You don't always need to pay business-class prices for a business-class laptop. Case in point, the seasonal update to the new Dell Vostro 3000 series. This team of durable laptops are now available with Ivy Bridge processors, more USB 3.0 ports, Bluetooth 4.0, and a small supplementary SSD for speedy wake and boot times--all for a $599 starting price.
Like most good things, the new Vostro comes in three sizes: the 13.3-inch Vostro 3360, the 14-inch 3460, and the 15.6-inch 3560. In keeping with Dell Vostro tradition, each system is available in three colors (Aberdeen Silver, Brisbane Bronze, and Lucerne Red).
In terms of hardware, the machines are more alike then they are different. Each flavor include a choice of 2nd or 3rd-generation Intel Core processors, a DVD-RW drive, HD webcam paired with a dual-array microphone (and Waves MaxxVoice Pro for better audio during business calls), finger-print reader, VGA, HDMI, and an array of USB 3.0 ports.
That's all the standard fixings. Let's talk configuration options. Upgrade-ready specs include a supplementary 32GB solid-state drive for faster boot times, AMD and Nvidia graphics for better performance, full HD displays, and even a 4G LTE broadband radio.
You can check out details for each of the new Dell Vostro 3000 series below.
Dell Vostro 3360 (Starting at $649)
If portability's your bag, the Dell Vostro 3360 will definitely fit inside of it. With a profile thickness of just .76-inches. this 13.3-inch laptop can go anywhere. The WLED anti-glare display packs a resolution of 1366 x 768 pixels. We have to see how well that display sips power from the included 4-cell battery. And speaking of power, the Dell Vostro 3360 packs 2 standard-issue USB 3.0 slots as well as one more port that marries USB 3.0 with Power Share technology for charging devices while the notebook's lid is closed. For storage, the 3360 can ship with a 320GB 7200rpm hard drive or a 500GB 5400rpm option--and don't forget, you can toss in a 32GB SSD armed with Intel Rapid Start technology to save time on booting the system.
Dell Vostro 3460 (Starting at $599)
The 14-inch Dell Vostro 3460 packs the same WLED glare-proof screen as the smaller 3350, but is available with a 1920 x 1080p, full HD resolution as well (or you can opt for the lower res 1366x768 option). To match the demands of a full HD panel, shoppers can also add optional Nvidia GT630M graphics. And in the spirit of upgrading, a back-lit keyboard will be a consideration for some as well. If you really want to max out on the hardware, the 3460 can run beefier hard drive options than the starter-level 320GB 7200rpm spinner. There are 500GB and 700GB 7200rpm drives as well. One feature that doesn't require a upgrade is the 6-cell battery, which comes included.
Dell Vostro 3560 (Starting at $599)
The biggest of the new Vostro line, the 3560 packs a 15.4-inch screen available in 1366 x 768 or 1920 x 1080 resolutions, and can be configured with an AMD Radeon HD 7670M discrete video card to supplement the integrated Intel HD graphics. In addition to VGA, HDMI, and 8-in-1 card reader ports, the 3560's larger frame can hold 4 USB 3.0 ports, including one slot with sleep-and-charge capability. Like the 14-inch model, the 3560 includes a 6-cell battery and is available with up to a 750GB 7200rpm hard drive. The back-lit keyboard is also a handy option that'll keep the business elite on their game even during late-night flights or in dimly lit hotel rooms.