When Best Buy unveiled its Blue Label program last month, we were skeptical. The program seemed good enough in concept: Best Buy asked its customers for their most desired laptop features, then worked with Hewlett-Packard and Toshiba to develop laptops that delivered those features. But being jaded product reviewers, we couldn't help wondering whether these laptops would live up to their promise, or whether it was all just marketing hype.
As they say, the proof is in the pudding (or something to that effect). This week we reviewed both Blue Label laptops--the Toshiba Satellite E105 and the HP Pavilion dv3510nr--and found two solid all-around laptops for home users. The Pavilion even took home an Editors' Choice award.
At $1,099, these laptops are priced toward the high end of what you'd expect to find on retail shelves this season. But they both feature Core 2 Duo processors, 4GB of RAM, and spacious 320GB hard drives. And both live up to the Blue Label promise: long battery life (3.5 hours for the Pavilion and 4 hours for the Satellite); lightweight design (especially the 14.1-inch, 5-pound Satellite); keyboard backlighting; and a lengthy two-year warranty.
Ultimately the Pavilion dv3510nr's LED-backlit display, slightly fuller feature set, and fair 3D performance (thanks to a dedicated graphics card) gave it the edge and helped it nab the Editors' Choice. But the Satellite does give you a larger screen and lengthier battery life, plus most of the features you'll need for home use.
For all the details, read our full reviews of the Toshiba Satellite E105 and the HP Pavilion dv3510nr.