by August 2, 2008 0 comments



Searching for that perfect notebook equipped to help you increase
productivity, but have financial constraints? Or maybe cost is not an issue for
you, but what you want is a feature-rich notebook. How about making a style
statement that will make you stand out of the crowd, a slim ultraportable
perhaps for those long business trips. We have tested and evaluated 31 different
notebooks that will cater to all your needs.

Every notebook has a unique set of characteristics defining it. This owes to
its looks, performance, graphics, security, or entertainment features. In most
cases, a higher grade in one or more parameters is achieved by compromising on
the other, for instance, you might not find a massive hard disk or features that
require more space in an ultraportable notebook.
In this shootout, we tested 31 different models of business notebooks from 12
different vendors. For this, we used industry standard benchmarks and the Brown
Gibson statistical model to arrive at the weightages for all categories. This
time, we divided the notebooks by price into the following categories:
a. Budget: Less than 30K
b. Standard: 35 to 45K
c. Mid-Range: 45 to 60K
d. High-End: 60-80K
Apart from the above, we also received two Tablet PCs, 3 UMPCs, and two other
laptops whose price exceeds Rs 1 Lakh. All of these have been reviewed in this
story, but have not been ranked. Ranking has only been done for laptops in the
four categories above.

Performance tests
We ran like PC Mark 05 to test the overall performance of each laptop, 3D Mark
06 and Cinebench release10 to test the graphics, and QCheck to test the WiFi
performance. One thing to keep in mind is that not all notebooks are shipped
with a dedicated graphics card, therefore limiting their graphics potential. For
testing backup times, we used Battery Mark 4.0. Lastly, we added one more test
to measure the power consumed by each laptop in three modes-idle, working,
sleep. We did this with the help of a Wattmeter we recently purchased.
Features
There is a wide variety of features available in notebooks. There are built-in
web cameras, finger print readers, etc. The features that were taken into
account were size and weight, no. and types of input-output ports available on
the notebook including S video, FireWire, HDMI and no. of USB ports available,
ergonomics that covers sturdiness, locks, screen protection, touchpad, and
keyboard placement and then there were other features like presence of trusted
platform module (TPM) chip, presence of Gigabit Ethernet, operating system
shipped with the notebook, memory card readers, webcam, one touch media buttons,
etc.
Pricing
Price is one of the most important factors that help people make their buying
decision. So we took into account both price and warranty in deciding for the
winner. The notebooks we received ranged from INR 23k to 1.5 lakhs. In terms of
warranty, almost all came with 1 year warranty but there were some which had 3
years as well, which is always an added advantage.

High-End
Lenovo Thinkpad R61

Quick Specs
Specs:
INTEL CORE2 DUO T7700 with 2.40 GHz speed, 2 GB RAM, 160 GB HDD, 3 USB ports
Price: Rs 64,000 (3 yr warranty)
Contact: Lenovo India Tel: 1800-425-3336, email:
buy@in.lenovo.com

The Thinkpad R61 from Lenovo turned out to be the winner in the high-end
category with excellent performance and a competitive price. This laptop is a
perfect choice for business users, given its matte black finish that doesn’t
attract smudges, the slim design, and the elegant looks. It has just about
everything that a business user would want–a 14.1” screen that’s neither to
large, nor too small, nor is it glossy like others, which show the user’s own
reflection. It has rescue and recovery features, in case your laptop crashes, a
webcam, and much more. Of course, the laptop’s weight could have been a little
lesser as other similar 14.1” screen laptops, such as Fujitsu’s S6510 weigh much
lesser. Hardware configuration is pretty good–an Intel Core 2 Duo T7700
processor, 2 GB RAM and 160 GB HDD. It has 3 USB ports and a DVD R/W optical
drive. Like most Thinkpads, this one too has a trackpoint.

Its keyboard also has two dedicated keys for going forward and backward on
the same window. It also has a finger print reader and all connectivity options
like with FireWire, Gigabit Ethernet and Bluetooth. Its battery lasts for 2 hrs
22 mins and it’s also the best performer in its category. Save for the weight,
the laptop is an ideal buy for business users, given its performance and rich
feature set.

