Get a 16-inch Blu-ray laptop for $449
There's a rebate involved, but the list price on this superbly equipped system is $700. Plus: It's National Donut Day! Find out where to score one free.
If you're in the market for a new laptop with a nice, big screen--though not so big it's impractical to carry around--I've got a pretty smokin' deal for you.
Actually, Fry's has the deal: an MSI A6000-226 16-inch laptop with Blu-ray for $449.99. That's after a $50 mail-in rebate [PDF], and not including about $8 for shipping. Regular list price: $699.99.
Update: Looks like this is already sold out. Sorry about that! Running a very close second: TigerDirect has a refurbished Acer Aspire 17.3-inch laptop for $429.97, again with about $8 for shipping. No rebates! No Blu-ray, either, but you do get a larger LCD.
This is a seriously well-equipped laptop. Let's start with the starring attraction: the Blu-ray drive, which doubles as a DVD burner. I think Blu-ray is overkill if you're planning to watch movies on the laptop--but awesome if you're planning to connect that laptop to an HDTV. The A6000's HDMI output makes that possible.
That said, movies will look plenty purty on its 16-inch, 1,366x768-pixel screen (which, it should be noted, has a movie-friendly 16:9 aspect ratio). At that size, the system can easily pull desktop-replacement duty--but at just 5.5 pounds, it's still light enough to schlep around. (Bump up to a 17-inch LCD and you're usually looking at a travel weight closer to 8-9 pounds.)
The A6000's other specs are equally impressive, including a 2.2GHz Intel Core 2 Duo T6600 processor, 4GB of RAM, a 320GB hard drive, and GeForce 8200M G graphics. (Full specs are available on MSI's product page.)
You also get a Webcam, a 4-in-1 media reader, and 802.11n Wi-Fi. The system is new, not refurbished, and covered by a 1-year warranty.
Though perfect for any power-hungry user on a budget, the A6000 strikes me as particularly ideal for a high-school graduate headed off to college in the fall.
The rebate offer is good until June 10, but there's every chance the A6000 could sell out before then. Heck, it could sell out before noon today. It's been known to happen...
Bonus deal No. 1: Happy National Donut Day! Head to your nearest Krispy Kreme for a free, no-strings-attached pastry circle of your choice. Or find a Dunkin' Donuts and get a free one with any beverage purchase. Is this the best holiday ever or what?
Bonus deal No. 2: How would you like the chance to buy Microsoft Office 2010 Professional Plus for just $10? You can, provided your company already has Office 2010 and a Microsoft Software Assurance plan. Many companies do, so go tackle (er, hug) your IT admin and find out if you can get in on this dirt-cheap action.