So nearly a year ago I started thinking about my laptop situation. I had 2 at that time: an HP Envy and an HP Elite book Revolve 810. Once I was no longer working I didn’t need a “backup” computer, but they each had their points that I liked, so I was having a hard time choosing which to keep and which to sell. (Living in a motorhome means not keeping everything we want, as weight and space are always important considerations!)
The little Elitebook is great, it is fast (8GB RAM/128GB SSD) and lightweight, has a swivel top so I can stand it up like a tent to watch video, or fold it back to use as a tablet. It also has a touchscreen, which I love. And, although I loathe Windows, I kept Win10 on it so that I could, in theory, use it with my Yamaha keyboards/MIDI/recording/etc.; however, in the few years I had it I never did. The only real drawbacks were lack of storage – 128GB doesn’t go very far in Windows – and the volume was so soft as to be useless without the use of headphones or an external speaker.
The Envy is a lot bigger – and a lot heavier! I run Linux Mint on it. With only 4GB of Ram it gets laggy at times since I tend to have lots of tabs open on my browsers much of the time. But it has plenty of storage for my needs, with a 1TB hard drive. And it has an optical drive which I rarely use. But I miss the touchscreen, and it is really heavy to lift and move around much and of course I can’t use it as a tablet – the main problem with that is putting it on my keyboards’ music stands to play the sheet music/music books I use online. And lastly, it came with Beats Audio so always had fantastic sound but when I got the new big HD put in I loaded the Linux – always my preferred o/s! – and Beats doesn’t like Linux…not a huge issue since it still sounds amazing! BIG DRAWBACK though: wifi doesn’t work! So I have to use ethernet or Bluetooth to get online, and neither option is always easy or fast.
(I also have a 10″ DragonTouch tablet that I use, with my b/t keyboard, like a laptop. In fact I use it more than either of my authentic laptops. It is the perfect size to sit on my keyboards’ music stand to read music from the internet while I play so I use it a LOT for that as well! It has the typical tablet features and of the half-dozen or so that I’ve owned it is by far my favorite!)
So back and forth I’ve been going, until, after conferring with the local computer tech/repair guy, I decided to go a totally ‘nother route, and sell them both to buy one that has what I want in a single machine. And last night I ordered a refurbished HP ProBook. It is lacking the swiveling display thing and the touchscreen and the optical drive – none of these things are deal breakers to me – but it does have the preferred SSD (256GB) and running Linux that will be plenty. (I do have both an external drive and plenty of space on my web host’s server anyway.) It has a 14″ screen and is <1″ thick; at 3.6# it’s plenty light enough for me to move easily without hurting myself. It has more USB ports, and HDMI (so I can connect to the TV and share stuff with Pete easily – I’ve always wished I had it!) And it’s only 3 years old; the others were both 10 years +. Lastly, it got a lot of good reviews, and I learned that it’s easy to access the “guts” for upgrades or changes.
There’s more I’m forgetting, I’m sure, but in a week I’ll know if I made the right choice. For right now I’m happy with my decision, even after sleeping on it. And maybe the best part is that once I sell the other two it will pay for the one I just got.
Win win WIN!