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MBA/MBP-like Machines


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1) What is your budget?
Around $1400.

2) What size notebook would you prefer?
12"-14"
 
3) In which country will you buying this notebook?
US

4) Are there any brands that you prefer or any you really don't like?
Generally fine with any of the big names or reputable smaller shops, though want to avoid Razor, MSI, HP.
 
5) Would you consider laptops that are refurbished/redistributed?
OEM-refurbished, yes.

6) What are the primary tasks you will be performing with this notebook?
Office work, light dev work (web, scripting, that sort of thing), media consumption, maybe some light gaming (eg nothing really new, AAA, blah; probably the most intensive thing I might play would be something like Factorio).

7) Will you be taking the notebook with you to different places, leaving it on your desk or both?
Home use, will also be my road trip machine.

😎 Will you be playing games on your notebook? (If so, please state which games or types of games?)
Not planning on it as I'm primarily looking at macOS, but if I am playing games then they'll be on the lighter side of things.

9) How many hours of battery life do you need?
Looking for 10hr+; battery life will be a primary concern.

10) Would you prefer to see the notebook you're considering before purchasing it or buying a notebook on-line without seeing it is OK?
Not concerned about seeing it first.

11) What OS do you prefer? Windows, Mac OS, Linux, Chrome OS, etc.
12) What ports do you require on your laptop? (ex. MiniDisplayPort or HDMI? Displayport or USB-C w/ DP?)
Not too picky about ports as I rarely use them currently

Screen Specifics

13) What screen resolution(s) would you prefer? See further below for explanations.
More the merrier, but bare minimum of 1920x1080. Ideally would like a taller ratio than 16:9.

14) Do you want a glossy/reflective screen or a matte/non-glossy screen? See further below for explanations.
Not too concerned about this, though preferably matte.

Build Quality and Design

15) Are the notebook's looks and stylishness important to you?
Fashion isn't the most important thing, though I do want to avoid the "gamer" look.

Notebook Components

16) How much storage space do you need?
Don't need too much since I plan on using external storage / NAS storage.

Timing, Warranty and Longevity

17) When do you consider purchasing this laptop?
Sometime around April/May 2024.

18) How long do you expect to use this laptop?
5+ years. My previous laptops have so far lasted 13+ years and 6+ years.

19) How long could you afford to do without your laptop if it were to fail?
Would not be an issue at all since I have multiple systems to use.

20) Would you be willing to pay significantly extra for on-site warranty, or would it be acceptable to you to have to ship the laptop to the vendor for repair with perhaps a week or more outage?
Don't need NBD, though I can get a 4yr depot warranty from Costco so I have a slight lean towards purchasing from them unless a huge discount can be found elsewhere (eg OEM refurb).
 
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Currently using my desktop and a Dell 7577 as my daily drivers and am currently looking at the M2 MBP 14 refurb or a potential M3 MBA 13 (or a discounted M2 version) this March. Mainly looking to dip my feet into macOS again but outside of that I'm looking to find a "premium" laptop with emphasis on battery life and QoL stuff like a decent keyboard / firm hinges / build quality stuff. I'm aware of stuff like the Framework laptops, though I'm not too happy with the hinges on those and things of that nature. Haven't looked at the laptop market in a while so I'm not sure what's really out there right now, but would like to know what my MBA/M?BP alternates would be.
Dell Inspiron 7577 (Mayu) - i7-7700HQ, GTX 1060MQ, 16GB DDR4 RAM, 128GB NVMe + 1TB HDD, 1080p, Win10 Home
DIY Desktop (Altair) - i7-8700K, Radeon 6600 8GB, 32GB DDR4-3200, 256GB NVMe + 256GB SSD + 8TB HDD, 1080p x3, Win11 Home
DIY Server (Mobius) - i3-4150, 8GB DDR3-1600, 34TB usable (50TB raw), Samsung EVO 860 500GB cache, unRAID 6.9.2 Pro
Other machines: DIY Desktop (Mashiro), Thinkpad W520 (Strigon), Thinkpad X61t (Aquila), Asus T100
RIP NBR
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  • Jarhead changed the title to MBA/MBP-like Machines

There are M2 Pro 14s available from the Apple refurbished store for $1600. They have standard M3 models with 16 GB of RAM for a bit less. On the Windows side, there isn't going to be much that offers comparable performance while delivering similar battery life. Maybe the Lenovo Yoga Slim 7i with the new Intel Core Ultra CPUs, but don't quote me on that. I also think that Costco dropped the 4-year warranty perk - you only get one year of extra coverage, even if you pay with their in-house Visa card.

 

I have to say I am a huge fan of my M3 Pro MBP 14 and have virtually no desire to return to a Windows-based laptop any time soon.

Desktop: Ryzen 5 5600X3D | 32 GB RAM | GeForce RTX 4070 Super | 4 TB SSD | Windows 11

MacBook Pro 14: M3 Pro 12-core CPU | 18 GB RAM | 18-core GPU | 1 TB SSD | macOS

Lenovo IdeaPad 3 Gaming: Ryzen 7 6800H | 16 GB RAM | GeForce RTX 3050 | 512 GB SSD | Windows 11

Lenovo IdeaPad 5 Pro: Ryzen 5 5600U | 16 GB RAM | Radeon Graphics | 512 GB SSD | Windows 11

 

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  • 2 weeks later...

the 13in macbook airs are a great buy, I don't own one but read a few rave reviews. If battery is king i'd look at a refurbished pro.

ZEUS-COMING SOON

            Omen 16 2021

            Zenbook 14 oled

            Vivobook 15x oled

 

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