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Author Topic: Laptop question
boo
Highlie
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Icon 1 posted March 14, 2007 16:51      Profile for boo     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Baring in mind that I am not a geek nor particularly informed about computers, does anyone have any suggestions for a laptop? I have owned a few desktops over the years, but never had a laptop and I'm considering getting one.

I would mostly use it for surfing the web and word documents. There are some good software programs for my profession though, so it would probably be worth me being prepared for those. At the moment I don't know what the requirements would be.

What I mainly need to know (I guess) is recommended brands and what specific features/criteria you would recommend I watch out for. I would want to be able to access the internet from my car, so I know I need a wireless card or whatever. Anything else you consider a must have?

Thanks [Smile]

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stevenback7
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Icon 1 posted March 14, 2007 17:51      Profile for stevenback7   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
umm i am not a laptop expert either but for surfing the web and doing word documents and any normal non graphically intesive programs a thousand dollar laptop sounds fine. Just watch out i guess for battery life because you don't want a machine what has less then 2 hours of juice. as well look for toughness especially since you are talking about using it in a car - a friend of mine scratched up his brand new laptop by as something as simple as using his mouse on the laptop itself. But my suggestion overall is look for a laptop which has been well tested and well used even though it might not be the newest model or have the biggest hard drive or anything usually they will last a lot longer and give you a lot more then a new model.

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Snaggy

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Icon 3 posted March 14, 2007 20:54      Profile for Snaggy   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
MacBook, nuff said! [Cool]
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dragonman97

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Icon 1 posted March 14, 2007 20:58      Profile for dragonman97   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Snaggy:
MacBook, nuff said! [Cool]

Amen!

I [hearts] my MacBook. Unlike the lame Windows laptops stevenback7 is talking about, I easily get 5+ hours of battery life on this (with wireless off).

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There are three things you can be sure of in life: Death, taxes, and reading about fake illnesses online...

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boo
Highlie
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Icon 1 posted March 14, 2007 23:53      Profile for boo     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Thanks for the input. [thumbsup]
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drunkennewfiemidget
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Icon 1 posted March 15, 2007 08:37      Profile for drunkennewfiemidget     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
If you're interested in throwing money directly down the drain, buy a new macbook.

They're overpriced. Period.

You can snag a decently priced used one usually, or if you insist on new go with a lenovo or dell.

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Sxeptomaniac

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Icon 1 posted March 15, 2007 08:58      Profile for Sxeptomaniac   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
I bought a refurbished IBM Thinkpad T30 about a year ago, and it's served me well (I believe that would have been manufactured by Lenovo). It came with Windows 2000, but I opted to install Ubuntu instead.

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Let's pray that the human race never escapes from Earth to spread its iniquity elsewhere. - C. S. Lewis

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Ugh, MightyClub
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Icon 1 posted March 15, 2007 09:57      Profile for Ugh, MightyClub     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
If you buy a MacBook you will have possibly the best of all worlds -- you can use OS X day to day, but if the software for your profession (Care to share? It might make for better guidance) requires Windows then Bootcamp, Parallels, and soon VMWare have your back. And if you really insist, you could throw Linux on it.

But if you want to pinch every nickle you can, get a cheap Dell.

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Ugh!

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boo
Highlie
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Icon 1 posted March 15, 2007 10:52      Profile for boo     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Thanks for the continued input. Not that it doesn't only confuse matters more [Smile]

Ugh, currently I'm a Realtor (I sell houses - for those outside the US) and there are various helpful software programs that could be utilized while out showing properties. For instance, I might be showing clients a house in a neighborhood when they notice another one for sale and have questions about it. I'd be able to access the Multiple Listing System from my car and get what info I needed right then and there.

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CommanderShroom
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Icon 1 posted March 15, 2007 11:13      Profile for CommanderShroom     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Well if you have a bunch of Windows only software and hardware. Stick with Windows.

Boot Camp is an /OK/ solution if you have tech skills, know someone that has them, or like to fsck about with that stuff. If none of the three apply I do not recommend it.

Second while Macs are very *pretty* machines, I still think they are over-hyped crap. No way would I spend that kind of cash for an even harsher lock in than M$.

Just to add another dissenting voice on laptop brands.

I suggest buying business class HP's. I like the nx series laptops. They are relatively compact, have decent features with an affordable price point. The NX6325 for instance, has a quick AMD processor, SD card reader, firewire and USB2.0 and costs about 700 bucks the last time I checked. Plus with business systems you end up being supported by the business group. They are in India, but anecdotally, their grasp of English seems to be hands down better than Dell's call center. And the wait times are usually 15-30 minutes next to Dell's 45-90.

Before I changed jobs I would have said Lenovo myself. My last job was an HP place and this one likes IBM. Honestly, it seems like the newer IBM/Lenovo's are rather crappy laptops. If the stack I am round-filing is any indication they are not up to par with the older ones I am familiar with. Things such as short circuits and hardware failure seem to be par for the course. And unfortunately they are serious dogs in the performance department.

Plus, if you keep the price on the low-end, you are not going to be as heartbroken if something bad happens to it, like a drop or spill after warranty. I kinda doubt you would be as ok with the same thing happening to a $1500+ Mac.

