoying touchpad

 

Laptop for Computer Science Buying Guide

In preparing this list we have reviewed some of the most compelling laptops out there and placed some important factors to filter out the best from the OK. Below are some of the characteristics that we have considered:

1. Latest Processors

A powerful processor allows your laptop to do virtually everything. In a computer science undergrad’s case that would be coding, programming, doing reports and other schoolwork. Of course, a little gaming to past time isn’t a bad idea either. Hence, if you want a high-performance laptop look for a processor that has high clock speed and plenty of threads.

2. Plenty of RAM

You can think of RAM as the place where your current computing task is being stored. When you’re doing several tasks at the same time the RAM can be overloaded quickly and your computer begins to slow down. To prevent this, you need a laptop with at least 8 GB of RAM for faster speeds and better multitasking.

3. Best Storage System

Right now, the fastest type of hard drive is solid state drives (SSDs). They not only have the fastest transfer and copy rate but SSDs also significantly cuts down the booting time to mere seconds. Thus, SSDs save you a lot of time compared to SATA and hard disks.

4. Runs Eclipse, Linux

Other than the components, one of the most compelling attributes that a laptop was looking should have is its ability to run different programming tools and editors especially Eclipse and Linux.

5. Good Display and Keyboard

Coding is part of the computer science curriculum and you may spend long hours doing this task. Hence, you need a laptop that has a good display so your eyes won’t tire easily. A good keyboard is also necessary if you want to bring your coding up to speed.

6. Dedicated GPU

While this is not important as the previous factors, it’s a good addition hence it allows you to play some of the latest PC games.

Computer science is one of the most in-demand courses in college today. The curriculum and amount of programming workload can be unbearable if you don’t have a reliable laptop with you. We hope that this list and guide was of some of use to you to help you decide which laptop to choose.

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Top Products

Best Smart Thermostats

Best Smart Thermostats

What if I tell you that your thermostats can automatically regulate your home’s temperature with just one tap on your phone? Furthermore, what if it can also learn from your schedule when it should turn itself on or off? Sounds like science fiction, right. Not exactly, as that technology is now available on the market.

If you think your mobile devices, such as smartphones and smartwatches, are the only things that are going digital think again. Our very homes are also becoming digitalized thanks to home installations, especially smart thermostats.

In this article, we have listed down some of the most innovative smart thermostats in the market today. These temperature regulator devices will surely make things easier for you by making sure you get a comfy environment inside regardless of the weather or season outside.

Top 8 Smart Thermostats of 2019

Image

Product

Specs

Availability

Feature 1

 

Bosch Connected Control BCC100

 

Feature 2

5-inch full-color touchscreen; 854 x 480 pixels
CLICK HERE FOR PRICE
Feature 1

 

Ecobee 4 Smart Thermostat

 

Feature 2

3.5-inch full-color LCD touchscreen; 320 x 480 resolution
CLICK HERE FOR PRICE
Feature 1

 

Emerson Sensi Touch

 

Feature 2

4.3-inch touchscreen; 272 x 480 resolution
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Feature 1

 

Hive Active Heating 2

 

Feature 2

3.5-inch color TFT display; 320 x 480 resolution
CLICK HERE FOR PRICE
Feature 1

 

Honeywell EvoHome

 

Feature 2

5-inch color LCD; 480 x 272 resolution
CLICK HERE FOR PRICE
Feature 1

 

LUX GEO-WH Thermostat

 

Feature 2

3-inch digital screen
CLICK HERE FOR PRICE
Feature 1

 

Nest Learning Thermostat

 

Feature 2

3-inch color LCD; 480 x 480 resolution
CLICK HERE FOR PRICE
Feature 1

 

Tado Smart Thermostat

 

Feature 2

LED matrix
CLICK HERE FOR PRICE

1. Bosch Connected Control BCC100

Bosch BCC100 Connected Control Smart Phone Wi-Fi Thermostat - Works with Alexa - Touch Screen
$156.89
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05/22/2022 11:00 am GMT

If you want to own a smart thermostat without having to break the bank, the Connected Control BCC100 is right at your alley. This budget thermostat works with any 24-volt heating, ventilation, and conditioning (HVAC) systems which include conventional gas and oil. For the electric system, it has two cooling and two heating stages, while its heat pump system has two cooling and four heating stages.

This device can be connected via Wi-Fi to any Android or iOS phone using an app, thus giving you access to its controls from virtually anywhere. While this may be the case, the device comes with a basic pre-programmed schedule pre-set at a comfortable 70 degrees. Thus, this thermostat isn’t solely reliant on the app to be functional.

It also comes with a 5-inch touchscreen display where you can see the current temperature, mode, and schedule. You can set daily and weekly cooling and heating schedules with up to four schedules and eight temperature threshold per day. The thermostat also automatically turns on the system when the target threshold is reached and immediately sends an alert via your phone.

Unlike its rivals in this category, though, the Connected Control BCC100 does not have any sensors that should wake it up when someone approaches the unit. It also can’t be connected with other smart-home hubs like Wink or Smart Things, as well as digital assistants like Google Assistant or Amazon’s Alexa.

Dimensions: 5.2 x 3.1 x 1-inches
Screen Size: 5-inch full-color touchscreen; 854 x 480 pixels
Sensors: Temperature
Connectivity: Wi-Fi
Zonal Control: None

Pros:

  • Easy to install and configure
  • Large, very readable screen
  • Compatible with a lot of HVAC systems
  • Can work autonomously without the App

Cons:

  • Does not have a motion sensor
  • Lacks smart-home hub connectivity

 

2. Ecobee 4 Smart Thermostat

 

When it comes to being “smart,” the Ecobee 4 is one of the most intelligent thermostats today since it comes with its own built-in Alexa support. Hence, aside from regulating your home’s temperature, this device can also order you pizza and over a thousand other things out of the Amazon assistant’s skill library.

The bread and butter of the Ecobee4, though, are its remote sensors. Its battery-operated satellites allow you to measure the temperature in any part of your home. This allows you to fix any type of cooling and heating issues such as averaging the warmth all throughout the different rooms of your home. It also has a “follow me” feature, which can adjust your residence’s temperature based on where the user goes.

Another nifty feature of this thermostat is its clear 3.5-inch LCD touchscreen with an intuitive user interface that allows you to set a personalized schedule quickly. Using the unit, the app or Ecobee’s website you can also you can also program a baseline comfort settings so the temperature won’t jack up especially during early mornings.

Because of its premium price and pretty advanced features, the Ecobee 4 is always compared with the gorgeous, iPod-like Nest Learning Thermostat. While the former may lose aesthetically, it won’t lose to functionality. However, unlike the Nest thermostat, Ecobee 4 doesn’t have a learning feature and relies solely on the user’s setting preference.

Dimensions: 4 x 1 x 4-inches
Screen Size: 3.5-inch full-color LCD  touchscreen; 320 x 480 resolution
Sensors: Temperature, proximity, ambient light, humidity
Connectivity: Wi-Fi, Bluetooth
Zonal Control: none

Pros:

  • Works perfectly with other Alexa devices
  • Remote sensors enhance the accuracy
  • Schedules and geo-fencing temperature settings
  • User-friendly app and interface

Cons:

  • A bit more expensive
  • Unchangeable “Alexa” wake word

 

3. Emerson Sensi Touch

Traditional thermostats will always have its loyal customers and if you just happen to be one of them you can never go wrong with the Sensi Touch. This mid-range thermostat has a large 4.3-inch touchscreen display with 272 x 480 resolution which you can also customize. The device is also easy to install and comes with the usual rear plate that you screw to the wall and the main body. During installation, however, you will need a C-wire.

You can also set a schedule when your home’s temperature should change with 15-minute increments. In case you don’t want to set a daily schedule, you can easily rely on the device’s geofencing feature. Depending on your phone’s location it can use different temperature preferences. Being within 3 miles from your home, for example, will make it use the usual “home” setting. However, when you remove yourself from this range, the device will use the energy saving setting instead.

After installing the device to the wall and you turned it on you can learn more about the setup process through the downloadable Sensi app. You can also use this app to set the schedule and create notifications and alerts. If you are an iOS user the app also allows you to connect to other Homekit-compatible smart devices.

However, this Emerson thermostat also has a few disadvantages that you should note. The most noticeable is that you can only set or adjust the schedules using the app and not directly with the main unit itself. The geofencing feature is also not customizable plus you can’t control when the device switches to sleep mode.

Dimensions: 5.6 x 3.4 x 1.2-inches
Screen Size: 4.3-inch touchscreen; 272 x 480 resolution
Sensors: Temperature, proximity, humidity
Connectivity: Wi-Fi, Bluetooth
Zonal Control: Yes

Pros:

  • Has geofencing feature
  • Large touchscreen display
  • Customizable user interface
  • Auto detects humidity and temperature extremes

Cons:

  • Unpreventable sleep mode
  • Doesn’t display outdoor temperature

 

4. Hive Active Heating 2

Hive Active Heating 2 and Hot Water (no installation) by Hive
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Hive is owned by British leading energy provider Centrica and most of their products have only been available in the US beginning 2017. However, that doesn’t erase the fact that the brand is one of the most experienced manufacturers in home heating solutions. The beautifully designed Active Heating 2 is their entry in the premium smart thermostats category.

At the center of its 3.5-inch TFT display is a mechanical dial which can be moved clockwise or counter-clockwise to control the temperature. At the bottom are three clickable buttons- the left being a back button, the center brings up extra settings such as a child lock and the right being the confirm key. There is also a downloadable Hive app for better convenience. The best bit about this device though is it can provide multizone comfort with active heating.

Much like its rivals, this smart thermostat has also been integrated with Amazon’s Alexa. Thus, you can control your heating preferences with your voice. The true potential of the Active Heating 2 comes alive if you paired it with other smart devices from Hive such as their light bulbs and cameras which also have smart functions. However, the challenging part of owning this system is you may need to hire a professional installer since the installation process is quite complicated.

Another downside of this thermostat though is the active heating feature isn’t supported by Apple’s Homekit. Thus, if you have already invested in smart home devices from Apple you may think twice before buying this one. Overall, this thermostat offers a lot of value in terms of its functionality and ability to control multiple zones.

Dimensions: 4 x 4 x 1.9-inches
Screen Size: 3.5-inch color TFT display; 320 x 480 resolution
Sensors: Temperature
Connectivity: Zigbee HA 2.0
Zonal Control: Multi Zone with Active Heating

Pros:

  • Easy to use
  • Intuitive user interface
  • A great looking thermostat system
  • Seamless Alexa integration

Cons:

  • Requires professional help to install
  • Doesn’t have motion sensors

 

5. Honeywell EvoHome

Honeywell RTH9580WF Wi-Fi Smart Thermostat
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If you’re the kind of homeowner who prefers simplicity in all things, then the EvoHome is just right about your alley. This thermostat has a durable no-frills design with an exterior made of plain white plastic. The package or kit contains a terminal and its dock but you will also have to purchase a  TRV valve for each radiator in your home that needs to be controlled.

The best bit about this thermostat is its ability to control even the most complicated heating system out there. It’s compatible with almost any heating system including underfloor heating. This feature is a godsend for a home whose rooms need to have different temperature settings and varying heating schedules.

When setting up the EvoHome kit we recommend that you seek the assistance of professional installers to ensure everything will work perfectly. Getting the preferred temperature in each room can be quite a daunting task especially at the beginning as it involves a lot of trial and error. However, once you get it right customizing the schedule is simply a breeze. There is also an economy mode which changes all the heating down to just 15 degrees. The corresponding app is also easy to use and has access to all its features and controls.

Much like other systems, there are a few flaws in this thermostat, too. The screen is always on, and its “idle screen” is either a traditional clock face or digital display. While it can work with Alexa’s voice assist, the commands you can give are pretty limited compared to its competitors. Overall, if you really need a multi zone comfort control and does not mind the aesthetics of the device, then the EvoHome is a great choice.

Dimensions: 5.5 x 4 x 0.8-inches
Screen Size: 5-inch color LCD; 480 x 272 resolution
Sensors: Temperature
Connectivity: Wi-Fi, Bluetooth
Zonal Control: Yes

Pros:

  • Can also do underfloor heating
  • Has zonal control
  • User-friendly and easy to operate
  • Durable design

Cons:

  • Unimpressive design
  • Lacks additional features of its rivals

 

6. LUX GEO-WH Thermostat

Lux Products GEO-WH Wi-Fi Thermostat, White
$70.47
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05/22/2022 05:25 am GMT

If you’re looking for an affordable alternative to premium smart thermostats, then the GEO-WH won’t leave you disappointed. While it does not have the elegant screens and sleek exterior of more expensive temperature control devices, it has a number of useful functions. This thing also has multiple power options such as batteries, a C-wire system power, and a micro-USB connection.