Fujitsu S6510

Quick Specs
Specs:
CORE 2 DUO T7500 2.20 GHz, 1 GB RAM, 160 GB HDD, 14.1” Screen, 1.85 Kg,
Webcam and Fingerprint Scanner
Price: Rs 80,000 (3 yr warranty)
Contact: Fujitsu PC, Gurgaon. Tel: 014-4705100, Email:
mansi.saxena@in.fujitsu.com

The black Lifebook from Fujitsu gives you the professional business look
similar to that of Lenovo’s ThinkPad R61.While it has a non-glossy body to
prevent smudging, its screen is glossy. On the performance front as well, the
laptop is just a little behind the R61, the best performer in this category. The
S6510 has a pretty decent set of features, which would be useful for all
business users. These include all connectivity options like Bluetooth, WiFi,
Gigabit Ethernet etc, security through a fingerprint scanner, and even a webcam
for video conferencing. Plus, it has a large keyboard with well spaced out keys
that are easy to operate even for people with large fingers.

Thelaptop is quite sleek, having a 14.1” widescreen, and weighing just 1.85
kg. Add to that a battery backup of 3 hrs and 12 mins, and you get an ideal
option for frequent travellers.
This notebook has Core 2 Duo processor with 1 GB RAM, which is pretty decent for
a standard business user.

The only caveat of this notebook is the high price. In this category, it’s
only lesser expensive than the Sony Vaio CR37. Otherwise, if you’re looking for
a slim, lightweight professional notebook for your business, then this is an
ideal choice.

Sony FZ35

Quick Specs
Specs:
INTEL CORE 2 DUO T8100 @2.10 GHz, 1.80 GHz, 2 GB RAM, 200 GB HDD, 15.4”
Screen, 2.64 Kgs, webcam
Price: Rs 59,990 (1 yr warranty)
Contact: Sony India, New Delhi, Tel: 1800-11-11-88, Email:
sonyindia.care@ap.sony.com

Here’s another 15.4” large screen laptop for working professionals looking
for a desktop replacement. This laptop gives a similar performance score as
Fujitsu’s S6510. However, its performance in grahics and regular productivity
benchmarks is far ahead of Fujitsu. The only place where it looses out is
battery backup. It managed to give a battery backup of just 1 hour 38 min, which
is far below Fujitsu’s 3 hrs 12 min. Interestingly, the notebook’s power
consumption is th e highest in its category. Even in idle mode, it consumed 40W,
whereas at peak performance, it consumed 67W. One missing feature in the laptop
is a fingerprint scanner, while the ones it does have are a SD card slot and
webcam.

It can even be an entertainment notebook, having buttons detected for
multimedia. So if you are looking for a good performing notebook at a reasonable
price, then consider this. But you have to compromise on battery life and power
consumption.

Sony CR 37

Quick Specs
Specs:
Intel Core 2 Duo Processor T8100 (2.10 GHz), 2 GB RAM, 250 GB HDD, 14.1″
display
Price: Rs 64,990 (1 yr warranty)
Contact: Sony India, New Delhi, Tel: 1800-11-11-88, Email :
sonyindia.care@ap.sony.com

Designed to look ‘kewl,’ the laptop has a metallic color base and a black
color lid, with a black keyboard outlined by a metallic border. The machine has
a display of 14.1” and is quite sleek and weighs just a littlelighter
(2.5kg)than Lenovo R61.

The laptop also has a display off button, and once you switch display, its
ambient light starts flashing slowly to indicate that the laptop is on. It also
has dedicated button for capturing images directly from its integrated 1.3
megapixel motion eye camera. It’s equipped with Intel Core2 Duo Processor T8100
with 2.10 GHz speed, 2 GB RAM, and a slightly bigger hard drive with 250 GB
space. It also has a fingerprint reader, 3 USB ports, and a DVD RW optical
drive. In terms of performance it lasted for 2 hours and 28 minutes in battery
mark. It scored low (889) in 3D Mark and another down point is 1 year of
warranty. Overall, it’s a good buy if you are looking for stylish looks and
don’t plan to run graphic-intensive applications.

TOSHIBA M800

Quick Specs
Specs:
CORE 2 DUO T8100 @2.10 GHZ, 2GB RAM, 240 GB HDD, 13.3″ Display
Price: Rs 72580 (3 yr warranty)
Contact: Toshiba India Pvt Ltd, Delhi
Tel: 1800-11-8674
Email:
notebooksales@toshiba-india.com

This laptop is part of Toshiba’s Portege series. It looks quite simple and
sleek and weighs only 2.05 kg, with a 13.3” Display and an integrated webcam.
This makes it ideal for mobile professionals who travel frequently. The laptop
is powered with an Intel Core 2 Duo T8100 running at 2.10 GHZ, 2 GB RAM and 240
GB Hard Drive. It comes with Toshiba HDD protection and also a finger print
reader for security. It has 3 USB ports, a DVD R/W optical drive and also has
support for Dolby Sound Room. For connectivity it supports standard 10/100
Ethernet, Bluetooth and Firewire.

