Get a 15.6-inch Acer laptop for $279.99

That's an after-rebate price, and you'll probably want to add a little more RAM--but it's still a killer deal on a dual-core portable PC.

Rick Broida Senior Editor
Rick Broida is the author of numerous books and thousands of reviews, features and blog posts. He writes CNET's popular Cheapskate blog and co-hosts Protocol 1: A Travelers Podcast (about the TV show Travelers). He lives in Michigan, where he previously owned two escape rooms (chronicled in the ebook "I Was a Middle-Aged Zombie").
Rick Broida
2 min read
This 15.6-inch Acer Aspire is a steal at $279.99 (assuming you don't mind waiting on a rebate).
This 15.6-inch Acer Aspire is a steal at $279.99 (assuming you don't mind waiting on a rebate). TigerDirect

Want to know why Netbooks are dead? Because you can buy a full-size, full-featured laptop for the same price. Witness today's deal from TigerDirect: the Acer Aspire AS5250-BZ853 15.6-inch laptop for $279.99, plus $8.77 for ground shipping.

The caveat: that's the after-rebate price. You'll pay $329.99 to get out the door, then get a $50 rebate (PDF) by mail. As is common these days, it'll come in the form of a prepaid debit card.

I know not everybody likes rebates, but when you look at the endgame price, this is nothing short of a redonkulously good deal. Seriously, a year ago? You'd be looking at $279 for a crummy, under-powered Netbook with a cramped keyboard and tiny screen.

The Aspire's keyboard is anything but cramped; it's even wide enough to accommodate a dedicated numeric keypad, which is really a nice amenity. And that 15.6-inch screen is the opposite of tiny.

The Aspire also comes with an AMD E-350 dual-core processor, 2GB of RAM, and a 350GB hard drive. Those are some entry-level specs, to be sure; you may want to think about grabbing another 2GB module. (I'm assuming it has a slot available--the specs don't say--but check the manual before you buy additional RAM.)

Ultimately, if you have modest computing needs and don't mind waiting 8-10 weeks for a rebate check (er, card), this qualifies as one of the best laptops deal I've seen--like, ever. Consequently, it will probably sell out quickly, so get your clicking finger in gear!

Bonus deal: Here's a good bookend to yesterday's free DVD ripper deal: WonderFox Soft is once again giving away HD Video Converter Factory Pro 3. Just download the program, then register it using code BB1747D443AAB51FF3148A77B6FEBC0AC0A7E4CC.