Options for a lightweight, ~13" touchscreen w/decent GPU? Return Zenbook?

Discussion in 'What Notebook Should I Buy?' started by Electric Shock, Aug 28, 2017.

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  1. Electric Shock

    Electric Shock Notebook Evangelist

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    General Questions

    1) What is your budget?
    $1000 US / $1300 CAD

    2) What size notebook would you prefer?
    b. Ultraportable; 11" - 12" screen
    c. Thin and Light; 13" - 14" screen


    3) Where will you buying this notebook? You can select the flag of your country as an indicator.
    CANADA

    4) Are there any brands that you prefer or any you really don't like?
    NO
    5) Would you consider laptops that are refurbished/redistributed?
    YES

    6) What are the primary tasks will you be performing with this notebook?
    Office/Adobe Creative Suite/Editing

    7) Will you be taking the notebook with you to different places, leaving it on your desk or both?
    Mostly working at different places

    8) Will you be playing games on your notebook? If so, please state which games or types of games?
    YES - capable graphics is an asset. Nothing intensive but an ultrabook with dedicated GTX 840M-940MX type is preferable. Radeon and Intel HD options also acceptable.

    9) How many hours of battery life do you need?
    3-8

    10) Would you prefer to see the notebooks you're considering before purchasing it or buying a notebook on-line without seeing it is OK?
    On-line is OK.

    11) What OS do you prefer? Windows (Windows 7 / 8), Mac OS, Linux, Chrome OS, etc.
    Windows 10

    Screen Specifics

    12) From the choices below, what screen resolution(s) would you prefer?
    1920x1080 -> 4K is acceptable

    13) Do you want a glossy/reflective screen or a matte/non-glossy screen?
    Both acceptable. TOUCHSCREEN required

    Build Quality and Design

    14) Are the notebook's looks and stylishness important to you?
    Looks are an asset but can be balanced depending on price and performance

    15) When are you buying this laptop?
    In the next month

    16) How long do you want this laptop to last?
    2-3 years

    Notebook Components

    17) How much hard drive space do you need? Do you want a SSD drive?
    No HDD actually required as I have plenty of spare SSDs but 256GB SSD is a mininum

    18) Do you need an optical drive? If yes, a DVD Burner, Blu-ray Reader or Blu-Ray Burner?
    No

    Hey guys, I've been a long time since I was here. I built my own Clevo notebook around 2011 but I haven't had an upgrade since that first gen i7 since it's been so good but it's time to be retired due to being enormous/heavy/hot/damaged.

    A few days ago, I found a ~$640 USD refurbed Asus Zenbook UX303LN from ~2015 w/4th gen i7-4510U, 8GB DDR3, 256GB SSD, and GTX 840M graphics. The ultrabook even has QHD+ 3200x1800 touchscreen. The bottom and top have a lot of scratches and dings and it looks well used but the inside looks brand new - so probably a 3rd party repair.

    I have until tomorrow (Tues.) to return it as it is an open box item at my store. I'm torn about keeping it because of the infamous broken hinge problem on the Zenbook series which could appear at any time and this only has 60 day warranty.

    The problem is I can't find anything comparable. I'm willing to go up ~$300 but not much more than that but this thing has spoiled me with the GTX 840M and touchscreen display. I was looking at the Lenovo Flex 4 (Radeon M430) and Flex 5 (Intel HD 620) but both those are only 1080p and with weaker graphics. They probably have better battery life due to newer gen CPUs.

    Is there anything in the sub $1000 range that would be comparable to this old ultrabook in terms of graphics power and lightweight/small size portability?
     
    Last edited: Aug 29, 2017
  2. Charles P. Jefferies

    Charles P. Jefferies Lead Moderator Super Moderator

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    A 60-day warranty isn't reassuring, not to mention the notebook is already ~3 years old. I'd personally return that notebook and hold out a little longer, we'll help you find something.

    Charles
     
  3. jakejm79

    jakejm79 Notebook Consultant

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    An outlet Dell XPS 13 would come close to all your goals, if you could sacrifice on the GFX side of things.
     
  4. Starlight5

    Starlight5 Yes, I'm a cat. What else is there to say, really?

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    @Electric Shock check out Thinkpad Yoga 460 with 940M. If it's not too big for you at 14" & 2kg, it will be a much better choice than older Asus.
     
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  5. Electric Shock

    Electric Shock Notebook Evangelist

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    Thanks. It appears to be discontinued and I can't seem to find it for sale anywhere in Canada at the moment.
     
  6. Starlight5

    Starlight5 Yes, I'm a cat. What else is there to say, really?

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    @Electric Shock they usually start at $600 for i5/8GB/256GB/940M/FHD on eBay.
     
  7. Electric Shock

    Electric Shock Notebook Evangelist

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    Unfortunately Ebay is out as a source because shipping + duties to Canada kills it and warranty can be iffy. It'll probably have to be something from a normal retailer or online that I can find in stock.

    I would spring for a Xiao Mi Air 13 w/940mx but the only place with them right now is Aliexpress in China with Chinese Win10.
     
  8. tinytop69

    tinytop69 Notebook Evangelist

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    From what I understand, the OS is simple to reinstall in english because I think the win10 key is hardcoded into the system. You should just have to do a fresh install of win10 language of your choosing.
     
  9. jakejm79

    jakejm79 Notebook Consultant

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    I thought the Xiaomi Mi Air 13 didn't have a touchscreen nor QHD, if those aren't requirements, then there is the Ideapad 720S 14. While a 14" screen it packs it into a 13.3 form factor just about (actually its marginally smaller than the Asus you have now).

    I'd suggest maybe filling out the questionnaire since it appears yours recent options contradict your original post. Like do you want a 13.3" screen because you require that exact screen size or are you merely looking for a laptop that has a comparable size to your current one which just happens to have a 13.3" screen.
     
  10. Electric Shock

    Electric Shock Notebook Evangelist

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    Thanks, I've added the questionnaire. It probably need some modernizing as it doesn't include features like touchscreen, etc. in it.

    1080p -> 4k displays are all acceptable. The only requirement is a touchscreen and 13.3" - 14" (or smaller) is preferable because that usually means it will be small enough to fit into my smaller bags and ultra book sized. Anything in that size range.
     
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