I recently switched from macos to Windows for my operating system. Although I have invested a lot in the macos ecosystem, the recent issues with keyboards on macbooks and the rising costs of mac hardware paired with a steady stream of improvements to WSL was enough for me to give Windows a sincere try.
My primary development machine is a Dell XPS 15 9570, with the following configuration:
- Core i7 8750H CPU
- 32 GB DDR4 RAM
- 1TB M.2 2280
- 4K (3840x2160) touchscreen display
It is paired to a 32” 2560x1440 WQHD panel, and the best thing about it is that it comes with a stand so it can be converted to a (very large) portrait display; the exact model is the BenQ BL3200PT, but perhaps realizing that is a mouthful the new iteration of this monitor is called the PD3200Q.
The XPS is a great machine, except for the webcam postion which is horrible (they have since fixed it in the 2019 upgrade), and the keyboard is a bit too soft for my liking.
My travel and commute laptop is the excellent Lenovo X1 Carbon now in its 6th generation. I could write a sonnet about this laptop, but here are the highlights:
- 14” 500-nit display - which is unfortunatately glossy, but very bright which is great for travel.
- The best keyboard of any laptop. Period.
- A webcam (with a hardware shutter)
- A LTE modem built-in (this is a configurable option)
- USB-C (x2), USB, HDMI and a microSD card reader built-in
- NFC (only in Europe)
This laptop is one of the best portable machines I have ever used. My only gripe with it is that it tends to be very aggresive with the fan. As a result the right side of the laptop gets quite warm and this is where I usually keep my external mouse so it tends to get annoying.
Here are some other things that I enjoy using:
- Bose QC35
- MX Master 2S
- Kensington Expert Mouse Wired Trackball
- Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard
- Spotlight Presentation Remote
My go-to bag to carry my gear is the Waterfield Pro Executive Laptop Backpack; I can also recommend the Staad Laptop Backpack if you carry minimal amount of gear. Waterfield’s bags are hand-made, high quality and will last you a very, very long time. I am celebrating 10 years with my very first bag from them, and it has yet to form a rip or a tear.
If you only want one laptop, get the Surface Book, I would recommend the 15” version. For a machine that can do it all and above, this is my recommendation and what I would buy today if I were to refresh my hardware.
If buying Lenovo hardware, it pays to wait. They are having excellent promotions and you can get away with some serious savings (I saved >$800 on my purchase). Get a coupon for upto $200 off your first purchase if you create an account.