Are there any Classic Style Laptops anymore?

Zarathustra

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So, I posted most of this elsewhere. LazyGamer responded, and he was right,m that this was probably much more suitable in it's own thread, so here it goes.

I generally use my desktop for everything I do, and only rarely reluctantly use my laptop.

I've been holding on to my old Dell Latitude E6430s like someone needs to pry it from my cold dead hands because I love the thing.

I don't care that it is thick, and not sleek looking.

Everything I could possibly want to do, I can either do without removing screws at all, or just releasing one or two and popping up a little door.

It's starting to get old though. Touch pad is starting to flake out. I could replace that, but these days resolutions have been getting crazy high on laptops, and I occasionally have to attend meetings with this thing, and the little 1366x768 screen is not brilliant when trying to look at other peoples 1440p screen shares...

So, I've been thinking about a replacement.

Before I just go try to pick up an old refurbished Dell Latitude E6540 or something like that, is there any hope that anything more modern will meet my requirements?

Here is what it must have:
- Everything "normal" must be upgradeable. Drives, RAM, WLAN card etc. these things may not be soldered to the board.
- Everything must be accessible. If I need to remove more than 4 screws to replace the main drive, or access the RAM or WLAN card, It's not for me
- No chiclet keyboards allowed. I can not stand those things. I'll take rubber dome or some other form of switch, but I will not put up with chiclet keyboards under any condition.
- Battery must be easily removable/swappable from the outside. No internal batteries.
- Must support at least 16GB Ram
- Prefer at least 4 cores (Does not have to be a speed demon, but reasonable desktop responsiveness is a must)
- At least 1080p screen
- Must have a gigabit or better ethernet port. (Preferably intel chip.)
- Must be designed with service in mind
- Must have analog Headphone/audio out port
- Must either come with an SSD or be upgradeable to an SSD (SATA is Fine)
- Hardware must be reasonably standard, and supported by the mainline Linux kernel. No rare or hard to find drivers allowed.
- Must be high quality. Latitudes will last you 10+ years and will still be alive when they are obsolete. This is what I am looking for.

Here is what I don't care about:
- Thickness does not matter (within reason, my baseline are the old Dell Latitude D and E series) I mean, sure, who doesn't like a thinner laptop, but it still must meet everything above.
- Sleekness and Aesthetics does not matter (Again, within reason. Don't care if it is pretty. This is not a pageant)
- Weight does not matter. I prefer something sturdy over something flimsy. (Again, within reason, an adult male must be able to easily carry it in a bag)
- 3D rendering performance. This laptop will never see a game or CAD. It will be a work machine, spending its life in Ms Office, Adobe PDF, etc. etc..
- Don't care about bluetooth.

If it takes 28 tiny screws all around the outsides only to realize that you now have to flip it over., remove the keyboard and its tiny flat ribbon cable, and flip it over again in order to access anything on the inside. I don't care how pretty or how fast it is. Sorry it's not for me.

Is anyone aware of a laptop that meets these criteria today, or is everything just Ultrabook trash now? The last laptops that I have used that meet these criteria were made in 2013. I'm hoping there are newer ones? Otherwise I'll be back to shopping for 7 year old refurbished models.

Appreiciate any input or recommendations.
 

Zarathustra

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Also, buttons, and that stupid eraser mouse in the keyboard. The 14" Latitude had TWO sets of buttons,
Ah, you mean the Clit. :p

Yes, mine has it. It was the portable mouse replacement that lost the war to the trackpad. I never use mine but it's presence has never bothered me.

You know, my E6430s does have two sets of buttons. Again, I though it was a curious choice, but it never bothered me,


I've been using tap-to-click since... we didn't have mice for the Toughbooks we were using in Afghanistan in the early 2000's. That was a place that mice didn't survive, especially ones with a ball. I've since adapted to tap-to-click. I know some folks hate it for various and probably legitimate reasons, but it doesn't slow me down in the least, and a good trackpad is usually more accurate and more ergonomic than setting up a mouse on the go. About the only reason I'd use a mouse on the XPS 15 would be for gaming.
You know, I've been trying to use tap to click for well over a decade. Every new laptop I get comes with it enabled, and I ahve given it th egood honest try, but I have never been able to. I always wind up inadvertently clicking on things I don't want to, accidentally dragging and dropping files in places they don't belong, or accidentally moving my cursor mid typing.

