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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I was looking to buy a laptop in the next month or so but when I saw that the new generation of intel chips is due for release on 2nd June, I thought it might be better to hold on. From what I have read, battery duration will improve as the new chips will draw less power, and long battery life is very important for me (as it is for most). In terms of speed I don't think there is much difference between ivy and haswell.

Ideally I wished to get some kind of ultrabook in August (for work purposes) but if it's worth the way, I'll use an old bulky one in the meantime. But that's if we can expect Haswell laptops in early June, or is it that it could be another months or two before we actually see laptops with them fitted in? Will the desktop range be out first or the mobile versions?

Laptop will not be used for gaming but mainly for Office, Internet and perhaps a bit of video editing.

Your help is appreciated.
 

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Well if you can wait, wait. Do you have a laptop now that you can use in the interim or are you in need of one right now?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I have a Dell Core 2 Duo that my wife now uses, battery life is quite poor but I guess I could share it with her if it's worth the wait.

What sort of advantages am I looking at with the newer chips? When do we realistically expect to see laptops equipped with these?
 

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Originally Posted by qadri View Post

Any suggestions? Is it worth the wait?
You have a Core2Duo with poor battery life?

Wait. Really. For multiple reasons:

1. Even if that Core2Duo is under the Nehalem architecture or even the Westmere, it is still VERY capable for daily everyday tasks. The CPU on your current laptop has the power you need, and even some more to boot most likely. It's the battery life that suffers. Haswell will bring a VERY big jump in performance-- depending on your Core2Duo, it could be as much as 2x the performance (Seeing as Ivy already has some 200% performers.)

2. One of the biggest focuses on Haswell in their mobile sectors is exactly what you complain about: Power consumption.

For your needs, I would suggest an ULV processor (Intel i7-3517u, Intel i5-3317u, or Intel i3-3217u) so that you can reap the rewards of high battery life with lower processing power (which will still be above your Core2, almost guaranteely.) Current Ivy Bridge ULV processors use ~17 W at the top end of their TDP (which is very low.) Haswell ULV processors are expected to only consume 13 W at the top end of their TDP, which is a great improvement.

If your processing power needs are VERY low, then you may even want to go with an Intel Atom and just upgrade it. Intel Atom's usually use a seldom <5W, and are primarily used in netbooks for their lightweight, low heat, and LOW power consumption. I know netbooks that can last 10 hours.

Another option entirely is to examine your needs AMD has good offerings for what you need NOW. Intel has a bit too.

If you need the power of a full-size mobile CPU (like an Intel i5-3210M), then you REALLY should wait-- the difference in power consumption will be BIG.

If you only need the power of a ULV processor (which, I think is where you're comfortably at.), then waiting would be a great idea, but you don't absolutely need to depending on how urgent you need a new laptop and if you're already growing out of the power of your current Core2.

Now, a really good option would be to ask yourself a couple questions:

How big of a screen do I need?
How much processing power do I need?
Do I mind spending some time upgrading and properlly maintaining the machine?

If you don't mind a super small screen, with a very low-power processor and you do NOT mind doing a little upgrading and maintaining, then another option opens up for you: ultraportable notebooks, and convertibles.

There are some AMAZING convertibles on the market right now, and there are some VERY good netbooks on their way out (netbooks are a dying breed, since not many people have exactly your kind of needs, so the market segment is small. Though, if you think that you can cope with a smaller screen and lower processing power in exchange for amazing portability, low weight, and low power consumption, then a netbook is a great choice. Intel still ships some netbooks with their Intel Atom N2600 processor, which is a great low-power processor which consumes a mere 3.5W TDP IIRC (if I dont, its near there.) AMD has a better option called the C-60/C-70 and combines OoE on a Fusion platform to get good processing power alongside a very good iGPU for the price and power consumption-- which, by the way, with C-60/C-70, is only around 9W.

So, what do you need?
 

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if you are on a budget then i would recommend waiting as the new Haswell CPU secret weapon is the IGPU which will be a better option if you are using the laptop for work and light gaming!
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thank you for the response.

The issue with the Core 2 Duo is battery life and the fact that it's heavy. Performance wise it seems ok but I've not really tested it with lots of windows/apps.

I'll be away for most of the week with a new job so my new desktop will sit at home (it's lovely) and the laptop is to do work whilst I'm away.

I think 14" would be a good size I think, that allows me to travel lightly and also use it on a desk. What's the biggest size I can get in a netbook?
 

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Originally Posted by qadri View Post

Thank you for the response.

The issue with the Core 2 Duo is battery life and the fact that it's heavy. Performance wise it seems ok but I've not really tested it with lots of windows/apps.