Performance wise the laptop gave average performance, lasting 2 hours and 9
minutes in Battery Mark and managed a score of 3070 in PC Mark and a score of
581 in 3D Mark.

Overall it’s a decent laptop, priced just a little higher but on the positive
side, it comes with a 3 year Warranty.

Mid-range
Dell XPS M1330

Quick Specs
Specs:
Core 2 Duo Processor 2.20 GHz, 2 GB RAM, 250 GB HDD, Screen size 13.3”, 2.1
kg, web cam, Nvidea GeForce 8400M GS
Price: Rs 48,900 (2 yr warranty)
Contact: Dell, Tel: 1800-425-4026/088-25068026, Email:
online_india@dell.com

This light-weight notebook looks beautiful with its smart and compact design.
Meant for professionals who need performance with style, this notebook is a true
winner in all respects. Styling done on the upper flap is beautiful with
aluminum strips on both sides. The notebook is designed in such a way that when
placed on an even surface there is a gap left beneath it; this helps in better
airflow, which in turn helps the machine to perform better. Now moving from
brilliant design to its performance: here again it comes out to be the best in
its category. The overall score of this machine is also way ahead as compared to
that achieved by most others; infact M1330 has second best score amongst all
notebooks evaluated in this shootout. One point to note here is that M1330 comes
with nine-cell battery that has given it an edge in battery backup. The laptop
lasted a shopping 4 hrs 13 mins on battery. The laptop also has a comfortable
keypad with large keys, big enough for even large hands.

The XPS M1330 comes with nine one-touch buttons for quick access and
‘Firewire’ and ‘HDMI’ ports. M1330’s sleek design and light weight makes it
ideal for frequent travellers. It only weighs 2.1 kg. If a professional is
looking for a notebook that has blend of performance and style, this one is
highly recommended as worth every penny spent on it.

Sony VGN-NR38GN/L

Quick Specs
Specs:
Core 2 Duo Processor 1.80 GHz, 1 GB RAM, 200 GB HDD, screen size 15.4”, 2.9
kg
Price: Rs 49,990 (1 yr warranty)
Contact: Sony India, New Delhi, Tel: 1800-11-11-88, E-mail:
sonyindia.care@ap.sony.com

This machine is for professionals who have an appetite for style. The Vaio
series is known for its good styling and this machine is no exception. The
design of this is sturdy and stylish. It comes with four USB ports along with a
‘Firewire’ port and even something called the ‘Magicgate’ slot for Sony specific
memory cards. Its switch for WiFi is placed in front along with speakers just
below the 15.4” screen. In overall performance, this machine is second best to
Dell’s XPS 1330, but its behind by a wide margin. Its closest competitor is
Acer’s TM5720, which outscores it in performance, but looses out to it in
features. One of the places where it gains against the Acer is hard drive
capacity. It has 200 GB hard drive against’s Acer’s 120 GB. The laptop’s
keyboard is well built, but the only catch is that the whole keypad bends when
one applies extra pressure on any key.

Though the machine is quite presentable, its weight which is around 3 kg,
which makes it difficult to carry around.

So it is a good option for users who need a laptop to save space on the
desktop, but who don’t travel much. The laptop’s battery backup stands just a
little below 3 hours, which is excellent. If only the weight had been a little
lesser, it would have been a great choice for those on the move.

Acer TravelMate 6292

Quick Specs
Specs:
Core 2 Duo T5550 2.0 GHz, 2GB RAM, 160GB HDD, webcam, 12.1”, 2.05 Kg,
fingerprint scanner
Price: Rs 47,299 (1 yr warranty)
Contact: Acer India, Bangalore, Tel: 25219520, email:
Rajesh_Aiyar@acer.co.in

This is a serious professional’s notebook, with a small form factor and a
screen size of 12.1”. The notebook weighs only 1.99 kg, and has batteries that
last a little over 3 hours, making it an ideal travel companion. It’s also quite
sturdy. The TravelMate 6292 comes with FireWire and S-video ports and smartly
placed speakers at the front. Even the ports for mic, headphones, lineout, and
FireWire are positioned in front of its base, making them easily accessible.
Even the fingerprint scanner has been placed between the two trackpad buttons
for quick and easy access. The laptop has a webcam that’s apparently optimized
for video conferencing. Its performance is average compared to others. The
machine’s keypad is large and comfortable to use. Seven different one touch
buttons are provided for functions like WiFi, Bluetooth, etc. Due to its smart
design and lighter weight, this notebook is perfect for individuals that are
perennially on the move.

