another laptop guidance request for your consideration...
Love The Verge Forums brethren, so I'm reaching out in need of some gospel...
The Sitch ::
I own a small consulting business that takes me out of town at least 1 week out of the month. My Vaio Z-540 finally died after 4.5 years on the road with me last week, which was expected. Problem is my backup laptop, an IdeaPad u150, also died last week. I've replaced the HD on that thing twice, as well as the battery. So now I'm using my girlfriend's old MacBook trying to build pivot tables in Excel for Mac which might as well be in Aramaic since I CAN'T FIND ANYTHING! Ugh. I need a computer NOW. So my dreams of an X1 Carbon Touch are gone.
The Use Case ::
I NEED a computer to replace my Vaio (financial modeling on Excel, PPTs, word processing, stat analysis (Statistica and R), some database mgmt.), also used for entertainment during travel.
I WANT a computer (or tablet?) to replace my Ideapad (back up for business functions, mostly small content consumption device pre-tablet).
As I mentioned, I travel 7-10 business days out of the month and work off-site from HQ most of the rest of the time. I am slightly vain and get tech envy when I'm in the airport. So I'd like something with a little style. So I need portability (3.5 lbs or less), good battery life, and something fairly durable.
I have TBs of data on the cloud and housed on back-up drives, but I need to access at least 200GBs of content on the computer at any given moment, so skeptical about 128GB SSDs, but that seems to be what exists in the wild. I'd love an i7/8GB slate, but it's not necessary for the vast majority of what I do on the road.
I'd like to spend no more than $1500 w/ insurance, but I'd go a little higher with some convincing. And I played with the Surface Pro and it's just too small for me. I need something 13-15". I've also decided to go W8, so I feel like a touchscreen makes more sense, right???
The Contenders ::
If I had a month or so to wait, maybe I get the Carbon or even the Helix, but I need something by week's end. So this is what I was able to put my hands on in NYC this weekend that I'm considering:
- Lenovo Yoga 13"
- Asus Zenbook Prime UX31A
- Acer Aspire S7 (I heard the battery life is craptastic, but I'd buy the extended battery since the thing is so light).
- Samsung Series 9 13"
- Samsung Series 9 15"
For some reason, I didn't like the ThinkPad Twist and none of the Sony's worked for me, which is sad because the Z Series was boss.
The Ask ::
Is there one slate to rule them all? Should I get something less sexy and just buy an N7 for consumption? I'm not wedded to any of the above, but those are the ones I could go buy tomorrow. I'm at the point of paralysis of analysis, so please be my fresh eyes. Thanks in advance for the help!