The last couple of new laptops I've used, I haven't even bothered anymore. I just go into settings and disable the feature before disaster strikes.

Because of this, I insist that my touchpads have two actual, physical buttons, for left and right mouseclick. not those flat integrated ones that some manufacturers are using these days.




That's a Latitude / nicer HP / nicer Lenovo, at least, and you'll still need to be careful. Only thing soldered on to my XPS 15 is the WiFI card; it's a Razorfied Intel AX201, so I'm not really complaining. The laptop will be slow before AX becomes too slow to use (like a decade or more). But yeah.
I bought the XPS 15 with the minimum drive and RAM configurations, and promptly shoved a pair of 16GB sticks and a 2TB NVMe drive in it.

More screws will be necessary, even for the business-grade stuff, but the beauty of thinner laptops is that anything that needs to be accessed is right there, because there's nowhere else to put it.
Hmm. I feel like I had to pry out a keyboard, release two screws, then flip the laptop over, and remove the rear case to do anything at all last time I worked on a Dell laptop, but maybe that was an Inspiron or something, not a Latitude or XPS. I do have an XPS issued me from work, and while I'm not supposed to I have opened it. It wasn't as much of a facepalm experience as I was hoping, but it was still 12 screws to remove the bottom case (for some reason, 10 were annoying tiny torx screws and two were slightly larger philips head screws). I feel like I shouldn't ahve had to do that, but to be fair, once I was inside all was pretty good.

Still a massive downgrade from the little RAM and WLAN doors on the bottom and SATA drive caddy sliding out of the side that I am used to on my old Latitudes.


The Latitude 14's keyboard could best be described as 'mush', but it wasn't at all unusable. Perhaps like an MX Red with thick O-rings. The XPS 15 I have is also slightly squishy, but somehow a bit 'creaky' at the same time, and also not unusable. I have an old Toshiba with a 'chiclet' keyboard, but I think that thing actually has real switches, it has great feedback, when the keypresses work.
Which generation 14" Latitude are you talking? The traditional ones or one of the modern Ultrabook thingies?

The keyboard on my e6430s is a little mushy (it is a rubber dome after all) but it is also the best rubber dome I have ever used, and it is so much better than the modern flat chiclet keys with the inexplicable blank bars of space between every key.

The work issued XPS has a chiclet keyboard and I absolutely hate it.

I have a problem with anything that looks like this: (XPS15)
1605331184687.png

Instead of like this: (E6430s)
1605331118615.png

(pardon the dust, it's been a while since the last thorough cleaning I really should give them a clean. It's been too long.)

Form my keyboards I demand at least a little bit of travel, no space between the keys, and a self centering behavior when pressed to mitigate off center keypresses. The 6430s excels in this regard, but kayboards like these haven't been put in Dells from what I can tell since 2013. The modern ones all have the god awful Apple-inspired chiclets like the XPS on the top.

Good luck with this one on anything other than a business laptop or 'gaming' DTR, and you'll probably have to get a business model to get an Intel wired NIC. And definitely good luck finding out beforehand. I really wish Intel (or someone) would put Intel NICs in slim USB 3 or preferably Thunderbolt enclosures.
Business models have been at the top of my list all along. Hopefully I can find one equipped with what I want.

Don't get me wrong, I'll enjoy the occasional game, but only on my desktop. Never anywhere else. Not on a laptop, not on an arcade, not in the living room.


I'd say that SATA really isn't fine; at least going forward. Support for SATA M.2 seems to be waning a bit, especially as capacities increase.
I've honestly never been able to measure a real world difference beteen the SATA and M.2 drives I've used outside of large sequential file transfers to other fast drives. Going from a hard drive to a SATA SSD was HUGE! Going from a SATA SSD to an M.2 (or other NVME) SSD has really felt like quite a marginal upgrade to me.

Honestly this isn't too much of an issue. I booted up the Latitude 14 with Ubuntu to copy stuff off and wipe (within reason), and everything seemed to work. Really the biggest issue I've had relates to the relationship of Secure Boot and Bitlocker, and I've mostly stuck to VMs on laptops as I haven't gotten dual-booting to work reliably. At some point I do need to try the latest Fedora again though, it's looking and feeling pretty sleek.
That is good to hear. I'm guessing there will probably stioll be WLAN card compatibility issues if you don't get the right one (there always are) but hopefully you can still swap those out in these laptops...

