Awards 2007 – A Laptop For Every Season
What a year 2007 has been, when we think that just a decade ago laptops were an ultra expensive item, about as aesthetically pleasing as a breeze block and with barely more processing power. Yet here we are and attractive, innovative notebooks are everywhere we look, with the humble desktop often taking a back seat as powerful portability rules.
How have we reached “Laptopical’s Laptop Awards” for 2007 so quickly? The year seems to have come and gone in a blink of an eye, the seasons have passed as if they were weekend visitors only.
Now, if each of our awards winners were a season, which would they be?
Spring is a time for new beginnings, the light winds and longer sunlit days take the hand of winter and draw us to a warmer future, if the Eee PC 701 was a season it would be spring. This lightweight, easy to use, ultra portable is exactly what laptops were when they first started out. It’s not a desktop replacement or a machine that could run the latest DX10 game without breaking into a sweat.
Indeed, it has middling hard drive space, a tiny 7 inch screen and not even a sniff of a mainstream operating system from Apple or Windows. However, for all of this it sticks to its principals and fills the niche that exists for people who just want a basic setup that they can get to grips with straight away. Novices have no need to trawl through the net for a slight system tweak that will make their experience bearable. Simple computing from the chaps at Asus with a streamlined linux OS at a bargain price. That’s worth any award going.
As our thoughts turn to Summer, we think of rest, sun, sea and the thinning of the workload for a bit, and with the Portege R500 series you can’t get much slimmer. These feather light Toshiba laptops are thinner than a gangster’s alibi. The impossibly light R500-S5001X limbos in at a tiny 1.72 pounds while only sacrificing an optical drive in its makeup. In the heat of summer, slim and beautiful is the way to go on the beach.
Autumn brings the falling of leaves, a cold snap to the air and thoughts of hibernation. As the cold spectre of winter begins knocking on the door making us want to stock up with provisions to get us through the harsh months. The Black-Hawk XR5 is all you would need to lead you through those austere times. It has beefy specifications and enough RAM, an industry leading 5120 MB, to make sure that every program you throw at its Intel Core 2 Quad processor can easily be accommodated. With 3G broadband built in, 2 top of the range NVIDIA graphics cards, a host of connection ports and a widescreen 17 inch display, you’ll have a gaming laptop that will make sure you emerge from hibernation with a broad smile on your pasty face.
As the year draws to an end and the snow starts to fall, Jack Frost is nipping at our toes and wallets, and sleigh bells can be heard faintly on the chilly horizon, Winter arrives and holds dominion over us all, especially our wallets drained by the excesses of summer holidays and autumn extravagances. It’s time to batten down the hatches and endure. If the Vostro 1000 was a season it would have to be winter. Rolling in under $500 this workman like Dell notebook is just the thing to get the job done when you need steady performance but not heavy cost. There are no superfluous bells and whistles to grab the attention of noobs who also think that the size of speakers is directly correlated with the quality of sound produced by them.
A solid laptop with a spill resistant surface speaks of a life of work not play for this unpretentious machine. The Vostro 1000 won’t turn heads at parties, but will be cooking the sausage rolls and handing out the Ferrero Roche to grateful guests. Dell deserves a big pat on the back for producing this workhorse system to keep the budget conscious road warrior happy.
So there we are four outstanding laptops in a field of significant maturity in the notebook market this year, with a bright 2008 just around the corner. Christmas greetings and a very happy and prosperous New Year to you all.
By Ian Bandy – Laptopical
Wednesday, December 12, 200