By horseman6 2 Comments
I recently started a consulting and contracting LLC. I already have a gig lined up so I wanted a desktop and laptop for business use, separate from my personal stuff. So I went on a hunt to get a laptop and desktop. I thought you guys may want to see what I decided on (maybe not though). I wanted to have a decent Windows desktop and a decent laptop for use with a VPN. Here are the systems I considered with some detailed notes,
|Laptop||Asus UX305||Inexpensive, reviewed well, light but capable. A good laptop for a great price.|
|Laptop||Hp Spectre x360||Tablet functionality, nice to look at, reviewed well. A bit pricey though.|
|Laptop||Macbook Pro 15"||Great Apple laptop quality for a very high price.|
|Desktop||Dell Inspiron 3000 - i7 Quad Core||Cheap, quick, and easy.|
|Desktop||Alienware Gaming Thing||Relatively inexpensive but very small and capable. Would maybe have some issues with the interface.|
|Laptop||Macbook||Super light, great apple quality, decent performance for a higher price.|
|Desktop||Intel NUC - i7-5557U||Very small, pretty cheap, but is kind of a fake i7 as it doesn't have 4 cores with hyperthreading|
|Desktop||iMac 5K||Ridiculously expensive and probably due for an update. This is a crazy persons choice but it's pretty.|
What did I decide on?
For a desktop, I was tempted by the machines above but in the end I went with the Intel NUC. It's super small and relatively inexpensive. It also consumes very little power which is great because I can leave it on all the time without worrying about my electric bill. I also happened to have an extra m2 250GB ssd laying around so I only needed to get 16 GB of memory which is super cheap. It's a very nice system. I would recommend it for anyone who wants something low powered and inexpensive.
For a laptop, well, that's complicated. I kept coming back to the UX305 but I really liked the idea of a more capable system with a touchscreen so I went with the Spectre x360. That was a massive mistake. It looks and feels great, I mean really great, macbook quality great, but it has a few major issues. One, it crashes constantly. I kept having to shut down IE and Chrome because it hated the touch interface. Two, it felt heavier than I thought it would, which is not a big problem but I wish it was lighter. Three, the trackpad is pretty shit. Yes, it works better than some previous windows trackpads I've used but it's still nowhere near as good as a mac trackpad. Four, and the big one, there is a massive flaw with the touchscreen. When I play videos, say on giantbomb, and I scroll using the touchscreen, if you scroll over a video, the video stops and the system doesn't react consistently. It will always stop or play the video, but it won't always scroll. It's not an issue for links or images, only for video (at least so far). This was annoying and I figured if this was a problem that I found with maybe 15 minutes of use, I couldn't trust it, and I returned it.
So, I went with my default choice and got the Apple Macbook. It's not as capable but it's extremely light and has an amazing trackpad. I was worried about the new "butterfly" keys but I'm pretty much used to it after only a couple hours of use.
I came away with one basic understanding, and that's whenever I hear great things about windows laptops, I know to be automatically weary. I have never had a flawless experience with a windows based laptop. Usually, the major problem is with the trackpad. I know, some people say "just use a mouse", which is ridiculous because I don't want to have to use a mouse and I don't want to struggle with a trackpad. And this isn't coming from someone who is at all a Mac fanboy as I've had linux machines, I have windows desktops, I have an Android phone, etc. In fact, my favorite OS is probably Linux (Linux Mint is pretty great). I've tried all of the "best" windows laptops out there in the past, including the new XPS 13 which supposedly has a great trackpad. Well, it didn't.
But anyways, these are my findings. Maybe I'll get irritated at the Macbook performance at some point down the road, I'll update this with impressions in a couple weeks.