Batteries are supposedly limited to <99Wh, so even at 17" there's a fairly hard limit to battery volume.
Whats the limit here? There just aren't any larger ones on the market? Or some sort of regulatory thing?

I draw the line at too pretty. Mostly just want something that doesn't stand out and scream 'steal me!' at a coffee shop.
Agreed. That is a concern.

I also would be way to embarrassed to use a crazy Christmas three light RGB illuminated Aliienware type design in public. I'm not some child.

I go for subtle, black and professional looking.


I've gamed using Intel IGPs... and I'll say stuff like RTX Voice is pretty nice when you have a GPU to run it. Even the lowly 1650Ti in this XPS 15 runs it. I'll also say that if there's any content creation involved, you want an Nvidia GPU for the stuff that they accelerate and for their driver stability and compatibility. Intel IGPs (and I assume upcoming dGPUs) are more than adequate and steadily improving, while AMD seems to be working overtime to stay in third place.
Of course, if you can get an AMD CPU, those are turning out to be right awesome for mobile use.
I don't do content creation. Just Outlook/Browser Business Apps/Office/Statistical software. Occasionally I'll open a Solidworks file and twirl it around, but that is rare. We have designers who do the modeling work. I hadn't thought of RTX voice. Noise cancleing on some of my conference calls WOULD be a blessing. I may have to think about that. Not sure how much money it is worth though.

You're not going to get a laptop without it, but at least you can usually disable it in the UEFI if the Windows toggle isn't enough. It is certainly a fairly detestable technology.
Oh I know. I just threw it out there that it is of no importance to me. I've only ever used bluetooth on my phone. Never seen a reason for it to exist on computers. Everything that it is used for (Audio, input devices, networking, etc) is better accomplished by some other technology.


All that and you've missed two of my peaves: rare high refresh-rate options and almost no FreeSync / G-Sync. I'm in the '120Hz VRR all the things' camp, just because that stuff should be standard, like they are becoming for phones.
Honestly this doesn't bother me at all. Don't get me wrong. I love the lack of tearing that Free/Gsync brings in games, but I don't play games on laptops.

60hz is fine for me on the desktop. I don't even find it noticeable unless I ma hyperfocusing on a moving mouse cursor, something I barely ever do.

Last time I cared about having more than 60hz on a screen was back on the old CRT's that would flicker like hell at 60hz, but ever since the flat panel era, refresh rate has been a non-issue for me.


But I feel you. On this XPS 15, I'm missing VRR, 120Hz, the VA panel is accurate (confirmed) but uniformity is noticeably poor at lower brightness levels, there's some annoying arrow key placement, and the combined power button and fingerprint reader is next to the delete key, above the backspace key.
I have no idea what screen is in my work issued XPS other than that it is 15" 1440p, but I have to admit, the screen is the one and only thing I like about it. The quality is great on mine. Sharp, nice colors, good backlight.

In every other way, I dislike this laptop, from the fact that the model our IT manager bought came with only a 1TB laptop hard drive, no SSD, to the fact that when I swapped that unusable piece of trash out with a m.2 SSD, the laptop has some sort of firmware issue where the fan now always spins like crazy and it is loud and annoying, to the chiclet keyboard, and the fact that for some completely stupid reason it shipped with a Killer branded WiFi module. (I mean, these are gaming snake oil, and I don't even play games) The screen is really its only redeeming quality. (for what it is worth, it is a 7th Gen i5, manufactured in 2018, I have no idea how these have changed over time).

I have flashed it with the latest firmware to see if I can get rid of the fan noise, but no such luck.

I appreciate you taking the time to write as much as you have!
 

LazyGamer

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Ah, you mean the Clit. :p

Yes, mine has it. It was the portable mouse replacement that lost the war to the trackpad. I never use mine but it's presence has never bothered me.

You know, my E6430s does have two sets of buttons. Again, I though it was a curious choice, but it never bothered me,
Main complaint was that the inclusion of the buttons meant that there was no space for a larger trackpad, even if they'd wanted to put one in. We have KVM trays for our servers that have tiny trackpads; I'm not paying my own money to deal with that limitation.