I'll be away for most of the week with a new job so my new desktop will sit at home (it's lovely) and the laptop is to do work whilst I'm away.

I think 14" would be a good size I think, that allows me to travel lightly and also use it on a desk. What's the biggest size I can get in a netbook?
11.6" is the biggest size you can get in a netbook. You are trying to balance many opposing issues. There are a few solutions to this.

The Core2Duo probably performs a lot better than you think; every computer needs some optimizing and such to run at peak optimal condition, even if it's new from the factory (oddly enough, my laptop performs better now than it did brand new.) I wouldn't worry about performance.

14.1" is a fine laptop size. It's not very popular though and I suggest that you choose between either 13.3" or 15.6" (the two main sizes. There are MANY 14.1" notebooks, dont get me wrong, it's just that selection in the 13.3" and the 15.6" classes are much much greater.)

If you could please provide me with what EXACT model your Core2Duo is, that'd be pretty nice. (look in Device Manager)

You have a few options for what you that I will tell you, but first, let me tell you about Haswell release:

First, Haswell is confirmed to come out for laptops before desktops. Whether the ULV line will come out first or the full-size line will come out first is unknown; they may come at the same time. Though laptops are first in line to get Haswell.

Second, Haswell is tipped to be released in June. Delays are possible, but very unlikely since the engineering samples are doing quite well.

Can you wait till June? That's a big factor in your options, which, by the way, here they are:

- Get a netbook. This gives you everything you want (battery life, portability, low weight, decent performance with AMD's Fusion platform.) for a very low price, the drawbacks are mainly in screen size and the fact that you'll need to do some tinkering with the machine before it's up to snuff for your needs.
- Get an ultrabook. This gives you everything you want (just like the netbook), but doesnt have the screen size issues of the netbook, and doesnt need any tinkering. Unfortunately, the reason you wont need any tinkering is because you CANT. Ultrabook upgrading is very uncommon as most components (RAM, CPU, etc... Anyhting but the HDD and WAN component) are soldered directly to the motherboard. Also, prices are very high for ultrabooks.
- Get a full-size laptop (like an ultrabook, just more power, more weight, and a bit heavier.) if you want extra power.
- Get a convertible laptop. Funny name, but this may actually be for you: Some laptops nowadays can transform into tablet computers. This gives you a BIG mobility jump and usability jump. Also, Convertibles are usually very light. Most are availible with an Intel Atom processor, but ULV processors are not unheard of for these units.
- Get a sleekbook. Almost like an ultrabook, just with an AMD APU instead of an Intel CPU. Usually are cheaper as well while giving less processing power but much better graphical processing power.
- Wait for Haswell or Richland.

What would you like to do?
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
It's a T6500 2.1 ghz. It has 3gb ram (originally had 1gb and I stuck another 2gb in last year).

Can you suggest a good performing netbook that can handle Office, PDFs, YouTube etc?

If I'm limited to screen size, what do you think of the Windows Surface RT?

I'm getting used to the idea that it is best to wait till June, especially as you say that you expect Haswell laptops to come out pretty much straight away in June.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by qadri View Post

It's a T6500 2.1 ghz. It has 3gb ram (originally had 1gb and I stuck another 2gb in last year).

Can you suggest a good performing netbook that can handle Office, PDFs, YouTube etc?

If I'm limited to screen size, what do you think of the Windows Surface RT?

I'm getting used to the idea that it is best to wait till June, especially as you say that you expect Haswell laptops to come out pretty much straight away in June.
Office, PDFs, and Youtube? Hold on for a moment--

Waiting for Haswell may not be worth it. Mostly because of your needs. Why do I say this?

The maximum TDP of Haswell and Ivy Bridge are 13W and 17W respectively-- though the main thing to note here is the word "maximum". Office, PDFs, and Youtube will NOT push the CPU to this "maximum" TDP, so your power usage will be very little no matter what CPU you get, so you may get great battery life either way. Though name a number: What's a great battery life to you realistically in hours? You may be able to hit this easily.

My opinion on the Windows Surface RT? I personally think it is a very purpose-built device. This device does not suit your purpose; which is for business in a way. I think putting that money towards a good laptop would be a better decision. YMMV though.

Let me give you an overview of what CPUs your future laptop will probably have if you decide to buy now.

Netbooks:

Intel Atom N2600 - The standard netbook processor. Will be suitable for your needs. Not reccomended as netbooks with this processor usually have a 1024x600 resolution (bad), a maximum of 2 GB of RAM (CPU limited), and Windows 7 Starter (bad OS.)

AMD C-70/60 - The standard AMD netbook processor. Will be suitable for your needs. Reccomended in a 11.6" model as the screen resolution will be 1366x768 most likely, have a maximum of 4+GB of RAM, and a full Windows 7 suite. This is the minimum processing power I would reccomend you getting.

