Monthly Archives: March 2016

Lenovo Ideapad 100 – 80QQ00L3US

At $350 (approx.), Lenovo Ideapad 100 – 80QQ00L3US is not a bad choice if you are looking for a laptop that supports home computing. This laptop is not going to make a home user or student swoon over its features though. For basic web browsing, office work and streaming videos this laptop offers reasonable performance. Lenovo 80QQ00L3US is powered by Intel core i3-5005u processor, 4GB RAM and 1TB hard drive. Budget laptops are all about trading off one important feature for another and it is not an exception with model 80QQ00L3US. It comes with low resolution display (1366 X 768) rather than a full HD display and lacks wireless ac. A full HD display is essential if you don’t want to compromise your viewing experience. In such case, you can consider Asus F555LA-AB31 laptop which comes with more powerful Intel core i3-5010u processor, 4GB RAM and 500GB hard drive. It has full HD display and supports Wireless ac. Both the laptops discussed above offer inbuilt optical drive. Lenovo Ideapad 100 – 80QQ00L3US is not a touchscreen laptop. However, Windows 10 is compatible with non-touch interfaces as well. Here is a brief review about specifications and performance of Lenovo Ideapad 100 – 80QQ00L3US.

Intel core i3-5005u processor has two cores and it operates with fixed frequency of 2 GHz. With the help of hyperthreading technology, each core works as two virtual cores. Like i3-5005u processor, Intel core i5-5010u is a 5th generation Intel core i3 processor. It operates with slightly higher frequency of 2.1GHz. Lenovo 80QQ00L3US offers integrated Intel HD 5500 graphics which is not suitable for gaming. When it comes to gaming, some low end games like Sims 3 and Dota 2 can be played in low resolutions and setting on this laptop. The graphics is not upgradable but it supports small photo editing.  You can also consider Acer Aspire E5-573G which is a budget gaming laptop and is powered by more powerful Intel core i5-5200u processor (2.2GHz-2.7GHz). It has dedicated graphics NVIDIA GeForce 940M card with 2GB VRAM plus 8GB system RAM. This Acer laptop has 1TB hard drive and full HD (1920 X 1080) display panel. However, it doesn’t come with inbuilt optical drive but you can always use an external USB based CD/DVD drive. The NVIDIA graphics not only supports gaming but it also boosts performance for applications such as Adobe Photoshop.

Ideapad 100 – 80QQ00L3US comes with 4GB DDR3L 1600MHz RAM and the memory is expandable up to 8GB. It has 1TB hard drive which operates at 5400rpm speed. Windows 10 is preloaded on the hard drive but it doesn’t come with full Version of Microsoft office.

15.6” display of Ideapad 100 – 80QQ00L3US supports max resolution of 1366 X 768p which means it can support video playback up to 720p but not 1080p. However, with the help of HDMI, you can watch full HD content on compatible TV and monitor.

Available ports and connectivity features include 1 USB 3.0, 1 USB 2.0, HDMI-out, 4-in-1 card reader (SD,SDHC,SDXC,MMC), RJ-45 and audio combo jack. It comes with webcam as well. Network connectivity is supported by Fast Ethernet, Wireless 802.11 b/g/n and Bluetooth.

The 21whr battery of Ideapad 100 – 80QQ00L3US offers up to 3 hours battery life, depending upon usage.

Final thoughts

For basic web browsing, office work and movie streaming Lenovo Ideapad 100 – 80QQ00L3US is a decent laptop. However, it comes with low resolution screen which may disappoint video/movie enthusiasts. Alternatively, you can consider Asus F555LA-AB31 which has full HD display panel, better processor and Wireless ac. On the flip side, it comes with 500GB hard drive while Lenovo 80QQ00L3US comes with 1TB hard drive.

HP Pavilion 15-ab293cl

HP Pavilion 15-ab293cl is a moderately priced 15.6” laptop that offers lots of storage and memory. It also comes with a solid built and rich features. This HP model comes with Solid hardware specs, for instance Intel core i7-6500u 6th generation processor, 12GB RAM and 1TB hard drive but it is not a workstation grade laptop. Unlike Intel Quad core i7-6700HQ, i7-6500u is a dual core ultra-low voltage processor and operates at much lesser frequency. However, HP 15-ab293cl is good enough if you need to work with occasional photo and video editing, 3D modelling and run office applications. If you have limited budget and need to run CPU intensive tasks then you can consider HP Pavilion i7-6700HQ powered laptop. This laptop comes with 8GB RAM and 1TB hard drive.  Like 15-ab293cl, it incorporates full HD touchscreen display. However, it doesn’t come with backlit keyboard. Both the laptops have CD/DVD burner but none of them come with Intel real Sense 3D camera. If you are going to use this laptop for media editing or designing then replacing hard drive with Solid State Drive will be a wise option as Solid State Drives are much faster than regular hard drives. SSDs access data almost instantaneously. Read further to know more about specifications and expected performance of the HP Pavilion 15-ab293cl.