I'll say that the current model XPS 15 (as in, 2020) has a massive trackpad and has two physical buttons underneath; they're not marked, but if you 'click' where they're supposed to be, you get solid mechanical feedback. I'd personally prefer to not have them at all, but I see that there are definitely other opinions on the subject!
You know, I've been trying to use tap to click for well over a decade. Every new laptop I get comes with it enabled, and I ahve given it th egood honest try, but I have never been able to. I always wind up inadvertently clicking on things I don't want to, accidentally dragging and dropping files in places they don't belong, or accidentally moving my cursor mid typing.

The last couple of new laptops I've used, I haven't even bothered anymore. I just go into settings and disable the feature before disaster strikes.

Because of this, I insist that my touchpads have two actual, physical buttons, for left and right mouseclick. not those flat integrated ones that some manufacturers are using these days.
So, I've found four things that make touchpads less than usable:
  • Someone decided that they should have some texture other than smooth glass, the Latitude 14 I tried did this, quite an annoyance after using a glass touchpad
  • Minimum activation pressure too high; this had me missing clicks all over the place
  • Slow response - my ASUS ultrabook has this issue; when editing text, I'll tap to move the cursor and immediately start typing, but the first few letters will be inserted at the last cursor position! The XPS and Latitude do not have this issue
  • Size. All of the above satisfied, as long as the touchpad is large enough, I settle right in.
I can't speak for your work issued XPS 15, but the XPS 13 of a similar generation I passed to my mother didn't really have any issues other than the dual-core CPU and nostril cam (webcam at the bottom of the screen instead of the top). It also came with a 3GB/s NVMe drive and honestly is a fairly exceptional laptop, though it does spin up its fans annoyingly.
Hmm. I feel like I had to pry out a keyboard, release two screws, then flip the laptop over, and remove the rear case to do anything at all last time I worked on a Dell laptop, but maybe that was an Inspiron or something, not a Latitude or XPS. I do have an XPS issued me from work, and while I'm not supposed to I have opened it. It wasn't as much of a facepalm experience as I was hoping, but it was still 12 screws to remove the bottom case (for some reason, 10 were annoying tiny torx screws and two were slightly larger philips head screws). I feel like I shouldn't ahve had to do that, but to be fair, once I was inside all was pretty good.

Still a massive downgrade from the little RAM and WLAN doors on the bottom and SATA drive caddy sliding out of the side that I am used to on my old Latitudes.
My old DTR is like that, but nothing modern really. I'd recommend watching a video or two on something that you're interested in buying as it's now common for the reviewer to do a disassembly. I do miss the component doors myself.
Which generation 14" Latitude are you talking? The traditional ones or one of the modern Ultrabook thingies?

The keyboard on my e6430s is a little mushy (it is a rubber dome after all) but it is also the best rubber dome I have ever used, and it is so much better than the modern flat chiclet keys with the inexplicable blank bars of space between every key.

The work issued XPS has a chiclet keyboard and I absolutely hate it.

I have a problem with anything that looks like this: (XPS15)
1605331184687.png


Instead of like this: (E6430s)
1605331118615.png


(pardon the dust, it's been a while since the last thorough cleaning I really should give them a clean. It's been too long.)

Form my keyboards I demand at least a little bit of travel, no space between the keys, and a self centering behavior when pressed to mitigate off center keypresses. The 6430s excels in this regard, but kayboards like these haven't been put in Dells from what I can tell since 2013. The modern ones all have the god awful Apple-inspired chiclets like the XPS on the top.
Literally the current model. I purchased one from Dell Outlet during a late summer sale to use as a holdover. The chassis itself looked quite dated, especially compared to the Latitude 13 models we get at work (the real ultrabook version).
I'll say that it doesn't match either of your examples, and neither does my current model XPS 15; the XPS has much less space between keys. So you'd probably be good with either.
Business models have been at the top of my list all along. Hopefully I can find one equipped with what I want.

Don't get me wrong, I'll enjoy the occasional game, but only on my desktop. Never anywhere else. Not on a laptop, not on an arcade, not in the living room.
I got sucked in to League of Legends, of all stupid games. I also enjoy a bit of Civ 5 or Civ 6 for extended periods of boredom. LoL and Civ 5 at least are absolutely playable with integrated graphics, and Civ 6 doesn't blink on this XPS 15 with an 8-core Intel CPU and a GTX1650Ti.

