Best Lightweight Laptops
The whole point of a laptop is to have the processing power and versatility of a desktop in conjunction with the kind of mobility you’d find in a smart phone. Ideally, laptops need to be easily portable and lightweight; otherwise, what’s the point? If you want to engage in sustained weight-lifting, then join a gym, right?
The trick is to get as much functionality out of as little mass as possible. In the spirit of this endeavor, here’s a sampling of the best lightweight laptops out there. In order to try and define what we mean by a lightweight laptop, we’re focusing on laptops that weigh in at four pounds or under. Since most laptops these days feature Internet readiness and a built-in camera as standard features, assume they’re part of the package unless you see otherwise.
Let’s rock …
Lenovo Ultrabook ThinkPad X1
This model combines the quality of Lenovo’s ThinkPad line with a weight that comes in under three pounds. It features an Intel Core i5-4300U processor, 1.90GHz (up to 2.90GHz max Turbo boost), 3MB Cache, and 4GB DDR3 SDRAM system memory. Add in a 14″ LED backlit display and a battery life of over eight hours, and you have one sharp little machine in your hands.
Acer Aspire S7-391-9886
With a price tag in the $1300 range, lightweight also describes your wallet after you buy this baby, but what a way to go! It boasts a 10-point 13.3″ screen to get the most out of Windows 8, a Core i7 CPU and a 256GB solid-state drive, and yes, it weighs only 2.8 pounds. This beautiful, sleek machine will definitely turn heads.
The 13″ MacBook Air features a 1.4GHz dual-core Intel Core i5 (Turbo Boost up to 2.7GHz) with 3MB shared L3 cache. It also comes with 4GB of 1600MHz LPDDR3 onboard memory. It goes for just under $1000 for the 126GB storage model, and under $1200 for the 256GB model, but in either case it weighs just a few ounces shy of three pounds.
HP Envy X2
This particular Envy is geared more towards the lightweight-worshipping crowd. This touchscreen laptop comes with the extra benefit of functioning as a desktop thanks to the detachable keyboard. It offers you an Intel Atom Z2760 Dual Core CPU 1.80 GHz (2 MB Cache), 2 GB SDRAM, 64 GB Solid-State Drive, and of course the 11.6″ (1366×768) touch screen. As if all of this isn’t enough to make other laptop users green with envy (sorry about that), it has a battery life of half a day; that’s right, 12 hours, when you’re using the keyboard. It tips the scales at just a little over three pounds, and it costs less than $700. And speaking of lightweight hybrids …
Microsoft Surface Pro
It’s a laptop! It’s a tablet! It’s … a hybrid! The Surface Pro can be used as a laptop, a tablet, or even as a replacement for a desktop. It gives you a 3rd generation Intel Core i5 Processor with Intel HD Graphics 4000, 4GB RAM Dual Channel Memory, a 10.6″ ClearType HD Display screen with 1920×1080 resolution, and weighs in a little over two and a half pounds, counting the AC adapter. On the downside, it has a short battery life (around four hours), and too few ports (you get a single USB 3.0 port, microSDXC card slot, and Mini DisplayPort). Still, you can pick up one of these beauties for around $600 if you shop right, and you’ll get a versatile, adaptable machine that gives you a good bang for your buck.
These are but five of the many lightweight machines out there, but these consistently come up in online conversations as being among the best. There’s a system here for everyone who wants to travel light yet pack a powerful processing punch.
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