Despite being almost half the price of its premium rivals, this thermostat also works in conjunction with an Alexa device. As such, you can control the room’s temperature by your voice. It also comes with an Android or iOS app which makes it easier for you to manage its schedule. Moreover, this device also has a geofencing option with “away and back” settings and even allows Zonal Control.

Another exceptional feature of this thermostat is you can mount it to have either horizontal or vertical orientation. It also possesses an air filter monitor and is compatible with a lot of heating system. It’s also easy to install and set up even if it’s the first time you are digitalizing your home. Finally, the device also has a 3-year warranty.

But then again, you can say that this thermostat is not for the picky homeowner. The digital screen is unappealing plus the display is hard to read without the backlight. It also has some trouble getting a decent Wi-Fi signal, especially if it’s too far away from the router or has a few walls and obstacles in the way.

Dimensions: 6.5 x 2.8 x 6-inches
Screen Size: 3-inch digital screen
Sensors: Temperature, proximity
Connectivity: Wi-Fi, Bluetooth
Zonal Control: Yes

Pros:

  • Affordable price
  • Can be integrated with Alexa
  • Has zonal control
  • Comes with geofencing feature

Cons:

  • Black and white display
  • Finicky temperature readings

 

7. Nest Learning Thermostat

Google Nest Learning Thermostat - Programmable Smart Thermostat for Home - 3rd Generation Nest Thermostat - Works with Alexa - Stainless Steel
$217.00
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05/22/2022 01:40 pm GMT

Bar none, the Nest Learning Thermostat is considered as the most intelligent thermostat device in the market today. Functionality wise, there are only a few smart products that can compare with it. It also has a very appealing iPod bezel-like design and a vividly clear touchscreen display with 480 x 480 resolution.

What separates this smart thermostat from the rest though is the sheer number of sensors that this thing has from proximity to field activity and more. Through its multiple sensors, the device learns most of your habits and schedules such as at what time you are at home the most and even the current season or climate. Using the data it has gathered, it then adapts to your habits and chooses the most comfortable or energy saving setting for your home.

The app is also quite useful in complementing the functions of the control unit. It also alters the heating when you don’t need it, such as in the case that you aren’t at your house. The motion sensors scan the area to check whether the residents of the house or perhaps some guests are inside the house or not. Finally, the metallic finish on the clock makes it a great décor to any part of your home.

On the flipside, you may find that the thermostat may overshoot the temperature adjustment by a bit since the program’s algorithm that learns your habit isn’t perfected yet. Nest has recently begun expanding their product lines, hence, for now, the Learning Thermostat is still a system on its own.

Dimensions: 3.3 x 1.2-inch
Screen Size: 3-inch color LCD; 480 x 480 resolution
Sensors: Temperature, proximity, indoor humidity, ambient light, far-field and near-field activity
Connectivity: Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, Wireless Interconnect
Zonal Control: No

Pros:

  • Very smart and learns your heating patterns
  • Beautiful iPod-like design
  • Has motion sensors
  • Can learn your habits and automatically creates energy saving settings

Cons:

  • Doesn’t have zonal control
  • Not compatible with Apple Homekit

 

8. Tado Smart Thermostat

You can think of the Tado Smart Thermostat as a hybrid thermostat that has almost everything. It has a sleek design, a zonal control, and even geofencing. However, balancing all these features together seems to be a tall order as there hasn’t really been a product to come up with such a cohesive system yet.  Regardless, this thermostat is still a great energy saving device which you definitely would like to have especially during the winter months.

One of the unique characteristics of its central thermostat is the combination of physical and touchscreen controls laid out in its nondescript white square design. It has a physical button which serves as a touchpad that lowers and raises the temperature. The individual radiator valves, on the other hand, are not as complicated but offer the same white text display.

Tado also works well with almost every major ecosystem out there such as Google Assistant, IFTTT and of course Alexa. Hence, you can use your voice to control your heating system and even pair all your heating mechanisms to other smart home devices. Furthermore, you can also integrate it with Apple’s Homekit. Setting up the schedules is also as easy as that of other premium thermostats in the list.

Despite all these eloquent features, Tado did not add any kind of motion-sensing sensors which could have made it more convenient just like the Nest. It also doesn’t have self-learning capabilities; hence you have to plan your schedule carefully if you optimally want to save energy. Lastly, the user interface may take a while to get used to especially because of its unusual control center.

Dimensions: 4.1 x 4.1 x 0.7-inch
Screen Size: LED matrix
Sensors: Temperature, Ambient Light, Humidity
Connectivity: Tado Internet Bridge (Ethernet port)
Zonal Control: Yes

Pros:

  • Sleek and thin design
  • Has zonal control
  • Plenty of sensors
  • Works well with major ecosystems

Cons:

  • Finicky app
  • Unattractive LED matrix screen

 

Smart Thermostats Buying Guide

Today’s thermostats can optimize the efficiency of your HVAC system and help you save a hefty sum on your utility bills. The device also allows your digitized home network to follow schedules and even be controlled even if you are halfway across the world provided you have an Internet connection. Some of the best thermostats even have advanced features like forecasts, “learning” ability and even motion sensors.

With more companies investing in the digital home industry, you can expect that smart thermostats will also evolve and have more functions in the future. With so much innovation in this space, it can be quite confusing for a buyer which smart thermostat can offer the satisfaction they need. This is where this article comes in- to be your guide and reference.

Let us look into some things that you should think about before buying a smart thermostat:

1. Technology

Not all thermostats are created equal in terms of its technological features. You want to have one that can connect with networks such as Wi-Fi and Bluetooth for better management and easy notifications. It should also be compatible with some of the digital home major ecosystems like Alexa, Google Assistant and Apple Homekit.

2. Mobile Access

The main allure of smart thermostats is you can control those using apps on mobile devices. While most devices are compatible with both Android and iOs devices, there are a few that only have one of the two operating systems. Make sure your mobile device is compatible with the thermostat you are eyeing for.

3. Sensors

Several thermostats have more than just temperature sensors and even come with motion detection, proximity, humidity and a lot more. Sensors are also crucial for some thermostats to “learn” the user’s habit and automate it to the most effective settings.

4. Geofencing

Many thermostats also have geofencing features which turn off or change the temperature of the room or house depending on the proximity of the user. For example, if you connect the thermostat with your mobile phone and you step off 300-meters away from the control unit the device can shut itself down or lower its temperature.

A smart thermostat can do a lot of good for your home. Aside from keeping up with your heating schedule it also saves you a lot of money that goes into your power bill. It also doesn’t require a hefty sum to start digitizing your home with this device.

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Top Products

Best Cheap Windows Tablets

Best Cheap Windows Tablets

We all know how good of an operating Windows is when it comes to desktops and laptops. But does it also do well in smaller devices like tablets?

The short answer would be yes. Several PC manufacturers also saw the benefit of using Windows as the tablet’s Operating System, instead of Android. With the introduction of Windows 10, this becomes more evident as the new OS version offers better user interface and navigation.

In short, people who are always on the go still want the Windows OS even in small gadget because they still want to do a few computing tasks on their devices. Plus the more affordable price tag also doesn’t hurt its reputation.

Many of the tablets which opted the use of Windows OS are 2-in-1 convertible devices which can transform from tablet to laptop just by attaching a mobile keyboard. However, there are also non-transforming tablets that opted to use Windows because of its versatility.

In this article, we have listed some of the best cheap Windows tablets that are available on the market. The prices of this Windows tablets are almost comparable to some of their Android and iOS counterparts.

Top 8 Cheap Windows Tablets of 2019

Image

Product

Specs

Availability

Feature 1

 

Acer Switch 5

 

Feature 2

256 GB PCIe SSD
CLICK HERE FOR PRICE
Feature 1

 

Asus Transformer Mini T102HA

 

Feature 2

64 GB eMMC
CLICK HERE FOR PRICE
Feature 1

 

Chuwi Hi10 Plus

 

Feature 2

64 GB eMMC
CLICK HERE FOR PRICE
Feature 1

 

Dell Venue 7140

 

Feature 2

128 GB SSD
CLICK HERE FOR PRICE
Feature 1

 

Huawei MateBook E

 

Feature 2

256 GB SSD
CLICK HERE FOR PRICE
Feature 1

 

Lenovo IdeaPad Miix 320

 

Feature 2

128 GB eMMC
CLICK HERE FOR PRICE
Feature 1

 

Microsoft Surface Go

 

Feature 2

128 GB SSD
CLICK HERE FOR PRICE
Feature 1

 

NuVision 8

 

Feature 2

32 GB SSD
CLICK HERE FOR PRICE

1. Acer Switch 5

Tablets nowadays are very flexible and can be used in a variety of ways. The most versatile of which are 2-in-1 convertible tablets, that can transform into a laptop by just attaching a keyboard cover for better typing experience. Switch 5 is one of the best examples of this type of device.  By combining portability and performance without having to sacrifice its reasonable price, this tablet is a sure hit especially for college students and young professionals.

Despite its small size, it packs a 2.5 GHz Dual-core Intel Core i5-7200U processor which can be turbo boosted up to 3.1 GHz. It’s paired with a standard HD Graphics 620 and 8 GB of RAM. Spec-wise, its more than capable of running some basic computing tasks and even mobile gaming. Meanwhile, the 256 GB SSD storage allows it to boot faster than hard drive equipped devices.

The 12-inch QHD IPS screen which has 2160 x 1440 resolution is slightly sharper than its competitors that have 1080p display. The color accuracy in this tablet is also quite solid at 78-percent sRGB color gamut rating. However, the maximum brightness falls short of the 400 nits category average as it only has 212-nits. The speakers’ audio quality is also subpar.

The tablet’s cover also acts as its keyboard, which is a step up from the Acer Switch Alpha 12 where this tablet was based from. The keyboard is well spaced, has ample travel and feedback plus its backlit. This thing also has some of the most important ports such as Micro SD, audio jack, USB 3.1 Type-A, and USB Type-C. For connectivity, it has the usual Bluetooth and 802.11 ac Wi-Fi. It also comes with a 3 Mega Pixels (MP) rear camera and a 1MP front. Battery life is at a manageable 8 hours.

However, the Switch also has its own quirks that buyers should be made aware of. While the kickstand is well built, it is hard to pry away from the tablet’s main body. The QHD display, while color accurate, has a very low brightness which makes the display quite dull. Also, while you can do a bit of gaming on this laptop, titles such as Overwatch on low settings will only be playable at below 30 FPS.

Overall, the Acer Switch 5 is a good budget tablet for those who won’t do a bit of typing and drawing on the side.

Display: 12-inch QHD IPS; 2160 x 1440 resolution
Processor: 2.5 GHz Dual-core Intel Core i5-7200U
Graphics: Intel HD Graphics 620
RAM: 8GB DDR3
Storage: 256 GB PCIe SSD
Battery Life: 8 hours
Weight: 2.79 pounds

Pros:

  • Decent connectivity
  • Powerful CPU performance
  • Sharp screen
  • Does well in basic drawing

Cons:

  • Low display brightness
  • Awkward hinge

 

2. Asus Transformer Mini T102HA

Following the rise of 2-in-1 tablet convertibles, Asus also released their own contender in this space- the Transformer Mini T102HA. This portable tablet easily transforms into a functional laptop by just attaching its keyboard cover. You also won’t have to burn a hole in your wallet just to get the benefits of this versatile device. And if you care more about battery life and not much about the device’s performance, then it perfectly matches your needs.

On board, this laptop is a 1.44 GHz Intel Atom x5-Z8350 processor and an Integrated HD graphics. Asus has also equipped it with 4 GB worth of RAM and 64 GB eMMC storage. While that may not be as impressive as fancier tablets, it’s plenty enough to do Internet browsing, watching movies and playing mobile games.

The 10.1-inch LED display with 1280 x 800 resolution is also nothing to sneer at. The screen has 400-nits brightness which is way beyond the average for this category. Its color accuracy, though, just barely cuts it as the small resolution takes away some of its pixel density. The audio quality of its speakers may be so-so, but it sure is loud enough for sounds to be heard all over a small room. On the flipside, this tablet doesn’t heat up as much as its other premium competitors.

