PC Specialist Lafite II review

This is one impressive wallet-friendly MacBook Air lookalike

PC Specialist Lafite II
PC Specialist Lafite II

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It's not hard to see where the Lafite 2 got its inspiration from. Imitation, they say, is the sincerest form of flattery and PC Specialist's laptop is just one of the many MacBook Air lookalikes that have come to market over the past few years. It is however probably one of the best MBA clones around and one of the best value-for-money laptops on the market at £579 for the configuration we tested.

We liked

The Lafite 2 is very affordable for what it offers. At well under £600 (£579 including delivery), it packs some cutting edge components (Skylake, USB Type-C) and comes with a blissfully bloatware-free setup. It is very easy to upgrade and maintain plus there's even an option to exclude the OS (Windows 10 Home) to bring the price further down.

We disliked

All PC Specialist laptops come with a three-year warranty, but it isn't quite what you might think. It's actually a cheeky "one-month collect and return, one-year parts and three-year labour" warranty. Upgrading to a full one-year collect and return affair only costs £5. So why not just do it? Also battery life is sub-par and build quality could have been improved.

Final verdict

A very nice laptop, not as polished as the main brands but nowhere near as expensive as they are, either. PC Specialist has a winner on its hands, a potential game-changer that could achieve what Chinese vendors like Xiaomi or Oppo have done in the smartphone market – namely, shake up that market.

And to be totally honest, this configuration priced at £599 (compared to £579 for our review spec) offers a more powerful Core i7 CPU and a Samsung 850 EVO SSD, and as a result is an even better choice.

Desire Athow
Managing Editor, TechRadar Pro

Désiré has been musing and writing about technology during a career spanning four decades. He dabbled in website builders and web hosting when DHTML and frames were in vogue and started narrating about the impact of technology on society just before the start of the Y2K hysteria at the turn of the last millennium.