Intel Core i7-6500u has 2 cores and each core operates with 2.5GHz frequency.  With the help of Turboboost, the frequency can increase up to 3.1GHz on system demand. It has 4MB of cache. On the other hand, Intel core i7-6700HQ has 4 cores and operates with base frequency of 2.6GHz and can Turboboost up to 3.5GHz. HP Pavilion 15-ab293cl comes with integrated graphics, Intel HD 520, which can run low demanding game smoothly on this machine. However, games like Call of duty black ops 3 will run in low details and setting. The graphics uses system memory. If you are looking for a laptop that can run all latest games smoothly,  supports HD video editing and 3D rendering, then Dell Inspiron i7559-763BLK, which is a 15.6″ Full-HD Gaming Laptop, could be a good choice. It is powered by Intel Core i5-6300HQ processor which is also a quad core processor. It has 8GB RAM and 256GB Solid State Drive. Most attractive feature of this Dell laptop is that it comes with powerful NVIDIA GeForce GTX960M graphics with 4GB DDR5.  It is not a touchscreen laptop but Windows 10 is well compatible with non-touch environment. The laptop comes with backlit keyboard but it doesn’t have inbuilt CD/DVD drive. i5-6300HQ processor operates with 2.3GHz and the frequency can boost up to 3.2GHz. It has 6MB of cache memory.

HP ab293cl is installed with 12GB RAM which is more than enough for regular computing but you can expand memory up to 16GB. It uses DDR3L 1600MHz memory and 1TB 5400rpm hard drive. Windows 10 is preloaded on the hard drive.   It doesn’t come with full version of Microsoft Office though.

The 15.6” touchscreen display of the laptop supports max resolution of 1920 X 1080p.  For external devices connectivity, the laptop offers 2 USB 3.0, 1 USB 2.0, 1 HDMI, 1 RJ-45 and 1 headphone/microphone combo. It has multi-format SD card reader. There is a webcam as well. Network connectivity is supported by 10/100 BASE-T Ethernet LAN and Wireless ac. The laptop supports Bluetooth.

The 4 cell lithium ion battery offers max battery backup of 5 hours.

If you are looking for a laptop that can perform day to day computing smoothly as well as offer reasonable performance for gaming and media editing then HP Pavilion 15-ab293cl is decent a choice.  If you are more into 3D rendering/designing, gaming and HD video editing then Dell Inspiron i7559-763BLK is a more suitable option as it has 4 physical cores, more cache( frequently used data stored in cache) and solid video graphics card with 4GB DDR5 video memory.

Dell Inspiron I5559-1349SLV

Dell Inspiron I5559-1349SLV is a touchscreen 15.6in laptop with a strong central configuration. It is decent enough for students, families and anyone who wants a reasonably fast, yet affordable, laptop. However, there are few shortcomings with this laptop as well. It comes with a low resolution screen and has only 6GB RAM. This is really important if you are a video enthusiast and into media editing. However, for general computing purpose, this laptop is a decent choice as it comes with Intel core i5-6200u processor and 6GB RAM. Those who are into media editing or 3D modelling can consider Dell Inspiron i5559-5347 15.6 Inch FHD Touchscreen Laptop with Intel RealSense. It is also a budget laptop and comes with same Intel core i5-6200u processor. It comes with features that make it stand out in the crowd. The laptop comes with 12GB RAM, Full HD display (1920 X 1080 ) and Intel Realsense 3D camera. Please note that Model: I5559-1349SLV doesn’t come with 3D camera. When it comes to performance, i5-6200u is capable of accomplishing day to day computing very fast. It supports casual gaming, media editing, encoding/decoding audio and video files etc. You can use it for home computing as well as for office use. However, I5559-1349SLV is not a work station grade laptop, thus, it is not appropriate for professional grade 3D modeling/rendering.