Typing on the keyboard cover is also not cumbersome as some would expect for a tablet of its size. The keys are well-spaced and while they don’t have plenty of travel, they are much better than on-screen keyboards. The touchpad, though, is inaccurate and unresponsive that it’s better to use a mouse. Fortunately, this tablet has the right ports for the job- a USB 3.0 plus a COMBO audio jack, a micro USB and SD card slot. Moreover, it also has a fingerprint scanner for added security. For connectivity, you have Bluetooth 4.0 and the usual 801.11 ac Wi-Fi.

One crucial flaw for this tablet though is its performance which sits at the bottom group of most benchmarks test. Charging via its USB port is also a tad bit slow. If you also have large fingers, you may not enjoy typing on its keyboard that much. This might be the reason why most of its users are kids; although some adults may find it of great value also.

Overall, the Asus Transformer Mini is a great tablet to have around especially since you can fit it in almost anything even in a satchel.

Display: 10.1-inch LED; 1280 x 800 resolution
Processor: 1.44 GHz Intel Atom x5-Z8350
Graphics: Integrated Intel HD Graphics
RAM: 4GB DDR4
Storage: 64 GB eMMC
Battery Life: 7 hours
Weight: 1.74 pounds

Pros:

  • Small and portable
  • Affordable price
  • Impressive battery life
  • Good quality hardware

Cons:

  • Poor CPU performance
  • Inaccurate trackpad

 

3. Chuwi Hi10 Plus

 

Small players are also getting into the action in the tablet category. These brands offer devices that also have the same spec but at almost half the price of the larger and more popular brands. One of the better low-priced tablets in the market today is the Hi10 Plus developed by Chinese brand Chuwi. The best bit about this product is its integration of Windows 10 and Android OS into one dual boot system which allows it to be powerful and portable at the same time.

Inside this tablet is a 1.44 GHz Intel Atom x5-Z8350 processor which can be turbo boosted up to 1.92 GHz. Chuwi has also equipped it with an 8th generation Intel HD Graphics, 4GB worth of memory and 64 GB eMMC storage. The specs are what you would expect on a tablet on its price point, but this tablet also has a few surprises. You can also switch between its two Operating system- Windows 10 to Android 5.1 and vice versa. Changing OS takes around 15 to 30 seconds.

Furthermore, the 10.8-inch screen isn’t too shabby as it has a 1920 x 1280 resolution. However, displays brightness is a bit dull and reflective. Graphic demanding games such as NBA 2K17 may experience an uncomfortable drop in FPS, but other casual games will encounter no such problems. The keyboard cover is also well-spaced and has decent travel, but they are sold separately. Moreover, the trackpad is also quite responsive although it has limited finger gestures. The audio is loud but the sound quality isn’t something noteworthy. For connectivity, you have the standard ones- USB-C, micro USB, micro HDMI, Bluetooth and 802.11 b/g/n Wi-Fi. It also comes with a front and back camera, both of which are 2MP.

But because it’s priced cheaper than even the low-cost tablets, you may need to manage your expectations. Its build quality may not be as reliable as other more expensive rivals. The performance is at par with other Intel Atom-based tablets and the display is subpar. You can also use a pressure sensitive stylus but it’s not as dynamic as those in premium tablets.

Overall, the Chuwi Hi10 Plus is an affordable tablet that can transform into a laptop. The dual-boot system also allows it to optimize your work based on the OS you currently need.

Display: 10.8-inch IPS; 1920 x 1280
Processor: 1.44 GHz Intel Atom x5-Z8350
Graphics: Intel HD Graphics 8th gen
RAM: 4 GB DDR3
Storage: 64 GB eMMC
Battery Life: 5 hours
Weight:

Pros:

  • Lowest-priced tablet in the list
  • Dual boot system
  • Durable Casing
  • Comfy keyboard

Cons:

  • Moderate CPU performance
  • Little to no technical support

 

4. Dell Venue 7140

Before most convertible tablets have opted the smaller 10-inch screen, there was a time when 12-inch models were all the rage. Dell also got on board the hype train and introduced its Venue 7000 series of 2-in-1 tablets; the most practical of which is the 7140. It was one of the first attempts to make a convertible tablet into a seemingly portable workstation.

At its vortex is a 1.2 GHz Dual-Core Intel Core-M5Y10 processor which can be turbo boosted up to 2.0 GHz. It is mated with an Intel GT2 Graphics and an 8 GB of RAM. These specs allow it to handle moderate gaming. You can even play World of Warcraft at 1366 x 768 display and still get a nifty 19 FPS. Moreover, Dell also threw in 128 GB worth of memory and with an SSD you can be sure that this thing boots faster than other tablets.

The Venue 7140’s display is also sharp and clear thanks to its full HD 1920 x 1080 resolution. It’s also more vivid than your average tablet since it has 341 nits of brightness. Likewise, Dell has also doubled down on its color accuracy which has a 101 percent sRGB rating. The audio quality is also quite impressive and is quite loud reaching 86 decibels at 13-inches away from the device.

Because it’s marketed as a productive type of device, the island-style keyboard has a matte finish. It also has plenty of travel at 1.33 mm and has a bit of actuation force at 71 grams. The touchpad though feels cramped but is quite responsive especially with the finger gestures. For connectivity, you have a micro SD slot, micro HDMI, a headphone/ mic combo and a USB 3.0.

However, this tablet also has quite a few disadvantages given that Dell has yet to update it since it was released in 2015. The processing speed is not that fast since it uses the earlier generation of Intel Core processors. Moreover, the device easily gets hot and can reach above the threshold temperature of more than 95 degrees. You also have to purchase the stylus and mobile keyboard, separately.

Display: 12-inch Full HD; 1920 x 1080 resolution
Processor: 1.2 GHz Dual-Core Intel Core-M5Y10
Graphics: Intel 5300 Graphics
RAM: 8 GB
Storage: 128 GB SSD
Battery Life: 8 hours
Weight: 1.6 pounds

Pros:

  • Solid build
  • Strong GPU performance
  • Awesome audio quality
  • Clear and vivid display

Cons:

  • Gets hot easily
  • Outdated CPU processor

 

5. Huawei MateBook E

Huawei’s first attempt at the 2-in-1 devices was the MateBook which was released last year. This year they have expanded the product line with full pledge notebook and subnotebook bearing the same name. The MateBook E, however, remains close to its predecessor albeit some tweaks. It still boasts an aluminum alloy casing which gives its 6.9-mm thick body a sturdy frame.  It also comes with a detachable keyboard cover and a touch pen.

At its heart is a 1.2 GHz Dual-core Intel Core i5-7Y54 which can be turbo boosted up to 3.2 GHz. Huawei also paired it with an Intel Graphics 615 and 8 GB worth of RAM. This allows this gadget to do a bit of image editing and drawing. Moreover, it has 256 GB of SSD storage which allows it to boost faster. You can also do a bit of gaming on this tablet. Playing BioShock Infinite in low settings can give you a comfortable 41 FPS.

Not to be outdone is the Notebook’s 12-inch IPS display that has a slightly better 2160 x 1440 resolution than HD screens. The display is quite vivid and very colorful boasting an RGB color gamut production at 100-percent. The detachable keyboard is easy to type on thanks to its soft chiclet keys which are also backlit. The touchpad, however, has an inferior surface texture and is quite unresponsive with complex gestures.

This tablet only has a few ports- a USB Type-C, keyboard connection, and a headphone jack. Fortunately, Huawei also provided it with a MateDock 2 which when connected to the tablet gives you additional USB-Type C, USB Type-A, VGA and HDMI ports.

While Huawei has fixed some of the problems of its predecessor, the new Matebook also has some persisting quirks. The hard drive is pre-partitioned which meant it can’t be upgraded. The 5-hour battery life is also quite short. Finally, the CPU performance is quite poor, unless you turbo boosted it.

Overall, the Huawei Matebook E is still a pretty decent budget tablet that you can use for a lot of purposes. If you want a better performing model check out the Huawei Matebook E Signature Edition.

Display: 12-inch IPS; 2160 x 1440 resolution
Processor: 1.2 GHz Dual-core Intel Core i5-7Y54
Graphics: Intel Graphics 615
RAM: 8 GB DDR3
Storage: 256 GB SSD
Battery Life: 5 hours
Weight: 2.43 pounds

Pros:

  • Crisp and very responsive touchscreen
  • Thin and very portable
  • Comfy keyboard
  • Includes a USB adapter

Cons:

  • Horrible trackpad
  • Needs angled keyboard

 

6. Lenovo IdeaPad Miix 320

Lenovo Miix 320 10.1 Detachable Touchscreen 2in1 Tablet with Keyboard/Laptop 2GB/64GB Windows 10 Snow White
$399.77
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05/22/2022 08:06 am GMT

According to the report of Common Sense Media, almost one in two children owns a tablet. The 10-inch IdeaPad Miix 320 seems to be targetting those demographics because of its relatively small size. While your children might be playing with it a lot, this tablet can also be converted into a functional laptop, albeit you need to have really small fingers to type on comfortably. It’s also one of the most affordable 2-in-1 devices in the market.

Under its plastic casing is a 1.44 GHz Intel Atom X5-Z8350 processor which can be turbo boosted up to 1.92 GHz. Lenovo also provided it with an Intel HD Graphics 400 and 4 GB worth of RAM. The specs can pretty much play most mobile games at decent FPS. It also comes with a 128 GB eMMC which is plenty enough if you are just doing Internet browsing and playing movies. The 9-hour battery life also means you can enjoy it longer without it being plugged.

The 10.1-inch screen has a decent 1200 x 800 resolution which is OK but has subpar clarity. You are also limited to the quality of your videos since it can’t play the crisp 1080 pixel quality. On the positive note, it produces great color quality at the 95-percent sRGB rating and has a brightness of 218 nits. These figures are slightly higher than most Chromebooks. Likewise, the onboard Dolby speakers produce good quality sounds that are loud enough to be fully heard in a small room.

Despite its size, Lenovo had found a way to fit some important ports like two USB 2.0, a USB Type-C, micro HDMI, headphone jack and a Micro SD slot. The device also has a 5MP rear camera and a 2MP webcam. Another noteworthy attribute of this tablet is its good heat management.

Display: 10.1-inch; 1280 x 800 resolution
Processor: 1.44 GHz Intel Atom X5-Z8350
Graphics: Intel HD Graphics 400
RAM: 4 GB DDR3
Storage: 128 GB eMMC
Battery Life: 9 hours
Weight: 2.31 pounds

Pros:

  • Clean and crisp sound
  • Long battery life
  • Long battery life
  • Doesn’t get hot above a comfortable threshold

Cons:

  • Cramped non-backlit keyboard
  • Paltry display

 

7. Microsoft Surface Go

Microsoft Surface Go (Intel Pentium Gold, 8GB RAM, 128GB) (MCZ-00001)
$244.00
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05/22/2022 12:24 pm GMT

A Windows tablet list is never complete without a representative from its makers Microsoft. The Surface Go is a gorgeous convertible tablet that brings perhaps the best Windows 10 experience because of its seamless user interface and navigation. You can think of it as a smaller and less powerful version of another successful Microsoft product- the Surface Pro.

Its design also follows the shadows of the other Surface line-up especially its amazing kickstand. It has, however, prominent round edges compared to the Pro’s angled and stark edges. On board, is a 1.6 GHz Dual-Core Intel Pentium Gold processor which is paired with an Intel HD Graphics 615 and 8 GB RAM. Microsoft also threw in 128 GB SSD storage to sweeten the deal.

The tablet’s 10-inch screen boasts 1800 x 1200 resolution which is close to the crispy 1080 pixel level. While that may not be the best display on its category, it still offers ample of pop. Its brightness of 415 nits easily overshadows the 245 nits of an average budget laptop. Likewise, its also color accuracy is also off the charts at a 129-percent sRG rating.

The optional backlit keyboard is easy to use and has a decent key travel of 0.9 mm. But don’t expect to hit your usual Word Per Minute (WPM) while typing on its small keys. The type cover is sold separately, same with the Surface Pen. This tablet only has one port- a USB-C. For connectivity, though, you have the usual Bluetooth 4.2 and an 802.11 ac Wi-Fi. Furthermore, I also have a 5 MP front webcam and an 8MP rear autofocus camera.

At a glance, this tablet is already a great tablet but it does have a few issues. The biggest of which is a lackluster battery life of only 6 hours. The screen should also a bit lighter to reach that 1080 pixel sweet spot. Finally, Microsoft still doesn’t want to include the Surface Pen and type cover as part of the package.

