Here I am again, reviewing another laptop. Like smartphones, most laptops have little differences from each other. While the premium line of notebooks battle to have the best build and beastly specs, the mid-tier laptops try to offer the best value for your hard-earned money.
What I have here is the Dell Vostro 5370. It’s a 13-inch laptop designed for business — small businesses to be specific.
If the Latitude line of business notebooks from Dell is top-notch and great for enterprise use, the Vostro sits below it. If you’re familiar with Dell’s portfolio, the Vostro series is on par with the Inspiron family. Now, onto the review.
The Vostro 5370 is a formal-looking notebook with a two-toned chassis. At first glance, one might think it has a single-piece aluminum build, but only the inner casing gives the cold touch of metal while the outer chassis has a matte finish.
Nevertheless, it’s lightweight and pretty thin for its class. The sleek Silver with Nocturnal Blue interior combination gives off a professional vibe.
As already mentioned, the laptop has a 13-inch display with a Full HD IPS panel. I never had any issues with its viewing angles and color reproduction, but the brightness levels could be better. Good thing the anti-glare coating keeps the display viewable even on a sunny day or when you’re in a cafe surrounded by windows.
The keyboard here is not as great as the one I used on the Latitude 7390 2-in-1. The key travel is decent while the spacing and overall layout are easy to get used to.
As for the touchpad, it’s got a pretty rough surface as opposed to the smooth glass touchpad of premium notebooks. It’s fairly accurate and, most importantly, it recognizes Windows 10’s touchpad gestures. The left and right buttons are integrated to the touchpad as well, and they’re a bit shallow.
Sitting quietly on the upper-right corner is the power button which also doubles as the fingerprint reader. This makes logging in very easy with Windows Hello, just like on the more premium XPS 13.
What’s great about mid-tier notebooks is that they don’t sacrifice ports just to have a slimmer profile. The Vostro 5370 has all the ports you’ll need to get through everyday work life.
On its right are the charging port, a USB-C Gen 1 which also doubles as the DisplayPort, a full-size HDMI, and a 3.5mm audio jack.
To the right are the Noble lock slot, two full-size USB 3.1 (one with PowerShare), and the microSD card reader. It could have been great to have a full-size SD card slot so I can actually use it to quickly transfer images from cameras.
The speakers of this notebook are nothing to write home about. They’re tinny and don’t get loud enough even for indoor use. If you’re alone in a quiet room, you’ll hear what you’re playing on this laptop. But, as soon as you open the windows or when there are people talking around you, you’re better off with a pair of headphones.
As for the notebook’s specs, I was able to use the 8th-gen Intel Core i5 variant with 8GB of RAM. With this kind of power, you can do any everyday task without any hiccups. It even has more than enough power to handle Photoshop and maybe even some casual video editing. The M.2 SSD that can have up to 512GB of storage is able to read and write files very quickly.
With no discrete video card, this notebook is not a gaming machine. While it can do some light gaming like Dota 2 or League of Legends, it’ll not be enough for AAA titles even in low settings. It’ll be hard to appreciate graphics-intensive games with low frame rates and minimal quality.
There’s nothing to worry about the laptop’s fan noise. It never got loud even if I already have more than twenty tabs open in Chrome with Photoshop working in the background. Perhaps the only time I can remember hearing the fan is late at night when my surroundings were really quiet.
Since it’s a business-oriented device, the laptop’s webcam will be used a number of times. The Vostro 5370 doesn’t have thin bezels, so the webcam remains on the top where it should be. The quality is okay when under bright light and it’s perfectly usable for Skype.
Is this your GadgetMatch?
If you’re looking for a decent mid-tier notebook, the Dell Vostro 5370 will be able to provide great everyday performance and ample oomph to get all your multimedia work done. It’s not designed for gaming, but it can handle some titles when you want to have fun.
It’s not the ideal business machine for enterprise users because it lacks certain specs, but it’ll do for small businesses that need a quality laptop. It never felt cheap or lacking for what it’s designed to do.
The Dell Vostro 5370 is priced at PhP 50,800 in the Philippines.
Microsoft unveils the brand new Surface Laptop Studio
A mashup of the MacBook Pro and iPad Pro?
Simultaneously launched with the updated Surface Duo 2, Microsoft also announces an all-new product that would blow your minds off. The brand new Microsoft Surface Laptop Studio is not your ordinary Surface or laptop for any matter. It’s more of a compact Surface Studio and also the successor to the Surface Book 3.
The most powerful Surface laptop yet
First and foremost, the specs are not kidding. You can choose between 11th Gen Intel Core i5 or i7 H-Series quad-core processors and 16GB or 32GB of LPDDR4x memory. SSD storage options goes from 256GB all the way to 2TB. Unlike the current line of MacBook Pros, the SSD is user-swappable.
Other than that, its GPU won’t disappoint you. Whether it’s all about 3D rigging and animation, motion graphics rendering, and even gaming, the Surface Laptop Studio can handle all of that with ease.
The Core i7 model has NVIDIA’s GeForce RTX 3050 Ti with 4GB GDDR6 memory. Enabling ray-traced graphics and DirectX 12 Ultimate will give you exceptional quality and incredible performance. If you opt out for the Core i5 variant, it ships with Intel Iris Xe integrated graphics instead.
With all such power, you can expect components to heat up. But Microsoft has a solution to that with its passive cooling and industry-leading thermal design.
Batteries are rated to last up to 19 hours with the Core i5 model and 18 hours on the more powerful i7 variant.
