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PC Show 2013 - Notebooks/Systems, Networking, PC Accessories/Software & Gaming Gear Buying Guide

Notebooks

PC Show 2013 Buying Guide

PC Show 2013 is currently taking place at Singapore Expo, at halls 5 and 6. The show is on from the 6th to the 9th of June, and is open from 12 noon to 9pm.

There will be a ton of products at the show, so in this handy buying guide we'll be giving you tips and tricks on what to look for in a great product. Whether you're buying a new notebook, router, keyboard or mouse, here's what you need to know before you buy your next gadget. But before we begin, here's a video highlight of the top 10 new gadgets from the show floor:-

Buying Guide Index
 


HardwareZone PC Show 2013 Portal

For more on the PC Show, including maps, brochures and Twitter updates, click on through to our PC Show portal.

 

Notebook Deals at the Show

Here are some highlighted Notebook deals at the PC Show this year.

Acer Aspire P3 Hybrid Ultrabook

Acer's Aspire P3 is a powerful 11.6-inch hybrid Ultrabook with a low power consumption notebook CPU (Core i3-3229Y) 2GB RAM and 60GB SSD. It also comes with a folio case that has an integrated Bluetooth Keyboard for when you need to work on the go.

PC Show 2013 Offer

  • PC Show Price: $899 (Usual Price: $1098)
  • PC Show Promotion: Free McAfee Anti-theft (first 200 purchases only till 9June 2013). Trade-in old notebook or desktop for up to $1200 rebate
  • Brochure

Location

Hall 6, Booth 6013

Dell XPS 12

Dell's 12.5-inch convertible Windows 8 Ultrabook uses a swiveling screen to convert between notebook and tablet form factors. It also sports a gorgeous full HD display and solid build quality, with a machined aluminum body and Corning Gorilla Glass protecting the screen. 

PC Show 2013 Offer

  • PC Show Price: $1799 (Core i5) $2199 (Core i7)
  • PC Show Promotion: Free accidental damage coverage, mini DisplaPort to VGA adaptor, 2nd year warranty and 1TB external HDD
  • Brochure

Location

Hall 6, Booth 6001, 6004, 6017 and 6000A

HP Envy 15 TouchSmart Notebook

The new HP Envy 15 Touchsmart has a stunning redesign, and features quality components like a 15.6-inch full HD (1920 x 1080p) display, Beats audio (4 speakers) and a dual-drive subwoofer. It'll also sport a 4th generation quad-core Intel Core i7 processor, 8GB RAM and a 750GB HDD

PC Show 2013 Offer

  • PC Show Price: $1599
  • PC Show Promotion: Free Microsoft 365 or  pay $99 for HP Slate 7-inch tablet
  • Brochure

Location

Hall 6, Booth 6003, 6015

Aftershock XG15

This 15.6-inch gaming PC features some of the latest hardware in the market now. It has a 4th generation Intel i7 (Haswell) processor, and also the powerful new generation NVIDIA 765M GTX discrete GPU.

PC Show 2013 Offer

  • PC Show Price: $1750 (Usual Price: $1900)
  • PC Show Promotion: Free IC diamond CPU+GPU, Color Calibration and TT Esports Gaming Mouse
  • Brochure

Location

Hall 6, Booth 6037

ASUS Transformer Book TX300

The 13.3-inch ASUS Transformer Book is a Windows 8 hybrid Ultrabook is both a tablet and a notebook. It comes with a 3rd generation Intel Core i5 (or i7) processor, and dual storage abilities. There's a 128GB SSD on the tablet, while the dock has an additional 320GB HDD.

PC Show 2013 Offer

  • PC Show Price: $1898 (Core i5), $2098 (Core i7)
  • PC Show Promotion: Free Sennheiser headset HD229S (worth S$99), while stocks last.
  • Brochure

Location

Hall 6, Booth 6012

Samsung Series 3 Chromebook

This affordable notebook runs Chrome OS, and is incredibly fast. It boots in under 10 seconds and has about 7 hours of battery life. It comes with a dual-core ARM processor, 2GB of RAM and free 100GB Google Drive storage space.

