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Why people are saying to buy the M1 MacBook Air over the M2

The once highly anticipated M2 MacBook Air is finally out. But despite how great the design looks, many potential buyers are instead turning to the M1 MacBook Air, a laptop that’s nearly two years old.

Apple still sells it, of course, and as plenty of reviewers and commentators have pointed out, it may prove to be the better option for many people — and there are three main reasons why.

Price

Price is the most obvious reason people have been recommending the M1 over the M2. With the introduction of the M2 MacBook Air, Apple created a family of MacBook Air models running its proprietary chips. The M1 MacBook Air is the absolute base model of this family, starting at $1,000. In comparison, the M2 MacBook Air is the base model of the M2 line starting at $1,200.

While not that pricey, it is enough to make a savvy consumer pause if a cheaper model is available. Of course, there are lots of upgrades involved in the $200 premium of the M1 MacBook Air over the M2 MacBook Air. That includes a thinner chassis, a MagSafe 3 charging port, thinner bezels, faster CPU performance, brighter screen, better speakers, and a higher resolution webcam. That’s a lot.

But because of how good the M1 already was, that $200 difference is still probably enough to deter many potential buyers who are just looking for a basic, fast laptop — whether that’s for college or work. In the end, it’s the cheapest MacBook you can buy, and that makes it undeniably attractive.

An Apple Store product page with the prices of the M1 and M2 MacBook Air next to each other.

The M2 MacBook Air base model is essentially the mid-tier device in the new MacBook Air family, and the next M2 MacBook Air configuration is the high-end model at $1,500. Devices can get pricier still with unique configurations at any tier, but the M1 MacBook Air will still give consumers the most bang for their buck at any hardware style.

While Apple continues to struggle with chip shortages, your best bet access-wise is the M1 MacBook Air. The company faced shipping delays with the M2 MacBook Air immediately at pre-order. Purchasing suggestions for those looking to buy Apple products earlier in the year were to buy the M1 MacBook Air for the quickest shipments. Overall, being cost-effective and easy to buy for several years, both online and in stores has been a plus for this laptop.

SSD and performance

The motherboard of the M2 MacBook Air is revealed in a YouTube teardown.

The M1 and M2 MacBook Air models both feature the same SSD storage options in terms of capacity. Both laptops are available in 256GB base models, which can be configured to 512GB, 1TB, and 2TB of additional storage.

Apple set out to make the base model M2 MacBook Air look like a viable upgrade with its M2 chip and eight-core GPU; however, the truth about the device quickly unfolded as reviewers and early adopters harshly critiqued the new laptop.

Many quickly figured out that Apple used its top-tier M2 MacBook Air model when demonstrating the performance power of the laptop during its WWDC unveiling in June and when sending out official review models. When Apple said the M2 MacBook Air would have an 18% increase in graphics performance over the M1, the company was talking about the higher-end model, which features a 10-core GPU and 512GB SSD.

Meanwhile, teardowns uncovered the base model M2 MacBook Air was missing features that could impact performance. It included a single NAND chip, instead of two flash chips, like the M1 MacBook Air, which provides faster performance. YouTuber Max Tech discovered in benchmarks that the base model M2 MacBook Air actually had 50% slower read/write speeds than the M1. The lower storage performance is not something the M1 MacBook Air suffers from, meaning there are situations where the M1 model is a better performer, such as in file transfers.

This, coupled with a thinner design and a lot of thermal paste issues, made the M2 MacBook Air susceptible to overheating. These performance flubs have made the M1 MacBook Air look like the favorable base model laptop, especially for the price.

No notch

Apple MacBook Air M1 open, on a table.
Andy Boxall/Digital Trends

The M2 MacBook Air has been released with a larger 13.6-inch display and thinner bezels than the 13.3-inch M1 MacBook Air. The M2 display is also slightly brighter at 500 nits versus 400 nits on the M1 display. However, the M2 MacBook Air has an additional feature: the controversial notch design, which houses the laptop’s 1080p webcam.

You might enjoy the new look of the screen, but when given the option of thinner bezels or a notch, it’s a bit less of an obvious choice. The inclusion of an important feature like Face ID may have made the notch easier to stomach, but that’s still a feature we’re waiting on. As it is, the notch will feel like an exciting new design element of the MacBook Air, and more like a feature you’ll just have to learn to live with. For a laptop that costs more, some may find it better to just stick with the M1.

Editors’ Choice




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Computing

The best low-profile keyboards to buy in 2022

There’s something really satisfying about typing on a low-profile keyboard. Not only do they feel more comfortable for long typing or gaming sessions, but they also help your wrists to be less prone to strain or pain.

