Michael HönnigMichael Hönnig
For my new freelance project I need to carrying my notebook PC around to and from the clients project office. Unfortunately my business notebook PC is too clumsy (16"), thick (4cm) and heavy (~2.2kg) for such. Thus, I was looking for a new ultra light notebook PC which is still well usable for software development (mostly Java with Eclipse IDE or IntelliJ IDEA). I came up a wish-list and did some research.

What I would like to get:

  • about 15" display, non-glare/matt, 4:3 aspect ratio
  • Intel i7 CPU or similar, Quad-Core
  • 16 GB RAM
  • >500 GB SDD
  • Ethernet, HDMI, USB 3.0 and USB C, min. 802.11n WiFi
  • centered main keyboard (rather no numeric block),
    suited for fast typing, ideally with backlight
  • single-touch pad (multi touch is still a horror with Linux)
  • Windows 10 Pro (which I need for this project)
    but ideally also capable of running Linux
  • silent and low pitch, ideally fan-less
  • Kensington Lock mount
  • <1.5 kg
  • <2000€

What I don't need:

I do not need:
  • an ultra HD screen resolution
  • a touch screen
  • a gaming graphic chip
  • a long lasting internal (external extra battery would be great)
  • a numeric keypad
  • an internal optical drive (of cause not for that weight requirement)

What I found:

I found few gadgets which came at least close:
  • Lenovo ThinkPad T470
    unfortunately just 14" display
  • Asus ZenBook Pro 15,6" Ultra-HD
    a bit too heavy (1.8kg) and just mediocre keyboard
  • Dell XPS 15 Infinity Edge 9560-4575 39,62 cm (15,6 Zoll FHD)
    a bit too heavy (1.8kg) and unpleasant fan noise
  • Acer Swift 3 SF315-51G-73UX 39,6 cm (15,6 Zoll Full-HD IPS) Ultrabook
    a bit too heavy (1,9 kg), glossy display and not sure about the keyboard
Not being sure if I will be able to use an external monitor and keyboard in the clients office, I was not yet able to make a final decision.

What I am using now:

Luckily I was able to postpone my decision: In parallel to my research about a new notebook PC, I was trying to reactivate my somewhat aged Samsung 900X4C (15" matt, 1.5cm, 1.6kg) - unfortunately with just 8 GB RAM and Dual-Core, an old 256 GB SDD and a broken hinge, still usable on a stable surface though. I successfully updated it from Windows 8 Pro to Windows 10 Pro. Seems I can stay with this gadget for at least some weeks in my new project and thus give me some time for a proper decision. If you know about a gadget which I've missed and which matches my criteria, please drop me a note by email or on Twitter!