Buying a new laptop, last minute thoughts

So I'm on the look out for a new laptop. The Apple seems like a good deal (I can also get quite a percentage off). Also from what I've been reading I should get a Intel Core Duo 2 chip, at least for the 4meg Cache and future 64bit processing support but its not essential to get a high clock speed. Hard Drives
have doubled again, so I dont need to worry about that. Here's top of my list at the moment, bearing in mind I only want a 12inch laptop (13 if I'm pushed)

Apple Mac Book = 2GHz Core Duo 2 with 80GB HD and 2gig of memory is £1,014.01 (1 year AppleCare)

Lenovo Thinkpad X60s = 1.66Ghz Core Duo 2 with 80GB HD and 1gig of memory is £1,021.98 (3 years warranty)

Dell XPS M1210 = 2Ghz Core Duo 2 with 120GB HD and 1gig of memory is £960.22 2 years warranty)

Toshiba Satellite Pro U200 = 2Ghz Core Duo 2 with 100GB HD and 1gig of memory is £1,173.83 1 year warranty)


All support 12.1inch screens (bar Mac with 13.3inch), WXGA (1280px by 800px) except the X60 which has plain XGA, dual layer DVD burners, Wifi and Bluetooth. Although I had to add Bluetooth to the Dell configuration. The 2Ghz models have 4meg Caches. The PC;s have card readers while the Mac does not. The X60 and U200 both come with biometrics. The Dell and Mac have a built in Cameras and those new Express card slots (aka not PCMCIA). All have Firewire and USB2 ports,
the mac only having 2x while the X60 and U200 have 3x and the Dell has 4x. The mac loses out on a lot of things here but I've loaded it with 2gig of memory and its still cheapest machine generally (and thats before my discount even). I even did a test config at 1.87ghz and it came to under £950, but its also got the 13.3 inch screen. I like the Dell and X60 because they both have options for bigger cell batteries (9 cell in the Dell), Svideo and bigger warranties. Generally the U200 is too expensive
and its really down to the Dell, X60 and Mac.

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Author: Ianforrester

Senior firestarter at BBC R&D, emergent technology expert and serial social geek event organiser. Can be found at, and