Some of the best ones that you can get today are from Logitech, including the G915 TKL if you are looking for the best gaming experience, or the MX Mechanical which is a new low-profile keyboard aimed at productivity. In fact, both the keyboards are also a part of our list of the best keyboards for 2022, which you should definitely check out if you are unsure about your next keyboard purchase.

Without further ado, let’s have a look at the best low-profile keyboards to buy in 2022.

razer deathstalker v2 pro review 06

Jacob Roach / Digital Trends

Razer Deathstalker V2 Pro

Best full-size low-profile gaming keyboard

Pros

  • Low-latency wireless and Bluetooth
  • Bright, vibrant RGB lighting
  • Metal volume wheel and media button
  • Solid battery life

Cons

  • Expensive
  • No tactile switch option
  • Mushy typing experience

Why you should buy this: It is the most premium low-profile gaming keyboard.

Who’s it for: Gamers looking for a premium full-size gaming keyboard with low-profile keys.

Why we chose the Razer Deathstalker V2 Pro:

Razer recently returned to the low-profile keyboard category with its new DeathStalker V2 Pro. It offers a variety of features that you may find in some of the best gaming keyboards, but at a premium price of $250. It’s a massive update over the original DeathStalker, as you now get low-profile optical key switches and a design that is inspired by the Logitech G915. The top plate is made out of aircraft-grade 5052 aluminum with a thickness of 26.6mm thick at its thickest point.

The keyboard offers wireless connectivity using Bluetooth 5.0 or Razer’s low-latency HyperSpeed via a tiny dongle. There is also support for wired connectivity using the bundled USB Type-C cable. When using Bluetooth, one can pair up to three devices and switch between them using three dedicated buttons. Speaking of which, there are no dedicated media buttons on the keyboard except a single multi-purpose button that sits next to the metal volume scroll wheel.

Available with Razer’s linear Red switches, the Deathstalker V2 Pro will also be available with clicky Purple switches later this year. The linear switches offer an actuation distance of 1.2mm with a force of 45 grams. The thin keycaps are quite premium and like most Razer products, the RGB shines through bright and evenly across the board. The keyboard can be fully customized using Razer’s Synapse software and while the polling rate is not as high as some other gaming keyboards, 1000Hz should be plenty even for fast-paced games.

Razer DeathStalker V2 Pro

Razer Deathstalker V2 Pro

Best full-size low-profile gaming keyboard

logitech g915 lightspeed tkl review featured

Jacob Roach / Digital Trends

Logitech G915 TKL

Best tenkeyless low-profile gaming keyboard

Pros

  • Superb typing experience
  • Bright RGB lighting
  • Fast wireless technology
  • Long battery life
  • Bug-free, useful software

Cons

  • Expensive
  • Incompatible with most mechanical keyboard accessories

Why you should buy this: It is rated as one of the best low-profile gaming keyboards on the market.

Who’s it for: Gamers looking for a reliable, well-built low-profile gaming keyboard with a tenkeyless layout.

Why we chose the Logitech G915 TKL:

TKL or tenkeyless keyboards have become quite popular and if you are looking for one that features low-profile keys, the Logitech G915 TKL is a prime choice. Offering a premium design and a rock-solid build, the keyboard offers a great experience be it gaming or typing. It features a brushed aluminum top plate with slim keycaps and Logitech’s own low-profile mechanical switches available in tactile, linear, and clicky options. The RGB backlighting is vibrant that nicely lights up the keys and you also get four media buttons, four function buttons, and a volume scroll wheel.

As for connectivity, the keyboard comes with Bluetooth and Logitech’s 2.4GHz-based Lightspeed wireless tech that offers negligible latency. There are also foldable feet that allow for two levels of height adjustment, and a dedicated slot for the Lightspeed USB dongle. It uses micro USB for charging, which is a sore thumb considering everything today has moved to USB-C. Logitech claims a battery life of 40 hours with 100% brightness and there is onboard memory that can store up to two lighting profiles and three macro profiles. Notably, the keyboard is also available in full-size which offers a similar experience and it is comparably cheaper than Razer Deathstalker V2 Pro.

Logitech G915 TKL

Logitech G915 TKL

Best tenkeyless low-profile gaming keyboard

The Keychron K1 SE low profile keyboard on a desk.

Keychron K1 SE

Best low-profile keyboard with hot-swap switches

Pros

  • Hot-swappable mechanical key switches
  • Wired and wireless operation
  • Support for wide range of OS

Cons

  • No companion software
  • Optical key switches are not the same as mechanical

Why you should buy this: It is the best low-profile keyboard that offers the ability to swap key switches.

Who’s it for:Keyboard enthusiasts who are looking for a low-profile keyboard with hot-swap switches.