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Intel core i5-6200u is a dual core processor which operates with base frequency of 2.4GHz and the frequency can boost up to 2.8GHz on system demand. It is Ultra low voltage processor. You can also consider HP Pavilion i7-6700HQ touchscreen laptop. Please note that Intel core i7-6700HQ has 4 cores which operate with base frequency of 2.6GHz and the speed can boost up to 3.5GHz. It has massive cache of 6MB while i5-6200u has only 3MB of cache. Higher cache memory can enhance performance since frequently accessed data is stored in cache memory. It comes with Full HD IPS panel and has 8GB RAM. It also comes installed with 1TB, 5400rpm hard drive. You can replace hard drive with Solid State Drive for better performance. This HP laptop doesn’t come with backlit keyboard while both Dell Inspiron I5559-1349SLV and Dell Inspiron i5559-5347 have backlit keyboard.

Dell I5559-1349SLV is installed with 6GB DDR3L Dual-channel RAM and the memory is expandable up to 16GB. It comes with 1TB 5400rpm hard drive preloaded with Windows 10. You can easily replace hard drive with Solid State Drive. However, you won’t get full version of Microsoft Office.

The 15.6 display can stream content in 720p resolution but not in 1080p. However, with the help of HDMI you can watch content in Full HD mode on compatible TV or on external displays. You need to purchase an HDMI cable separately for this purpose.

Besides HDMI output, Dell Inspiron I5559-1349SLV offers One RJ 45 port, Two USB 2.0 ports, One USB 3.0 port and One headphone/microphone combo (headset) port. There is a multiformat media card reader as well. It offers standard HD webcam (not Intel realsense). Network connectivity is supported by Wireless ac and Bluetooth. Wireless Network connectivity is supported by 10/100 Mbps Ethernet LAN.

4 cell battery pack offers up to 5 hours of battery backup (approx.). However, it depends upon usage as well.

Finally, Dell Inspiron I5559-1349SLV is a decent laptop for those who are looking for regular computing as well as entertainment. Main drawback with this laptop is that it comes with low resolution display. If you can stretch your budget a little then you can consider Dell Inspiron i5559-5347  which comes with  more memory, full HD display panel and Intel realsense 3D camera. The realsense camera is missing in Dell Inspiron I5559-1349SLV.

 

HP 15-F387WM Black Licorice 15.6″ Laptop

HP 15-F387WM is a moderately priced 15.6” laptop which offers performance for day to day computing tasks but when it comes to storage and memory, the laptop comes with pretty standard configuration. Model: 15-F387WM offers only 4GB RAM and 500GB hard drive. Features like backlit keyword are not available with this machine.  However, there are other better budget machines available to choose from.  For instance, Dell Inspiron 15 i5555-2866SLV Signature Edition Laptop is a touchscreen laptop powered by robust AMD A10-8700P processor, 8GB RAM and 1TB 5400 rpm storage. Dell laptop also has backlit keyboard while HP 15- F387WM lacks backlit keyboard. Like AMD A8-7410 APU quad core APU, AMD A10-8700p is also a quad core APU and operates with higher Turbo frequency. It also comes with Radeon HD R6 graphics which offers better performance than R5 graphics coming with AMD A8-7410 APU. Both the laptops offer integrated graphics so you can’t upgrade graphics. The laptops incorporate inbuilt optical drive. If you are looking for a laptop for PC gaming and other CPU intensive tasks then Dell i5555-2866SLV is more preferable, though it is not a hardcore gaming laptop.  Here is a brief review about specifications and performance of HP 15- F387WM :

As told earlier HP 15-F387WM offers only 500GB storage so, if you need more storage, you can consider HP Business 15 Touchscreen Laptop which comes with 1TB hard drive space. Rest of the specs remain same in both the laptops. Moreover, this HP business laptop has antiglare touchscreen display. Both laptops are suitable for home users and students alike, unless you need to work with CPU intensive programs like Adobe Photoshop, AutoCAD, Revit etc. You can run low demanding games but high end games like Fallout 4 will struggle in this laptop. However, for running office applications, making presentation emailing/skype and web browsing, this AMD A8-7410 powered laptop offers enough performance. If you are looking for more performance then Dell Inspiron 15 i5555-2866SLV Signature Edition Laptop will be a better option.

