After my aging Acer finally gave up the ghost, I began the hunt for a new laptop. Seeing as Windows 8 has not long been released, I thought there would be a plethora of new devices to really showcase the new operating system.
As it turns out, those wanting a 15″ power laptop are actually pretty limited. OEM’s seem to have jumped on board the Ultrabook bandwagon, offering many in the 11-13″ range, that admittedly have great battery life, but often lack the power for any sustained use. What I needed, was something that had dedicated graphics, a powerful CPU, and plenty of RAM.
Other perks, that would have been ideal, yet not essential, were for the laptop to come equipped with an SSD drive and a high resolution screen. Looking at the Mac equivalent, the 15″ Macbook Pro would have ticked all the boxes. The price? a staggering £1699.
Most people know that you can usually get a similar specification Windows machine for far cheaper, however, the high end price point on Windows seems pretty limited. After much research I had narrowed down my decision to two laptops. The unimaginatively named Asus N56VZ and the Samsung Chronos.
Both these laptops have a fast i7 Intel processor, 8GB RAM and dedicated graphics. The Samsung, includes an 8GB SSD to boost performance, paired with the similar 1TB hard drive of both laptops. They also both feature high resolution screens, with the Samsung at 1600×900, while the Asus has a full 1920×1080 display. The Asus also has a Blu Ray drive.
The Samsung was being replaced by a new Chronos announced at CES, while the Asus is a 2012 model, slightly updated for the new year. This meant that both laptops could be had for £800.
So which one did I go for? The Asus won me over, with its better screen and Blu Ray support. As an added bonus, I also decided to upgrade the slow HDD to a Samsung SSD. This means that I was able to purchase an i7 quad core laptop, with 8GB RAM, 2GB Graphics, Blu Ray Drive, Full HD screen and 250GB SSD for £900. This is very similar in specification to the Macbook Pro, for a full £800 less. What a bargain!
So far I am very pleased with my decision. Did I make the right choice? What do you think – let me know in the comments.
Thanks for reading,