Why we chose the Keychron K1 SE:

Mechanical keyboards with hot-swap key switches are not that difficult to find, but what if you want one that offers low-profile keys? Well, the Keychron K1 SE is a sound choice as it is available with low-profile Gateron mechanical switches that can be hot-swapped. Having a tenkeyless layout, you can choose between the standard red, blue, or brown low-profile Gateron mechanical switches with a rated 50 million keystroke lifespan. There is also the option of optical key switches available in red, blue, brown, banana (yellow), or mint (cyan). Keychron also sells more low-profile keycap options on its website selling for $19 for a set of 87.

The keyboard comes with keys that offer functionality for both Windows and Mac allowing you to use it with either of the operating systems. Since it is a wireless keyboard, you can connect the K1 with a variety of devices running on macOS, iOS, Windows, or Android. It even offers the option to switch between Windows and Mac and allows you to connect up to three devices via Bluetooth. You can also use the keyboard in wired mode using the USB-C cable.

The K1 SE is engineered with a reinforced aluminum top case plus a plastic bottom case and can be purchased with either standard white or RGB backlighting. The keycaps are standard ABS plastic with laser-etched legends which means they are going to wear out easily over time. But the key switches come with MX-styled stem housing, so finding a replacement should not be that hard.

Keychron K1 SE, 87 Keys Ultra-Slim Hot-Swappable Wireless Bluetooth/USB Wired Mechanical Keyboard with White LED Backlit, Low-Profile Keychron Optical Red Switch Compatible with Mac Windows

Keychron K1 SE

Best low-profile keyboard with hot-swap switches

logitech mx mechanical keyboard review 2

Jacob Roach / Digital Trends

Logitech MX Mechanical

Best low-profile gaming keyboard for productivity

Pros

  • Excellent typing experience
  • Works with Windows and MacOS
  • Pairs with up to three devices at once
  • Adaptive, useful backlight
  • Pairing is a breeze

Cons

  • A bit expensive
  • Limited key remapping options
  • No hot-swappable switches

Why you should buy this: It is one of the few and very best low-profile mechanical keyboards meant for productivity.

Who’s it for: Those who seek a solid mechanical keyboard with low-profile switches for office or similar productivity purposes.

Why we chose the Logitech MX Mechanical:

Most low-profile mechanical keyboards are meant for gaming, but what if you want something that is meant for productivity, say in your office? Enter the Logitech MX Mechanical. Available in full-size or a 75% layout, it feels premium and offers a solid typing experience. Although, it isn’t really cheap at $170 for the full-size and $150 for the Mini version. It offers Bluetooth connectivity or you can use the bundled Logi Bolt dongle. The best part is that it can switch between three devices instantly regardless of the operating system. This means that you can connect and switch between your desktop, laptop, and tablet effortlessly. Notably, there is no wired connectivity mode, which can be an issue for some users, though you get a USB-C cable in the box for charging purposes.

Instead of RGB, there is static white backlighting for the keys which is backed up by an ambient light sensor. This adjusts the backlight automatically based on the lighting conditions in your room. This feature also allows the keyboard to have a solid battery life of 15 days and a full 10 months with the backlight off. Another benefit of the light sensor is that the keys light up as soon as you lay your hands over the keyboard. Additionally, you can use the Logi Options+ app to fully expand the feature set of the keyboard like rebinding some of the keys, various backlighting options, controlling special function keys, and more.

The typing experience is quite good and the keyboard uses Kailh Choc switches available in Tactile Quiet (brown), Linear (red), and Clicky (blue) switches. Our review unit included the Tactile Quiet switches, which come with 45 grams of activation force, 1.3mm to reach the actuation point, and 3.2mm of total travel distance. Overall, the keyboard feels that it is made for typing especially since the switches come with a shorter travel distance (0.7mm less actuation travel, and 0.8mm less total travel) when compared to its full-sized counterparts.

Logitech MX Mechanical Wireless Illuminated Performance Keyboard, Clicky Switches, Backlit Keys, Bluetooth, USB-C, macOS, Windows, Linux, iOS, Android, Metal

Logitech MX Mechanical

Best low-profile gaming keyboard for productivity

Product image of the Fnatic STEAK65 LP low profile gaming keyboard.

Fnatic STREAK65 LP

Best 65% low-profile gaming keyboard

Pros

  • Well-built
  • Removable USB-C cable
  • Bright RGB lighting
  • Stable and smooth key switches
  • PBT keycaps

Cons

  • Non traditional 65% layout
  • Misses on wireless connectivity

Why you should buy this: It is one of the best low-profile gaming keyboards with excellent switches and a compact 65% layout.

Who’s it for: Gamers looking for a low-profile keyboard with very limited desk space.