Overall, the Microsoft Surface Go is an excellent choice for students who want a budget tablet which they can also use for basic computing and taking notes.

Display: 10-inch PixelSense; 1800 x 1200
Processor: 1.6 GHz Dual-Core Intel Pentium Gold
Graphics: Intel HD Graphics 615
RAM: 8 GB DDR3
Storage: 128 GB SSD
Battery Life: 6 hours
Weight: 1.15 pounds

Pros:

  • Pristine design
  • Reasonably priced
  • Impressive display and speakers
  • Excellent GPU

Cons:

  • Accessories still not included
  • Short battery life

 

8. NuVision 8

NuVision 8-inch Full HD (1920 x 1200) IPS Touchscreen Tablet PC, Intel Atom Z3735F Quad-Core Processor, 2GB RAM, 32GB SSD eMMC,
$489.00
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05/22/2022 11:05 am GMT

How small can a tablet go? Well for the NuVision its 8 inches! This mini tablet is also incredibly thin at 7.62 mm. Its very portable and can fit into almost any type of bags. Despite its low cost, the manufacturers still were able to give it a semi-premium design and a durable chassis. While its incomparable to a Surface Pro or an iPad, you will surely get more for its price.

On its core is a 1.33 GHz Intel Atom Z3735F processor with an integrated Intel HD Graphics. NuVision also has equipped it with 2 GB worth of RAM and 32 GB SSD storage. While this might not be as impressive as more powerful components, this tablet can do pretty much what its larger counterparts can do. If you just want to watch a movie, check your Social Media account and other basic tasks, then it won’t encounter any performance problems.

The 8-inch display might be small, but it has a Full HD 1920 x 1200 resolution. Hence, you can watch videos on a higher quality than some budget 10-inch tablets. While the display is quite bright, it’s not recommended for outdoor use especially while being exposed to some sunlight. One rare feature that this tablet has is a capacitive Windows key opposite its webcam. You can use this key for several functions such as waking the device and going to the Start screen.

For connectivity, this tablet has a Micro USB port for charging and OTG devices, HDMI for external memory, a microSD slot for added file storage and a headphone jack. Sadly, its touchscreen doesn’t have pen support.

This tablet, however, also has a few disadvantages brought primarily by its size. The battery life is at a disappointing 4 hours. The cameras are also awkwardly positioned. Finally, surfing the Internet is not as pleasant as a Windows 10 desktop since everything you see is shrunk. Clicking on links and other small elements of a website can also be frustrating.

Overall, the NuVision 8 is a great choice for people who are always on the go who wants a tablet that can fit even in the smallest of bags.

Display: 8-inch IPS Full HD; 1920 x 1200 resolution
Processor: 1.33 GHz Intel Atom Z3735F
Graphics: Intel HD Graphics
RAM: 2 GB
Storage: 32 GB SSD
Battery Life: 4 hours
Weight: 2.65 pounds

Pros:

  • Very affordable price
  • Easy to carry around
  • Pixel dense display
  • Plenty of ports

Cons:

  • Short battery life
  • Awkwardly positioning of cameras

Cheap Windows Tablet Buying Guide

Choosing a Windows tablet is much easier because you have your work cut down for you since you know what OS you are getting. When it comes to buying this tablet it all boils down to three factors, which are:

1. Tablet’s Size

Tablets come in different sizes from the 8-inch minis to the more standard 12-inch models. They also vary in thickness and other dimensions. The largest tablet in the world is even 42-inch big. Overall, the size determines its portability and affects other factors such as pixel density and the amount of port it could have.

2. Function

Tablets also have different functions. Those with crispier and vivid display, for example, are geared to watching movies and artistic tasks like image editing. Meanwhile, there are also those which offer comfortable keyboards aimed for typing and even low to mid gaming. Some tablets are also more suitable for mobile gaming and for browsing. Before buying the tablet, decide first what its primary function is- for travel, media, business, browsing, etc.

3. Balanced Specs

While your tablet will not perform just as fast as your laptop or PC, you should also consider some of its specs such as the processor, memory, graphics, storage and most importantly battery life. All of these factors will eventually contribute to your overall experience with the device. Also research the price of accessories, such as the stylus pen and mobile or cover-type keyboard, if it’s reasonable or not have.

Whether you are a fan of Windows OS on a tablet or not, there is no denying that this formula works. With the emergence of 2-in-1 convertible laptops and the further development of Windows to adapt to numerous devices, it might be high time to invest on a tablet that runs on a PC platform system.

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Best Laptops for Linux

Best Laptops for Linux

We are all familiar with the proprietary operating systems (OS) – Microsoft Windows and Apple iOS. But there is another software platform that has been gaining popularity, especially among programmers and encoders- enter Linux.

A few years ago, Linux was widely used mainly to handle servers and was not on personal computers. But with constant innovation and its better user interface, it has become a great alternative to the mainstream OS. Today, you can now see people using Linux on their desktop and laptops. A lot of businesses and educational institutes have also begun using it.

Linux has several advantages that make it a practically better OS than the rest. It has better security as the system is known to keep viruses and malware away. The system is also very stable and experiences fewer crashes. It’s also easy to maintain because you can update the OS centrally in its corresponding software repository. Furthermore, you can pretty much run the system on any hardware so long as they are compatible. And have we mentioned it’s FREE!

Top 8 Laptops for Linux of 2019

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Product

Specs

Availability

Feature 1

 

Dell XPS 13 Developer Edition 9370

 

Feature 2

Ubuntu
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Feature 1

 

Asus Zenbook UX303UA

 

Feature 2

Intel Core i5 6200U
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Entroware Orion

 

Feature 2

Intel Core i5 8250U
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HP Spectre X360

 

Feature 2

Intel Core i5-8250U
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Feature 1

 

Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon

 

Feature 2

Intel Core i5-8250U
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Purism Librem 15

 

Feature 2

Intel Core i7-6500U
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Star LabTop

 

Feature 2

Intel Core i7-8550U
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System 76 Serval WS

 

Feature 2

2.6 GHz Dual-core Intel Core i7-6600U
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1. Dell XPS 13 Developer Edition 9370

Dell XPS 9370 Laptop, 13.3" UHD (3840 x 2160) InfinityEdge Touch Display, 8th Gen Intel Core i7-8550U, 16GB RAM, 512 GB SSD, Windows 10, Silver
$979.00
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05/22/2022 06:05 am GMT

Dell has constantly been updating their flagship laptop the XPS 13 making it more powerful and portable year after year while keeping its chassis classy and sleek. The Developer Edition 9370 is its latest refresh with a noticeable drop in volume and weight. They also upgraded the already gorgeous QHD+ display to a 4K resolution on its 13.3-inch touchscreen. This laptop also comes with several configurations including a Full-HD non-touchscreen option.

At its heart is a 1.8 GHz Quad-core Intel Core i7-8550U processor which can be turbo boosted up to 4.0 GHz. The Intel UHD Graphics 620, although is not meant for gaming, can handle pretty much all other graphics requirements of most computing tasks. This laptop also has 16 GBB of RAM and a 512 GB SSD storage which allows it to boot faster.

Dell has also improved the laptop’s thermals especially its fans which now run more silently. You also now have 4 cores and 8 threads compared to the previous U series which only has two. As a result, you can notice a significant speed boost to the new XPS. Furthermore, the device is now 30-percent thinner than its predecessor but still retains its durability. The XPS battery life remains unchanged at 11 hours.

The backlit keyboard remains as comfortable to type on as ever. Each key has been coated with titanium oxide allowing it to resist stains better while keeping the surface shiny. It also has some of the essential ports such as a MicroSD reader, headphone jack, a USB Type C, DisplayPort, and two Thunderbolt 3.

However, the laptop also has the same issues that are associated with the XPS 13 line. The webcam’s placement at the center bottom screen remains awkward, especially for video calls. The 4K resolution also has an average color accuracy, which means you can’t use it for tasks such as video editing. Lastly, it lacks the legacy port USB Type A.

Overall, the Dell XPS 13 is a great laptop with a Linux OS out of the box as it offers more bang for your buck than most of its competitors in its price range.

Display: 13.3-inch touchscreen; 3840 x 2160 resolution
Processor: 1.8 GHz Quad-core Intel Core i7-8550U
Graphics: Intel UHD Graphics 620
RAM: 16 GB DDR3
Storage: 512 GB PCIe SSD
Pre-installed Linux: Ubuntu
Battery Life: 10 hours
Weight: 2.67 pounds

Pros:

  • Sleek and portable design
  • Vivid display
  • Powerful CPU
  •     Great cooling system

Cons:

  • Doesn’t have USB Type-A port
  • Awkwardly placed webcam

 

2. Asus Zenbook UX303UA

ASUS ZenBook UX303UA 13.3-Inch FHD Touchscreen Laptop, Intel Core i5, 8 GB RAM, 256 GB SSD, Windows 10 (64 bit)
$899.00
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05/22/2022 07:35 am GMT

The ultrabook category is perhaps one of the most stacked laptop class with every major brand having a stake in it. Price-wise ultras are classified as mid-range and above the one thousand dollar bracket. However, the budget-friendly, aluminum cased Asus Zenbook UX303UA makes its competition look overprice by keeping its prices low without having to sacrifice the quality of its build and components.

Running things for this laptop is a 2.3 GHz Intel Core i5 6200U processor mated with the usual Intel HD Graphics 620. Asus also equipped it with 8 GB RAM and 256 GB SSD storage. While the specs are pretty mediocre compared to premium laptops, this device is more than competent for daily usage that involves browsing, watching movies, typing, and other basic computing tasks. Because it doesn’t have any bloatware, except for its speakers, this laptop can also serve as an affordable Linux based laptop after a few tweaking.

The 15.6-inch FHD touchscreen has an IPS panel that makes the display look vivid and dynamic despite having a 1920 x 1080 resolution. It’s considered to have the brightest display in its class with 322 nits and has an excellent 115.6 percent sRGB color gamut rating. The Bang & Olufsen speakers also provide a pleasant audio experience thanks to a program called ICEpower AudioWizard. The chiclet keyboard is also comfortable to type on and is also backlit.

Moreover, this Asus laptop has plenty of ports despite being thin. It has the essential ones such as three USB 3.0, HDMI, headphone jack, SD card slot, and a mini DisplayPort. The 1.2-megapixel camera also takes color-accurate photos and is useful during video calls. This laptop also regulates heat effectively and seldom crosses the comfortable temperature threshold.

Even so, this laptop also has a few disadvantages that you should be aware of. While the chassis is smooth and sturdy, the bezels are a bit thick. The ambient light sensor can also be annoying at times. The speakers are good, but its rivals have better.

Overall, the Zenbook UX303UA is an excellent ultrathin notebook to run on Linux because of its solid performance coupled with a striking design.

Display: 15.6 FHD touchscreen; 1920 x 1080 resolution
Processor: 2.3 GHz Intel Core i5 6200U
Graphics: Intel HD Graphics 620
RAM: 8 GB DDR3
Storage: 256 GB SSD
Pre-installed Linux: None
Battery Life: 7 hours
Weight: 3.2 pounds

Pros:

  • Sturdy aluminum chassis
  • Strong CPU performance
  • Excellent keyboard experience
  • Bright and colorful FHD screen

Cons:

  • A few bloatware
  • Irritating ambient light sensor

 

3. Entroware Orion

Entroware Orion
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Setting up a laptop to use Linux distribution is not an easy process. There are lots to consider including hardware compatibility and user interface. Luckily there are manufacturers like UK-based Entroware that provides Ubuntu Linux-based produces such as the Orion. While the black plastic exterior may seem bland especially so because it doesn’t have a brand logo it serves as a blank canvas for EFF stickers and customization.

Inside this machine is a 1.6 GHz Quad-core Intel Core i5 8250U processor which can be turbo boosted up to 3.4 GHz and mated with an Intel UHD Graphics. Entroware also equipped it with an 8 GB RAM and a 120 GB M.2 SSD storage. While these may not be impressive compared to premium laptops, it serves our intended purpose just right. Its 14-inch matte IPS display with 1920 x 1080 resolution is not something to scoff off.

Typing on the Orion is also quite pleasing because of two factors. The screen extends beyond the hinge and slightly raises the rear of the keyboard up to create a nice typing angle. The chiclet-style keys also have more travel than most ultra-thin laptops. The laptop is also built to take advantage of cloud-based services thanks to its Intel AC Wifi.