AMD A8-7410 is a quad core accelerated processor unit which operates with base frequency of 2.2GHz and the frequency of some of the core can increase up to 2.5GHz. On the other hand, AMD A10-8700p operates with base frequency of 1.8GHz and can Turboboost up to 3.2GHz. Single threaded programs will be benefitted by this feature. When it comes to benchmark, the Passmark score for A8-7410 is 2584 while the same for A10-8700p is 3569. Thus A10-8700p is more powerful than A8-7410.

The 15.6” touchscreen display supports max resolution of 1366 X 768 pixels, which means the display can stream content in 720p resolution but not in 1080p. However, with the help of HDMI port you can watch HD content in Full HD mode on compatible TV or on external displays. You need to purchase an HDMI cable separately though.

Ports and connectivity features include 2 USB 3.0; 1 USB 2.0; 1 HDMI; 1 RJ-45; 1 headphone/microphone combo and 1 multi-format SD media card reader. The laptop comes with VGA webcam. Network connectivity is supported by Integrated 10/100 BASE-T Ethernet LAN and 802.11 b/g/n Wi-fi.

3 cell battery offers back up to 4 hours which depends upon usage.

Lenovo IdeaPad 100 80QQ002DUS

Lenovo IdeaPad 100 80QQ002DUS falls in the category of general purpose laptop rather than gaming laptop. It is powered by 5th generation Intel core i3-5005u processor. Although most of the laptops are now shipped with 6th generation core processor, and the number is increasing every day, there are still a fair number of machines that ship with an older version of the core processor. It makes 5th generation processor based laptop cheaper. Lenovo IdeaPad 100 80QQ002DUS is a good example of it. It is decent for those who are looking for a computing device for basic usage. The laptop comes with 4GB RAM and 500GB hard drive. The main drawback of this laptop is that it comes with low resolution screen  (1366X 768) which really matters if you are a videophile .  With proper setup, you can easily notice the resolution enhancement that 1080p brings. If you are a video enthusiast, you can also consider ASUS F555LA-AB31 15.6-inch Full-HD laptop that comes with 5th generation Intel core i3-5010u processor, 4GB RAM and 500GB hard drive. However, you have to pay little extra for it. But it is worth buying as you will get full HD display, 2 USB 3.0 ports and wireless ac. Also, i3-5010u operates with higher frequency of 2.1GHz while Intel core i3-5005u coming with Model 80QQ002DUS operates with 2GHz. However, it doesn’t make any significant difference when it comes to day to day computing. Both the laptops come with CD/DVD burner. Here is a brief review about specifications and performance of Lenovo  80QQ002DUS.

Intel core i3-5005u processor is a dual core processor and each core operates with 2 GHz of fixed frequency. You can’t overclock it. The processor is Hyperthreading enabled which means two cores can work as 4 logical cores. Lenovo  80QQ002DUS comes with integrated Intel® HD Graphics 5500 graphics which supports low end games. Demanding games like GTA V and Fallout 4 are hardly playable in this machine. However, you can play Sims 3 in low to medium details and settings. If you are looking for an affordable gaming laptop then you can consider Acer Aspire E 15 E5-574G-52QU which comes with 6th generation Intel core i5-6200u processor and 8GB RAM. It comes with discrete NVIDIA GeForce 940M with 4GB dedicated video RAM. It also offers full HD display. The dedicated graphics not only enhances the gaming performance but also aids in photo and video editing jobs. It certainly costs you more but you get powerful processor, more memory, discrete graphics with dedicated video memory, more storage and a full HD display panel. Only disadvantage of this laptop is that it doesn’t come with inbuilt optical drive. But you can always buy an external USB based CD/DVD burner at a price of $20-$25.

Lenovo IdeaPad 100 80QQ002DUS is installed with 4GB RAM and 500GB 5400rpm hard drive.  Windows 10 is preinstalled on the hard disk.

The 15.6 non-touch display can stream content in 720p resolution but not in 1080p. However, with the help of HDMI, you can watch HD content in Full HD mode on compatible TV or on external displays. You need to purchase an HDMI cable separately though.

Ports and connectivity features include 1 USB 3.0, 1 USB 2.0, HDMI-out, 4-in-1 card reader (SD,SDHC,SDXC,MMC), RJ-45 and audio combo jack. It has 0.3 megapixel webcam.  Network connectivity is supported by both wireless  (802.11 b/g/n) and wired connectivity. It supports Bluetooth as well.  There are two 1.5 watts speaker to support Audio. Keyboard coming with the laptop is standard and not a backlit keyboard.