I will say, though, that if you never plan to use a dGPU, it's a waste of space, weight, battery life, and will generate extra noise.
I've honestly never been able to measure a real world difference beteen the SATA and M.2 drives I've used outside of large sequential file transfers to other fast drives. Going from a hard drive to a SATA SSD was HUGE! Going from a SATA SSD to an M.2 (or other NVME) SSD has really felt like quite a marginal upgrade to me.
Not an upgrade to performance on the desktop, no; you'd need to go full Optane to notice a difference. It's mostly that M.2 SATA is becoming less available. My XPS 15 doesn't even support M.2 SATA, for example.

This also makes sense, given that SATA is ill-suited for solid-state memory as it's tuned around spinners, and that the extra protocol layers add needless complication.

But it's also really a non-issue, since laptops now come with NVMe slots and NVMe drives are plentiful.
That is good to hear. I'm guessing there will probably stioll be WLAN card compatibility issues if you don't get the right one (there always are) but hopefully you can still swap those out in these laptops...
Intel has been extremely good about getting their drivers into the Linux kernel. The best, really, for a company of their size.

I have yet to have an issue with Intel WiFi and any flavor of Linux. They just work. And Dell uses Intel cards in their Latitudes (almost always the AX201), and they use the Killer rebrand of the AX201 in the XPS line. Linux just uses the Intel driver and rocks on.
Whats the limit here? There just aren't any larger ones on the market? Or some sort of regulatory thing?
Pretty sure it's an FAA thing with respect to lithium ion batteries on passenger aircraft. It's like California emission standards; only applies in certain situations, but those happen often enough that the reg becomes de facto for the industry.
Agreed. That is a concern.

I also would be way to embarrassed to use a crazy Christmas three light RGB illuminated Aliienware type design in public. I'm not some child.

I go for subtle, black and professional looking.
I'm good with a soft white for backlighting, and white or black (or silver) for the laptop. My XPS 15 is silver on the outside (because machined Al/Mg), and I got the white keyboard deck because it's my thing. But you can get it in the default black, and it's all business too.
I don't do content creation. Just Outlook/Browser Business Apps/Office/Statistical software. Occasionally I'll open a Solidworks file and twirl it around, but that is rare. We have designers who do the modeling work. I hadn't thought of RTX voice. Noise cancleing on some of my conference calls WOULD be a blessing. I may have to think about that. Not sure how much money it is worth though.
I'd bet that there's some software that doesn't rely on the GPU that you could use to get the noise control close enough, like AMD sharpening vs. DLSS, it'd be better than nothing. Even better would just be a better mic or full-on webcam.
Honestly this doesn't bother me at all. Don't get me wrong. I love the lack of tearing that Free/Gsync brings in games, but I don't play games on laptops.

60hz is fine for me on the desktop. I don't even find it noticeable unless I ma hyperfocusing on a moving mouse cursor, something I barely ever do.

Last time I cared about having more than 60hz on a screen was back on the old CRT's that would flicker like hell at 60hz, but ever since the flat panel era, refresh rate has been a non-issue for me.
VRR should be on everything, everywhere. V-Sync is a CRT-era technology that isn't needed, and on laptops, the tech for VRR is already there!

But higher-refresh rates are a creature comfort that shouldn't be overlooked. It's always jarring to go from my desktop back to a 60Hz anything. It's then that you realize that you're slowing down for the monitor.
I have no idea what screen is in my work issued XPS other than that it is 15" 1440p, but I have to admit, the screen is the one and only thing I like about it. The quality is great on mine. Sharp, nice colors, good backlight.
Dell had some absurdly high-res screen on the ~2017 XPS 13 I used (the one that went to my mother). Gorgeous, but at time of release desktop scaling was either bad or terrible, so I wound up running the desktop at a lower res which had obvious limitations. Last time I worked on that laptop, scaling worked great and the screen is still basically perfect to this day.