Acer TravelMate 5720

Quick Specs
Specs:
Core 2 Duo Processor 2.20 GHz, 1 GB RAM, 120 GB HDD, webcam, Screen
size15.4”, 2.92 kg, Fingerprint scanner
Price: Rs49,999 (1 yr warranty)
Contact: Acer India, Bangalore, Tel: 25219520, E-mail:
Rajesh_Aiyar@acer.co.in

The is a large notebook, with a 15” screen, ideally suited for working
professionals looking for a desktop replacement. The laptop has all the features
required for this kind of a requirement, including seven one-touch keys, Wifi,
Bluetooth, multimedia jacks on the front, memory slot, and a fingerprint scanner
between the touchpad buttons. It also has a webcam that’s optimized for video
conferencing. Plus, it also has FireWire, S-Video and four USB ports. The
laptop’s performance is second highest in its category. This is primarily due to
the whopping 3 hrs 30 min battery backup that it provides. For a laptop this
size, the backup time is quite commendable. Its keyboard is really interesting,
as its slightly curved. But since it’s a full-sized keyboard, the curves don’t
reduce the usability.

Overall, a great machine for desktop replacement, with all the bells and
whistles you could ask for.

LG XNOTE E200

Quick Specs
Specs:
Core 2 Duo processor 1.66 GHz, 1GB RAM, 160 GB HDD, 12.1” Screen, ATI Radeon
graphic, Web cam, 2 Kg
Price: Rs 51,500 (1 yr warranty)
Contact: LG Electronics India, Greater Noida, Tel:
120-2560900, Email: SAIvi@lgindia.com

E200 is a beautiful notebook, and you could easily fall for it purely for its
looks and sturdy design. The laptop sports a 12.1” screen, and is quite compact.
In fact, it’s quite portable, as it weighs just 2 kg. This is also one of the
few machines to come with a ‘HDMI’ port for high definition output. Even the
configuration is decent–Core2Duo processor, ATI Radeon graphics, 1 GB RAM, and
Windows Vista. Unfortunately, it couldn’t outperform the other laptops in its
category, which is strange given this config.

The E200 has a decent sized keypad with optimally placed keys and a nice
touchpad that is comfortable to work with.

Due to its small form factor and compact feel, this notebook is perfect for
professionals on the move. One can also enjoy music while working as sound
quality of speakers is good. Plus, it has a battery backup of 2 hrs and 20 mins.

Standard : DELL VOSTRO 1200

Quick Specs
Specs:
Intel Core 2 Duo T7250 2.0 GHz, 2 GB RAM, 160 GB HDD, Gigabit Ethernet,
12.1”, Fingerprint scanner, Webcam, 2.10 Kgs.
Price: Rs 38,900 (1 yr warranty)
Contact: Dell, Tel: 1800-425-4026(Toll Free) Email:
online_india@dell.com

The Vostro 1200 has been designed keeping in mind the needs of people working
in small to mid-sized businesses. It’s powered by a Core 2 Duo processor coupled
with 2 GB RAM that is upgradable to 4 GB. The laptop gave the best performance
amongst all laptops in its class. The laptop has a host of good features–12.1”
widescreen, lightweight at 2.1 kg, fingerprint scanner, a webcam, and even a
card reader. It has a DVD writer, but that’s standard across all laptops these
days. It also has all the basic I/O ports, except FireWire, S-Video out, and
quick launch keys. But these are not something that a user can’t live without.
Even WiFi and Bluetooth are also a part of the laptop, which take care of your
wireless connectivity needs.Wired connectivity is taken care of by a Gigabit
Ethernet port.

Vostro’s design is very neat and compact, making it easy to carry around.
Couple that with the 3 hours battery backup it provides, which is the highest in
this category. Its keyboard is a little small though, which takes time getting
used to. Even the touchpad keys are a little hard to press.

Overall, a good laptop for frequent travellers given its performance and
portability.