.The 24 whr battery offers up to 3 hours of battery life, depending upon usage.

Conclusion

With a few shortcomings, Lenovo IdeaPad 100 80QQ002DUS is still a good laptop for basic use. However, if you are looking for a laptop for streaming videos then ASUS F555LA-AB31 is a  more suitable option as it comes with full HD display.

Dell Inspiron I3558-9136BLK

A common complaint about cheap laptops is that the manufacturers reduce some of the key features to cut the price. However, this is not completely true in case of Dell Inspiron I3558-9136BLK. Powered by 5th generation Intel core i3-5015u processor and 6GB RAM, this laptop can accomplish day to day tasks smoothly. It also allows you to do some processor intensive tasks like photo editing, small video editing, encoding and decoding media etc. As i3 is the entry level core processor, you can’t expect to run CPU or GPU demanding applications like AutoCAD, Revit, 3DsMax, Sony Vegas pro etc. on this laptop.  You require a solid processor for such work. Again, this laptop comes with low resolution screen which offers max resolution of 1366 X 768 pixels. You can also consider Dell Inspiron 15 i5558-5717SLV which is touchscreen laptop, powered by Intel core i5-5200u processor and has 8GB RAM. It has full HD (1920 X 1080) touchscreen display. Full HD display is good if you are using the laptop for watching movies and videos. Furthermore, it comes with backlit keyword which is missing in Dell Inspiron I3558-9136BLK. Though you have to pay little extra, yet it is worth buying as you will get more powerful processor, more memory, full HD display panel, inbuilt DVD/CD drive  and backlit keyboard . Again, Dell Inspiron 15 i5558-5717SLV is signature edition laptop so the device is junk-ware free. Unlike Dell Inspiron I3558-9136BLK, it comes with inbuilt optical drive. Here is a brief review about Dell Inspiron I3558-9136BLK.

Dell Inspiron I3558-9136BLK comes with Intel core i3-5015u processor which is clocked at 2.1GHz of fixed frequency. It has two cores. On the other hand, Intel core i5-5200u processor operates with 2.2GHz base frequency and boosts up to 2.7GHz if system demands. If you are more into media editing, Dell Inspiron 15 i5558-5717SLV will be a more suitable option.  This laptop is not workstation grade but you can do small 3D rendering work as well on it.

For such tasks you can consider HP Pavilion 15-ab292nr laptop which comes with Intel core i7-6700HQ processor (2.60 GHz speed, with Turbo Boost Technology frequency can reach up to 3.50 GHz) which has 4 physical cores and, with the help of hyperthreading technology, 4 cores work as 8 logical cores. It has massive 6MB of cache while Intel core i3-5015u has 3MB of cache. This HP laptop has full HD touchscreen display, better intergrated graphics, 8GB RAM and 1TB hard drive. It also comes with DVD drive and runs on Windows 10. This laptop not only helps you in 3D designing but can also run latest games. However, for certain demanding games you may need to turn down setting and resolution

Model: I3558-9136BLK is installed with 6GB dual channel DDR3L 1600Mhz RAM and the memory is expandable up to 16GB as there are two memory slots. It comes with 1TB 5400 rpm hard drive. You can replace hard drive with Solid State Drive for better performance. The laptop runs Windows 10 and comes with trial version of Microsoft office preinstalled.

The 15.6 display can stream content in 720p resolution but not in 1080p. However, with the help of HDMI you can watch HD content in Full HD mode on compatible TV or on external displays. You need to purchase an HDMI cable separately though.

Besides HDMI output, the edges of Inspiron I3558-9136BLK are arranged with One RJ 45 port, Two USB 2.0 ports, One USB 3.0 port,  One headphone and microphone combo (headset) port. There is a multiformat media card reader as well. It offers standard HD webcam (not Intel realsense). Network connectivity is supported by Wireless ac and Bluetooth.

The 4 cell battery of Dell I3558-9136BLK supports max battery life of 5 hours, however, it depends upon usage.

Conclusion

Finally, Dell Inspiron I3558-9136BLK is decent laptop for those who are looking for basic computing. The main drawback is it lacks in DVD drive. Also, it has low resolution display. If you can stretch your budget little more you can consider Dell Inspiron 15 i5558-5717SLV which comes with more powerful processor, more memory, full HD display panel, inbuilt DVD/CD drive and backlit keyboard