Why we chose the Fnatic STREAK65 LP:

If you want a super compact, gaming keyboard with slim low-profile keys, then check out the Fnatic STREAK65 LP. As the name suggests, it features a 65% form factor making it perfect for gamers that have limited space on their desk, and it is now available in a white color finish. The main deck offers a metal top with edges that are rounded and the low-profile design offers a thickness of just 22mm.

The speed low-profile key switches from Fnatic have been designed with gamers in mind. They are basically a custom version of the Kailh Choc V2 key switches that offer just a 1.0mm pre-travel distance, total travel of 3.2mm, and are claimed to be 35% lower than traditional mechanical switches. The switches are also pre-lubed, offer excellent stability, and are MX-compatible allowing you to replace the keycaps if you need to in the future. Speaking of which, the keyboard comes with PBT keycaps, meaning that they should last you longer compared to ABS keycaps.

The keyboard comes with a removable USB-C cable, while the RGB lighting is nice bright that spills from the side of the keys, giving a nice glow all around. It also comes with four additional programmable keys on the right side, which is a nice touch. All the lighting effects, macro programming, and other settings can be done using the Fnatic OP software. Overall, this is an excellent low-profile gaming keyboard with almost zero flaws.

Fnatic STREAK65

Fnatic STREAK65 LP

Best 65% low-profile gaming keyboard

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Why you should build your next gaming keyboard, not buy one

I’m fed up with mainstream gaming keyboards. They’re just too expensive for what you get. My frustration to find something I really loved led me to finally bite the bullet and build my own. It’s a hobby that’s billed as niche and prohibitively expensive, but that’s not the case. You can build a keyboard for the same price as buying one from a mainstream brand, and you’ll come out with a much better result.

Keyboards are complex beasts, despite how simple they appear. Once you open the can of worms that is custom mechanical keyboards, you’ll quickly become an expert in minor differences between keycaps, switches, and everything in between. If you want a keyboard that can put even the best mechanical keyboards to shame, you need to build your own.

Building your own keyboard isn’t that expensive

Jacob Roach / Digital Trends

There’s one reason most people stick with mainstream keyboards: building your own is too expensive, or at least that’s how the story goes. Although it’s tough to build a keyboard for the same price as something like the HyperX Alloy Origins Core, it’s not much more than buying a high-end gaming keyboard.

My personal keyboard (above) cost me about $250. That’s a lot, but not much more than the wired Asus ROG Strix Flare II Animate, and the exact same price as Logitech’s popular G915 TKL. And you’re getting a lot more for your money. If a mainstream brand like Corsair, Logitech, or Asus released a keyboard that could go toe-to-toe with one you built yourself, it would be $400 or $500. Easy.

But in that way, building a keyboard isn’t akin to building a PC. It’s not about making something cheap and scrappy. Building your own keyboard is about piecing together something that’s unlike anything you can find in the keyboard world — from the amazing customization that’s offered to the high-end build quality.

There are more options than ever for building your keyboard now, too. For years, we were restricted to Cherry MX switches and their derivatives, as well as kits that would cost several hundred dollars on their own. An influx of newer brands like Akko are selling parts for much less, vastly lowering the barrier to entry. There’s never been a better time to dive in.

Pick your base

Jacob Roach / Digital Trends

Building your keyboard starts with a base. If this is your first time, I’d highly recommend starting with a DIY kit so you can get your keyboard up and running right away. These kits come with all of the basic components you need, and they almost always allow you to modify the kit with your own parts after the fact.

Here are a few kits I recommend:

From $50 to nearly $200, DIY kits cover quite the range of prices. And for good reason. Before buying your DIY kit, there are a few things you’ll want to keep in mind.

The first is how the plate is mounted to the frame. Most cheaper kits and nearly all mainstream mechanical keyboards use a plate mount — that is, the keyboard plate is attached directly to the frame. More premium kits like the Akko ACR Pro 75 and GMMK Pro use a gasket mount instead, which puts a small gasket between the switch plate and frame. I prefer a gasket mount because it provides a slightly softer typing experience. You may encounter a few other mount types, but most are variations of a standard plate mount.

Otherwise, consider what form factor you want. I don’t like full-size keyboards, so I gravitate toward 60% or 70% options, but it all comes down to personal preference. You have a lot more options when building your own keyboard, so take some time to look around for a form factor that you like.

Finally, look at the material the keyboard is using for the plate. You can usually swap out the plate later, so don’t worry too much about getting it right immediately. You can find aluminum, copper, and even acrylic plates, and they all provide a slightly different sound and typing experience.

Once you have your kit, it’s time to turn your keyboard into, well, a keyboard with some switches.

Switches make the difference

Several switches sitting in front of a keyboard.
Jacob Roach / Digital Trends

The key switches you use are incredibly important when building your own keyboard, so it’s important to research the switches that are right for you. Look up typing examples on YouTube, read reviews, and try not to get too in the weeds on specs. You can usually order testers for a few dollars to try out the switches before you buy them, too.

