Best 13" PC laptop right now?

idyll

n00b
Joined
Jul 11, 2004
Messages
50
What's the best 13" Windows based laptop money can buy right now?

Requirements:
- i3 or i5 (is i5 that much better than i3?)
- 4GB memory minimum
- long battery life (is 7+ hours possible?)
- thin and light (doesn't have to have optical drive)

If I won't be able to get that kind of battery life with i3/i5, what's the next runner up?
 

idyll

n00b
Joined
Jul 11, 2004
Messages
50
Thought someone would say that :)

Is there something that's a runner up to the Sony Z series laptops? The $2k price is a little steep, though $1k-1.5k might be a bit more doable.
 

Vengance_01

Supreme [H]ardness
Joined
Dec 23, 2001
Messages
6,438
Lenovo X201s.

It has solid battery life, a 12 inch WXGA+ screen and a Core I5
 

idyll

n00b
Joined
Jul 11, 2004
Messages
50
^ That's a good one.. Even comes in the i7 flavor.

It's too bad it does not have a built in webcam, but it's not a huge setback.
 

orangeblue

Limp Gawd
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Oct 16, 2009
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325
I hate to say it, but the 13in MBP with Windows 7 in bootcamp might be your best option (though I don't know if Apple's Windows driver support has improved or not). It doesn't have a i3/i5, but it does have a 10 hour battery life along with a decent C2D and Nvidia graphics (integrated yes, but much more usable than something from Intel).
 
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Vengance_01

Supreme [H]ardness
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Dec 23, 2001
Messages
6,438
^ That's a good one.. Even comes in the i7 flavor.

It's too bad it does not have a built in webcam, but it's not a huge setback.
but the I7 in the lenovo are ULV so they are not quads but Dual cores
 

Skud

Gawd
Joined
Sep 4, 2002
Messages
587
Sony Z... As I type on my Sony Z..

Microcenter and Best Buy has them for $1699


i5-540m
4GB
128GB SSD


Riley
 
Joined
Jan 14, 2006
Messages
801
I hate to say it, but the 13in MBP with Windows 7 in bootcamp might be your best option (though I don't know if Apple's Windows driver support has improved or not). It doesn't have a i3/i5, but it does have a 10 hour battery life along with a decent C2D and Nvidia graphics (integrated yes, but much more usable than something from Intel).

If you really want battery life, I'd agree with orangeblue's quote here. I recently went back to Apple by purchasing this new MBP, and the 10+ hour estimates are pretty accurate. I have it bootcamped with Win7 Ultimate, and it scores at least a 6 on the Windows Index as well. Great combination of portability/power.
 

exe163

[H]ard|Gawd
Joined
Nov 15, 2005
Messages
1,366
Lenovo X201 in on sale right now. I just ordered mine.

I was going to get the Z but there is hardly any worthwhile deal on it.
 

DBZ33

Gawd
Joined
Jul 10, 2005
Messages
948
If you really want battery life, I'd agree with orangeblue's quote here. I recently went back to Apple by purchasing this new MBP, and the 10+ hour estimates are pretty accurate. I have it bootcamped with Win7 Ultimate, and it scores at least a 6 on the Windows Index as well. Great combination of portability/power.

You might get 10hr battery life in OSX but not when you are running windows on it. I would say more like 4-5hr.
 

RanceJustice

Supreme [H]ardness
Joined
Jun 9, 2003
Messages
6,189
Absolute best of the best is in fact, Sony Z. Hell, it even has a Core i7.

Want a LOT cheaper right now? Asus U30JC. Around $850 it comes with a Core i3 or i5, 4gb ram (expandable) and a discrete GeForce 310 512mb (Better than the 320 integrated in the new piece-o-crap MacBook Pro 13", and even the Core i3 is superior to the MacBook's Core2Duo). There is also evidence that if you wanted, you could upgrade the processor all the way up to a Core i7-620! QS models are around $200-300 on ebay. It is meant to handle Core i5s and i7s, but in the USA they are only selling them with i3s by default for some reason. In even so close as Canada, they come with i5-450s.

Can you afford to wait a little bit longer? Asus U33 Bamboo - This is the supposed high end variant of the U30JC. The exterior is covered in real bamboo and it has an aluminum keyboard deck (rumors of a backlit keyboard)! It also has NO optical drive which means more room for cooling, and either a 1gb GT310 or possibly even a higher card. Not sure what processor it will launch with, but much like the U30JC, you can upgrade the proc if you're daring. If the U33 Bamboo is all its cracked up to be, it will be the easy, MUCH MUCH cheaper second to the Sony Z.

Possibility: If the HP Envy 13 is updated, it may be worth it. Right now, its a Core 2 Duo machine, but the screen and graphics card are pretty damn great. I would NOT pay for it these days though. If they can update it to a Core i7 620 put a 5xxx graphics card in it, then we're talking. Oh, and there is no bloody reason for ANY premium laptop today to lack a backlit keyboard.
 
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