Another "shopping for a new laptop" thread

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Another "shopping for a new laptop" thread

Postby jjoyce » Wed Oct 10, 2007 6:06 pm

The screen on our trusty ThinkPad stopped working so, while it's still a fine machine to hook up to a monitor, that's a tough setup to stuff in my bag and carry to the coffee shop.

Any recommendations? The IBM tech who looked at it was hot on Lenovo, but he might be the first person I've heard good things from on that brand. I was perusing Apple's sale site, but nothing immediately struck me.


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Postby Dust Mite Rodeo » Wed Oct 10, 2007 6:15 pm

I got a Toshiba A205 about 3 months ago. Works good. The screen is is not the best, but I usually use it with the external monitor so I don't care.

Doofus me, I bought an HDTV without a 15 pin PC input. I bought a computer without DVI or HDMI video out. So I can't connect the PC to the TV for gameplay, unless I go buy a $200 converter box.

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Postby mrak » Wed Oct 10, 2007 6:26 pm

At work we have HP notebooks. I like them a lot, but because I'm not the one buying them, I don't know much about the specs. Our IT department must find them reliable, though, or they wouldn't put up with them.

I have (and like) an Apple notebook myself, but since you're probably using Windows now (and unless you're specifically looking to start using the Mac OS), you'll probably find it most cost-effective to stay with the Microsoft-aligned brands.
Last edited by mrak on Wed Oct 10, 2007 6:27 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Postby Thusnelda » Wed Oct 10, 2007 6:27 pm

I love my MacBook Pro to death. I bought it back in the summer directly from the Apple site as a refurb; I haven't had ay problems with it, and I saved something like $400 off of the regular price. It was cheaper than the student discount at the TechStore, too.

I've since dragged it all over the state and to class and work. It's awesome; even my computer-geek boyfriend was jealous. Plays videos like a dream.

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Postby white_rabbit » Wed Oct 10, 2007 7:37 pm

Probably not what you're looking for, but here is a website where you can buy two almost indestructible computers for four hundred bucks. One you can give to your kid for Christmas and the other goes to a child in a third world country. One laptop per child.

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Postby fennel » Wed Oct 10, 2007 7:56 pm

A Mac is definitely worth a try. You can run whatever ancillary OS you like, though you will have to purchase Windows if you want that. If you like to dabble on the command line, the world is your oyster. The availability of open-source software is second only to Linux distros.

Or if you really like to dabble, get an Intel machine with a Linux OS. But as far as the (GUI) interface, I hear that even the best (ubuntu is the latest buzz) is little better than Windows. That's not a great recommendation if the GUI really matters to you, but you will have complete control over your software.

On the other hand, if you're just doing e-mail, web browsing, and word-processing, it may make sense to go with a cheap Windows laptop and shell out a little money for the best anti-virus/anti-spyware software available.

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Postby bluethedog » Wed Oct 10, 2007 8:01 pm

Um, aren't all laptops free now?

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Postby barney » Wed Oct 10, 2007 9:27 pm

Get a MacBook Pro - they are tres-sweet. (If you have to run Windows stuff, VMWare Fusion or Parallels are great.) (For the uber-geeky, you can also run other OSs within Fusion, too.)

If you are of the PC vein, I would get a Lenovo if you want a lean, mean, pure power machine, more "worky" type stuff. Or an HP if you want an overall media center, watch movies, photos, but word process too, kind of machine.

Or, get a MacBook Pro. Seriously.

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Postby jammybastard » Wed Oct 10, 2007 10:10 pm

Depends on what you want to do with it.
Personally I've had great luck with Dell's for performance and value.
Same goes for ASUS. Bought one from and it's been rock solid. Multimedia extravaganza!

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Postby Veeder » Wed Oct 10, 2007 10:37 pm

Dell runs a pretty sweet refub site. Great deals. Dell Outlet

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Postby fisticuffs » Thu Oct 11, 2007 8:02 am

Macbook. Hands down. even compared to other brands spec by spec its about the smae money plus you'll never have a pop up or virus or even more annoying than those anti-virus software. and yeah windows runs smooth as hell on it too. Dont know why you'd want to something like that since OSX blows the doors off it and Vista is just a cheap rip of full of bugs.

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Postby paulie » Thu Oct 11, 2007 8:49 am

Presumably you'll be using this for work, so an Apple may not be the best choice, given that everyone you work with probably uses a PC.

I'd probably go Lenovo, especially if you're not planning to try playing games on it. They are tanks in my experience, even after IBM stopped making them. Of course, this is anecdotal evidence at best.

Also, a laptop is one thing I would buy whatever extended warranty is available. Replacement parts aren't cheap.

Good luck.

PS, I also agree with the comment above about Vista. Make sure that you get XP on it, a lot of places are still offering XP vs. Vista.

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Postby mrak » Thu Oct 11, 2007 9:06 am

paulie wrote:Also, a laptop is one thing I would buy whatever extended warranty is available. Replacement parts aren't cheap.

Normally, I avoid the extended-warranty stuff, but I also make an exception for laptops. Think about how and where you haul it around; it gets jostled around a lot, no matter how hard you try to be careful.

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Postby fisticuffs » Thu Oct 11, 2007 9:18 am

The only extended warranty I ever bought was Apple Care for my powerMac. My superdrive went down. they gave me a new one for free and installed it. Money well spent.

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Postby Beer Moon » Thu Oct 11, 2007 9:23 am

I have also heard good things about Lenovo - IBM roots. I use a Tosh at work here, and I really like it. It's really the first laptop I've used though so I don't have much in the way of comparisons.

I'm not sure how you feel about Dell - I'm sorta indifferent - but you can find some good deals in the refurb outlet store. Good as new, and not much drawback if you plan to get the extended warranty anyway.

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