Overall, switches break down into two types: linear and tactile. You’ll want a linear switch for gaming and a tactile switch for typing, though you can certainly switch between gaming and typing with either. It comes down to preference, as is usually the case.

Here are some switches I recommend for gaming:

  • Akko Wine Red linear switches — A perfect alternative to Cherry MX Red switches.
  • Glorious Lynx linear switches (lubed) — A super light linear switch that’s hand-lubed.
  • Gateron Oil King linear switches — A much heavier switch that’s great for heavy-handed gamers and typists.

And for typing fanatics:

  • Glorious Panda tactile switches (lubed) — Hand-lubed tactile switches that have an extremely satisfying thonk while typing.
  • Drop Halo Clear tactile switches — Heavier switches that have a clear bump early while pressing. Definitely for heavy-handed typists.
  • Kailh Speed Bronze clicky switches— A clicky switch that’s very loud. Great if you love clicky keyboards, but bad for the office.

Hand-lubed switches are the way to go if you can get them. Factory lubrication is super inconsistent, so you’ll want to seek out switches that have been lubricated by hand if you can. You can also buy a kit to do it yourself, or you can ditch lubrication altogether. Some people prefer the typing experience with unlubed switches anyway.

The main thing to pay attention to is how many pins the switch has. You’ll typically find 3-pin and 5-pin switches, but they’re basically the same. 5-pin switches add a couple of plastic posts to stabilize the switch, but you can snip those bits off if your keyboard can only accommodate a 3-pin switch.

Make it your own

A keyboard with Japanese art on the keycaps.
Jacob Roach / Digital Trends

Now for the fun part: making the keyboard yours. Style points matter when building your own keyboard, so take some time to find the keycaps you like, a cable that fits your theme, and lighting that brings the whole thing together.

Keycaps are a personal endeavor, and many sets are limited edition drops that you only have a brief time to buy. Instead of recommending specific sets, here are a few places I recommend shopping for your keycaps:

  • Drop — Expensive, but fantastic switches with a lot of personality and unique shapes. If you have the money, this is where you want to shop.
  • Osume — Minimalist keycaps that are only available in limited edition runs. They look and feel fantastic, but are a bit expensive.
  • Akko — Akko keycaps are inexpensive and not quite as nice as the top two options, but you’ll find several unique designs you won’t see anywhere else.
  • Amazon — Amazon is a great place to shop for inexpensive keycaps, but you may have to deal with quality issues like fuzzy legends or durability depending on the set you choose.

There are a few things to keep in mind when choosing your keycaps. First, try to go for PBT keycaps if you can. ABS keycaps have better color, but they wear down over time. PBT keycaps will last longer, but feel free to use ABS if you want something with a little more flare. Try to shoot for thicker keycaps if you can find them, too.

Outside of the material, look into how the keycap legends are attached. You want either dye-sublimated or doubleshot legends, if possible, as they offer the best protection for the legends over a long period of heavy use. Laser-engraved keycaps are also an option if you want RGB lighting to shine through, though they’ll wear out much faster.

Finally, look at the keycaps you’ll need for your keyboard. A lot of kits have different form factors for function keys like Ctrl and Alt, so you may need to purchase a separate set if yours doesn’t come with the proper sizes.

Outside of keycaps, your cable brings the look of your keyboard together. There’s nothing special here to note outside of picking up the right cable for your keyboard. Both Glorious and Drop have several coiled cables with different color options, though they’re a little expensive. If you’re trying to save, you can always use any old cable.

A journey, not a destination

Keycaps with bananas on a gaming keyboard.
Jacob Roach / Digital Trends

I’ve only scratched the surface of the world of building your own keyboard. Much like building a PC, you can continue to upgrade, swap, and customize your keyboard over time. That’s the idea. Build something now for your budget and needs, but know that you can always make changes down the line.

Nothing you do is set in stone, which adds so much value to your upfront purchase. Again, you’re not just buying a single product — it’s a platform that you can build on in the future.

Editors’ Choice




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Hurry — Microsoft Surface Pro 7+ is $330 off at Best Buy today

Riley Young / Digital Trends

One of the best laptop deals to snap up right now is the Microsoft Surface Pro 7+. At Best Buy, you can buy it for $600, saving you a hefty $330 off the usual price. A huge saving, this is a good time to buy the stylish and practical 2-in-1 laptop, especially if you’re looking for a new laptop for school or for working more efficiently. Here’s why you need it in your life.