ASUS F5SL

Quick Specs
Specs:
Core 2 Duo T5550 1.83GHz, 2 GB RAM, ATI Radeon HD 3470 graphics, 160 GB HDD,
15.4”, rotating webcam, 2.75 Kgs
Price: Rs 44,990 (2 yr warranty)
Contact: ASUS Technology, Mumbai, Tel: 67668800 Email:
media_india@asus.com

The Asus F5SL is one of the two winners in this price segment. The laptop is
a mixture of style and performance. The 15.4” LCD delivers sharper pictures,
thereby making image and movie viewing a pleasant experience. On top of the
screen you have a rotating webcam for video conferencing that lets you click
pictures and shoot video clips both on the front and behind the screen easily. A
Core 2 Duo processor and 2 GB RAM lie at the heart of this notebook, but its
main attraction is the dedicated HD3470 graphics chipset from ATI, which gives a
considerable lead over others in its class in graphics performance. However, the
laptop sacrifices its battery backup for performance. It managed to stay alive
for just 1 hr and 4 mins on battery, which was the lowest in the entire
shootout. Despite that, the graphics performance makes its overall performance
score just a hair below the top scorer in this category, the Dell Vostro 1200.
The laptop has one touch buttons for opening a web browser, mute, etc. Both its
keypad and touchpad are very comfy with adequate spacing amongst the keys.
Overall, it’s a good buy in its class for those needing more than basic
productivity work.

ACER ASPIRE 2920

Quick Specs
Specs:
Core 2 Duo T5550 1.83 GHz, 2GB RAM, 160GB HDD, webcam, 12.1”, 2.05 Kgs
Price: Rs 39,999 (1 yr warranty)
Contact: Acer India, Bangalore, Tel: 25219520, Email :
Rajesh_Aiyar@acer.co.in

ACore 2 Duo 1.83 GHz processor is what powers the Acer Aspire 2920 along with
a 2 GB RAM and 160GB HDD for storage. The notebook looks exactly like a smaller
version of the Aspire 5920. But with a 12.1” screen and weight of around 2 kgs,
its quite comfortable to lug around. The notebook scored decently in both
features and pricing, and gave the second best performance for this category.
Like the 5920 even this one has a Dolby certified sound system and two built-in
speakers.

It also has a 5-in-1 card reader along with a DVD writer and webcam. One
touch buttons have been provided on it for accessing email, switching on/off
Bluetooth and Wi-Fi making this an easier and more comfortable notebook when it
comes to usage.

Battery backup is decent at 2 hrs 45 mins. Overall, the Aspire 2920 is a good
choice for people who are looking for a compact, feature rich notebook, which
they need to carry around often.

ACER ASPIRE 5920

Quick Specs
Specs:
Core 2 Duo 1.83 GHz, 2 GB RAM, 160 GB HDD, 15.4”, 3 kg, webcam
Price: Rs 38,534 (1 yr warranty)
Contact: Rajesh Aiyar, Acer India, Bangalore, Tel: 25219520,
E-mail : Rajesh_Aiyar@acer.co.in

Only a few points behind the winners in this segment, this notebook gives
decent performance and is high on entertainment features. Sporting a 15.4” LCD
screen, loaded with Dolby certified surround sound system with a subwoofer, Acer
MediaTouch keys and one touch Wi-Fi, Bluetooth and Email buttons, the Aspire
5920 seems like a dream come true for professionals who want their notebooks to
turn into entertainment powerhouses when they are not working. The notebook has
packed inside a Core 2 duo processor, 2 GB RAM, and 160 GB HDD. Apart from this
it has S-video and FireWire ports, along with 4 USB 2.0 ports, a webcam, a card
reader, and a DVD writer. It weighs around 3 kg which makes it amongst the
heavier ones in this category. Therefore when it comes to usage, due to its size
and weight the notebook is not good for people who are looking for something
more comfortable to carry. Battery backup stands at 2 hrs and 29 mins.

HCL Infinti Powerlite 9100 PL

Quick Specs
Specs:
Pentium Dual Core 1.86GHz, 2 GB RAM, 160 GB HDD, 14.1”, webcam 2.35 Kgs.
Price: Rs 37,677 (1 yr warranty)
Contact: HCL, Noida, Tel: 9312219956 Email:
aditya.bhandari@hcl.in

This model has a 14.1” screen and weighs around 2.35 Kgs which is good for
its price. It also gives a decent battery back up of around 2 hours 31 min. It
does have a basic configuration in terms of features like webcam, USB ports, DVD
writer and a card reader but there’s no S- video or FireWire output, or security
features like a biometric fingerprint reader which might be necessary for some.
The DVD writer, memory card reader, USB, headphone and microphone ports have
been intelligently placed on the sides leaving only the VGA and Kensington lock
port at the back, making it comfortable to use even when you have devices
plugged into these ports.

However, the notebook delivers decent performance and competes well with
others in this category. Overall, the 9100 PL is a good laptop for the budget
conscious who just need a laptop for running their basic productivity
applications.

