The iPad of laptops is back with better specs and a change of clothes. The Apple 12-inch MacBook was already a lust-worthy object, weighing just two pounds and measuring only 13.1mm at its thickest point yet still offering up to 11 hours of battery life, a 12-inch Retina display, and a completely silent, fanless design. It just wasn't that great for actual work. The new model improves the situation, adding sixth-generation, dual-core Intel Core M processors with Turbo Boost speeds of up to 3.1 GHz, faster graphics, and speedier storage. It still has only one USB-C port, but that's less of a hassle than it was when it first launched, and for the fashion-conscious, it's now available in rose gold, alongside the prior silver, space gray, and gold finishes.
Sometimes good things come from unexpected places. Like the world's thinnest laptop coming from the company that used to occupy the land on which Apple's building their spaceship. At just 10.4 mm thick, the HP Spectre Laptop is the new king of slim, using a clever design to cram in more power than expected. That includes full-fledged Intel Core i5 or i7 processors, three USB Type-C ports, a full-sized keyboard and full-travel etched glass trackpad, Bang & Olufsen speakers, a 13.3-inch 1080p IPS display, and enough battery to keep the whole thing running for up to 9.5 hours. Weight is kept to a reasonable 2.45 by way of a CNC'd aluminum chassis and carbon fiber bottom plate, and an active cooling system should keep the thing from cooking your thighs.
High-performance PC gaming requires a lot of power. More power than you can fit in a typical laptop. So instead of chaining you to a desk or selling you a pizza box-sized portable, the Razer Blade Stealth lets you have both a high-end gaming PC and an ultrathin laptop, thanks to a smart, simple compromise. The Intel Core i7-powered laptop sports a 12.5-inch high-res touchscreen, yet has an aluminum chassis that measures just over half an inch thick and lets the package weigh in at under three pounds. All of this makes for a capable laptop, but when it's time to game, you use the Thunderbolt 3 port to connect to your desk-bound, sold-separately Core, which houses a double-wide, full-length PCIe graphics card from your choice of AMD or Nvidia, as well as a host of extra ports, a beefy power supply, and plenty of heat dissipation. Portability when you want it, power when you need it — the computing equivalent of a mullet.
Up 'til now, the Surface has been stuck in a weird limbo between tablet and laptop. No more. The Microsoft Surface Book is designed to be a killer laptop and a killer tablet. Its unique hinge lets you detach the screen from the keyboard, turning it into a tablet, and reattach the screen facing out, letting you take advantage of the powerful, MacBook Pro-besting processor, RAM, and graphics built into the keyboard base without giving up the highly responsive, pressure-sensitive stylus and finger-ready touch surface. You can also pair it with a Surface Dock for desktop use, but even if you don't, it's the most interesting device that we've seen out of Redmond in, well, ever.
Even the best designed computers still look like technology, giving them a cold edge. The Wood Kubb Computer means to do the opposite by appearing to be nothing but a single block of wood. It measures roughly 5" x 5", is available in three finishes, and despite its small body still has full-size specs, with Intel Core i3 or i5 processors, Intel HD graphics, SSD storage, and up to 16GB of RAM. You'll still be responsible for adding a monitor, keyboard, and mouse, but at least it will be one less thing in your life made from plastic, metal, and glass.