Great design and lighting system
The Alienware 17 continues its tradition of all-around excellence in portable performance. There's almost nothing to dislike about this fifth-generation variant. The exterior has been redesigned with a slightly more mature appearance, better overall build quality thanks to the inclusion of more metal components, and a new take on the AlienFX lighting system. System performance is outstanding with the fourth-gen Intel Core i7 processor and top-of-the-line Nvidia GTX 780M graphics card.
Very bright, clear image with great viewing angles
There's no doubt that Alienware makes some of the most powerful and eye-catching gaming rigs currently available, and the fact that the Alienware 17 lasts more than four hours on battery power is a tribute to the efficiency of its Haswell processor. However, it's expensive even by Alienware's standards and only by dropping the specification using the custom-build option on the web site will lower the price.
Good performance, Dedicated graphics
Overall, the Asus is a superb gaming laptop. With the Blu-ray drive, it betters the Alienware 17 (its top competitor), but both seem expensive compared to other options on the market. A high-end gaming laptop may be a step too far for your wallet. But, if you can afford it, this is a superb buy.
Excellent CPU and graphics performance, relatively cool and quiet
Go buy one, I did. If you're a gamer this is a superb choice. The price is reasonable for what you get, and I personally prefer the ASUS ROG G750's cooling and trackpad to its most direct competitor in price and features, the MSI GT70. In fact, I prefer the keyboard too because the game-centric SteelSeries keyboard design on the MSI doesn't work as well when using the machine for productivity (the Windows button moved to the right side drives me crazy).
Non-glare display with high contrast
All in all, the notebook leaves a very high-quality impression. Besides the materials the build quality can also convince us; keyboard and touchpad are also very convenient to use. Further unique features are the flat power supply unit and the comprehensive illumination. Despite the somewhat pretentious appearance of the case, the individuality of the notebook is unrivaled and not every manufacturer would try to integrate a GeForce GTX 765M into a 14-inch case.
Excellent performance, Beautiful 1080p IPS display
The Alienware 14 is a noticeable upgrade over its predecessors; it's a well-rounded notebook with very few cons. This notebook's highlights include outstanding performance thanks to its Intel quad-core processor and Nvidia graphics; a well-executed design and AlienFX customizable lighting system; excellent 1080p IPS display; superb build quality and chassis strength; good speakers; a plentiful port selection; a tolerable level of noise and respectable if not outstanding battery life.
Fantastically fast for a 14-incher
At $1,499 kitted out with the 1080p screen and Nvidia GeForce GTX 765M graphics that you'll definitely want, the Alienware isn't an inexpensive or a particularly stylish laptop. We've seen thinner machines that can vaguely play PC games for under $800. It's not particularly portable either, with bulk and battery life that might make you think twice about taking it to your local cafe.
Class-leading performance, Multimedia-oriented features
Watching movies on a tablet is well and good, but to get real immersive entertainment, a 15.6-inch laptop with multiple speakers like the Asus N550JV-DB72T is the portable equivalent of a home theater system, plus it also qualifies as a power user system.
Big storage capacity, attractive case, backlit keyboard
The Asus N550JV-CN201H convinces with a decent system and gaming performance. Although the CPU significantly throttles (down to 800 MHz) under full load, you will hardly experience this in practice. The benchmark results are as expected. In addition, the notebook features a bright, contrast-rich and matte IPS display and a big storage capacity and can read Blu-ray disks. The battery life is also appropriate for a notebook with that much performance.
Attractive multimedia laptop with impressive audio and video capabilities
The slow hard drive is a cost-cutting weakness in a laptop costing almost £1000, and leaves it looking expensive in a crowded market. Nonetheless, the N550JV is an attractive multimedia laptop with impressive audio and video capabilities that could make it suited to presentations at work, or entertainment at home.
Good input devices, Very bright display, Fast SSD
The Dell Latitude E6540 is a business notebook, so the display, input devices, quality and service are especially important. The E6540 does not disappoint us and is convincing in these categories. The slightly bouncing keyboard and the small quality problem at the display cover are compensated by the matte Full HD display.
Very good keyboard, Stable performance under load
The ThinkPad Edge E431 may not be exciting, but it's a solid performer. It's a business-grade notebook with lots of power, excellent build quality, adequate battery life, and a strong keyboard. It's also quite durable and light enough (thanks to its ABS plastic frame) to fill a bag without overburdening its owner. The clever proprietary charging/OneLink Dock port design is also a nifty addition if you're frequently in search of better docking options.
Portable OneLink Dock, Good durability
The Lenovo ThinkPad Edge E431 provides an impressive offering for its price. Starting at $500 (NBR's configuration was priced at $648) users will receive a durable attractive chassis, with excellent usability thanks to Lenovo's high quality keyboard and touchpad, along with ample performance capable of handling most business tasks with relative ease.
The only area where the E431 suffers is portability.
Excellent spill-resistant keyboard
The Lenovo ThinkPad Edge E431 isn't without its sacrifices, but with a starting price for a business laptop that starts at less than $550, that's to be expected. You'll have to pay extra for solid-state cache or storage. And you'll have to live without a touchscreen, HD resolution, or backlit keys. And the screen's color and contrast washes out quickly if you aren't sitting dead center.
Anti-reflective Full-HD display, Very good application performance
The Aspire V3-772G (RRP 1,499 Euros, ~$1992) with the brand-new Haswell platform can certainly not be criticized for the performance: 99% in our sub rating is an excellent result. The 17-inch notebook offers workstation performance in regard to the quad-core CPU, graphics card and storage solution.
Appealing design, fit and finish, Excellent contrast ratio
While the current price point of around $1000 doesn't seem unreasonable, the slightly thicker, but much more performance-oriented Asus N550JV with the high-end quad-core Intel Core i7-4700HQ, matte 15.6-inch IPS display with a resolution of 1920 x 1080 pixels, and dedicated Nvidia GeForce GT 750M seems like a much better option - especially considering that it only costs about $100 more.
Very impressive battery life, especially under heavy load
The VivoBook V551LB is a mixed bag of highs and lows, with very good battery life, but a sub-par screen. It has a mostly premium-feeling shell, but lacks the solid-state storage or backlit keyboard that we've come to expect with a system priced at near $1,000.
That doesn't make the VivoBook a bad option by any means. It's just not the best-balanced choice for most users.
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