No mention of the Sony VAIO Z?
Quite surprised there's no mention of the refreshed VAIO Z. It's easily the best laptop released this year IMO. It includes everything most power users could possibly want, all in a tiny 1.5KG package...
2010: it's a wrap Apple's MacBook Air was undoubtledly the stand-out notebook of 2010, particularly in its compact 11.6in form, even though the bigger, 13.3in model is the better of the two: not a lot less portable, but faster, more functional and with a longer battery life. However, the 11.6in Air is a beast that can span …
" the newer netbooks didn't really deliver any significant benefit over older ones."
This is probably true. It is almost true for me, but I have a pretty tooled up Eee. That said depending on what you use it for, any one of these may (or may not) be significant.
1) Most other makes have improved their battery endurance
2) More cores, 64 bit capable.
3) GPU (Ion has 8 CUDA cores).
Personally, I'd like a 1015N, Points 2... and perhaps 3 look tempting.. But... hey're optional extras since I can always get to another machine.
Battery life on my Eee is great even after a year. 1024 x 600 is quite usable - I'm not pushed but would welcome bigger but in about 10 inche's... really, 1024x600 is quite ok.
What I'd like to see in these machines is
1. more memory, 4 Gb would be nice. The option to expand to 8 would be nicer. 2 Gb is usable but ... swap is always annoying.
2. matte/non-reflective screens.
3. Easy access to HD and ram.
4. Options of a beefier GPU ( ie Ion) or NOT. Asus did a nice thing with the 1015 line.
5. Don't care for this myself, but some folk want internal wireless broadband modems.
6. Some sort of high speed external expansion. eSATA or if USB3.0 takes off, that.
7. Linux drivers for all bits released (ideally with source)
8. Err... ARM? PPC? :P
9. 3D Screen. Ah no.. Just kidding :P
EeePC 1000HE with Windows 7 HP gets from 5 to 9 hours battery like. 5 if used hard (DVD burning or something like that) and damn near 9 just surfing and basically doing nothing. I can live with that. Of course it pays to understand how to tweak the power options, which seems a mystery to most common users.
The Dell XPS 13 and HP Envy 13 were both discontinued... And there is no Alienware between the 11 and 15 sizes... So what is the best 13" core i, SSD fitted, discrete graphics laptop on the market? The only option I've found is the Sony Z and it's a very expensive option!
HAHAHAHAHAHA Lets see
Dozens of models of Dell laptop miss identifying power supplies and batteries and not playing becasue it thinks they arent from Dell
Least 4 other models with crap hinges
GX270 and GX280, nothing more said. Along with half a dozen others
I could go on, but I'm gonna take the dog for a walk instead.
All manufacturers get problems of varying degrees. However, my point was a simple one, why are people recommending a laptop that implodes very badly and within warranty?
Its time where people stopped doing a 2010 roundup based on only 'new' reviews. All of the models quoted in here should have had a background check on their post purchase state. That is patently obvious.
I spent an awful lot of money (£1600) myself on a beautiful Sony laptop only to have the hinge break and the screen die 15 months in (i.e out of warranty). Sony more or less said it serves me right for wanting to open and close the lid a lot. We had a whole bunch of similar Sony failures on work laptops. I'll never again buy Sony. Give me boring reliability over looks any day. All the Dells I've had/used (and there have been a lot over the years) have been very reliable except for the XPS M1730 , two of which I've seen die heat related deaths after 2 yrs, luckily covered by the 3 yr warranty.
Re: ".... saddled with just a gigabyte of memory and Windows 7 Starter Edition, the newer netbooks didn't really deliver any significant benefit over older ones."
$42 for Crucial 2GB RAM module and $40 for Windows 7 (1/3 of Family Pack @ $120 from newegg.com) and my EeePC 1000HE has new life; quick and stable. Sorry guys, but over here on this side of the pond things are priced just a bit better.