ULV:

Any binned Intel Processors (ULV Celerons or Pentiums) - The standard "cheap" thin-and-light processor. Again, sufficient for your needs and reccomended. Though they are "binned" processors, so I wouldnt get them since a much better processor is usually only a few dollars away.

AMD E300/E400/E450/E2-1800 - AMD's ULV processor. Almost identical TDP to Intel (18 W vs 17W) while giving sufficient processing power and better graphical power. I reccomend all the processors for AMD's ULV line except the E300; it's a bit weak.

Intel i3-3217u (or Intel i5-3317u or Intel i7-3517u) - Non-binned, fully bonified ULV proccesors. The most performance you'll get at in a sub 20W TDP package. Strongly reccomended if you can afford it-- though the i7 may be overkill for you.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
That's interesting. It seems like I will not benefit from the reduced power usage of Haswell. I think I could afford an i5 so may not need to got for the netbook, main reason is the small screen size. As I won't have access to a PC at all time at work, I am looking at 14 or 15 inch so I can get some work done on it.

So it's not worth the wait I guess? If not can you suggest a good laptop that has good battery life, lightweight and preferably good sound (some I have heard have sound that can barely be heard) with a decent screen. I think i5 will be wasting money so would rather have 8GB ram and a 128gb SSD (or can put one in later if the deal is good).
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by qadri View Post

That's interesting. It seems like I will not benefit from the reduced power usage of Haswell. I think I could afford an i5 so may not need to got for the netbook, main reason is the small screen size. As I won;t have access to a PC at all time at work, I am looking at 14 or 15 inch so I can get some work done on it.

So it's not worth the wait I guess? If not can you suggest a good laptop that has good battery life, lightweight and preferably good sound (some I have heard have sound that can barely be heard) with a decent screen. I think i5 will be wasting money so would rather have 8GB ram and a 128gb SSD (or can put one in later if the deal is good).
Budget?
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by qadri View Post

That's interesting. It seems like I will not benefit from the reduced power usage of Haswell. I think I could afford an i5 so may not need to got for the netbook, main reason is the small screen size. As I won;t have access to a PC at all time at work, I am looking at 14 or 15 inch so I can get some work done on it.

So it's not worth the wait I guess? If not can you suggest a good laptop that has good battery life, lightweight and preferably good sound (some I have heard have sound that can barely be heard) with a decent screen. I think i5 will be wasting money so would rather have 8GB ram and a 128gb SSD (or can put one in later if the deal is good).
128 GB should be added afterwards. Usually it's cheaper to buy a SSD aftermarket than included.

8 GB of RAM is ridiculous for your needs. You only need 4 GB. You will not hit the limit unless you start gaming. If you somehow do, then 6 GB is understandable, but 4 GB on a tweaked system (there are many things you can do to minimize RAM use, a big one is disabling SuperFetch.) is very comfortable for your needs.

Also, to echo the last poster: Budget?
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by qadri View Post

Any suggestions? Is it worth the wait?
Are you a patient person or impatient person like me?
If you are an impatient person then go ahead and find a good ultrabook with long battery life.
If not then you can wait till June to see.

When are you getting the ultrabook?
Install Linux on your wife laptop. It's quite good and prolong the battery life slightly more.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Thanks guys. Yes I am a bit impatient but trying to convince myself to wait if there is an advantage in doing so.

Budget wise I am bit flexible but would not want to overspend if there is no need. Another thing putting me off spending a lot is that it might be outdated and slow in a few years so money would be gone to waste if I'm buying another in a few years. I have a lot more value for money with the PC I have just built.

UK prices a more than US. I will be in the US in April so perhaps could get something from there. $1000 seems reasonable which is £660. Trouble is that good laptops here are £1000+ and I don't fancy spending that much for reasons mentioned. If I can get a lightweight laptop with good battery for around £700 then great, otherwise I'll spend more. I'll be travelling and walking with it quite a bit (including hills) so weight is important.
 

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Wow, what an expansive budget. That is much more than you think if you're hood at bargain hunting or are a conscious consumer.

Unfortunately, I do not live in the UK, so I will suggest laptops that are under 1000$ US/CAD (my country). You may then look for the same laptop in your currency or paypal it to autonatically convert the currency.

My reccomendations:

The Lenovo Twist 12.5". They start at around 700$ for a lightweight, small, capable laptop with a touchscreen that can be converted into a tablet. On the low end, you can get an i3-3217u. For closer to 950, you can get an i7-3517u and a 128 GB SSD. A good solid machine.

