Laptops

Third time's the charm

Design Spotlight: Microsoft Surface Pro 3

Is it our technological destiny to want both a tablet and a laptop forever, or can advances in hardware and software, combined with intelligent design, actually unify our professional and personal lives within one screen? Microsoft made its stance on the matter abundantly clear with the launch of the original Surface in the summer of 2012. Two years later, the third iteration of the Surface is a marvel of engineering honed by experience and proving more than ever that Microsoft’s vision for the future of computing is as real as it gets. Here's a rundown of the key innovations that make new Surface Pro 3 both a powerful Intel Core laptop and an easy-to-use tablet.

Why choose when you can have both?

Twice the Device: Tracking the Rise of the 2-in-1

Sick of juggling multiple device? You're not alone. So called 2-in-1s can offer the best-of-both-worlds solution, combining the productivity of a laptop with the fun and convenience of a tablet. Check out our video for a rundown of this growing new gadget category and start plotting your new streamlined future today.

Putting the polish on chrome

Google Chromebook Pixel

If the new breed of "convertible" Windows 8 laptops hasn't left you more confused than a barber with Troy Polamalu in his seat, then Google's latest venture into the hardware world should do the trick. The Google Chromebook Pixel ($1,299) is a high-end laptop running Google's own Chrome OS. Not familiar with the software? It's a browser on steroids, optimized for web content along with a growing number of browser-based applications -- and that's about it.

Onward and upward... and outward... and sideways...

Lenovo ThinkPad Helix Tablet

The latest member of the ThinkPad family isn’t just a tablet dragging along a keyboard for faster emailing and double the battery power — though its companion QWERTY is certainly good for both of those things. The real kicker? Attaching the 11.6-inch Windows 8 touchscreen device to the keyboard activates a special cooling system in...

Productive contortionist

Lenovo ThinkPad Twist

Lenovo’s family of convertible devices, with names like Yoga and Twist, remind us of that gymnast/cheerleader/yoga instructor/circus performer we dated years back. Unlike that experience, where the novelty quickly wore off, the Lenovo ThinkPad Twist ($849+) proves useful for both work AND play. A serious productivity Ultrabook with passable multimedia hardware, the Twist’s screen turns...

Tableau Vivant

Modbook Pro

The biggest problem we have with the iPad is that it’s a one-way device. It’s fantastic for consuming information, but what about making it? Tablets are best for YouTubin’ and Angry Birdin’, not image processing and video editing — unless you have the patents of multi-touch coursing through your veins. But new hope for the...

Arm flailing not required

Asus Taichi Ultrabook Tablet

Anyone who’s tried working off just a tablet for a day has experienced the ecstasy of an easy, lightweight carry, and the agony of hunching over a slightly inclined screen for 10 hours. Like other gadgets we’ve seen, the Asus Taichi aims to solve that dilemma by combining an ultrabook and tablet into one airy...

The Hulk to your Smartphone's Bruce Banner

Clamcase Clambook

If your penchant for gaming, music and web surfing through your smartphone is a 10/10, then you might want to put a tickler in your calendar for this holiday season in anticipation of the Clamcase Clambook. With nary a hint of Macbook Air (ahem), the Clambook is as thin as the day is long and...

New soul? Or a ghost of laptops past?

HP Envy Spectre XT

We’re not ones to embrace hyperbole, but the new HP Envy Spectre XT ($1,000+) may actually live up to its category — and humility-bending title of Ultrabook. Weighing a fairly svelte 3.07 pounds with 14.5mm-thick profile, HP’s newest offering features an Intel Ivy Bridge CPU, a four-speaker Beats Audio sound system, a 13” high-definition LED...

Unlike most substitute teachers, this thing feels no pain

Design Spolight: Intel Studybook Tablet

There’s a healthy rivalry taking place over the future of the computer educational market, and the only clear winner so far are the students. Intel has put long-term competitor One Laptop Per Child (OLPC) on notice with their recent announcement of the Studybook, a new low-cost tablet loaded with educational software perfect for schools in...

