Top 10 best well-rounded laptops for work

These laptops can do it all and are a great choice for most on-the-go users.
1) Acer Aspire 5920-6954 Laptop

Except for business applications, which it lacks, the Acer Aspire 5920 Vista Home Premium laptop has just about everything home-office buyers could ask for in a solid budget laptop. Equipped with a 1.66-GHz Core 2 Duo T5450 and 2GB of memory, the Aspire 5920-6954 earned a solid WorldBench 6 Beta 2 score of 70. The terrific keyboard boasts loads of shortcut buttons that do everything but take out the trash.

2) Lenovo IdeaPad Y510 Laptop

Lenovo’s IdeaPad Y510 vaults into the upper reaches of our most recent all-purpose laptops chart, largely on the strength of its design smarts. It feels as durable as its beefier sibling, the ThinkPad. In PC World Test Center benchmarks, the Lenovo IdeaPad matched the Acer Aspire 5920-6954 almost step-for-step, yet the Lenovo costs US$100 less.

3) HP Pavilion dv2660se Laptop

The HP Pavilion dv2660se offers strictly budget performance, but its battery life, great design, and low price make it a winner. The six-pound HP Pavilion’s high-capacity 12-cell battery endured for a whopping 6.3 hours on one charge in our tests. The HP Pavilion dv2660se offers strictly budget performance, but its battery life, great design, and low price make it a winner. The six-pound HP Pavilions high-capacity 12-cell battery endured for a whopping 6.3 hours on one charge in our tests. That’s about 2.5 hours longer than the average mainstream laptop.

4) Dell Inspiron 1525 LaptopA big difference between the Dell Inspiron 1525 laptop and most other inexpensive laptops is that you can customize it down to the smallest detail–even lid color–before buying it online. The Dell Inspiron earned a PC WorldBench 6 Beta 2 score of 78, which is 13 percent faster than the average of 69 recently tested all-purpose laptops.

5) Lenovo ThinkPad R61 Laptop

For a work-oriented laptop decked out with all the trimmings, the Lenovo ThinkPad R61 is hard to beat. The 2.2-GHz Core 2 Duo T7500-equipped Lenovo R61 performed admirably in our speed tests, with a WorldBench 6 Beta 2 score of 80. The R61’s 3-hour, 19-minute tested battery life is good.

6) Fujitsu LifeBook A6120 Laptop

The Fujitsu LifeBook A6120 is a good performer, carries a reasonable price tag, and comes with most of the features you’d expect from a well-rounded machine–except good battery life. The LifeBook A6120’s tested battery life was a meager 2 hours, 36 minutes. That’s a far cry from the standard of 6 hours, 19 minutes (with extended battery in place) set by HP’s Pavilion dv2660se laptop. Built to handle multimedia chores, the A6120 earned a solid score of 84 on our WorldBench 6 test suite.
7) Toshiba Satellite Pro A210-EZ2201 LaptopRather slow and with short battery life, the Toshiba Satellite Pro is outshone by most competitors in this group. However, if pinching pennies is paramount, this Windows Vista Basic laptop can get mainstream work done without too much fuss. As for battery life, the Satellite Pro A210-Ez2201’s 2.2-hour performance was the shortest of the 16 recently tested all-purpose laptops, pooping out 1.7 hours sooner than the average.

8) Sony VAIO VGN-SZ791N Laptop

Thanks to its Intel 2.5-GHz Core 2 Duo T9300 CPU and its nVidia 8400GS graphics card, the Sony VAIO VGN-SZ91N smoked our WorldBench 6 performance tests with a score of 94. Aside from strong performance, this laptop has several likable features. Two customizable shortcut buttons sit at the top of the keyboard. You can use them to call up a number of useful functions–multiple monitor mode, hibernate, brightness adjustment, or a snapshot look at key notebook functions, for example.

9) Sony VAIO VGN-FZ180E/B Laptop

The Sony VAIO VGN-FZ180E/B offers a big, bright screen, weighs very little, and has great battery life. The Sony VAIO’s 15.4-inch screen is superb. Based on Sony’s proprietary Xbrite HiColor high-contrast technology, it is extremely bright and really makes colors pop. At 5.7 pounds, the VGN-FZ180E/B is light enough that you can easily carry this delectable screen almost anywhere.

10 ) Toshiba Tecra M9-S5514 Laptop

The Tecra M9-S5514 should be well-equipped to handle the rigors and demands of travel-heavy business use. With a fast 2.2-GHz Core 2 Duo T7500 processor but only 1GB of RAM, the Toshiba Tecra earned 73 in our WorldBench 6 Beta 2 tests–about average for the category. Battery life, however, was below average at 2 hours and 48 minutes.

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Jim Love, Chief Content Officer, IT World Canada

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