But wait, it’s not just a laptop…
There are other two modes other than the laptop. There’s a tent-like mode where the hinge magnetically snaps onto place. This is beneficial when watching flicks and viewing other playable content.
Turn down the screen further. Alas! A laptop transforms into a tablet without turning the screen all the way to 360 degrees. Instead it has a hinge design similar to that of the original Surface Studio where the laptop screen can be tilted all the way down to the surface level.
Not only you can jot down notes or do some scribbling, you can also be serious with your craft as it supports the Surface Slim Pen 2.
If you’re worrying about storage and charging, it can be stored beneath the laptop and charges magnetically — just like the Apple Pencil 2 in the newer iPads.
The popular Surface Dial that made its debut in the Surface Studio is also compatible especially if you’re used with that Surface-exclusive accessory.
120Hz screen on a laptop?
Yup! You’re reading it right. The Microsoft Surface Laptop Studio has an oh-so-smooth 120Hz 14.4-inch “PixelSense Flow” display (not to confuse with Google’s line of Pixel phones) that’s also a touchscreen. Not only it’s calibrated to meet any content creator’s needs, it also supports Dolby Vision and Dolby Atmos 4 as well.
For specifics, it’s a 3:2 display with a resolution of 2400 x 1600 and a pixel density of 201 ppi. Contrast ratio is 1500:1.
As we already mentioned Dolby audio, it also features Quad Omnisonic speakers with dual invisible woofers for that richer and fuller sound. This means it’s an all-in-one multimedia device on the fly.
For online meetings, its 1080p resolution front facing camera and dual far-field Studio Mics are advantageous for clearer calls.
Great power comes with great connectivity options
The Microsoft Surface Laptop Studio sure is a future-proof device. Not only it has a 3.5mm audio jack and a dedicated charging port, it also has two USB-C 4.0 ports with Thunderbolt 4 support.
Not only the ports can connect fast external HDDs, SSDs, and newer devices, you can also hook up dual 4K-5K monitors and even an eGPU for that glamorous setup and immersive visual experience whether for work or play.
It also has the speedy Wi-Fi 6 modem as well as Bluetooth 5.1 for less latency.
The Microsoft Surface Laptop Studio runs the latest Windows 11 Home. It’s preloaded with Microsoft 365 apps and a 30-day trial of 365 Home. It also comes with the Xbox App and a one-month trial of Xbox Game Pass Ultimate.
For biometrics, the user can rely on Windows Hello face authentication system. It doesn’t have any fingerprint scanner though.
Pricing and Availability
Pre-orders for the Microsoft Surface Laptop Studio starts today with a base price of US$ 1,599.99. It is expected to be shipped on October 5, 2021.
realme Book officially launches in the Philippines
Does it look familiar?
realme is truly being bold. After starting out with only smartphones, they have gradually expanded their portfolio. Now, they also have a laptop with the realme Book.
One look at its metal gray finish and its easy to make comparisons to Huawei’s MateBook line which drew inspiration from the MacBook line. But that’s a topic for another day. Let’s first look at what this thing is packing.
It’s powered by an 11th Gen Intel Core processor. It’s available in i3 and i5 variants. Each variant offers a different storage option: 256GB SSD storage for i3, and 512GB SSD storage for i5. For RAM, you get 8GB LPDDR4x. Sounds promising? It also has a 54Wh large battery with 65W Super-Fast Charge technology.
The display measures at 14″. It’s a 2K Full-Vision display which should be better than decent. For audio, it’s equipped with Stereo Sound by DTS (Powerful Bass Sound by HARMAN).
Price and availability
The realme Book i3 variant is available at PhP 37,990, while the i5 variant retails for PhP 47,990.
Members of the realme Squad can avail of the realme Book at PhP 8,000 OFF for the i3 (PhP 29,990) and PhP 6,000 OFF for the i5 (PhP 41,990) when they pre-order via the realme Official Store on Lazada starting September 24.
The realme Book will also be available in all Silicon Valley stores starting October 1, with freebies worth PhP 5,500 including a free one-year Microsoft Office 365 subscription, a realme laptop bag, and a mouse.
Lenovo Legion X60 Intel gaming lineup announced
Now with better performance and optimized Lenovo software
Lenovo is once again making big waves when it comes to their Legion gaming laptops. This time around, they’re not really looking at releasing anything new. Instead, they’re more on improving or upgrading their current gear with the latest hardware possible. It all starts with their new Lenovo Legion X60 Intel gaming laptops.
Basically, the Lenovo Legion X60 Intel gaming lineup features refreshed iterations of Legion laptops. At the heart of these laptops is an 11th generation Intel H-Series processor, which promises remarkable performance. Whether you’re gaming, streaming, or simply multi-tasking, these laptops will surely bring the power for whatever purpose. Along with this, these refreshed models also sport the latest NVIDIA RTX GPUs to keep up with insane gaming workloads.
Apart from these, the refreshed models will also come with Lenovo’s dedicated hardware and software technologies for any type of gamer. From Coldfront 3.0 to an improved TrueStrike keyboard, Lenovo built these laptops for either the casual or competitive type. Note that only the following models received the refresh:
- IdeaPad Gaming 3i (PhP 59,995)
- Legion 5i (PhP 72,995) and 5i Pro (PhP 124,995)
- Legion 7i (PhP 169,995)
In terms of availability, these laptops in Legion Exclusive Stores, authorized retailers, and on the Lazada Legion Flagship Store.
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