Main complaint with high-res screens is that they eat battery life. High refresh rates you can turn down when on battery etc., but you're just not going to get battery life back from a 4k LCD, let alone a 4k OLED. And I've seen more than one video stating that 4k OLEDs on laptops have some weird sub-pixel structure that messes with the perceived sharpness of content, not just text like VA panels can, but everything. OLED would be worth the battery life hit if not for that.

But 4k just for 4k? They can keep it. I find 1080p to be just about perfect for laptops, 13" to 17", with above-average vision. My blind wife has to set them to ~175% scaling though... :)
I appreciate you taking the time to write as much as you have!
No worries -- I just went through all this. Searched, bought the Latitude because I couldn't find what I wanted and it was cheap, returned it, bought the XPS which is still not what I want but works, still searching...

The closest I've seen is some of Razer's products. But to hit my requirements, I have to go over the top on other things, and then I wind up at a US$3500 pricetag along with Razer's Q/A and support. I might pay that for a Dell if one such existed, but not for Razer!
 

Zarathustra

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Not an upgrade to performance on the desktop, no; you'd need to go full Optane to notice a difference. It's mostly that M.2 SATA is becoming less available. My XPS 15 doesn't even support M.2 SATA, for example.

This also makes sense, given that SATA is ill-suited for solid-state memory as it's tuned around spinners, and that the extra protocol layers add needless complication.

But it's also really a non-issue, since laptops now come with NVMe slots and NVMe drives are plentiful.
You know, I was thinking about 2.5" SATA drives vs m.2 NVMe drives. I havent even through about m.2 SATA drives in forever. I almost forgot they were a standard.

Intel has been extremely good about getting their drivers into the Linux kernel. The best, really, for a company of their size.

I have yet to have an issue with Intel WiFi and any flavor of Linux. They just work. And Dell uses Intel cards in their Latitudes (almost always the AX201), and they use the Killer rebrand of the AX201 in the XPS line. Linux just uses the Intel driver and rocks on.
Nor have I. Intel networking stuff always just works.

Dell has a nasty havit of sneaking in non Intel stuff on occasion that causes all sorts of problems though.

Pretty sure it's an FAA thing with respect to lithium ion batteries on passenger aircraft. It's like California emission standards; only applies in certain situations, but those happen often enough that the reg becomes de facto for the industry.
Kind of a shame that a laptop you may never even bring on a plane, is hampered by plane restrictions...

VRR should be on everything, everywhere. V-Sync is a CRT-era technology that isn't needed, and on laptops, the tech for VRR is already there!
I mean, hvaing it doesn't hurt, but what have you ever made use of it on outside of games? For a non-game machine, it seems like a non issue.

But higher-refresh rates are a creature comfort that shouldn't be overlooked. It's always jarring to go from my desktop back to a 60Hz anything. It's then that you realize that you're slowing down for the monitor.
Honestly, unless I am comparing side by side, I don't even notice. 60hz simply does not bother me.

Dell had some absurdly high-res screen on the ~2017 XPS 13 I used (the one that went to my mother). Gorgeous, but at time of release desktop scaling was either bad or terrible, so I wound up running the desktop at a lower res which had obvious limitations. Last time I worked on that laptop, scaling worked great and the screen is still basically perfect to this day.
Yeah, windows scaling has improved with almost every release of Windows 10.

I had a Latitude at my last job. E74xx something (can't remember). It came with a super high res screen, but at that point (2017) we were still stuck on Windows 7, and Windows scaling wasn't very good. It was aone fixed setting OS wide, not per monitor, so if I scaled the res on the laptop screen, everything was HUGE when I popped it in the dock, and vice versa, so until the company transitioned to Win10 I just left it in a lower resolution and utilized supar built in upscaling.

Speaking of docks, I don't know why Dell did away with their traditional pop-in docking stations for the Latitude series. They were the best around. Modern USB-C docks are a pain by comparison.
 

DrezKill

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You know, I've been trying to use tap to click for well over a decade. Every new laptop I get comes with it enabled, and I ahve given it th egood honest try, but I have never been able to. I always wind up inadvertently clicking on things I don't want to, accidentally dragging and dropping files in places they don't belong, or accidentally moving my cursor mid typing.

The last couple of new laptops I've used, I haven't even bothered anymore. I just go into settings and disable the feature before disaster strikes.