Peer into the future, without the crystal ball

CES 2012: Our Favorite Booths

We kicked off 2012 by visiting not-so-beautiful Las Vegas to attend CES, with the hope of getting a head start on the exciting new products that will launch over the coming year. While we’ll continue to highlight gadgets revealed there on a regular basis, one of the best parts about being on the ground at...

Thin It to Win It

Acer Aspire S5 Ultrabook

Acer has kicked off what’s sure to be an avalanche of Ultrabook announcements at this year’s CES with the Aspire S5. As of the time of writing this article, the 13.3-inch S5 holds the title for “thinnest Ultrabook”, measuring 15mm at its thickest point and weighing just under 3 pounds. That svelte physique, encased in...

Drive-in? Try Fly-in.

My Life on the Go: Relax

GEAR PATROL SPONSORED POST As much as we love our home theaters, they don’t exactly pack well. So, in this second part of the My Life on the Go series we decided to test the ASUS U46E’s prowess at handling one of our favorite off-hour diversions — movies.

Spreadsheets no more

My Life on the Go: Create

GEAR PATROL SPONSORED POST It’s no secret computers are just as much a tool for serving personal expression as they are tools for business — sometimes the two being one in the same. Recently, we’ve been spending time with the ultra-portable ASUS U46E ($850) laptop to evaluate just how the next generation of Intel-powered laptops...

Thin Wins

Dell XPS 15z

The design of Dell’s new XPS 15z laptop ($999+) may seem familiar to Mac fans, but it’s still a welcome offering to P.C. users overwhelmed by cheap plastic. Touted by Dell as the “thinnest 15.6-inch laptop in existence”, the XPS 15z measures a willowy 0.97 in. thick while still packing plenty of firepower under its...

Google and Samsung gang up on the traditional OS

Samsung Series 5 ChromeBook

The name ChromeBook sounds like something Lil’ Wayne reads in bed, but it’s actually the brand Google has devised for a new breed of internet-addicted laptops. Built to be cheap and speedy, they won’t replace the MacBooks or Dell’s of this world, but Google clearly envisions a future where they’re the go to device for...

Slaying the daily grind

Dell Precision M4600 & M6600 Mobile Workstations

A horde of tablets may want your casual digital attention like Hasselhoff wants a cheeseburger, but for those who still require a laptop for more than the occasional Youtube stream, Dell’s new Precision M4600 & M6600 workstations should be the beezneez. In their most ferocious forms, both models can sport an Intel Core i7 Quad...

Keep Your Doritos Fingers Away

Acer Iconia 6120 Touchbook

The Acer Iconia-6120 14-Inch Dual-Screen Touchbook ($1,200) is the latest iteration of a budding computing form factor that wants to walk the line between tablets and laptops. Unlike the petite Toshiba Libretto W100, this king of the Iconia series sports two 14-inch Gorilla Glass touch panels that provide plenty of real estate for all manner...

Part Netbook, Part Tablet, All Sexy

Dell Inspiron Duo

Love the idea of a tablet, but can’t bear to part with your keyboard? Well, Dell has heard your plea and developed the “convertible” Inspiron Duo ($550) netbook in the hopes of bringing you the best of both worlds.

Macbook Heir

New Macbook Air 13.3″ and 11.6″

Well the folks at Engadget leaked it some time back, but now it’s official. The MacBook Air has received a much-needed update and emerged as the new belle of the laptop ball.

Netbook Form Factor, iPad Style Input

Toshiba Libretto W100 Ultra Mobile PC

Conceptual gadgets with a serious potential to join the legions of other vaporware devices circulating online is typically something we try to avoid covering. In some cases though, the teased device is just too gadgetastic to ignore. Case in the point is the Toshiba Libretto W100 ($1,100). Promised by Toshiba to hit shelves in August...

Type & Touch

HP Pavilion dv6

HP was one of the first PC manufacturers to embrace touch interaction through their Touch Smart All-In-One desktops, and today they showed a further desire to integrate it in notebooks as well. Revamped with a new etched metal casing option similar to the HP Envy, the dv6 is clearly meant to serve as multimedia machine....

