The new Galago Pro is an exciting new entry into the field of Linux laptops from favorite Linux hardware vendor System 76. Currently, I am running it as my home machine running Pop!OSand doing most of my web and Rails development on it as well as a good deal of scripting for automating some Rails deployments with Docker and Dokku. After running it more for more than 50% of the time and living in it for a few weeks, here are my thoughts.
Build Quality: I don’t want to be to forward but the galago has a nice body — I mean it’s a looker! All kidding aside, the metal build is a big improvement from all the other System 76 laptops available and from most other Linux laptops on the market. While I would have preferred a matte screen, the screen is gorgeous. Of course the elephant in the room is Mac build quality. It’s close but sadly, not quite there. The largest issue is the sound quality on the onboard speakers, it’s not great and for my ears unusable.
Battery Life: I’ll make this quick and brutal. It’s not good. My usage is looking at about 4.5 hours on average. Nowhere need what I need and just bad. If there’s one major issue that needs to be fixed in a second rev, then this is it.
Ports: This machine has ports! USB, USB C, HDMI, ethernet, and a few others. You can live dongle free, the way God intended. The fact that I haven’t had to think about ports or adapters on this machine is great. I like having the option to plug into ethernet when needed. However, I might like to see a rev give up some of the ports in favor of more USB C — that’s just the direction the market is going in and as my good friend Locutus is so fond of reminding me: “resistance is futile”.
Performance: This baby runs great! My only real complaints here are it often sounds like a small drone is attempting to take off from my desk due to fan noise. In my limited research of other Galago users, there does seem to be a correlation between fan noise and the i7 model which is the one I have. It’s entirely possible that the i5s might run with less fan noise, but I haven’t tested that.
Overall, it’s a good solid Linux laptop. If you’re looking to support a Linux-focussed vendor and are in the market, the Galago is worth a look. If you’re looking for a MacBook Pro killer, you might find yourself slightly disappointed. If you liked this post, follow me on Twitter.