HP Envy x2. Another convertible that is essentially a large Windows 8 tablet with a keyboard (it is still a full function computer, make no mistake!). Very lightweight, slim, and as the selling point: almost 11 hours of battery life. The reason for this is it's low power Atom processor. You will need to do some tweaking before the laptop will be great, but it can work.

The Asus Vivobook X202. Cheap, lightweight, and capable. Touchscreen, good speakers, tiny form factor and gorgeous design. Can be had for around 600$ with an i3-3217u, and there is a 500$ model with a Pentium 987 X2. The only drawback is that it has lowish battery life.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by qadri View Post

Thanks guys. Yes I am a bit impatient but trying to convince myself to wait if there is an advantage in doing so.

Budget wise I am bit flexible but would not want to overspend if there is no need. Another thing putting me off spending a lot is that it might be outdated and slow in a few years so money would be gone to waste if I'm buying another in a few years. I have a lot more value for money with the PC I have just built.

UK prices a more than US. I will be in the US in April so perhaps could get something from there. $1000 seems reasonable which is £660. Trouble is that good laptops here are £1000+ and I don't fancy spending that much for reasons mentioned. If I can get a lightweight laptop with good battery for around £700 then great, otherwise I'll spend more. I'll be travelling and walking with it quite a bit (including hills) so weight is important.
Well, it appears you won't be do any games, so I recommend you get either ASUS Zenbook Prime, Asus VivoBook or Lenovo YogaPad 13".

Those three are really good light weight notebook. Of course, there is other companies ultrabook, but I like ASUS and Lenovo because of their quality and sexy design on their laptop.

ASUS Zenbook Prime has probably either ivy bridge i5/i7.
ASUS VivoBook is similar to it, have touch screen and slightly bad battery life then against depend how you use it.
Lenovo YogaPad is a mix of between Tablet and a Laptop.

Hey, what is the point of getting Haswell when you aren't going to do anything beside surf, emails, flash games and etc?

Ivy bridge will last you a long time, lol.
I have this dinosaur laptop that my aunt gave me on Summer. Why is it a Dinosaur because it is from like 2000s I guess, and I replace it to Linux and might throw in an extra 1gb ram and it is great to do anything except battery life.

Considering that weight is an issue. Get ASUS Zenbook Prime. It look similar to MacBook Air but better, and look more sexy than it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Nice responses. Reason I asked about waiting was not because the Haswell chips have better graphics but because they draw less power. But then again, the fact i will not be doing games probably means I will not benefit much from the reduced power usage if I'm not playing games or doing other heavy stuff.

I was actually looking at something 14-15.6 inch so I can get word done it. I see that 15.6 inch laptops are about 2.2kg and the 14" are lighter as well as being cheaper so that might be the way to go.

Yogapad might be on the small size and a bit expensive for what it is?

I've had a look at the VivoBook and the reviews are excellent. What is the difference between a VivoBook and Zenbook Prime? The Zenbook seems to be more expensive (and there a lot of models which is confusing). What are they like in terms of keyboard (heard some can be annoying to type with) and also sound?

While looking at Asus, I came across the ASUS Transformer Book TX300. I don't think it's out just yet, but what do you guys think and when will it be out? The detachable tablet benefit means going for a smaller 13.3" screen.

Thanks.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by qadri View Post

Nice responses. Reason I asked about waiting was not because the Haswell chips have better graphics but because they draw less power. But then again, the fact i will not be doing games probably means I will not benefit much from the reduced power usage if I'm not playing games or doing other heavy stuff.

I was actually looking at something 14-15.6 inch so I can get word done it. I see that 15.6 inch laptops are about 2.2kg and the 14" are lighter as well as being cheaper so that might be the way to go.

Yogapad might be on the small size and a bit expensive for what it is?

I've had a look at the VivoBook and the reviews are excellent. What is the difference between a VivoBook and Zenbook Prime? The Zenbook seems to be more expensive (and there a lot of models which is confusing). What are they like in terms of keyboard (heard some can be annoying to type with) and also sound?

While looking at Asus, I came across the ASUS Transformer Book TX300. I don't think it's out just yet, but what do you guys think and when will it be out? The detachable tablet benefit means going for a smaller 13.3" screen.

Thanks.
Go for the 14" Vivobook.

The Yogapad is indeed overpriced for what it is, but it's more of a premium product as it was the first... I can't recall... It did something unique... Gosh what a brainfart
rolleyes.gif


And the Zenbook is more expensive than the Vivobook mostly because the Zenbook is also a premium product. It is a fully bonified ultrabook; thinner, more battery, SSD, etc. Better specifications. These differences wont make a big difference to you except the SSD which you can add in yourself. The Vivobook is touchscreen. The Zenbok is not.
 
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