Packing an Optical Drive Despite Being Tiny

Gateway EC14D07u

The Gateway brand may not hold the clout it once did, but by releasing the EC14DO7U, the company has still shown they can create computers with wide consumer appeal. Measuring 11.6-inches with a screen resolution of 1366 x 768 pixels, this tiny P.C. still manages to include an optical drive and can easily double as...

A Capable Offering from a Computing Unknown

ViewSonic VNB131 ViewBook Pro

ViewSonic may not be a household name in the world of computing, but that shouldn’t distract buyers from seriously considering the company’s first 13-inch laptop. Called the ViewBook Pro (clearly copying Apple), the laptop’s body is made of an aluminum alloy chassis that tapers to a point along the front edge. Just 1 inch thick...

Entry Level for Apple, But Solid None the Less

Apple MacBook (Fall 2009)

Updated in the fall of 2009, Apple’s entry-level MacBook packs a bevy of worth while features that make it a promising computer for those uninterested in PCs and with no need for the more powerful MacBook Pro line. Squeaking in just below the $1,000 price point, the white polycarbonate MacBook now features Apple’s new unibody...

Between Netbooks & the Ultra Portable Elite

Acer Ferrari One (FO200-1799)

Co-branding on something like a laptop usually hints at some scheme on the manufacturer’s part to up the price on a base model without adding any value in the specifications department. The Acer Ferrari One, however, is an exception that fits somewhere between a high-powered netbook and a low-powered ultra portable. Weighing 3.3 pounds and...

A Good Option for Gamers on the Go

Alienware M11X

Typically, when it comes to computers, gaming power and portability just don’t mix. The Alienware M11X bucks this trend by providing decent gaming performance in a relatively small chassis. Measuring 11.6-inches, its screen size is dangerously close to that of most netbooks, but luckily the M11X packs much more under the hood. Featuring an ultra...

A Great Combination of Power and Looks

HP EliteBook 2540p

The EliteBook 2540p is HP’s answer for consumers who want top-notch performance and battery life out of a laptop that’s only slightly bigger than a netbook. Like the ThinkPad X201s, it sports a 12.1 inch screen, but with a slightly lower resolution of 1280 x 800. Modernly-styled thanks to it full magnesium alloy casing and...

A Business Focused Portable Work Horse

Lenovo ThinkPad X201s

Known for reliability among business users, with the ThinkPad X201 Lenovo provides an outstanding mix of battery life and performance which makes it perfect for road warriors with ample budgets. While it may not have nearly as much curb appeal from an exterior design standpoint compared to the competition, the ThinkPad X201s is built for...

The Thinnest Laptop In Existence

Dell Adamo XPS

The Dell Adamo XPS currently holds the record as the world’s thinnest laptop by a landslide. Squeaking in at 9.99mm or (.4 inches thick), design wise this aluminum alloy sheathed computer is simply stunning to behold, and to enhance its allure even opens in a manner James Bond would approve of. Instead of the normal...

The Ultimate Portable PC if Price is No Object

Sony VAIO Z Series

Touted as the most powerful ultra portable on the market today thanks to its available 2.66 GHz Intel Core i7 processor (3.33GHz with Turbo Boost), the Sony Z series represents the pinnacle of laptop design in both looks and performance. Featuring a 13.1 full HD LED backlit widescreen display with 1,600 by 900 resolution, and...

Transforming Mac Laptops Into Desktops

Henge Docking Stations For Macs

Mac laptop users finally have a clean looking and space saving solution for using their MacBook or MacBook Pro like a desktop at home. Built to work with the majority of modern Apple portable computers from 2008 onwards (except the Air), this sleek dock positions the computer vertically without limiting access to your optical drive,...

I Have the Power!

Origin Eon18 Gaming Laptop

Remember Alienware before it was acquired by Dell in 2006? Its goal was to create ridiculously powerful and customized PC’s for the gaming obsessed. Correction, its goal was to create custom PC’s for the filthy rich, and gaming obsessed. Well once the firm sold out, one of Alienware’s founders Kevin Wasielewski decided to found another...