Because of this, I insist that my touchpads have two actual, physical buttons, for left and right mouseclick. not those flat integrated ones that some manufacturers are using these days.
I still sometimes try to use it, but when I do, I don't know why I bothered, cuz it just doesn't work out all that well for me. 98% of the time I just say f_ck it and stick to what works, actual physical buttons. Never really got the hang of click-hold-and-drag with tap-to-click, or trying to use tap-to-click in conjunction with a keyboard key, among other things. Sometimes if I just need to double-click on something I might give it a whirl, but most of the time I need to use the buttons to accomplish whatever I'm trying to do.

I also like having full numpads in laptops.

I figured that at some point in the nearly 4 decades I've been alive, laptops would end up like desktop PCs, allowing us to completely build our own. That still hasn't really happened. So f_ck laptops. Never could get used to paying higher-than-desktop prices for weaker-than-desktop hardware. Only laptop I have is cuz I got it for free. It's really handy to have a portable computer, but I just can't stand the things. Also hate almost all the keyboards you find on laptops.

not on an arcade
You're missing out. Great gaming to be had in all 3 corners of the gaming universe (arcade, PC, and yes, home/handheld console).

Agreed. That is a concern.

I also would be way to embarrassed to use a crazy Christmas three light RGB illuminated Aliienware type design in public. I'm not some child.

I go for subtle, black and professional looking.
Agree with both you guys there. Don't wanna draw attention, inviting others to steal my sh1t, or put on an embarrassing light-show. On the other hand, I'm sad some of the functional lights like HDD activity indicators are going away in PC cases.

Last time I cared about having more than 60hz on a screen was back on the old CRT's that would flicker like hell at 60hz, but ever since the flat panel era, refresh rate has been a non-issue for me.
CRT flicker at 60Hz really ****ed with my eyes. Gave me eye fatigue and migraines. At my previous job, they f_cking gave me a 60Hz CRT and I went home and brought an 85Hz CRT that was lying around just to use with my work PC, so my eyes weren't screaming bloody murder all the time. After weeks they finally gave me an LCD screen. 60hz with persistent LCD image is no problem.

I'm good with a soft white for backlighting
I need backlighting for all my keyboards, laptop or desktop. I don't need RGB, but a nice single color that doesn't grate on the eyes is fine. I'm not the biggest fan of white backlighting. I think a subtle blue would work better for me.

VRR should be on everything, everywhere. V-Sync is a CRT-era technology that isn't needed, and on laptops, the tech for VRR is already there!

But higher-refresh rates are a creature comfort that shouldn't be overlooked. It's always jarring to go from my desktop back to a 60Hz anything. It's then that you realize that you're slowing down for the monitor.
I kinda agree with Z that for non-gaming scenarios, 60Hz is fine, especially on a laptop that will never ever ever be used for anything gaming-related. On the other hand, after being exposed to 144Hz for a year, and after I started living with 144Hz for months, it really is kinda hard to go back to 60Hz. I too would like to live in a world where 60Hz is a thing of the past, and VRR is everywhere.

I find 1080p to be just about perfect for laptops, 13" to 17", with above-average vision.
I am so sick of 768p on my laptop. Can't fit sh1t in that. My mom's lappy is 1080p and I have realized that's my bare-minimum resolution for a laptop. As has been pointed out, don't really need higher than that for a laptop due to battery issues. I think 1440p would work out okay for me in a laptop, but 4K screw that. Highly unnecessary.

:LOL:
Sadly my laptop requirements are pretty close to Z's in many areas, and sadly I'd be just as disappointed as he will be. The laptop market has never been for me. The only way to have the computer you want, exactly the way you want it, is to have a desktop. If you want a laptop, drop your pants and bend over.
 

LazyGamer

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I still sometimes try to use it, but when I do, I don't know why I bothered, cuz it just doesn't work out all that well for me. 98% of the time I just say f_ck it and stick to what works, actual physical buttons. Never really got the hang of click-hold-and-drag with tap-to-click, or trying to use tap-to-click in conjunction with a keyboard key, among other things. Sometimes if I just need to double-click on something I might give it a whirl, but most of the time I need to use the buttons to accomplish whatever I'm trying to do.
Bad ones can be frustrating, but good ones are a breeze. I almost wish my XPS 15 didn't come with the buttons it has, but those are needed for Linux.
 
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