Buy Now

One of the best Microsoft Surface Pro deals today, the Microsoft Surface Pro 7+ is a great system. As you’d expect, Microsoft is one of the best laptop brands around and it’s clear to see why when you use the Microsoft Surface Pro 7+. It has an Intel Core i3 processor along with 8GB of memory and 128GB of SSD storage. While that might not sound like it would rival the best 2-in-1 laptops, it makes up for its unremarkable hardware with a fantastic display and functionality.

The Microsoft Surface Pro 7+ offers up a 12.3-inch PixelSense display with a resolution of 2736 x 1824. With a 3:2 aspect ratio, you get 18% more vertical screen real estate than a typical laptop, too. Thanks to its 2-in-1 design, you can switch between using it as a full laptop with keyboard, to using it as a tablet, digital canvas, or docked workstation. It’s immensely versatile with Windows 11 capable of giving you plenty of options. A versatile kickstand helps you adjust it to nearly 180 degrees as well.

Other features keep on coming, such as dual HD cameras with a front-facing 5.0 megapixel 1080p HD camera and an 8MP rear-facing camera with autofocus, along with dual far-field Studio Mics. Multiple ports allow you to power many 4K external displays if you wish, as well as charge all your devices. Up to 15 hours of battery life means the Microsoft Surface Pro 7+ will last you all day long, plus it weighs just 1.7 pounds so it’s truly portable.

If you’ve been considering the Microsoft Surface Pro 7+ and Microsoft Surface Pro 7, this is an ideal time to buy one. With the Microsoft Surface Pro 7+ normally priced at $930, it’s down to $600 at Best Buy for a limited time only. You’ll be delighted with this purchase.

Buy Now

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This deal is the perfect excuse to buy an HP Envy laptop

If you’re looking for a versatile laptop, HP’s Envy lineup has some great laptop deals to choose from, and one of the best HP Envy deals available right now is on the HP Envy x360 Convertible laptop. Currently you can grab this popular laptop with touchscreen functionality for just $880 at HP, which is a savings of $280 from its regular price of $1,160. Free shipping is included, and a range of additional special offers on things like accessories and monitors are available with your purchase of the HP Envy x360 as well.

Why you should by the HP Envy x360 Convertible laptop

HP has long been one of the foremost names in computing, and the company makes several laptops meant to suit the various needs of different users. When it comes down to the HP Envy and HP Pavilion lineups, the Envy laptops tend to better suit the needs of people looking for a dedicated work laptop. This could be said of the HP Envy x360 Convertible laptop as well, particularly if your work is in the world of creativity. It boasts a ton of performance capability, especially as built for this deal, with a quad-core Intel i7 processor, 16GB of RAM, and a speedy 512GB solid-state drive leading the way through your creative workflows.

Another great feature of the HP Envy x360 is its touchscreen functionality, something that has made interacting with various kinds of work much more immersive and convenient with the rise of tablet use in the workplace. The Envy x360 has a 15.6-inch touchscreen with Full HD resolution and multitouch capabilities, and like all of the best 2-in-1 laptops, it has a range of different positions it can be used in depending on whether you want to work, watch a movie, or even do some gaming. More practical features of the HP Envy x360 Convertible laptop are a fingerprint reader for security, long battery life, an HD welcome with HP Wide Vision technology, and audio enhancements by Bang & Olufsen.

If one of the best HP laptop deals available right now sounds like the right one for you, click over to HP now to grab the HP Envy x360 Convertible laptop. It’s currently just $880, which is a savings of $280 from its regular price of $1,160, and free shipping is included.

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The Surface Pro 8 just dropped to $1,000 at Best Buy

If you’ve been waiting for the chance to buy the Microsoft Surface Pro 8 with a discount, here it is — Best Buy’s Surface Pro deals currently include a $200 price cut for the Microsoft Surface Pro 8, slashing the device’s price to $1,000 from $1,200 originally. The tablet may even replace your current choice among the retailer’s laptop deals, if you decide to invest in the Surface Signature Keyboard. However, since there’s no telling how long the offer for the Microsoft Surface Pro 8 will last, you need to hurry if you don’t want to miss out.

Buy Now

Whether you’re a professional or a student, the Microsoft Surface Pro 8 will provide immense help in your daily tasks with its 11th-generation Intel Core i5 processor and 8GB of RAM. It also features a 256GB SSD with Windows 11 pre-installed, so you can start using the device as soon as it boots up. The Surface Pro 8 can run for up to 16 hours on a single charge, and its Fast Charging technology means that you won’t be tethered to a wall socket for a long time when its battery gets low.