The added bulk also helps with the airflow and heat distribution inside the laptop which keeps the laptop cool throughout your daily usage. This thing also has a plethora of ports such as two USB-A, a USB-C, HDMI, SD card reader, VGA, Ethernet and separate jacks for its microphone and headphone.

However, despite being a portable workstation this laptop also has a few quirks. The trackpad is horrible at registering movement and is often finicky with the clicks. The display is also quite dull and has poor viewing angles.

Overall, the Orion is a great alternative if you want to get the benefits of the Linux or Ubuntu OS without having to shed out a lot of dough.

Display: 14-inch Matte FHD IPS; 1920 x 1080 resolution
Processor: 1.6 GHz Quad-core Intel Core i5 8250U
Graphics: Intel UHD Graphics
RAM: 8 GB DDR4
Storage: 120 GB M.2 SSD
Pre-installed Linux: Ubuntu, Ubuntu MATE
Battery Life: 6 hours
Weight: 2.9 pounds

Pros:

  • Affordable price
  • Great heat management
  • Decent CPU performance
  • Comfortable keyboard

Cons:

  • Small, unresponsive trackpad
  • Dull display with poor viewing angles

 

4. HP Spectre X360

This 2-in-1 convertible laptop is a popular choice for users who want a flexible device that they can carry around effortlessly. The sleek, lightweight and thin design of this gadget are perfectly matched with a smooth aluminum chassis. The laptop also has several “physical modes you can switch from depending on what you are doing including tent, writing and watching mode.

HP has equipped this device with a 1.6 GHz Quad-core Intel Core i5-8250U processor which can reach up to 3.4 GHz when turbo-boosted. It’s mated with the usual Intel UHD Graphics 620 and has 8 GB of RAM. You also get a pretty respectable 256 GB SSD storage. With these specs, you can do a bit of video editing, animation and mobile gaming on top of other basic computer functions. However, it requires a bit of tinkering if you want it to be compatible with Linux distro.

Versatility remains as the best selling point of the Spectre X360. The keyboard deck is still rock-solid with long travel keys which is excellent for typing. Despite being thin, it contains plenty of ports such as a USB 3.1, HDMI, card reader, a headphone-mic combo and two Thunderbolt 3. You will also be delighted of its Bang & Olufsen audio which has top-notch quality, especially when aided by HP Audio Boost. The laptop also comes with an HP Tilt Pen which is rechargeable and slides open to unveil its USB-C port for charging.

However, this 2-in-1 laptop also has a few disadvantages compared to other convertibles. The trackpad is responsive but is a bit wide. Moreover, the Full HD display seemed to take a step back in terms of quality.  Its Tilt Pen also has lower sensitivity than those provided by its competitors.

Overall, the Spectre X360 remains as one of the top 2-in-1 laptops because of how well its features were packaged. Run it with a Linux OS and its versatility and performance will kick off a few notches.

Display: 13.3-inch FHD PS micro edge; 1920 x 1080 resolution
Processor: 1.6 GHz Quad-core Intel Core i5-8250U
Graphics: Intel UHD Graphics 620
RAM: 8 GB DDR3
Storage: 256 GB SSD
Battery Life: 13 hours
Pre-installed Linux: None
Weight: 2.78 lbs

Pros:

  • Well-built and attractive chassis
  • Awesome battery life perfect for productivity
  • Very comfortable keyboard to type on
  • Above par CPU performance

Cons:

  • Gets hot when computing great load
  • The trackpad is a bit wide and sometimes gets in the way of typing

 

5. Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon

Lenovo 20KH002RUS ThinkPad X1 Carbon Laptop, 14"
$1,436.48
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05/22/2022 08:12 am GMT

Lenovo’s workhorse, the ThinkPad, has jazzed up its top-tier model the X1 Carbon, which is now on its 6th generation. The latest model comes with an 8th generation Intel processor and has been updated with a USB-C charging. It now comes with voice command far-field microphones and optional 1920 x 1080 touchscreen. But, the more it changes the more this laptop remains the same business first machine.

Powering this laptop is a 1.6 GHz Quad-core Intel Core i5-8250U processor which can be turbo boosted up to 3.4 GHz. Lenovo has also equipped it with a standard Intel UHD 620 and 8 GB worth of RAM. Moreover, it also has a 512 GB NVMe SSD which has a fast data transfer rate and helps speed up the booting process. The X1 also has a fingerprint reader feature called the Match-in-Sensor which adds an extra layer of security.

The bread and butter of this laptop though is its vivid 14-inch HDR screen with 2560 x 1440 resolution. The images on the screen are deep and saturated that it almost felt life-like. Going by the numbers, this laptop screen has a whopping 199 percent sRGB color gamut rating and 469 nits of brightness. Both stats are way beyond the average of a business laptop. And who could forget the excellent keyboard of the Thinkpad that has excellent tactile feedback matched with the comfort of the soft-touch deck? Typing on this laptop is as enjoyable as can be.

The iconic Trackpoint also allows more precise and efficient navigation. Meanwhile, the 3.9 x 2.2-inch touchpad was quite accurate and responsively smooth. The laptop also has a wide array of ports- three USB Type A, HDMI, a micro SD card reader, audio jack and two Thunderbolt 3. It also comes with a 720-pixel webcam, which produces mediocre images but is quite useful for video calls. Finally, its battery lifespans at 10 hours.

Despite all these great things, this laptop also has a few minor inconveniences. The audio quality is OK, but the volume seemed too low. The fingerprint scanner is also unpleasant at times. When active, the fans can also be noisy.

Overall, the ThinkPad X1 Carbon is a popular choice for people who are work-oriented and still prefers to have a good display while at it.

Display: 14-inch high dynamic range (HDR); 2560 x 1440 resolution
Processor: 1.6 GHz Quad-core Intel Core i5-8250U
Graphics: Intel UHD 620
RAM: 8 GB
Storage: 512 GB NVMe SSD
Battery Life: 10 hours
Pre-installed Linux: None
Weight: 2.49 pounds

Pros:

  • Portable yet sturdy design
  • Fast CPU
  • Class-leading keyboard
  • Plenty of ports

Cons:

  • Average battery life
  • So-so webcam

 

6. Purism Librem 15

Purism– Librem 14
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Data privacy and security is a serious issue for many computer users, especially since the discovery of Vault 7 and other online monitoring schemes. Hence, it isn’t unusual if some people want a laptop with pre-installed GNU or Linux OS which are harder to exploit from such attacks. If you are a person who values security and privacy even if it costs a premium then the Purism Librem 15 is your laptop of choice.

Keeping things busy for this laptop is a 2.5 GHz Dual-Core Intel Core i7-6500U which can be turbo boosted pp to 3.1 GHz and is mated with a robust Intel HD Graphics 520. Purism has also thrown in 16 GB of RAM and a packed storage courtesy of 256 GB SSD and 1 TB HDD. Its 15.6-inch Full HD screen isn’t shabby at all and comes with a respectable 1920 x 1080 resolution.

What you are truly buying on this laptop though is freedom. Two of its most security elements are actually hardware features. This laptop has hardware kill switches which turn off the use of mic and camera and prevents anyone from accessing it remotely. Likewise, you can shut down the Wi-Fi and Bluetooth via a hardware kill switch whether for security purposes or if you just want to save some battery. Furthermore, it also has hardware switches for the keyboard to ensure your laptop isn’t sending any data or instructions in and out of your laptop.

The laptop is pre-encrypted using LUKS or LVM as default.  GnuPG and SSH keys are also readily created by the GNOME Seahorse application. Its Operating System also has an OpenVPN so you can create your VPN connections out of the box. Additionally, uBlock Origin and HTTPS Anywhere are also pre-installed with its PureBrowser.

The chiclet-type keyboard is pleasantly tactile and has a nice feedback with plenty of travel. Meanwhile, the touchpad is decent and comes with a middle-click. This laptop also has some of the necessary ports such as HDMI, two USB 2.0 and three USB 3.0 Type-C. For connectivity, it uses an Atheros Wi-Fi.

However, this laptop also has some minor flaws you should be aware of. Aside from its expensive price, the data transfer rate in this laptop is also much slower brought by the full-disk encryption feature. If you also happen to purchase this laptop in the UK, take note of the 20-percent duty charge that you will shoulder.

Overall, the Purism Librem might be an expensive notebook but for those who want security and privacy owning one can be a rewarding experience.

Display: 15.6-inch Full HD matte; 1920 x 1080 resolution
Processor: 2.5 GHz Dual-core Intel Core i7-6500U
Graphics: Intel HD Graphics 520
RAM: 16 GB
Storage:  1TB HDD + 256 GBB SSD
Pre-installed Linux: Pure OS
Battery Life: 8 hours
Weight: 4 pounds

Pros:

  • Guaranteed privacy and security
  • Decent performance
  • Plenty of free software installed
  • Awesome keyboard

Cons:

  • Very expensive
  • Slower data transfer rate

 

7. Star LabTop

Star LabTop 13.3-inch Ultrabook Laptop (English UK Keyboard, Ubuntu 20.04 LTS)
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The number of companies that are building laptops based on Linux OS has steadily been increasing in the past few years. Among these new PC, builders are Starlabs, which has a few laptop models on their arsenal. Among their top sellers, though, is the 14.8-mm thin LabTop ultrabook which is now on its 3rd edition. The current version benefits from the new Kaby Lake processor and a faster SSD storage. The battery is also changed to a 45.6-watt variant to allow longer battery life.

Giving life to this laptop is a 1.8 GHz Quad-Core Intel Core i7-8550U processor which can be turbo boosted up to 4.0 GHz. It is coupled with an Intel UHD Graphics 620 and 8 GB worth of RAM. Its manufacturer also equipped it with their own Star Drive SSD which has up to 3200 MB/s sequential read speed and up to 2200 MB/s sequential write speed. The SSD storage also helps its fast booting process.

The aluminum chassis is quite sturdy and has a smooth overall finish. Furthermore, this laptop also brandishes a 13.3 inch IPS screen with LED backlighting and a resolution of 1920 x 1080 pixels. The resulting display is crisp and clear and can be viewed up to 178 degrees angle. Furthermore, it has a backlit keyboard which also has a function lock key. Once enabled it makes all the F-keys function without having to hold on the Fn key. The glass trackpad is also smooth and allows easy gesture control and precise tracking.

This laptop also has the essential ports such as HDMI, USB-C with power delivery, headphone jack, USB 3.0 and a micro SD card reader. For connectivity, it has the usual Bluetooth 4.2 and a Wi-FI that can reach up to speeds of 867 Mbps. Finally, it has a decent 720 pixel HD camera for Skype calls.

On the other hand, this laptop also has a few quirks. The island-style keyboard has small keys which have less travel resulting in an awkward feedback. The Full HD display is great but it feels short in terms of color accuracy. Lastly, it gets hot faster than its rivals in the ultrabook category.

Overall, the Star LabTop is a phenomenal alternative to most mainstream ultrabook given its fast data transfer rate and compatibility to Linux.

Display: 13.3-inch LED IPS; 1920 x 1080 resolution
Processor: 1.8 GHz Quad-Core Intel Core i7-8550U
Graphics: Intel UHD Graphics 620
RAM: 8 GB DDR4
Storage: 480 GB SSD
Pre-installed Linux: Ubuntu
Battery Life: 7 hours
Weight: 2.87 pounds

Pros:

  • Thin and very portable
  • Respectable CPU performance
  • Function key lock
  • Large viewing angles

Cons:

  • Average battery life
  • Subpar keyboard

 

8. System 76 Serval WS

Serval WS - System76
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Not all of the most lucrative gaming laptops run on Windows OS. Even Linux-based laptops can also be a powerful gaming rig especially if that is made by the company System 76. Its flagship Serval WS is a hell of a machine that has everything an avid gamer, even non-Linux fans, would surely want their hands on. The laptop is even configurable in a ton of ways but it ultimately involves- 8th generation Intel cores, Nvidia GeForce 10-series, NVMe PCIe SSD storage and even up to 64 GB of RAM. That’s just about everything you need to run the best gaming titles at ultra settings.

Our choice is the midrange configuration which in our opinion offers a good balance between gaming, coding and everything else. It comes with a 3.7 GHz Hexa-core Intel Core i7-8700K processor which can be turbo boosted for 4.6 GHz and coupled with a GTX 1060 video card for a stable gaming experience. The build also comes with 16 GB of RAM and 1 TB SSD. Now, that’s powerful setup which can easily cut down the FPS rate at silky smooth levels.

