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Best laptop and desktop Christmas gift ideas

Hybrids, convertibles, desktops, desktop-replacements, gaming PCs and more: it's a crowded and confusing world when you're shopping for PCs these days!

Here's some of our top gift suggestions across a range of categories.

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Microsoft Surface Pro 3

The most recent Microsoft Surface is also the best yet. At 12-inches the screen is bigger and better than ever, while the device itself is thinner and lighter.

If you need all the power and functionality of a Windows laptop with the convenience of converting to a tablet, the then Surface Pro 3 is the one to look out for.

Published:Caption:Photo:Sarah Tew

Origin PC Millennium (2014)

While laptops are getting slimmer and slimmer, traditional gaming PCs are still where size can matter.

Built for 4K gaming, the Millennium is an absolute monster and with a AU$7,000 price tag to match. Of course, the great thing about PC gaming is the simplicity of component upgrades, so this is a gift that'll last for a long time...

Published:Caption:Photo:Sarah Tew

Lenovo Yoga 3 Pro

The new Yoga 3 Pro is thinner and lighter than ever, thanks to that iconic "watchband" hinge design.

How much thinner and lighter? According to Lenovo, 17 percent thinner and 14 percent lighter than last year.

Inside it's as powerful as ever, sporting the new Core M processor from Intel. This is a convertible device that'll definitely attract some attention.

Published:Caption:Photo:Sarah Tew

Alienware Area 51

The iconic new look of the Area 51 isn't just about standing out from the crowd.

Alienware says that the 'triangle' shape means better airflow and cooling, as well as easy tilt to access ports on the chassis.

Beyond that, you've got one seriously powerful machine with a surprisingly affordable starting price of AU$2,999.

Published:Caption:Photo:Sarah Tew

Toshiba Satellite P50t-B

If you're a stickler for screen quality, then Toshiba's Satellite P50t is the one to look for.

Packing in a 15-inch 4K resolution screen into a laptop might seem like overkill, but Toshiba has made it powerful enough to ensure that the GPU can handle it.

This is the one for the photographer or videographer in the family.

Published:Caption:Photo:Sarah Tew/CNET

Alienware Alpha

Alienware is bringing PC gaming into the lounge room with the Alpha 'console'.

Small and quiet, the Alpha has a purpose-built UI that means you can perform a full set up without a keyboard -- all you need is a gaming controller.

If you've been keen to access your Steam library while on the sofa, then the Alpha might be right for you -- and starting at AU$699 it won't break the bank.

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Apple Macbook Air

With a new CPU and a lower price the latest Macbook Air is faster and more affordable than ever.

Starting at AU$1,199 for the 13-inch model, pop this under the tree for your Apple-loving family member and they definitely won't be disappointed.

Published:Caption:Photo:Sarah Tew/CNET

Acer Chromebook 13

The Chromebook may be a slightly odd beast, but anyone looking for a low-cost laptop that focuses on productivity should at least consider one.

With a 13-inch 1080p screen and the Nvidia K1 Tegra chip, you've got 13 hours of battery life and a 9 second boot up. Plus that AU$379 price is pretty compelling!

Published:Caption:Photo:Sarah Tew