I still think the Lenovo U400 is the best bet, but here is a 13.3" Sony VAIO for $599 (plus sales tax, free shipping)-
Other than a 2.3GHz Intel Core i3, 320GB 5400rpm hard drive and 13.3" display, it has the same basic specs as the Lenovo U400. It weighs 3.8lbs and is 0.95" thick.
Good luck and I hope this helps you find what you're looking for!
All right, so here's the deal...
If anyone could help, it'd be great. I'm looking for laptop suggestions both within a budget that says in the $500 range, and suggest for a budget from $600-$650. No Dells. No HPs. I know I'm picky but there you go. I'd like a reliable laptop, one that isn't known for crashing a lot or too many crazy problems.
I want a laptop with a smaller screen (13 inch range?), preferably not too heavy (I'm going to be a student so slightly portable is nice). Obviously, if I can get one with good battery life that'd be great, but I understand I can't have everything for the type of budget I'm asking for, so if I must sacrifice something this would be it?
I'm a writer, photographer, student, and gamer. I realize it's hard to find a cheaper computer for all of these things, so I'll give you specifics. I need a computer good at multitasking. This is a must because I'm often listening to music, writing in MS Word, browsing Tumblr with like ten tabs opened, and IMing at the same time. I also enjoy photo editing and creating graphics so computers that can run photoshop and other photo programs easily while I'm multitasking would be perfect.
As for the gaming part... it really doesn't need to be outstanding. Basically, I'd like to be able to play and Sims 3 (with a few expansions) with higher settings without trouble. If I can't have playing those games on higher settings for my budget WITH the multitasking, then I'm fine with medium.
Mostly, is it even possible to find a laptop like that in the $500 range? Or even the $600-$650 range? I've been out of the computer loop for a little so I don't even know what's going on with laptops these days since tablets seem to be the thing. I need a new laptop though.
If anyone could help, god, I'd love you forever. I'd really appreciate any advice anyone has.