There is a lot to like about this laptop not just because of its over-the-top gaming capabilities. At its price point, no laptop can even come close to all the top-of-the-line components that this laptop has. It comes preinstalled with either the Ubuntu Linux or the brand’s own custom POP! OS. In terms of raw power, it can do even the most demanding tasks such as video editing, scientific computing, and code compiling. The bulky exterior also gives it better heat regulation.

The keyboard is also phenomenal, with each key having its own customizable backlight. Because of its wide body, it is also able to fit a complete 10-key number pad. A massive frame also allows it to have plenty of ports such as HDMI, DisplayPort, stereo mic, stereo speakers, headphone jack, S/PDIF, SD card reader, one USB 2.0, three USB 3.1 and two USB-C with Thunderbolt. You also get a 1080 pixels HD webcam which takes clear and color accurate photos.

One pressing issue about this laptop though, aside from its luxurious price, is its weight. The 15-inch already weighs in at 7.5 pounds, while the 17-inch variant is at 9.2 pounds. This, of course, takes away most of the portability of the laptop. In the first place, this shouldn’t even be called a laptop but rather a slightly portable desktop.

Overall, the System 76 Serval WS serves a very niche market. But if you have the money and prefers a fast performing Linux laptop for work or gaming this one is a definite must-have.

Display: 15.6-inch IPS Matte; 1920 x 1080 resolution
Processor: 3.7 GHz Hexacore Intel Core i7-8700K
Graphics: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060
RAM: 16 GB DDR3
Storage: 1 TB GB SSD
Pre-installed Linux: Pops! OS, Ubuntu OS
Battery Life: 6 hours
Weight: 7.5 lbs

Pros:

  • Great for gaming
  • Very customizable base on your preference
  • Overloaded with ports
  • Has a number pad

Cons:

  • Heavy and hard to carry around
  • Too expensive

 

Kali Linux for Penetration Testing Professionals

If there is one group that will get the most benefit out of the Linux OS, it’s the penetration testing professionals. Their job is to test out the security of a system and develop countermeasures so that hackers won’t be able to hack them.

Kali Linux is one of the best Linux distribution (or distro) that is geared for advanced security auditing and penetration testing. This Debian-based distro can perform different information security tasks such as reverse engineering, computer forensics, and security research. It was developed by Devon Kearns and Mati Aharoni of Offensive Security. It was released in March 2013 and is free to download.

Laptop for Linux Buying Guide

The good news is you don’t really need a powerful laptop with the best hardware and components to have smooth usage. Many Linux distros are lightweight and don’t require too much CPU power and RAM. However, there are a few things you should also consider before buying a laptop that has a pre-installed Linux OS or distro. Likewise, these factors also apply if you want to convert laptops that run on Windows or iOS to Linux.

1. Compatibility with Linux distro

Linux has tons of distros you can choose from such as Ubuntu, Elementary OS, Linux Mint and many more. Its best to check first with your target distro for their official recommendations and if your laptop is OK to run their system.

2. Potential bugs or glitches

If you find a laptop with a pre-installed Windows that you want to convert to Linux, check first if there may be some small bags that may affect your overall experience with the new OS. You can also install Linux on Mac laptop but the downside is the Apple laptop is generally more expensive.

3. Value for Money

Depending on your budget and your purpose for the Linux laptop, you may also want to consider if you want to consider some extras. For example, if you also are going to use the device for video editing then go for a laptop with a great screen and performance.

Linux popularity will continue to grow as more people realize the benefits that they possess over mainstream OS. If you are someone who is into programming or just want a faster laptop without the extra muscle from its hardware, then it’s time to check out other Linux-compatible laptops on the market.

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Best Gaming Desks

Best Gaming Desks

When you’re a serious gamer there’s more to consider than just your rig and accessories. It’s also important to consider your gaming chair and gaming desk.

Gaming for some is just a hobby, while for others it is a part of their lifestyle and there are professionals who compete in gaming tournaments which makes it an important source of their income. Gaming must be taken seriously and there are aspects that need to be addressed in such cases, like the importance of gaming space whether you are using a laptop or desktop computer to fulfill your gaming needs.

PC gaming has become popular lately and there is more to it than building a powerful gaming rig. A gamer cannot settle on playing on the floor or just standing up because comfort while playing is an important factor that will affect the gaming experience of a gamer.

Desks are not all created the same, there are differences that if noticed might be too late for the gamer. Choosing a gaming desk for PC gamers can be a bit challenging, there are aspects that must be taken into consideration, if not careful or not planned well, you might settle on something that is not perfect for your gaming needs.

A gaming desk must be spacious enough to fit monitors, gaming mouse, keyboard, desktop, and if you are a serious gamer there will be more accessories added to the gaming rig. Choosing a gaming desk is usually affected by the user’s personal preference, the gaming desk ergonomics is also an important factor that must be put in mind, is it user-friendly? Considering the long hours that will be spent while playing and enjoying the latest game releases, standing or sitting in one position may take a toll on one’s health and may even result in muscle strain or internal injuries in the long run.

Top 5 Gaming Desks of 2019

Here are some of the best gaming desk available – make sure to read about them carefully before spending your hard-earned cash and be disappointed with it in the long run.

Image

Product

Dimension

Availability

Feature 1

 

Atlantic Gaming Desk

 

Feature 2

15.5 inches x 7 inches x 6.25 inches.
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Feature 1

 

Z-Line Belaire Glass L-Shaped Computer Desk

 

Feature 2

60″x 24” x 37″
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Feature 1

 

Need Computer Desk and Computer Table Writing Desk

 

Feature 2

63 inches long
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Feature 1

 

Techni Mobili Deluxe

 

Feature 2

65″ x 65″ x 30″
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Feature 1

 

Techni Sport Gaming Computer Desk

 

Feature 2

23.5″L x 47.25″ W x 41.5″H
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1. Atlantic Gaming Desk 

Atlantic Original Gaming Desk- 44.8 inches wide, speaker stands, cable management and more
$57.11
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05/22/2022 12:50 pm GMT

This gaming desk is designed with gamer’s needs in mind. This desk will fit all the gaming gear and offers so much more so that a gamer can do what he is really meant to do, which is to focus on the amazing gameplay. This desk is made from stylish, laminated charcoal carbon fiber. This desk provides enough space for your PC, laptop, extra monitors, games, speakers, and other gaming accessories. This desk measures 15.5 inches x 7 inches x 6.25 inches.

This desk features a charging stand for cell phones or tablet, speaker stand, extra storage to store games, basket, controller storage, cable management, cup holder for drinks, and a headphone or VR rack. It can fit a 32-inch monitor and up to 32 lbs of weight. A smartphone and tablet can be charged and within hands reach while playing games. It is designed with smooth contours that add a contemporary touch to the gaming room. This desk is perfect for neat freaks who love to keep everything organized all the time, making all gaming essentials stored in one place, making it hassle-free and easy to use anytime. Customer service is based in the USA; they have been working for more than 30 years and providing excellent customer service and support.

Pros:

Sturdy and durable, Simple and easy to use, can be customized depending on personal preference, it is affordable and the legs are stable that works on any flat floor surface.

Cons:

Wire drawer is not smooth to open, some parts are misaligned, and some of the desk welds are poor. The attachments support low weight requirement. The desk is wobbly for some users and the assembly was not well thought of when planning the desk design. It gets dirty easily, like dust or pet hairs. The monitor stand or tower is too high for some users.

 

2. Z-Line Belaire Glass L-Shaped Computer Desk

Z-Line Designs Belaire Glass L-Shaped Computer Desk
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Belaire desk is designed with an L-shape and has a black glossy powder coat finish, a tempered glass desktop that measures 6mm/5mm which makes it durable and won’t break easily. It also comes with a display shelf and a metal frame. It features a monitor shelf that will work well during gameplay. It also has a keyboard-tray with enough space for a gaming mouse and it has reinforced plates with welding joints that makes it durable and stable. It measures 60″x 24” x 37″ and weighs 96.45 lbs.

Pros:

Has a good footprint to space ratio compared to other gaming desks in the market, it can fit all monitors and gaming accessories, Roomy desk with affordable price. It is a space-saver and it can fit your gaming rig up to 2 to 3 monitors plus extra gaming accessories. It offers a limited lifetime warranty and can be sent back anytime if needed to be repaired at a small cost. Tempered glass is durable and will not easily break. It comes with complete and step by step instructions making it easy to install and all the hardware needed is included. There is enough room space for the legs and makes it easy to move.

Cons:

Using woods screws, the keyboard tray sits a bit lower and cannot be adjusted depending on the user’s preference. The glass is not durable; some users experienced the glass desk to break. The packaging is not organized and some of the parts look it comes from a refurbished store. The glass is not fingerprint-proof, will get a lot of fingerprints and will need to be cleaned frequently.

 

3. Need Computer Desk and Computer Table Writing Desk 

It has waterproof and a glossy finish that looks amazing, elegant and timeless. It is also safe from unwanted accidents when drinks get spilled on the desk. It is designed with sturdy and durable workspace construction, guaranteed to last long. It offers the right amount of storage that will help keep the gaming accessories neat and organized all the time. It also passed the safety and performance standards of ANSI/BIFMA.  It measures 63 inches long.

Pros:

Easy to install, has a flat surface, it is sturdy and stable, Large enough that can fit 3 monitors plus keyboard and gaming mouse. It has a clean and simple design. Can attach a keyboard tray and can be adjusted according to your preference.

Cons:

The Metal frame is not advisable for gamer dads with small children. It is expensive but no additional features. Some users receive damaged and wobbly desks.

 

4. Techni Mobili Deluxe

Techni Mobili Deluxe Tempered Frosted Glass L Shaped Corner Desk With Pull Out Keyboard, Graphite
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Techni Mobili Deluxe is a corner desk with an 8mm tempered glass workspace finish. It measures 65″ x 65″ x 30″ and the reinforced metal frame has graphite MDF and it is scratch and water-resistant. One of the highlights for this gaming desk is it is customizable. It can be assembled with a keyboard tray whether on the right or left side. The keyboard tray is made from sturdy wood and comes with a safety stop. It can also be used as two separate desks, the long and short side tables can be interchanged. The glass desktop has 80lbs capacity and the shelf has 30 lbs.

Pros:

Easy installation, allows customization depending on your personal preference (can be used as two standalone desks) supports easier cable management making the wires and cords organized and secured, Open back allows continuous airflow for the tower, Keyboard tray can be assembled on either left or right making it versatile and perfect for left-handed gamers. It offers a 5-year limited warranty.

Cons:

Plain design, would want to see an all-black or silver color scheme. Poorly manufactured product, the parts are misaligned and some users experienced the glass breaking after a few months of using it.

 

5. Techni Sport Gaming Computer Desk 

This gaming desk is perfect for gamers who love to keep everything organized. It features a gaming rack, drink holder, and a built-in headphone or VR rack. It can hold 2 monitors and has enough space to add a tablet rack. The desk measures 23.5″L x 47.25″ W x 41.5″H and will work well with an adjustable gaming chair. It can also be installed with a wire rack that can be used as an additional storage or a place to store external hard drives. This gaming desk is the perfect combination of comfort and reliable performance.

Pros:

Can be easily assembled, has an affordable price, works as a dual monitor stand, and has a perfect height level for gaming set-up. It has a durable and stable leg. It provides ample space for your gaming rig and extra accessories. It comes with a 5-year limited warranty.

Cons:

Low weight limit requirements, scratches easily show, it needs a cable tray, control holder needs to be spruced up with rubber tips to prevent it from getting unwanted scratches.

 

There are different varieties of gaming desks that are available in the market. With it comes with a various set of features that can advantageous compared to some of its competitors. These features are important to some especially if it fulfills the gaming needs of a gamer.

Every serious gamer knows that a computer station is important and a must in order to fully enjoy the gaming experience. Being a gamer does not mean buying the best computer parts and assembling it into a super gaming rig. There are other factors that must be considered in order to completely enjoy a gaming experience and at the same time be fully comfortable and avoid getting injured or experience pain in different parts of the body. A cramped gaming station is not comfortable to play in and the best gaming desk must have a right amount of space that will fit a monitor or two and be able to facilitate the much-needed peripherals that will not just enhance gameplay but also improve one’s gaming experience.

Gaming Desks Buying Guide

When planning to purchase a gaming desk, these factors that will be discussed must be taken into consideration and will guide you to buy the right one in order for you to fully enjoy your gaming experience.