PC Show 2013 Offer

Location

Level 6, Booth 6035

 

PC Show 2013 Notebook Portal

Notebook Buying Guide

Whether you're after a lightweight touchscreen convertible Ultrabook, a subwoofer-toting monster gaming machine, or something in between, you'll be spoiled for choice at PC Show 2013. Read on as we give you some tips on choosing the right notebook for you and also show you some of the standout deals from the show.

NOTEBOOKS TODAY

With the introduction of Microsoft's touch-enabled Windows 8 OS we've seen a wealth of new convertible and hybrid notebooks enter the market. Of course, you'll still find slim and light Ultrabooks, great value multimedia notebooks and powerful, high-end desktop replacements too.

 

 

 

Convertible & Hybrid Notebooks are designed for Windows 8's touch-enabled Modern UI, utilizing a touchscreen and the ability to transform into a tablet-like form factor. Convertible Notebooks are defined by having a permanently attached keyboard section, while Hybrid notebooks utilize a separate keyboard and screen that can be docked together. If you want to get the most out of Windows 8, these are definitely the way to go, as they offer the dual-functionality of both a notebook and a tablet. 

Note that not all convertible or hybrid notebooks can be classified as Ultrabooks, as some of them use different processors such as the Intel Atom processor found inside HP's Envy X2.

 

 

Ultrabooks are becoming more and more affordable and make a great choice for anyone looking for a lightweight, portable notebook. All Ultrabooks must meet Intel's strict specifications which include an Intel CULV processor, thickness less than 18mm for 13-inch models, or 21mm for 14-inch models, a minimum battery life of 5 hours, a maximum of 7 seconds wakeup time from hibernation, and a storage transfer rate of at least 80 MB/s.

Ultrabooks are also available with touchscreens for use with Windows 8, however, we have found these to be less than satisfactory, and we recommend a convertible or hybrid Ultrabook instead if you want a touchscreen.

 

 

Multimedia Notebooks offer great value as they often pack top-of-the-line specs and other features not found on an Ultrabook such as a Blu-ray optical drive and better speakers. These notebooks will handle most tasks with ease and thanks to their discrete GPUs, can often be used for some light gaming as well.

 

 

Desktop Replacements are the most expensive notebooks available but are also the most powerful. Packing quad-core Intel i7 processors, powerful discrete GPUs, and full HD 17-inch displays, these machines are made to run the most intensive applications and games. Some also offer 3D displays or superior sound with built-in subwoofers. 

 

What To Look Out For

Processor: Most notebooks today use an Intel processor, but how do you choose between an Intel Atom, Core i5 and Core i7? Intel's Core i7 processors are the most powerful, with Core i5 following close behind, while Atom processors are quite a long way behind them that are meant for light content consumption needs. In our experience, only choose a Intel Core i7 processor on a desktop replacement or high-end multimedia notebook. The CULV-class Intel Core i7 processor found in Ultrabooks isn't much more powerful than the i5 version, and will also drain your battery faster.

Windows 7 or Windows 8 OS: While all convertible and hybrid notebooks will come with Windows 8 as standard, others may come with an option of either Windows 7 or Windows 8. If you're given the choice, you may want to opt for Windows 8 even if you don't have a touchscreen, as most notebook trackpads are capable of handling gesture and swipe commands that work just as well for navigating the Windows 8 Modern UI.

Screen Resolution: While a resolution of 1366 x 768 pixels is considered standard for most 11 and 13-inch notebooks, some notebooks offer much higher resolutions, up to 1920 x 1080 pixels (full HD) on a few models. Our preference is for a resolution of 1440 x 900 or 1680 x 1050 pixels as you an cram more information and do more on a given notebook size than the standard resolution screens. However, the latter could help keep costs down, so it's really a matter of your criteria in getting a notebook.

Check out the latest Notebooks and reviews at our HardwareZone Notebook Product Guide.