This week's roundup of the best laptop deals features excellent deals on Apple's 2014 and 2015 MacBook Air laptops. We've also found deals on Dell's answer to the MacBook Air and a powerful mainstream Lenovo with a 1080p screen.Apple MacBook Air 1.4GHz 11.6" Laptop
Store: Micro Center
Price: $699.99 with in-store pickup
Lowest By: $100
Is It Worth It?: Back-to-school shoppers who insist on a Mac, your deal has arrived. Micro Center offers the 2014 Apple MacBook Air Haswell Core i5 1.4GHz 11.6" Laptop for $700. This Editors' Choice deal is $100 off list and $150 off Amazon's price for this laptop, which makes it the best price we've ever seen for this system. The 2014 model features Intel's 1.4GHz Core i5-4250U CPU, an 11.6" 1366x768 display, 4GB RAM, 128GB SSD, 802.11ac wireless, and Mac OS X 10.9 Mavericks. Note: Supplies are very limited, so you may have to check multiple stores to find one in stock near you.
Apple MacBook Air 1.6GHz 13.3" Laptop
Store: Electronics Valley via eBay
Lowest By: $200
Expires: August 31
Is It Worth It?: "The new Air falls right where you'd expect it to — it's around 10% faster than its Haswell-based predecessor, and about 20% slower than the faster dual-core chip in the 13" MacBook Pro," says Ars Technica. And while its unchanged design may be showing its age, today's deal compensates for that as it undercuts Apple's price for this same laptop by an impressive $200. The 3-lb. 2015 Apple MacBook Air Intel Core i5 1.6GHz 13.3" Laptop features an Intel Core i5-5250U Broadwell 1.6GHz dual-core processor, 13" 1440x900 LCD, 4GB RAM, 128GB SSD, 802.11ac wireless, and Mac OS X 10.10 Yosemite.
Dell XPS 13 9343 2.1GHz 13.3" Laptop
Store: Dell Home
Price: $799.99 with free shipping
Lowest By: $59
Is It Worth It?: The Dell XPS 13 Intel Broadwell Core i3 2.1GHz 13.3" 1080p Laptop is Dell's answer to the MacBook Air, winning accolades from the likes of Engadget, Laptop, and CNET. Today, its price has dropped down to $800, which is just a buck over the best price we've ever seen for this machine. "This is clearly the Ultrabook of the Broadwell-U generation to beat," says Anandtech. It provides a responsive, small, light, and well-built machine in the body of an 11" laptop. The 2.6-lb. machine features an Intel Broadwell Core i3-5010U 2.1GHz dual-core processor, 13.3" 1080p display, 4GB RAM, 128GB SSD, 802.11ac wireless, and Windows 8.1 64-bit.
Lenovo Z50-70 2GHz 15.6" Laptop
Price: $569 via coupon code "USPZ501813" with free shipping
Lowest By: $431
Expires: August 28
Is It Worth It?: The Lenovo Z50-70 Intel Haswell Core i7 2GHz 15.6" 1080p Laptop is a mainstream machine with a better-than-average spec sheet and affordable price tag. Currently $431 off, the 5.5-lb. Z50-70 features an Intel Core i7-4510U 2GHz Haswell dual-core processor, 15.6" 1080p LCD, 8GB RAM, 500GB hard drive, Nvidia GeForce 820M 2GB graphics card, 802.11ac wireless, and Windows 8.1 64-bit.
Toshiba C55-B5242 2.16GHz 15.6" Laptop
Price: $309 with free shipping
Lowest By: $19
Is It Worth It?: The Toshiba C55-B5299 Intel Celeron 2.16GHz 15.6" Laptop won't wow you with its power, but if you're on a tight budget or just looking for a basic Windows-based laptop, this machine offers specs that are slightly better than most budget machines. The 6.5-lb. laptop features a 15.6" 1366x768 LCD, a low-power Intel Pentium N3540 2.16GHz Bay Trail quad-core processor, 4GB RAM, 750GB hard drive, and Windows 8.1.