1. Size

The size of the gaming desk is an important factor to consider. The available space in the designated game room must be considered as well. Planning and study the space you have allotted for your gaming space, whether it is small or big, and how many monitors are used for the desktop gaming. If the monitor that will be used is heavy or light, a desk usually has specific weight capacity requirements that will be able to handle it accordingly. Space must be able to accommodate everything that is needed, so you can relax and fully enjoy your gaming experience without the hassle of a cramped and overcrowded room.

2. Shape

Gaming desks have a different variety of shapes. The most common are the L-shaped desk and standard desks. There are pros and cons when buying either of the two. L-shaped corner desk gives more space without taking the entire space you have allotted for it; it is advisable for those with limited space because it can be placed across the wall length. L-shaped desks are bigger than standard desks. Its space will be perfect for those who have more monitors and will have enough space to place the gaming chair and the keyboard and mouse. These desks also have wider space and have a great aesthetic value while giving the gamer a comfortable gaming space and one advantage for it is that you can set it up in any corner of a room.

3. Material

Gaming desks are created from different materials. The most durable among them are the metal and solid wood gaming desks, they are heavier when it comes to the weight aspect but definitely guaranteed to last longer than the ones made from cheaper materials. Depending on the personal preference of the gamer, he can opt to buy wood, glass, or metal desks.

4. Is it User-Friendly?

The gaming desk must be designed to be ergonomic and easy to use. When a serious gamer spends a long time playing games, there are different health problems that may arise from it especially if the computer desk is not designed to give comfort. There are tendencies for gamers to ignore other important things when they are fully focusing on the extensive gameplay, discomfort or pain in different parts of the body can lead to internal injuries and chronic pain. To prevent these from happening, the gaming set-up must be properly done to provide support and comfort to the gamer while he is playing. The desk must have the appropriate height that is suited for long gameplay. The keyboard must be placed at a lower level compared to the monitor. There are desks in the market that are designed with adjustable lengths and can be adjusted according to the height of the user, whether if he is tall or short.

When sitting in the gaming chair, the leg must be positioned between 90-110 degrees in comparison to the torso while the back of the knees must not touch the edge of the chair. To check if the desk is at the right position, the gamer must sit on the desk and keep his elbow at 90 degrees angle and keep the arms in line with the torso. The desk has the correct height if the arms are rested and comfortable when placed on top of the desk. Make sure to consider the design, comfort, and support a gaming desk gives before splurging your money and become disappointed with it in the long run.

5. Added features

There are gaming desks that have shelves that will fit the monitor or monitors if you have more than one and also a storage area that can fit your gaming accessories like controllers, headphones, and etc. There are desks with holes that will facilitate the management of the cables and wires. It must also be arranged in a neat system to keep the place organized, where no wires or cords are hanging loose on the desk. One other factor that needs to be considered is the appearance of the desk.

Aesthetics is important, an attractive gaming desk can be the factor that will matter whether one will be productive or procrastinate on a daily basis. One would want to buy a gaming desk that will complement the room and other decorations. Also consider where the computer will be placed, make sure it won’t restrict movements while playing and has enough space to improve the cooling capacity of the gaming tower.

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Best Capture Cards

Best Capture Cards

A capture card is a device that captures video footage from different sources like a PS4, PC, Wii, or Xbox. It has many uses but for most, it is used to record high definition videos of gameplay that can be later on streamed on a Twitch or YouTube channel.  A capture card is very handy since it gives a user the freedom to edit video footage of a gameplay which is one of the necessary steps when establishing a professional social media channel. A capture card gives the gamer flexibility that helps him create amazing gaming videos and without having interruptions.

For a beginner YouTuber who is new to the scene, a capture card is one important tool that he needs to consider getting when preparing a video game channel with the purpose of profit gaining. It is a helpful device that will help capture video recordings of gameplay and later on to be uploaded on different social media platforms such as Twitch, Ustream, or YouTube. For the viewers, the video output is very important considering the technology we have nowadays. Having to enjoy and watch a high definition video of a favorite game is really popular.

Capture cards are important and necessary for gamers who record and stream their gameplay. Capture cards are hardware devices that are used to capture video signals from devices like an external hard drive thru a connection made with HDMI. These capture cards are important for those who record their gameplay and upload it into a different social media outlet. There are different capture cards on the market and choosing the best one can be a chore.

Top 5 Capture Cards of 2019

Image

Product

Specs

Availability

Feature 1

 

Elgato Game Capture HD60

 

Feature 2

Stunning 1080p quality with 60 fps
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Feature 1

 

Magewell HDMI Plus

 

Feature 2

Extract HDMI embedded audio output via 3 5 mm headphones jack
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Feature 1

 

AVerMedia Live Gamer HD 2 GC570

 

Feature 2

Plug and play support for Windows (except Win7). Real-time gameplay with low latency HDMI pass-throughD
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Feature 1

 

Roxio Game Capture HD Pro

 

Feature 2

Capture, edit, share, and live stream your gaming footage from your PS4, Xbox One, PC, and more in crisp HD video (up to 1080 30p/1080 60i) with your choice of HDMI or component input and output
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Feature 1

 

Cloner Box Pro

 

Feature 2

Capture and record Full HD 1080p hdmi videos from various game console and other video sources.
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1. Elgato Game Capture HD60 

The Elgato Game Capture HD60 is definitely one of the most well-known capture cards in the market. This device is one of the easiest to use. It able to capture full HD videos and usually at 30 or 60 fps and it can be used for high-quality video recordings like for example gameplay of the newest released games on the market. It is compatible with different consoles and systems and can be easily streamed on different channels such as Twitch, YouTube, and Ustream.

The Elgato has different features; one of them is the Flashback recording. The capture card is always recording a short video of the material and it comes in handy when there is a cool battle or difficult level that suddenly needs to be recorded, with the Flashback recording feature, there will be footage that can be accessed anytime you want it. It also has a Stream Command feature, this feature allows to add a webcam or camera that can be overlaid on top of the video footage. It also allows the user to record a commentary over a previously recorded video footage. However the commentary cannot be edited with the software, so make sure to plan the commentary to prevent mistakes from happening. An external software editor is needed to edit the video footage and audio.

Pros:

Flashback recording feature and the stream command feature is a handy feature when recording video gameplay. The video output is 1080p60 and the feature ultra-low latency allows interacting with the audience during live streaming. It has a sturdy and durable design and allows customization. The encoder has a feature that saves storage space and at the same time preserves the video output quality.

Cons:

The Elgato has a limited built-in editing; the user will need external video editing software to edit audio or video outputs. Some users find out that the audio output is not working and sounds garbled and stutters from time to time.

 

2. Magewell HDMI Plus

Magewell USB Capture HDMI Plus
$359.00
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05/22/2022 12:10 pm GMT

This device is easy to use, plug it and it will play, without any confusion or messy installation instructions. It can capture videos from cameras and video consoles.

Pros:

Video output is 4k at 60 Hz. It automatically downscale video outputs to 1080p and it features a separate microphone and headphone jacks. Easy to use, just plug and play and it will work accordingly. Handy, lightweight and can fit inside a bag when traveling.

Cons:

Overpriced compared to some of its competitors in the market. Sometimes the USB 3.0 does not work and is not compatible with PC. Video quality is not as good as the other capture cards in the market. A user will need external video editing software to edit video outputs. It does not come with an HDMI cable.

 

3. AVerMedia Live Gamer HD 2 GC570

This capture card is compatible with different consoles and the video output is in full HD 1080p60. This capture card uses the USB interface. It is easy to use just plug and play. It supports multi-card support and can use up to 4 cards at the same time. It allows live editing and has customizable features.

Pros:

It offers a 2-year warranty after registration on the website, compatible with different consoles and systems. Plug and play installation process. It supports up to 4 cards simultaneously. RECentral 3 software allows capturing and streaming video simultaneously. It can support video platforms like OBS, can record videos into a MicroSD card, and can record high-quality videos. It is light and compact, easy to carry when traveling.

Cons:

It has audio and video issues during recording. Have poor customer service and support. Build quality needs improvement.

 

4. Roxio Game Capture HD Pro

Roxio Game Capture HD PRO Video Capture Device and Editing Software for PC
$49.99
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05/22/2022 12:45 pm GMT

This capture card is easy to install and utilize. It is easy to use; it is able to capture video game footage in HD. It also allows sharing and streaming while giving commentary.

Pros:

It is affordable and easy to use. It has a voice changer feature. Share videos on YouTube or Twitch easily while capturing HD videos at the same time. It is lightweight and easy to transport.

Cons:

HDMI cable does not come inside the box. Hardware is unreliable, sometimes it works other times it does not.

 

5. Cloner Box Pro

 

This capture card is the advanced version of HDML cloner Box. It can record Full HD videos from different sources such as video game consoles, network videos, or video discs. It comes with video and editing software. It has a feature that allows scheduled recording. It supports AV, HDMI, VGA, and YPbPr input signals. The recorded videos can be playback by using the remote control.

Pros:

It can be used as an alternative to a DVR, network videos can be recorded directly to the PC. It saves videos as MP4 files to an external hard drive or USB storage devices and does not require a PC to do so. It supports 4k video input. With just one click you can save a screenshot. It captures video game play in 1080p Full HD output. It also supports live video streaming in different platforms.

Cons:

It has too many issues and sometimes unresponsive. USB is not detected at times.

 

Capture Cards Buying Guide

When planning to buy a capture card, there are guidelines that need to be followed in order to get the correct hardware that is worth your money. There are different factors that need to be considered when buying your first ever capture card. One must plan and research about different capture cards before buying a specific brand so you will invest your money in the right hardware.

1. Cost

How much are you willing to pay for a hardware device like a capture card? It all depends on the quality and the frequency of use for the device. If the reason for buying the hardware is for a few occasional video recordings of gameplay then there will be no need to buy an extravagant capture card. Professionals, however, need to invest their money in a top-notch quality of hardware in order to produce high-quality videos. There are capture cards that produce excellent quality but do not cost too much, it is important to read reviews about different products before purchasing one.

2. Ergonomics

Is the device easy to use? The best capture card comes with a variety of features that helps the user understand how it works. Always make sure to research and read about the device, read the manual cards and check the website for the capture card to learn more about it. A capture card that is user-friendly and easy to use is the best for beginners and even professionals alike.

3. Compatibility

Before rushing and buying a hardware device, make sure that it is compatible with the system you are using and whether if you have everything that is needed in order for it to function and fully work without any complications. The hardware must be supported for it to function with the console or system without causing any complication or problems.

4. Quality

The quality output of the video is one of the important aspects one must consider when buying a capture card. The best capture card must provide rich video and high-quality outputs and the frame rate must also be high. A capture card varies on the ability to record a video quality; some can only record 720p HD, 1080p Full HD, or 4K Ultra HD. It all depends on the usage for the capture card, professionals usually use the best video quality, which is 4k Ultra HD and it is also more expensive compared to the other capture cards in the market. Usually, a powerful system is compatible and it is able to use 4k resolution level capture cards.

5. Console or System

When buying a capture card, one must also consider the console or system he is using. There are specifications that are qualified depending on the console that will be used. PS4 and other consoles in the market use HDMI transfers. Make sure to buy the right hardware that will also be supported by the system you are using. The capture card must be compatible with the hardware factors of the console like the storage, memory, and speed. Capture cards must be bought from legit manufacturers that will provide the user with customer service and help via manuals and tutorials provided on the website.

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Best Bluetooth Adapters for PC

Best Bluetooth Adapters for PC

A Bluetooth adapter is a USB-based device that receives and transfers Bluetooth signals from one device to another. For the Bluetooth device to work it is plugged into the USB port of the PC and it can be used to support different devices. It is also known as a “Bluetooth dongle”. These are the tiny devices and usually half an inch in measurement that barely protrudes from the USB socket of the PC or laptop.

The Bluetooth ability feature is usually found on various devices such as smartphones, game consoles, wireless keyboard, headphones, gaming mice, and even smart television. By using its wireless feature, different electronics can be easily connected in just a few clicks of a button, making lives at home or work more convenient. This small device is designed with a Bluetooth chip that can be used with a PC with no built-in Bluetooth feature.

A Bluetooth device has different uses such as transferring files thru its wireless capability and it also wirelessly operates different electronic devices such as gaming mice, keyboard, headphones and etc. It is often used to sync files thru a secure channel from one device to another. The computer will be wirelessly connected to different electronic devices making the work easier and hassle-free.