The Microsoft Surface Pro 8, however, is more than just a tablet. With the separately sold Surface Signature Keyboard attached, the device transforms into a laptop. It’s actually the top option in Digital Trends’ best 2-in-1 laptops, so it’s perfect for anybody who can’t decide whether to buy a tablet or a laptop. Meanwhile, when comparing the Surface Pro 8, Surface Pro 7+, and Surface Pro 7, the advantages of the latest version of the device over its predecessors include a larger 13-inch touchscreen with smaller bezels and up to a 120Hz refresh rate, the introduction of USB-C with Thunderbolt 4, and updated components for performance that won’t let you down.

The Microsoft Surface Pro 8, a powerful and reliable tablet, is down to $1,000 from Best Buy after a $200 discount from its original price of $1,200. The offer also falls under the top Best Buy laptop deals if you purchase the Surface Signature Keyboard. The price of the device may go back to normal sooner than you expect though, so you shouldn’t take too much time thinking about it — click that Buy Now button as soon as you can to get Microsoft Surface Pro 8 for cheaper than usual.

Buy Now

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Grab this cheap Chromebook at Best Buy while it’s 56% off — save $140!

Whether you’re headed back to school or you need to be connected on the go, Best Buy has got you covered. Lately we’ve seen some pretty incredible Best Buy laptop deals, not the least of which is this Acer Chromebook 315 deal that’s happening at the moment. Right now, you can save $140 on the Acer Chromebook 315, meaning you can take it home for only $109, which is a huge reduction from its original price of $249. This deal is only available for a little while longer, so if you skip it today, then it’s gone for good.

The Acer Chromebook 315 prides itself on being the perfect multi-media companion, and we can’t say we disagree. The Chromebook 315 is super thin and super lightweight, so it’s ready to accompany you on the go, wherever you go. The value for the price is seriously hard to beat, if it’s even possible to match it at all. This machine comes with an HDR camera and it boasts fast and wireless connectivity, as well as a truly impressive 12.5 hour battery, which means that if you’re looking for one device to keep you universally dialed in, this is the Chromebook deal to end all Chromebook deals.

It’s not just the look and feel of this Chromebook that make it a great buy. It also comes with two USB-C ports so you can transfer data quickly and connect to your devices reliably. USB-C is 10 times faster than your standard USB 2.0 port, but if you don’t want increase your storage that way, you can also take advantage of the microSD card slot to house all of your media. This isn’t the luxury yacht of Chromebooks, but compare this machine to the best Chromebooks and best student Chromebooks, and you’ll see the cheap price more than makes up for its lack of features.

With faster boot times than ever before, courtesy of the super-stable Chrome OS, there’s never been a more affordable and responsive way to stay connected. Why pay $249 when you can score this powerful, ultralight computer for only $109? This $140 discount is only available at Best Buy for another handful of hours, so add it to your cart and check out sooner rather than later or risk missing out on our of our favorite laptop deals of the impending back to school season.

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Computing

Hurry! Get 68% off NordVPN if you buy today!

If you’ve recently been browsing our desktop computer deals for a computer to pick up, you may also want to pair it with a VPN service like NordVPN. In fact, if you act fast enough, you can get 68% off the cost of a subscription if you grab the two-year Complete package, which comes in at $127 for the two years, or $5.29 per month, which is a pretty great deal if you know you want a long-term VPN. Even better, there’s a 30-day money-back guarantee if you try the service and find it’s not exactly what you’re looking for.

Why you should buy NordVPN

At this point, most people are familiar with the benefits of VPNs and being able to access geoblocked content, but each VPN has its additional perks, and the ones from NordVPN are pretty great. For example, one of the biggest aspects of geoblocking and using VPNs is how many countries you can access it from, and for NordVPN, that’s a total of 59, plus they’re all high-speed servers, so you shouldn’t see a significant impact to your speed when using a VPN. Even better, you get to use the VPN with up to six different devices at once, so you can share it with your family to help keep them protected as well.

Speaking of protection, NordVPN also has a malware protector that helps you avoid dangerous sites and downloads, blocking access to either if it detects that there’s something fishy going on, which is great for those who aren’t that tech-savvy. There’s also ad-blocker tech baked in and anti-tracker protection for things like cookies, which is handy in a world where everything about us is tracked. Finally, if you opt for the VPN Plus or Complete package, you also get NordPass, which is Nord’s password manager, and if you go for the Complete package, you also get 1TB of encrypted cloud storage through NordLocker.

So, while the Complete package is a bit on the pricier side, it’s one of the best VPN deals you’re going to find, especially with the 68% discount on the Complete bundle. Even if you don’t go for that, the VPN Plus package has a 62% discount, and the VPN only package has a 60% discount, which are still significant. While you’re here, if you’re planning to get a VPN for a new laptop, check out some of our laptop deals.

