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I have a small list of characteristics that are required for a new laptop and have been looking for websites where I can specify my requirements and see which laptops fit the bill. I want to specify OS/RAM/HDD size/CD drive/screen resolution/battery life. I have found several sites so far where I can specify everything except battery life. Does such a site exist?

I know that this is not a shopping site - but before any moderator rushes to close this question - please note that I am not asking "where do I buy this laptop" - merely what laptop fits this specs. I don't even care what country the website is based in.

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It would help if you listed the specs that you wanted? –  wag2639 May 18 '10 at 8:17
    
I have had several experiences of my questions being closed because they looked to much like a "shopping" question - I am deliberately leaving the question more general to avoid this. Besides the answers will be of more benefit to people for a longer period if they are not tied down to spec's that are only relavent in mid 2010. –  Mick May 18 '10 at 9:00

3 Answers 3

Dell allows you to customize laptops when you're purchasing them, and some of the laptops have battery options you can select from:

screenshot

Most laptops have more than one battery type available from the reseller, letting you select the battery life you want (more Whr = more power stored)

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Good- but of course you are then limited to dell laptops. –  Mick May 18 '10 at 9:07

Not generally. Battery life is dependent on usage patterns, and not something that they can give you with any certainty. They have benchmarks to use in comparisons, but you aren't going to be able to accurately do that.

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Certain sites like Newegg and others like it employ a drill down category selection that may help you. You can sort by one factor at a time or multiple factors with power search to do it all at once. Each successive filter applied will limit the possible categories to choose from.

After you get a short list, I would highly recommend researching it online through and reading as many reviews as possible.

However, if you can afford it, and are fine with a more industrious look rather than something flashy, I'd recommend looking at Lenovo's T series.

Edit: more info below

I think I saw this once a while ago, but I can't remember what it is. Perhaps try http://www.notebookreview.com/.

Generally, the following things will use more power and shorten battery life:

  • Dedicated/discrete graphics card
  • Larger screens
  • Faster hard drives (7200 vs 5400, very marginal though - power shouldn't be the concern in choosing between these)
  • Multiple hard drives
  • Using your CD/DVD/Blue-Ray drive
  • CCFL LCD backlights (vs LED)

Also, generally, bigger batteries with more cells will last longer than shorter batteries with less cells. However, you can't compare a 13" - 3 [battery] cell laptop to a 17" - 9 cell laptop.

Furthermore, remember that manufactures will overstate their battery life and show it under the best conditions (low LCD display, lowering processor to barely usable, turning off discrete graphics cards, turning off wireless networking).

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There is no option to select any aspect of the battery life. Even when you click on an individual laptop it is still hard to find out how long it will last amongst the info. –  Mick May 18 '10 at 9:06
    
My post probably does help you much but for other people, it might offer some general advice. Good luck. –  wag2639 May 19 '10 at 0:18

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