Top 10 Bluetooth Adapters for PC of 2019

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Product

Features

Availability

Feature 1

 

Zexmte Bluetooth Adapter

 

Feature 2

Range is up to 10 meters
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Feature 1

 

TaoTronics Bluetooth 4.1 Transmitter and Receiver

 

Feature 2

High-quality stereo sound and provides lag-free content
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Feature 1

 

1Mii B06 Plus APTX Wireless Bluetooth Receiver

 

Feature 2

Range of up to 50 meters in the open air and 20-30 meters indoors
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Feature 1

 

Avantree Bluetooth Adapter

 

Feature 2

Plug and play feature
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Feature 1

 

ORICO Bluetooth 4.0 USB Adapter

 

Feature 2

Range within 10-20 meters indoors
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Feature 1

 

Asus BT-400 Bluetooth Adapter

 

Feature 2

10 meters of range
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Feature 1

 

Edimax EW-7811Un USB Adapter

 

Feature 2

Wireless data rate compatibility with 150 Mbps 802.11n.
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Feature 1

 

Kinivo BTD-400 Bluetooth 4.0 USB Adapter for Windows

 

Feature 2

Range of 10 meters
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Feature 1

 

Costech 4.0 USB Adapter

 

Feature 2

Range of 10 meters
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Feature 1

 

Pluggable USB Bluetooth 4.0 Adapter

 

Feature 2

Compatible with Windows 10, 8.1, 8, and Linux computers
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1. Zexmte Bluetooth Adapter 

This Bluetooth adapter is a small device coated with a black frame that is guaranteed to blend in with most PC and laptop exteriors. It comes with a 4.0 version that is backward-compatible compared to other versions and its range is up to 10 meters in an open space and without any blockage or hindrances. It is perfect for personal use and it has a bandwidth of 3 Mbps.

Pros:
Affordable price, offers a great value even at a very affordable price. It offers a 45-day refund and lifetime warranty.

Cons:
Not compatible with older Windows version and may experience problems, Driver installation can be a bit complicated for some.

 

2. TaoTronics Bluetooth 4.1 Transmitter and Receiver 

 

This Bluetooth adapter is made by Taotronics. This device can be used to transmit and receive signals. It has a feature that allows it to play non-Bluetooth devices by just plugging the unit into the RCA out or 3.5mm audio jack of the Television or speaker. It plays high-quality stereo sound and provides lag-free content when in transmitter mode and it works even when it is charging.

Pros:
Can play non-Bluetooth devices like a non-Bluetooth device such as TV or speakers. It can be paired with two Bluetooth receivers.

Cons:
Some users experienced the device stopped charging and working after a few months of using it. Low volume and sound cut off from time to time. It has connectivity problems with some devices.

 

3. 1Mii B06 Plus APTX Wireless Bluetooth Receiver 

This Bluetooth adapter is a Class 1 Bluetooth and has a range of up to 50 meters in the open air and 20-30 meters indoors without obstacles. It’s Bluetooth 4.2 that delivers a High Fidelity sound and 3d audio. It is easy to set-up and easy to use, perfect for beginners. To use it just power it on and it will automatically connect with the device it is previously paired to.

Pros:
Can connect with two devices simultaneously. It works with voice commands when paired with an Alexa app. Just plug pair and play, hassle-free and no complications.

Cons:
Analog only and no digital output. It is made from cheap plastic. It has poor sound quality.

 

4. Avantree Bluetooth Adapter 

This USB Bluetooth dongle is from Avantree. It is made by a well-known company that has an impressive experience in producing various accessories like Bluetooth adapters. This Bluetooth adapter has a small size and it is designed with rounded edges and finished with a glossy black exterior that looks great. It works particularly well for PC with Windows 10 version, as it supports the plug and play feature. For those who own the older window versions, it is best to download the generic driver as the software from the website is a bit unreliable.

Pros:
Reliable and cheaper, it is easy to use compared to other counterparts in the market. It is compatible with Windows 10 and has a stable connection when in use. The company offers a 24-month warranty and support.

Cons:
Drivers are unreliable and pose some problems for some users. Not compatible with Mac and Linux computers, TV or car stereo systems.

 

5. ORICO Bluetooth 4.0 USB Adapter 

This Bluetooth adapter is designed with the Bluetooth version 4.0. It offers faster data transfer and it lessens the power consumption when in use. This adapter comes in a variety of colors and has an excellent exterior design. It has a wireless range within 10-20 meters indoors with no hindrances or blockage. It is easy to connect with any Bluetooth device.

Pros:
It is affordable, durable, and easy to use. Excellent customer service offers support to clients. It works with Windows 10. It works well with multiple computers and the audio sound is great.

Cons:
It is not compatible with Mac devices. Some users had trouble installing in Windows 10 version. Drivers come in a mini DVD, needs to download the drivers from the website it will be around 1 GB. It is made from cheap material, easily breaks.

 

6. Asus BT-400 Bluetooth Adapter

This Bluetooth adapter has Bluetooth 4.0 capabilities. It is small and most likely would go unnoticed when plugged on the USB port of a laptop or PC. It is designed to be easily gripped by fingers when needs to be removed from a USB port. It is easy to use with its plug and play feature when using PC with versions Windows 7, 8 and 10. It bandwidth capability is up to 3Mbps and works within 10 meters of range. It comes with manual instructions and the Asus drivers actually work, unlike its competitors. If there is a need to download the latest drivers, the Asus website has it.

Pros:
Works great, Instructions and manual come inside the box. Customer service is excellent. Reduces power consumption and has backward-compatibility. It has a 2-year limited warranty. It works with different Bluetooth devices. It has a stable signal, excellent driver support. Plug and play compatibility with Windows 10 and 8.

Cons:
It is more expensive than its counterparts.  It works with one device at a time. The signal is cut-off at times with some users.

 

7. Edimax EW-7811Un USB adapter 

This Bluetooth adapter offers 6x the normal speed of Bluetooth dongles in the market. It is capable of streaming music, videos and other files in a much faster way. It is equipped with Wi-Fi multimedia standard and can customize prioritization depending on the user’s preference. This Bluetooth adapter has a wireless data rate compatibility with 150 Mbps 802.11n. It is designed with a Nano size and will not protrude too much when connected on the USB port of the PC or laptop.

Pros:
It requires low energy consumption when transferring data. It comes with an added security. Its set-up guide comes in different languages and will cater to more users. It does not block websites and it supports plug and play compatibility making it easy to use. It is designed with a glossy black exterior. It is compatible with Mac, PC, and Linux computers.

Cons:
Works on a closer range. Blue led light flashes; it may be annoying to some users. Stopped working after a couple of months to some users. Slow speeds and sometimes the connection is cut-off.

 

8. Kinivo BTD-400 Bluetooth 4.0 USB Adapter for Windows 

Kinivo USB Bluetooth Adapter for PC BTD-400 (Bluetooth 4.0, Low Energy, Compatible with Windows, Raspberry Pi, Linux)
$13.99
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05/22/2022 05:51 am GMT

This Bluetooth adapter has the latest Bluetooth version 4.0 Class 2. It is compatible with different versions of Windows. It supports Windows 10, 8, 8.1, 7 and Vista; it was not tested if it works with Windows XP. This Bluetooth dongle works well with various Bluetooth-enabled devices like headphones, smartphones, printers, and etc. This adapter is compatible with Raspbian and Ubuntu on Raspberry Pi. It works at a range of 10 meters. It is compatible with older Bluetooth equipment. It is designed with a miniature size and shape that makes portable and easy to carry when traveling.

Pros:
It requires low energy consumption, Just plug and play and it will work accordingly. It comes with a 2-year limited lifetime warranty and the customer service is US-based. It is compatible with different Bluetooth-enabled devices. Works with different devices at the same time as long as it has different profiles for examples 2 headsets won’t work simultaneously. 1 Headset, 1 keyboard, 1 mouse will work. It works with a PS4 controller, perfect for gamers who are looking for a working Bluetooth adapter.

Cons:
Worked at first but is not durable and sturdy enough, didn’t last long. It does not work with Windows 10 to some users. It has bad audio quality.

 

9. Costech 4.0 USB adapter 

Bluetooth 4.0 USB Adapter, Costech Gold Plated Micro Dongle - Newegg.com
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This Bluetooth adapter has a Bluetooth version 4.0 works with A2DP stereo playback. It works within the normal 10-meter range. It is compatible with different Bluetooth devices such as headsets, keyboard, speakers, cell phone, mouse, and etc. It has a small, compact design. It has EDR and compatible with 2 and 3 Mbps. It is compatible with Windows 10, 8, 8.1, 7, Vista and XP.

Pros:
It is very affordable and safe to leave on the laptop even when traveling. It has backward-compatibility with other versions. It is affordable and easy to use just plug and play and you can utilize it immediately. It has low energy consumption.

Cons:
It is not compatible with TV and car stereo systems. It does not work with PS4 and other gaming controllers. It is not compatible with Mac computers.

 

10. Pluggable USB Bluetooth 4.0 adapter

This Bluetooth adapter has a Bluetooth 4.0 version. It is one of the best adapters for pc users. It is designed with a small compact size and it is portable, which makes traveling easy. It is compatible with Windows 10, 8.1, 8, and Linux computers. It saves energy when in use and can be left on the PC USB port while traveling. It is compatible with different Bluetooth-enabled devices such as headsets, keyboard, mice, printers, and cell phones.

Pros:
It has low energy consumption when in use. It is compatible with Ubuntu on Raspbian and Raspberry Pi. It comes with a complete set of instructions and a CD installer. It works with Xbox One S controller.

Cons:
It does not have the capability with Windows 7 and older versions. It is not compatible with car stereo and TV. It does not support Mac computers.

 

Different Functions of Bluetooth Adapter

1. File Transfer
It wirelessly transfers files from one device to another.

2. File Exchange
One device can transfer files to another while receiving at the same time.

3. Voice Transmission
Sound can be transmitted via the Bluetooth connection by using headsets or headphones on the PC.

4. Data synchronization
It allows data to be synchronized between two different devices, such as Cellphone and Computer.

5.  Bluetooth printing
The Bluetooth printer will be used to print different files thru a wireless connection.

6. Telephone support
Answer online calls like the Skype app by using a Bluetooth-enabled headset.

7. Play music
Play music by connecting Bluetooth speakers on the computer.

8. Play video games
Play video games by using a Bluetooth-enabled gaming controller.

Bluetooth Adapters for PC Buying Guide

There are ways to find the best Bluetooth adapter and there are various features that make it the best in the market.

1. Range

Bluetooth adapters are not all the same and are determined into different Bluetooth class. Class 1 Bluetooth adapters have a wireless range of 100 meters, Class 2 Bluetooth adapter can transmit wirelessly from a range within 10 meters. Most of the Bluetooth adapters available on the market belong in class 2 and examples of these are electronic devices like gaming mice, keyboard, headphones, and printer. Sometimes it will depend on the uses of the Bluetooth capabilities, like for example for an office, a Bluetooth Class 1 is needed and it will provide a large broadcasting wireless range to cater to more people. The 100-meter range is the ideal range for it to properly work and make sure there will be no hindrances or obstacles while using it.

2. Compatibility

This aspect must be considered before purchasing a Bluetooth adapter. The Bluetooth adapter must be compatible with different devices, like smartphones, speakers, headphones, keyboard, and mice. It must be able to support various devices. It must also be compatible with PC, Linux, and Mac computers.

3. Version

There are different Bluetooth versions available. Bluetooth 4.0 adapters are the most advanced compared to other versions. It is known to provide stability, low power consumption and it is also backward compatible with the other versions. It will be able to ensure a hassle-free wireless connection with all electronic devices that are Bluetooth-enabled.

4. Price

Bluetooth adapters in the market vary from one another when it comes to price. By searching and reading reviews about the best Bluetooth adapters, an individual can find a high-quality Bluetooth adapter with an affordable price. There are brands that also require payment when downloading drivers from their websites.

5. Portability and Size

A Bluetooth adapter comes in various sizes, one of the most common sizes is the small thumb size that measures 1 inch. It is easy to handle and will not be difficult to carry around especially when traveling from one place to another.

6. Bandwidth

The data or transmission rate of the Bluetooth adapter is also considered when planning to purchase one. It will depend on the kind of information that needs to be transmitted from one device to another, it is important for offices because a high volume of data is usually transferred in a day to day basis.

The best Bluetooth adapter has a Bluetooth 4.0 version and designed with a small thumb size that is easy to use and can be easily transported when traveling. It must also have a wireless range of 100 meters and will work with many electronic devices with Bluetooth ability and as well as PC and Mac computers. It must be also easy to use by just plugging it on the USB port of the computer then you can utilize its features immediately.