SLIDESHOW

10 Great Laptop Deals

As sellers clear the shelves for laptops with the latest Intel processors, you can get a good buy on a slightly older laptop if you don't need the performance boost.

Why Good Laptop Deals Now?

The buzz in laptops this month concerns the arrival of powerful new Intel quad- and dual-core processors (code-named Sandy Bridge), which promise better graphics, improved energy efficiency, full support for 1080p high-definition Blu-ray playback, and vastly superior performance.

But with exciting new laptop chips come not-so-exciting higher laptop prices. That means the time is ripe for deal hunters: If you don't need Sandy Bridge performance and you're willing to seek out laptops that are slightly older and somewhat less powerful and energy-efficient, you can find bargains as stores look to clear older inventory off their shelves.

The price reductions won't be mind-blowing, says Stephen Baker, vice president of industry analysis for market research firm NPD Group. "Everybody wants to imagine a 50 percent price cut on notebooks," Baker says, but that's not likely. Savvy shoppers willing to look around a little, however, could save as much as $200 to $300.

Here's a look at ten great deals on non-Sandy Bridge laptops available right now. (Note: You can identify Sandy Bridge Intel Core i3, i5, and i7 chips by looking for a four-digit model number that starts with a 2.)

Amazon: 17-Inch Asus Republic of Gamers Laptop--Save Up to $150

Model: G73JW-A1 | $1700

Processor: 1.73GHz Intel Quad Core i7-740QM

Specs: 8GB DDR3 133MHz RAM, 1TB hard drive, Blu-ray combo drive, 802.11b/g/n Wi-Fi, Nvidia GTX 460M graphics with 1.5GB GDDR5, Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit, 17.3-inch display with 1920-by-1080-pixel resolution, Webcam

Thoughts: You'll want to grab this high-end laptop sold through a third-party retailer on Amazon before it's gone. The Sandy Bridge version of this laptop is already available and selling for about $150 more than its predecessor.

SonyStyle: 16-Inch Sony VAIO--On Sale Through March 26

Model: VPCF1390X | $870

Processor: 1.73GHz Intel Quad Core i7-740QM

Specs: 320GB hard drive, 4GB DDR3 RAM, CD/DVD combo drive, 16.4-inch VAIO display with 1600-by-900-pixel resolution, Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit, Nvidia GeForce 310M graphics

Thoughts: Sony has a big sale on its VAIO laptops now through March 26. You can upgrade this model with a faster processor, more hard-drive space, or whatever else you need. Sony's Sandy Bridge-loaded VAIO C Series laptops start shipping this month.

Buy.com: Lenovo 15-Inch Laptop--Good Price

Model: G5600679AKU | $600

Processor: 2.53GHz Intel Dual Core i3-380M

Specs: 15.6-inch display with 1366-by-768-pixel resolution, 4GB DDR3 RAM, 500GB hard drive, Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit

Thoughts: The graphics are nothing to write home about, but this is a respectable machine that weighs just 5.6 pounds. Lenovo's Sandy Bridge ThinkPad T, L, and W series are coming soon.

Dell: 14-Inch Laptop--On Clearance

Model: Studio 14 (1458) | $600

Processor: 2.4GHz Intel Dual Core i3-370M

Specs: Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit, 14-inch LED display with 720p output, 3GB DDR3 RAM, 320GB hard drive, ATI HD5450 Mobility Radeon graphics card, DVD/CD combo drive, 802.11n Wi-Fi

Thoughts: Dell's clearance section is always a good place to find deals. This 14-inch Dell Studio is available only in blue.

Dell: 17-Inch Desktop Replacement--$700 With Multitouch Screen

Model: Studio 17 (1749) | $700

Processor: 2.4GHz Intel Dual Core i3-370M

Specs: Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit, 17.3-inch LED laptop with 900p output, 4GB DDR3 RAM, 500GB hard drive, ATI HD5650 Mobility Radeon graphics card, DVD/CD combo drive, 802.11n Wi-Fi

Thoughts: Here's another clearance special from Dell. It's a great size, but don't plan on lugging this 7.08-pound beast around with you.

HP: 15-Inch Laptop--Good Price on Base Model

Model: G62x | $500

Processor: 2.4GHz Intel Dual Core i3-370M

Specs: Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit, 3GB DDR3 RAM, 320GB hard drive, 15.6-inch display with 1366-by-768-pixel resolution, DVD combo drive, media card reader, 802.11b/g/n Wi-Fi, three USB 2.0 ports, VGA, HDMI

Thoughts: Be careful shopping at the HP store, as the $500 deal applies only to the base model. Just as with Sony and Dell, as you increase the processor power, RAM, or hard-drive size, the dollars will start to add up.

Amazon: 15-Inch 3D Toshiba Satellite--Save Up to $300

Model: A665-3DV8 | $1400

Processor: 1.73GHz Intel Quad Core i7-740QM

Specs: 6GB DDR3 RAM, 640GB hard drive, 15.6-inch LCD screen with 1366-by-768-pixel resolution, Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit, 3D ready, Blu-ray drive, Nvidia GeForce GTS 350M with 1GB of dedicated DDR3 video memory

Thoughts: Best Buy was selling this laptop during the holidays for $1700, and Wal-Mart had it for $1565. It's a great deal at $1400.

Best Buy: 15.6-Inch Toshiba Satellite--Good Storage, RAM, Processor

Model: C655-S5128 | $580

Processor: 2.53GHz Intel Dual Core i3-380MP

Specs: Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit, 4GB DDR3 RAM, 500GB hard drive, 15.6-inch TFT-LCD screen with 1366-by-768-pixel resolution, two USB 2.0 ports, DVD/CD combo drive, 802.11n Wi-Fi

Thoughts: You could find a similar laptop over the holidays for the same price, but with half the storage and RAM and a much weaker processor.

Amazon: 15-Inch Samsung--LED Laptop

Model: RF510-S02 | $800

Processor: 1.6GHz Intel Quad Core i7-720QM

Specs: 15.6-inch LED display with 1366-by-768-pixel resolution, 4GB DDR3 RAM, 640GB hard drive, Nvidia GeForce GT 330M graphics card with 1GB dedicated memory, 802.11n Wi-Fi, Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit, Bluetooth 3.0 + EDR, two USB 3.0 ports, multiformat card slot (SD, SDHC, SDXC, MultiMediaCard), DVD combo drive

Thoughts: This laptop has a great price, but it brings some trade-offs. While it boasts 720p high-definition output, it has no Blu-ray drive. And although the machine has an Intel quad-core i7 processor, it's the weakest one you can buy. Make sure this laptop will meet your needs before buying--at $800, however, it's hard to go wrong.

Amazon: 16-Inch Sony VAIO--Blu-ray Drive, Good Graphics

Model: VPC-F13WFX/B | $1030

Processor: 1.73GHz Intel Quad Core i7-740QM

Specs: 500GB hard drive, 4GB DDR3 RAM, Blu-ray drive, 802.11b/g/n Wi-Fi, Bluetooth 2.1, two USB 3.0 ports, Memory Stick/Memory Stick Pro slot, MultiMediaCard slot, ExpressCard/34 slot, Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit, 16.4-inch display with 1600-by-900-pixel resolution, Nvidia GeForce GT 425M with 1GB of dedicated DDR3 RAM

Thoughts: This laptop is similar to a model selling on SonyStyle, but with more storage, a Blu-ray optical drive, and a better graphics card.