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Computing

This Dell business laptop deal is a great bulk buy for your office

If you’re looking through the Dell laptop deals for a relatively cheap general-use laptop, the Latitude 3420 is on sale at Dell right now for just $699, down from the original $1,159 retail price, which is a nice little $460 discount. This makes it an excellent bulk purchase for a company that needs good productivity laptops.’

Why you should buy the Dell Latitude 3420 Laptop

Among the nicest things about the Latitude 3420 are the 14-inch FHD display and its weight of only 3.36 pounds, which makes it a smaller laptop and easier to put in a bag or carry around by hand. That’s handy for a work environment where a person may be taking the laptop home every night. The CPU is an 11th-generation i5-1135G7, a nice midtier CPU that can easily handle the majority of productivity tasks such as slideshows, tables, and word processor apps. It can also reasonable handle transcoding for streaming or playing video for meetings and presentations, which is a nice little plus. There’s also a 720p camera in the front for those who work remotely or often have online meetings, plus a workable microphone that should be enough for most calls and conversations.

RAM comes in at 8GB, which should be enough to have at least a few apps and browser tabs open at the same time — and assuming it isn’t being abused, it should be enough for most work needs. Storage is also good at 256GB, although you can always plug in an external hard drive through one of its three USB ports and still have space left over for a mouse or even a printer. Connectivity comes in the form of Wi-Fi 6 and Bluetooth 5.1, so it’s future-proofed and will allow for a great internet connection even at a distance. Finally, there’s Windows 10, although it also comes with a Windows 11 license if you want to go that route.

All in all, the Latitude 3420 is a great business laptop that’s small, lightweight, and has some great specs that make it versatile for the workplace at a good budget. And at just $699 from Dell, it’s a good bulk purchase for a small or medium-size company. If you want something a bit more powerful and lightweight, there are some great Dell XPS deals to look at, although they’re generally more expensive, or you can look at our general laptop deals for something from another brand.

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Game

With a Samsung TV and Game Pass Ultimate, I don’t need to buy an Xbox

It took a bit of time, but you can now stream Xbox games from your TV without a Microsoft console in sight. As long as you have a Samsung TV. The Xbox app is now available on Samsung’s latest smart TVs and monitors, alongside apps for rival gaming services like Stadia and NVIDIA’s GeForce Now. It’s bigger news, however, when a console maker — and its huge catalog of games on Game Pass Ultimate – offers game streaming straight from your TV.

I had an extended play session during a launch showcase at Samsung’s London event space, and it made me, a PlayStation gamer, an offer I can’t refuse: Play Xbox games from the cloud with no additional hardware, aside from a Bluetooth-connected controller. I can even use my DualSense controller because I’m that kind of person.

This will be familiar news to anyone that’s already streamed games with Xbox Cloud or Google’s Stadia, but, all the games I tried were smooth, with incredibly swift load speeds. Some early previews of Samsung’s Gaming Hub kept gaming media to familiar hits, but with Xbox rolling out the entire Game Pass experience, I got to test its limits with Flight Simulator, a game that benefits from speedier load times and avoiding those pesky huge patch files.

On a big TV, even while standing up, playing Flight Simulator turns into a meditative experience. Type in your destination for an exploration flight (or, easier on a controller, set your cursor on the world map), and just fly and fly and fly. That’s what I did, and I started to hate that I’ll never be able to do this on my PS5. I’m sold on the idea already – I just don’t have a 2022 Samsung TV. Damn you, Microsoft.

Xbox Game Pass 2022 updates

Xbox

It’s not perfect, of course. Don’t expect 4K or variable refresh rates beyond 60 fps – this is still cloud gaming, although we get 4K streams on Stadia… The bigger question is whether Xbox’s games can stream on Samsung’s Game Hub, stably, for several hours on end, and that’s something that can only be answered after extensive testing. What if your connection hiccups and you lose that major progress made in Red Dead Redemption 2?

For now, the hub is limited to Samsung’s 2022 TVs and monitors, and it’s unclear exactly how Microsoft will deliver Xbox Cloud to other big screens not connected to its consoles. For Samsung’s part, its spokesperson said the company hoped to “extend the device coverage in the near future”.

Microsoft’s own streaming stick, similar to a Chromecast, seemed like the obvious solution, but the company said earlier this year that it was taking a ‘new approach’ with its game streaming devices, so that’s not happening for a while at least. It hasn’t elaborated further, besides teasing “a new approach that will allow us to deliver Xbox Cloud Gaming to more players around the world in the future.”

That could mean a dedicated device, or it could be exactly what I’m testing today, the TV app, coming to more TVs. Hopefully some that already exist. Hopefully mine? Buying a new TV to avoid paying $300 for a new console seems more than a little circuitous. For now, I’m left waiting for a way to stream Xbox Cloud to my TV without a console. Barring some particularly laborious workarounds, it seems I’ll be waiting a little longer.

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