LG R 405-L

Quick Specs
Specs:
Pentium Dual Core T2370 1.73 GHz, 2 GB RAM, 240 GB hard disk, webcam, 14.1”,
2.35 Kgs
Price: Rs 39,000 (1 yr warranty)
Contact:LG electronics India, Greater Noida, Tel: 2560900,
Email: salvi@lgindia.com

This notebook is amongst the good looking notebooks in this class, band has a
compact and sturdy design. The keyboard of this notebook is easy to use having
large keys with adequate space for placing your palms. Same goes for the
touchpad, which is quite smooth. Most input and output ports on this notebook
are provided on the sides which make it comfortable to use even while working
with a few devices plugged in. It comes loaded with a massive 240 GB HDD as
compared to 160 GB HDD present in most other notebooks. It also has standard
features that are present on most laptops in this price range, including a
webcam, S- video out, and a memory card reader. It misses out on a fingerprint
reader and FireWire out. In performance, the R405L lags behind most other
contenders in its category which can be due to the Pentium Dual core processor.
Overall, a good notebook for basic productivity. Battery backup stands at 2 hrs
12 min.

SONY VAIO CR343N

Quick Specs
Specs:
Core 2 duo T5670 1.80 GHz, 1GB RAM, 200 GB hard disk, 14.1” widescreen, AV
buttons, webcam, fingerprint, 2.5 Kgs
Price: Rs 44,990 (1 yr warranty)
Contact: Sony India, New Delhi, Tel: 1800-11-11-88 (Toll free),
Email: sonyindia.care@ap.sony.com

ACore 2 Duo processor, 1 GB DDR2 SDRAM, 200 GB hard disk drive and a DVD RW
optical drive are all that this notebook comes with. Performance is nothing
spectacular, despite the configuration. However, it has scored second highest on
the features front. It has buttons around the keyboard that let you control AV
applications and capture images with a single touch. Like almost all Vaio series
notebooks, it has a beautiful design with 14.1” wide LCD display which gives you
a relatively good picture quality.

What makes it pretty comfortable to use is its keyboard -the keys are quite
big and well spaced. It comes loaded with Windows Vista Business Edition and a
trial version of Microsoft Office 2007.

Overall this is a good looking, feature rich notebook having a sturdy design
but is a little overpriced as compared to its competitors. Battery backup is
just a little below 2 hours.

TOSHIBA Satellite L310

Quick Specs
Specs:
Core 2 Duo T5550 1.83 GHz, 2GB RAM, 120 GB HDD, Gigabit Ethernet, Webcam,
fingerprint recognition, 14.1”, 2.4 Kgs.
Price: Rs 41,805
Contact: Toshiba India, Delhi, Tel: 26383500, Email:

notebooksales@toshiba-india.com

The Toshiba satellite L310 is a good looking business notebook. Even though
it has a 14.1” LCD widescreen display it still looks quite compact and weighs
only 2.39 kg. Based on the Centrino platform the L310 runs on an Intel Core 2
Duo processor with 2 GB RAM and 120 GB hard disk drive. Other features on this
notebook include a webcam, gigabit Ethernet, fingerprint recognition, AV
buttons, a FireWire out and a DVD writer.

Its keyboard was one of the most comfortable we came across in this category.
The keys are large and very well labeled making it. But this is where the
goodies end. The notebook’s performance isn’t average as compared to others in
its class.

Overall, the L310 is a good looking notebook with a decent set of features
but lags in performance as compared to others in this segment. Its battery
backup is just a little below 2 hours. It’s an average laptop, meant for basic
productivity work.

Budget
Zenith Presidio

Quick Specs
Specs:
Intel Core 2 Duo 1.86 GHz, 1 GB RAM, 160 GB HDD, 4 USB ports, 12.1 inch
Screen, 1.9 Kg
Price: Rs 26,500 (1 yr warranty)
Contact: Zenith Computers, Tel: 28377300 Email:
info@zenith-india.com

The Presidio is a lightweight and sturdy notebook, and quite professional
looking with a compact and appealing design. Good looks aren’t the only plus
point of this beauty. It comes packed with an ‘Intel Core 2 Duo processor’ and
one GB of RAM, which have perhaps helped it become the best performer in its
class. In fact, one of the rasons for that is the superb battery backup of
nearly two hours, which is again the highest in its class. Plus, it’s also the
lightest laptop we got in this category, weighing just 1.9 kg. Being a
widescreen with just a 12.1” screen ensures that you can use it even in cramped
places, such as a domestic flight. Besides that, the laptop has all the regular
features required by a mobile professional–Bluetooth, 4 USB ports, SD card
slot, and even a FireWire port. Plus, it also has a S-Video port. One thing that
would take you sometime to get used to is the size of ‘Shift’ and ‘Control’
keys. They’re half the normal size. Speakers are smartly placed on the front,
and so are the LED indicators for HDD, WiFi, power, etc. Presidio has a decent
touch pad that’s quite comfortable to use. Plus, it has shortcut buttons to
launch mail, browser, music, etc. Like most other laptops in its class, this one
also didn’t ship with an OS, so you’ll have to pay separately for that. All in
all, an excellent choice for frequent travellers, given its lightweight, good
battery backup and excellent performance.

