Apple (the modern version of the company, anyway) is known for its product lineup minimalism, producing only a handful of versions in key categories.
Several days ago, an analyst note led to widespread speculation that the company was going to discontinue the 17-inch version of the MacBook Pro. The comments from KGI Securities analyst Ming-Chi Kuo (reported by MacRumors and others), indicated that hybrid products combining the slim design of the MacBook Air with the power of the Pro line were the way forward for Apple, and the 17-inch Pro was a possible casualty of that shift. … Read more
With Intel's new Ivy Bridge third-generation Core i-series CPUs dominating the PC component discussion this week (or really, the last several months), it would be easy to miss today's announcement from AMD about new GPU parts.
AMD's Radeon graphics line, formerly branded under the ATI name, is found in many high-end laptops, including HP's Envy line and Apple's MacBook Pro. The current HD7000 series is now being expanded to include the HD7700M, 7800M, and 7900M.
AMD promises several new features from these updated GPUs, including smoother switching between integrated and discrete graphics. Rival Nvidia has … Read more
You've likely heard the name Ivy Bridge tossed around over the past six months or more, and might even know that it represents the next generation of Intel CPUs and chipsets. But what do these new parts mean if you're currently shopping for a laptop or desktop PC?
This basic FAQ should answer some of your most immediate shopping questions (with more background on Ivy Bridge and its new 22nm transistors here). For a more in-depth look at Ivy Bridge performance results on laptops and desktops, check out our system reviews, benchmark scores, and analysis at the related links below.
Should I look for an Ivy Bridge sticker at the store? Post-launch, you'll likely rarely hear that name again. It's an internal code name (like Sandy Bridge before it), that we use as a quick shorthand. In reality, this is Intel's third-generation Core series processor family, which will use the same Core i3, Core i5, and Core i7 names as the previous two generations.
If the names are the same, how can I tell which PCs have the newest parts? On the mobile side, it's easier. The 2012 Ivy Bridge (or third-generation) CPUs have a part number that begins with the number 3. For example, one of our test systems has an Intel i7-3720QM CPU. Our Sandy Bridge test system from last year had an Intel Core i7-2820QM. The new mobile CPUs are: i7-3920XM, i7-3820QM, i7-3720QM, i7-3612QM, and 3610QM. The desktop CPUs are: i7-3770K, i7-3770, i7-3770T, i7-3770S, i5-3570K, i5-3550, i5-3450, i5-3550S, and i5-3450S. … Read more
Dell is rolling out a series of updates to the Alienware M14x, m17x, m18x laptops, including the latest GPUs from Nvidia and AMD. This timing is odd, to say the least, as Intel's third-generation Core i-series CPUs (also known as Ivy Bridge) aren't included.
Instead, these new Alienware models have the current second-gen chips (aka Sandy Bridge). As the high-end quad-core versions of Ivy Bridge are expected to be available from PC makers starting around April 29, the message is clear -- anyone who orders one of these new Alienware laptops before that is a sucker. … Read more
You can now grab a 3G/4G Lenovo IdeaPad for only $200 courtesy of Sprint. But don't forget that you'll be locked in for two years, that it's a Netbook, and that Sprint's 4G flavor of choice is WiMax.
The IdeaPad S205s will cost $199.99 after a $350 instant price drop and a $100 mail-in rebate through a reward card. Sprint is selling the heavily subsidized Netbook at its various retail stores and online outlet.
Lenovo's IdeaPad offers a dual-core 1.33GHZ processor, 2GB of memory, an 11.6-inch 1366x768 HD LED widescreen display, … Read more
Much digital ink has been spilled over ultrabooks, the new pseudo-category of very thin, very light laptops.
The idea behind the ultrabook is an excellent one: to create slim, powerful, long-lasting laptops that can compete with Apple's MacBook Pro and Air, but the name itself is a trademarked Intel marketing term. That means a PC maker has to play by Intel's (not always clearly explained) rules in order to qualify for an official ultrabook sticker.
Both before and after the launch of the ultrabook platform, there have been laptops that are as thin and light as official ultrabooks, … Read more
With Intel's next-gen CPUs arriving late spring/early summer, and Windows 8 coming to new PCs sometime around October, it's easy to recommend that laptop shoppers hold off on any new purchases until one or both of those are available.
Or, is it? We've opened up the question for point/counterpoint debate, with Scott taking the position that you should definitely not buy a laptop right now, and Dan saying we shouldn't be slaves to a release calendar, and just buy what you want, when you want it.… Read more
commentary Well, it was fun while it lasted.
The personal computer industry backed a promising candidate in the ultrabook concept, convincing even a skeptic like myself that a new class of superslim, superlight laptops was the key to exciting consumers. Ultrabooks were well on their way to becoming the PC form factor of the future.
And now, it's already over.
In record time -- something less than six months -- the ultrabook term has become so overused and amorphous that it's well on its way to being useless. … Read more
Ultrabooks are a hot topic right now, but with so many superslim 13-inch laptops available, how do you choose the best one? It's especially hard in the new pseudo-category, as most of the ultrabooks we've seen are very similar, both in design and specs. For this eagerly awaited Prizefight, we pitted two of our favorite ultrabooks against each other: the HP Folio 13 and the Dell XPS 13.
The Dell has a very MacBook-Air-like design, whereas the HP is a bit more businesslike, but has fantastic battery life. Below, you'll see our laptop experts, me along with Julie Rivera and Brian Tong, rate both systems across several key categories, and at the end, we'll tally up the score and declare a winner. … Read more