What laptops made in the past 5 years don't suck? I'm 12 years behind on laptop advances because they all sucked for a good long while

Main requirement is battery life, charge, and ability to drive external displays. Need to use it in situations where power is inconsistent

@sir I've had this problem too. Bought a Librem 15 last year and while the hardware itself is really sexy it can certainly be quirky (my battery seems to be dying after a whole 8 months, plus the whole librem 1 stuff...) The pinebook stuff you mentioned looks *really* nice, but the shitty non-standardness ARM kinda ruins it :c

@ari @sir Oh man tell me about it. Librem 13v2 here: battery already tanking, first power adapter just spontaneously died. I wish @purism would stop shoving half-finished products out the door.

@sir how much of battery life do you expect?

I used to have HP Probook 4340s, which had battery that lasted about 5 hours on Linux and had both VGA and HDMI. There were only two bad things about that laptop: default HDD (changed to Intel SSD) and wifi/bluetooth card (used to be Ralink, changed to a better one). However, it didn't have a decent CPU, it was Intel Core i3 3rd Gen.

@alexcleac as much as I can get. I'll maximize battery life above all other considerations in this case

@sir oh, forgot to mention, that laptop was designed in 2012 :)

@sir And blob-free too I guess.
Specifically on this one: None, AFAIK unless you could consider the ARMs ones with the reverse-engineered drivers and/or consider that Intel ME / AMD PSP isn’t a blob.

@lanodan though I'm okay with reverse engineered drivers and I can't escape manufacturer rootkits :(

@sir Well, on the Intel ME side there is the more recent Thinkpads, which are still good.
But otherwise it’s stuff like Pinebook Pro and sturdy chromebooks.
@sir @lanodan well, you do. In that case, I think only modern usable laptop would be Asus Chromebook with Rockchip SOC, havn't used it myself, but have heard from some people about it.

@sir I've been carting around an older Lenovo Yoga 510 for a while now, and it's been a champ. I don't use the "fold it backwards into a tablet" thing really, but it does make it into a decent TV in a pinch. I've used it for theatrical productions, running sound and video cues and it's never let me down.

I have it dual booting Ubuntu and Win10 and everything works in both, battery life is excellent. Dunno for sure about the current models, but this one is great.

@jalcine hm, looks decent. What's the FOSS situation?

@sir I get about ~5 hours when fully charged. It came with Windows, threw Kubuntu on there and everything worked out of the box sans screen rotation (which I don't use but found a tool for it)

step 1. purchase panasonic toughbook
step 2. remove extra hardware features, remove ultrabay, etc
step 3. pack 18650 cells into empty space in casing
step 4. throw on a cheap BMS
step 5. ??????
step 6. lorge

@sir honestly I am still using a t60.

If I were to do a modern, non libre machine, I would do a Ryzen machine (good bang for buck, easy drivers) and make sure I have an nvme drive.

@the_gayest_doggo I still love my two X200's but the power issue is ruling them out

@sir with the ultrabay battery and a 3 cell my t60 gets a good 6 hours of continuous use.

I personally am enjoying using my t60 for running about and going to events and a desktop at home that has processing ability. nextcloud takes care of syncing files and contacts and emails and whatnot between them automatically.

@sir i'm actually very happy with my librem 13 gen 1. gen 2 has a better trackpad but no ethernet port... not perfect but they are easy to open up and upgrade and they come with coreboot and linux stock.

system76 comes up a lot, but i've been told that the build quality isn't great. could be outdated information tho.

@xj9 what's the battery life like? Do you have a kill-a-watt by chance?

@sir the keyboard is nice. idk how big the battery is off the top of my head, but i can get a good 4h of dev work out of it.

@sir @xj9 13v2 here. Get maybe 5 hours. I wish the battery was hot-swappable. No kill-a-watt but might look into nabbing one.

@xj9 @sir did you know the Pinebook Pro is about to come out at $200? Looks nice to me.

@hector @xj9 only if I can use it with a mainline kernel, though

@sir I'm not aware of any that don't, but I typically don't even look at the ones costing more than $500-$600.

@lnxw48a1 @sir Even when looking at the more expensive ones, it's a problem.

The only one that seems to be decent seems to be the Huawei MateBook X Pro. And I believe that one only exists to help them break into the US market (given the fact that you can only buy it in a handful of regions).

I just spent a ridiculous amount of money on a high end Lenovo T490 and while it's OK, I'd have expected more. Such as a touchpad that works properly.

@lnxw48a1 @sir I typically look at used business laptops (ThinkPad, Latitude, etc.) for anything under $600. New latops in that price range will almost always have inferior build quality and screen, among other things.

@sir @puresick depends, obviously, but I'm mostly happy with my ThinkPad T480. I would have loved to get the smaller X280, but the removed all the thing I cared about/(Ports, mostly)

I love my xps, with the 13 running something like sway I got 14-16 hrs coding with light internet. That's SD display, the higher red with touch uses more.


current lazy setup is just ubuntu with gnome, a few shell extensions. Not battery tuning done by me as yet and using about 6.5w idle - 9w while running FF now. This is driving a monitor over thunderbolt as well.

I remember with arch and i3 plus a bit of powertop recommended tuning I was getting about 4w idle.


Just after posting this I checked again and it's back sitting at 6.55w

@sir ThinkPad, particularly the T series, is usually a reliable choice.

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