Buying an Ultrabook, Features you must consider ; Buying Guide

ultrabook-hummingbird

Thin,Sleek,Long lasting Batteries, light in weight and “Inspired by Intel” are the words associated with a Ultrabook these days. Those who have no idea about what an Ultrabook is , An UltraBook is something that Laptops were meant to be. Ultrabooks are actually the clan of those thin yet extremely powerful laptops and notebooks that are running on Intel’s new Sandy bridge architecture. Intel announced the Ultrabook concept at Computex in 2011.

Ultrabook is new segment and sooner or later you may want to buy one.Here we present a comprehensive guide to what are the Specs that really matter when you are going to buy a UltraBook.

CPU:

Intel Core Processor

Since Ultrabooks are meant to be power packed performers, almost all of these devices come with i5 or i7 as Processor. Intel’s i5 and i7 are already well-known performers. The third generation core i processor series is built to consume even lesser power that means a longer battery life with just no compromise with the processing power.

Storage, HDD vs SSD vs Hybrid Drive:

Hybrid Drive 500GB

Most Ultrabooks offer 320GB or 500GB as standard storage option for HDD and those which offer faster SSD drives will offer 128GB to 256GB disk space. Though you can also get as much as 1TB in some Ultrabooks like Samsung Series 5 Ultrabooks. While mechanical HDD offer you a better storage option at  a lower cost, SSD offer you a high performing system but at a premium cost.

So what is Better SSD or mechanical HDD ? Well you need to understand your need to make this decision. Those who are power and performance hungry and don’t care to spend a fortune to get that should go for SSD as they offer high performance at a premium rate. However if you want an ample amount of storage at a reasonable price go for a  mechanical HDD. Remember SSD + high performing CPU + Fast RAM = a power full high performance system.

These days some of the Ultrabook manufacturers have started to bundle SSD and HDD together in the same device. These are known as Hybrid Drives. Hybrid drive devices have HDD for storage and some small amount (10GB to 20 GB) SSD drive space to store OS and Boot options to make Booting the device fast. Like Acer Aspire S3 comes with a 320GB hard drive along with a 20GB solid state drive, and the Samsung Series 5 offers a 500GB drive and 16GB SSD.

GPU:

Ultrabook gpu

While deciding which Ultrabook to buy decision about Integrated or dedicated GPU is quite important to decide the performance of your Ultrabook. If you are a gaming enthusiast and plan to use your Ultrabook for gaming purpose do select one that has a AMD or NVIDIA dedicated GPU. If your sole purpose is business and a little HD movies etc. then you can go for Integrated GPU as well. Recently NVIDIA and AMD launched their GeForce 600M and 7000M series Graphic cards for Ultrabooks and laptops.

Screen:

hp-spectre-xt-touchsmart-ultrabook-laptop

When the Ultrabooks were essentially launched their were mostly 13inch devices available. But with recent launches the screen sizes of  these devices have increased and 14″ and 15″ display is also common. You can easily get 1366×768 display resolution while a few high-end also offer 1600×900 resolution. While in a showroom selecting a device make sure you pay attention to details like viewing angle,brightness and contrast, colors etc.

Design and Looks:

ultrabook

Ultrabooks are often seen as a competition to Mac Book Air , and we all know that Apple devices are all about design and looks. Since a Ultrabook is meant to be an all purpose device meant to go anywhere and highly portable a metal finish chassis is preferable for durability. Like The Dell XPS 13 is a sturdy Ultrabook,made of aluminum and carbon fiber.  HP Envy 14 Spectre also uses scratch-resistant glass on the lid and palm rest.

What to look for:

  • Look for keyboard design,Touchpad most of Ultrabook manufacturers opt for a button less touchpad to make their designs sleek but it’s often very inaccurate.
  • Also check Hinge placement and palm rest comfort.

Connectivity:

HP-DM3-Ultrabook-connectivity

Most of the Ultrabooks sacrifice certain ports to achieve a thinner design. Make sure that your Ultrabook has all the ports that you need. for instance if you are buying Ultrabook for business purpose make sure it has a VGA port to connect projectors and also an Ethernet port for net connectivity. Photographers may look for a SD card Slot to transfer photos.Although an Optical drive may or may not be present as it’s not that important and can be bought separately as a USB drive. Also look for a device that offers latest high-speed data transfer protocols like USB3.0 .

Battery life:

ultrabook battery

Most of the Ultrabooks are designed to be high performers and are optimized to be low power consuming.Any thing that has a battery that can last for 6+ Hr is good enough to meet you needs of portability.

We hope that with this detailed guide you’ll be able to select a good Ultrabook.

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