Get a Lenovo convertible laptop for $463.50 shipped
This refurbished Core i5-powered ThinkPad features a 12.5-inch touch screen that's hinged so it can pull tablet duty.
For those of you who might be new to the Cheapskate blog, allow me to refer you to, which answers a lot of common questions -- like "why I sent you an e-mail for a deal that was already sold out." (Spoiler: It wasn't sold out when I sent it.)
I mention that example because today's deal may also sell out quickly. (At this writing, Lenovo shows 498 units still in stock.) For a limited time, and while supplies last, Lenovo has the ThinkPad Twist S230u convertible laptop for $463.50 shipped. (Sales tax may apply in some areas.) That's after applying coupon code OUTLET15 at checkout.
This same configuration had an MSRP of $899 when.
In case the name didn't give it away, the Twist can go from laptop to tablet with a twist (and subsequent fold) of its center-hinged IPS touch screen. That screen tops out at 1,366x768 pixels, which CNET dinged for being on the low side, but I find that sufficient for a 12.5-inch display.
There's no SSD in this Ultrabook-style Windows 8 system, but it does have an Intel Core i5 processor, 4GB of RAM, a 500GB hard drive, and Bluetooth. Plus, despite it being a refurb, it comes with a full one-year warranty. Right on, Lenovo.
At 3.4 pounds, it's a little on the heavy side for a tablet, but at least it's a slim 0.8 inch thick. Even if you don't end up cradling it, you can "tent" it for easy touch-powered usage on kitchen counters, end tables, and the like.
I definitely recommend reading CNET's review, which points out a few niggling issues with the Twist (like a wonky accelerometer). You can also check out more than 100 mostly positive Amazon user reviews.
My take: Usability quirks aside, this is an amazing deal -- one of the best I've seen on a convertible.
Bonus deal: Like so many of its modern brethren, the Twist lacks an optical drive. Fine by me: I rarely need one -- until I need one. On those occasions, like when I want to burn a DVD, it's helpful to have an external drive on hand. Like this one: Newegg has the LG GP50NB40 Super-Multi external DVD burner for $24.99 shipped. A $5 mail-in rebate (PDF) brings your total down to $19.99. This slim, portable drive appears to be entirely USB-powered.
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