HCL Leaptop G-2827

Quick Specs
Specs:
Intel Celeron processor 2.0 GHz, 512 MB RAM, 160 GB HDD, 15.4” Screen, 2.71
Kg
Price: Rs 22,990 (1 yr warranty)
Contact: HCL Infosystems, Tel: 9818989875, Email:
product.lab@hcl.in

This was the lowest priced laptop we received in the shootout, so obviously
it’s meant for people on a shoe-string budget. But the good part is that the
laptop doesn’t skimp on features because of the price. It has a roomy 15.4”
widescreen that’s a pleasure to work with, and comes packed with an ample 160
GB of HDD space. It has all the basic I/O ports that you would need to work
with. These include 4 USB, VGA out, and the usual network, headphones, mic, etc.
The speakers are very optimally placed on its front panel at the edges. Don’t
expect anything but regular productivity work out of it, because it houses a
Celeron processor, and even the RAM is a lowly 512 MB. Even battery backup isn’t
too great at 1 hr 39 mins. Plus, while its shiny body looks attractive in the
beginning, it is prone to smudging and scratches would be visible in the silvery
part around the central lock of the LCD panel.

Working on it is quite comfortable though, even for people with large
fingers, because of a full-sized keyboard and plenty of resting space for palms.
Even the touch pad is quite comfortable to use. Overall, a good choice for
regular office work.

Chirag CD18

Quick Specs
Specs:
Core Duo Mobile processor 1.86 GHz, 512MB RAM, 100 GB HDD, 12.1”, ATI Radeon
graphics, 1.91 Kg
Price: Rs 27,000 (3 yr warranty)
Contact: R P Info systems, Kolkata, Tel: 22319003, Email:
bijonc@rpchirag.com

This notebook is compact with a 12.1” screen, and quite sturdy and light,
making it ideal for frequent travellers. However, we did observe a few minor
nuances. When we powered it on, the screen kept going blank intermittently
during the booting process, and we couldn’t find any power or HDD LEDs to
indicate any activity. Thankfully the machine booted fine. The notebok has an
Intel Core Duo mobile processor with ATI Radeon Express graphics. It’s not too
impressive in performance, scoring the lowest in the group. It also heated up
rather quickly, especially below the right palmrest. Interestingly, the notebook
reached us preloaded with DOS, so you would have to spend extra for an OS. The
‘Delete’ key’s placement is odd, and size of the ‘Shift’ key is also half, which
would take time to get used to. Battery backup was decent at 2 hrs 21 min. Add
to that the 1.91 kg weight and it’s useful for frequent travellers.

HCL Leaptop 9200 GM

Quick Specs
Specs:
Intel Celeron processor 2.0 GHz, 1 GB RAM, 160 GB HDD, 15.4” Screen, 2.7 Kg
Price: Rs 30,281 (1 yr warranty)
Contact: HCL Infosystems. Tel: 9818989875, Email:
product.lab@hcl.in

Leaptop 9200 looks like the third brother in its category of the HCL family
of G2827, P2826 and 9200GM. What differentiates this from others is that this
comes with Windows Vista Business which in turn makes this machine costlier than
the other two. Most expensive in its category is obvious as Vista price is
incorporated. All these models have three one touch keys for quick access. Using
these keys one can access internet, mail. One key ‘P1’ is a programmable key
that can be configured according to ones need. When we talk about overall score
this is at the bottom, and on the performance front this one has managed
position just above Chirag and G2827. Keypad and touch pad is exactly same as
other two HCL notebooks in this category.

This again due to its size and weight is difficult to carry around. We don’t
recommend it for professionals on move. 9200 GM is a good option as a desktop
replacement.