Your Laptop's Best Friend for Battling Mother Nature

Ken Kai DRI Welded Seam Computer Messenger

Whatever your style is, chances are there’s a laptop bag for sale that matches it. For those who tote their computer on a daily basis, though, things like comfort and protection are far more important than looks, particularly for long commutes walking outside. Along that line, luggage manufacturer Ken Kai’s new DRI laptop messenger bags...

Netbook For Green-Minded Geeks

Sony Vaio W Eco-Friendly Laptop

More often than not, so-called “green” electronics earn that title thanks to their low or efficient energy consumption. Sony, like Apple, though has decided to up the ante by building this 10-inch netbook system out of 23% recycled CDs. Gee, I wonder where they could have gotten those from?

Carrying Capacity Upgraded

J.Fold Nylon Messenger & Cargo Day Bags

There’s no doubt you’ve probably come away from the holidays with a few new accessories to lug around. It just so happens the folks at J.Fold have a few new and stylish messenger bags in which to haul your latest crop of gear around. New for this winter are the J.Fold Nylon Messenger Bag and...

A Separation Between Perch & Slate?

Lenovo IdeaPad U1 Hybrid Tablet Laptop

Apple may have the nation’s tech fiends in a frenzy over the calculated slow drip of details and rumors circling its potential tablet announcement at the end of January, but that doesn’t mean other major tech manufacturers can’t come up with lust-worthy ideas of their own. Take the Lenovo IdeaPad U1 Hybrid. Part Linux-powered web...

Will This Finally End Netbooks Once and For All?

Dell Vostro V13

Even though Dell’s surprising anorexic marvel, the Adamo XPS may have garnered much of the company’s recent media attention, we were pleasantly surprised to learn today about the Vostro V13. Built off of the production lessons learned from the aforementioned razor thin Adamo XPS, the Vostro V13 is still a svelte machine at .65 inches...

Small In Size, Big In Features

Incase Small Messenger Bag

If you’re a fan of traditional backpacks, the Ogio Politan is an excellent choice, but if you prefer a messenger-style laptop bag designed specifically for your spiffy new Apple MacBook, you’ll want to take a look at respected Apple accessory supplier, Incase.

Finally a Laptop with No Strings Attached

Dell Latitude Z Laptop

Steve Jobs’s finger may consistently rest on the cool-factor pulse of the world, but that doesn’t mean he’s the only one who gets it. In a break from the traditional corporate cookie-cutter workhorse laptops that built the Dell Computer empire, the Latitude Z represents the convergence of several nascent technologies built with portability in mind....

Preventing Scurvy One Computer At A Time

Be.ez LA besace Lime Drop Messenger Bag for MacBook

If you’ve ponied up for that new unibody Macbook, don’t do it (and yourself) the injustice of toting it around in a less than worthy bag. Your 10 year old Targus simply will not suffice. If you’re on the hunt for an appropriate mode of cartage, check into the line of slick “mobile lifestyle” bags...

New Apple 13-inch MacBook

New + Improved + Cheaper = Awesome Well, well… Apple’s revised their laptop lineup today (MacBook, MacBook Pro and MacBook Air). Damn technology. Lets start with construction – the MacBook is made from one solid piece of aluminum, so like your chef’s knife – this thing is streamlined, solid and sexy (like Gear Girls). Better...

Sony VAIO SR

[click on image to enlarge] Come early-August you might reconsider switching your old PC laptop for a Macbook. Not everyone needs a Mac after all. The Sony VAIO SR is a gorgeous little machine. It’s a 2.8 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo (Centrino 2) powered laptop with a 13.3 inch LED backlit XBRITE display, up...

Click-n-Grip Laptop Strap

Ever notice how laptop bags, though nice and protective, are poorly designed when you need to pull your laptop out? There’s often little room for you to pull out the actual laptop. Well, the click-n-grip Laptop Strap makes this a breeze. The 2″ poly-pro webbing straps accomodate most laptops and can be lifted by its...