HCL Leaptop P2826

Quick Specs
Specs:
Intel Core 2 Duo processor 1.86 GHz, 2 GB RAM, 160 GB HDD, 15.4”, 2.7 Kg,
Webcam Price:
Rs 28,990 (2 yr warranty)
Contact: HCL Infosystems. Tel: 9818989875, Email:
product.lab@hcl.in

This one looks exactly similar to the other two Leaptops from HCL in this
category. The difference is that this one comes with an Intel Core 2 Duo CPU,
whereas the other two are Celeron based. Plus, it has more features, such as a
built-in webcam. Plus, it comes with an ample 2 GB RAM, while the other two have
512 and 1 GB. It obviously outperforms the other two due to this.This notebook
has all the regular ports needed by ordinary users, such as four USB ports,
Ethernet, modem, VGA, etc. We did wish it also came with Bluetooth as well at
this price. As the overall score suggests, this notebook is the second best
performer in this category. The laptop can be used for daily office work and
with added features it can be configured for more advanced apps like
teleconferencing. However, owing to the large size and 2.73 kg weight, it’s not
for those who’re perpetually on the move. Overall, go for this if you need
performance and are an infrequent traveller.

LG XNOTE ED510-L

Quick Specs
Specs:
Intel Celeron processor, 1GB RAM, 120 GB HDD, 15.4”, 2.68 kg
Price: Rs 27,000 (2 yr warranty)
Contact: LG Electronics India Pvt. Ltd., Greater Noida, Tel:
120-2560900,
Email: SAIvi@lgindia.com

This is another large 15.4” widescreen laptop, like all HCL Leaptops in this
category. But despite that, it’s a little lighter than the Leaptops, weighing
2.68 kg as against 2.73 kg of the Leaptops. It also has a full size keyboard and
plenty of space to rest your palms. This laptop comes with an Intel Celeron
Processor and 1 GB RAM. The overall laptop is quite sturdy with two locks to
safely close the LCD panel. A small problem, which might be with this piece was
the battery, which is not tightly locked into its place. It has basic features
that would be required by a standard user, save for one card reader. There are
no quick launch buttons, like in the Zenith Presidio. The laptop’s performance
is pretty good, but battery back up is on the lower side at 1 hr and 37 mins.
Overall, a good notebook for basic productivity work, and given the weight and
size, it’s not meant for frequent travelers.

Tablets
Fujitsu LifeBook T2010

Quick Specs
Specs:
Intel Core 2 Duo U7600 1.2 GHz, 1 GB RAM, 160 GB HDD, 12.1” Screen,
Fingerprint Sensor, TPM
Price: Rs 1,05,000 (3 yr warranty)
Contact: Fujitsu PC Asia, Gurgaon Tel: 014-4705100, Email:
mansi.saxena@in.fujitsu.com

The slim, light-weight LifeBook is a convertible tablet wiht a bi-directional
swivel. A Tablet PC is ideal for designers or architects who’re mostly on site
and have to pen down a plan or design which they have to draw by hand. This
tablet fits the purpose. It has a stylus that’s sensitive to small taps and
gives a feel of actually writing on a notepad. The stylus even has an eraser
head. To be used as hand-held, it provides a good grip; if you are holding the
tablet in your right hand you can change the orientation of display by 180
degree so that the grip is on your right hand. It houses a front mounted
battery, because of which the touchpad has been replaced with a track-ball. It
has Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, Gbe, VGA and 2 USB ports along with a FireWire port. All
it lacks is an optical drive. For performance it gave a decent 2966 score in
PCMark and 226 in 3DMark , which are good. Battery life lasted 3 minutes shy of
two hours. It’s sensibly designed.

HCL Leaptop 9100 PT

Quick Specs
Specs:
Intel Core 2 Duo processor 2 GHz, 2 GB of RAM, 250 GB of HDD, screen size of
12.1”, 2.2 kg, Web cam, Finger print scanner
Price: Rs 46,500 (1 yr warranty)
Contact: HCL Infosystems, Tel: 9818989875, E-mail:
product.lab@hcl.in

The first thing that catches eye in this tablet is its glossy finish and
compact design. Though this machine is a tablet, it doesn’t loose out its
sturdiness.9100 PT comes with ‘FireWire’ port with speakers optimally placed on
upper flap. 12.1-inch screen is well secured in all the positions. This machine
comes loaded with Windows Vista Business. We carried out same tests as done on
notebooks to check performance of this machine and this one faired very well in
them. Keypad of this tablet is quite nice with convenient sized keys and a nice
touch pad. One impressive aspect of this high performing tablet is the price
that is quite attractive. 9100’s small form factor with low weight makes it
ideal for professionals on move, especially those who are in the field of
designing like architectures, interior designers etc. The most attractive thing
about this tablet is the price. At around 46K, it’s a steal.

Sandeep Koul, Varun Jaitly, Swapnil Arora and Rahul Sah

 

Click here for Specs
Table

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