--------------------
Does he know our big secret?
Has one of us confessed?
'Bout the wires circuits and motors
Buried in our chest

Posts: 2465 | From: Utarrrrggggghhh!!!!!!!! | Registered: Mar 2003  |  IP: Logged
Mac D
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Icon 1 posted March 15, 2007 11:37      Profile for Mac D     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
HP and Compaq = BAD BAD BAD BAD BAD. I will never again get anything from thoes companies. Well, they are the same company now. But before they where 2 bad companies that are now one big bad company.

If you get a PC go with Dell or Gateway (I liked Gateway but since 1999 they seem to be getting a bad reputation) Also I heard the Sony Vio is a good computer and that Toshiba makes some nice laptops but with the last 2 your going to be paying upwards of on par with a Mac. I love my Macs but if you need the software that only works on a PC. Do not, I repeat do not in any way shape or form get an HP or compaq.

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There's nothing wrong with me, This is how I'm supposed to be.

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Dr Watson
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Icon 1 posted March 15, 2007 12:25      Profile for Dr Watson     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Just a note on Gateway, I bought a 7510GX for gaming a couple years ago. Very fast, the price wasn't horrible, but the build quality is. Maybe it isn't so bad, but I'm comparing it to my Thinkpad 600x. The screen on it spontaneously developed bruises 3 months into using it. I babied it too... sent it to Gateway 5, yes FIVE, times to get the lcd replaced. Only, each time, they replaced the screen with a used one, all of which worse than the original. Never did get it right, the warranty eventually ended and Gateway basically said fuck you, despite my story. Oh, the power button fell off when I went half way across the country to make a presentation. Battery life was always less than an hour... oh well. I had 100's of ram problems with new gateway desktops at my last job. Sad thing is, the company only has 800 machines.

If I were to ever buy a new laptop again... hmm, no I don't think I will. Researching and getting a tried and true older model machine is fairly safe, IMO. Just my $.02

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Smoke me a kipper, I'll be back for breakfast.

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CommanderShroom
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Icon 1 posted March 15, 2007 12:37      Profile for CommanderShroom     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Have to ask MacD, what HP/Compaq stuff have you owned?

I am using an old HP VL400 for a desktop. Still in (mostly) stock form. 9 yrs old and still running strong. I have even done video conversions with it. Not bad for a PIII. And while I am not impressed by Compaq's line of laptops, HP makes them damn near bulletproof, so long as you avoid the consumer models. They really scimp on stuff for those lines in the way of lasting quality.

But the business-class stuff is solid.

And I do not like to buy anything I can't install Linux on with relative ease. My last HP (NX6110) went everywhere with me and never caused me much in the way of trouble. Other than trying to get WiFi to work under any Linux.

--------------------
Does he know our big secret?
Has one of us confessed?
'Bout the wires circuits and motors
Buried in our chest

Posts: 2465 | From: Utarrrrggggghhh!!!!!!!! | Registered: Mar 2003  |  IP: Logged
Mac D
BlabberMouth, the Next Generation
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Icon 1 posted March 15, 2007 16:26      Profile for Mac D     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by CommanderShroom:
Have to ask MacD, what HP/Compaq stuff have you owned?

I had a some 333Mhz desktop from Compaq that was nothing but problems. It was one thing after another. There was no stop to the problems. I got so fed up I got my Gateway PIII 500MHz computer. That was a fine computer and still is.

And then I worked at a place that eventually switched to Dell. But they had HP's before that and everyone had there systems switched out multiple times and IT would have to take them back and fix them. It was just a headache.

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There's nothing wrong with me, This is how I'm supposed to be.

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-ct-
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Icon 1 posted March 15, 2007 21:13      Profile for -ct-   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
you should know better than to ask about computer hardware or software on this forum

the ONLY "logical" answer anyone ever gives is "get a mac"
as if EVERYONE has that much money lying around or that they're SO much better than a PC

guess what people?


THEY'RE NOT BETTER!!

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Things are always darkest... just before you pull your head out of your butt, void where prohibited, keep away from flame, surcharge(s) may apply.

www.harddriveHELL.com and demoniclemon.com

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maximile

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Icon 1 posted March 15, 2007 21:32      Profile for maximile   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Only three people said get a Mac. Everyone's simply posting their experiences, and trying to be helpful.

Why should she know better? As far as I can remember, we haven't had an OS flamewar for ages. There's been nothing posted since she joined to suggest that we're anything but calm, rational people (on the subject of operating systems, anyway).

So why post such obvious flamebait? Are you bored?

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Cap'n Vic

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Icon 1 posted March 15, 2007 21:42      Profile for Cap'n Vic     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by maximile:
Only three people said get a Mac. Everyone's simply posting their experiences, and trying to be helpful.............So why post such obvious flamebait? Are you bored?

Remember, this is coming from a guy who can't drive a car, or a bike.....
[evil]

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Ugh, MightyClub
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Icon 1 posted March 16, 2007 11:22      Profile for Ugh, MightyClub     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Boo, I would personally still buy a MacBook, even though I'm guessing most (if not all) MLS/realty software is Windows-only.

However, a Windows-based laptop would be a fine choice for you. If you are willing to spend a little extra money for higher build quality then I would look at Sony Vaios or HPs. If you want inexpensive, I would order a Dell. In my (somewhat limited) experience, Dell laptops hold together fine for the long term, but their keyboards are pretty flimsy. If you have a local Best Buy, Circuit City, or similar, go down and play with a few different brands. Focus on how well the machine is put together rather than what software is included. Software can be upgraded, replaced, tossed, etc. If the keyboard is uncomfortable you're out of luck. You won't be able to try a Dell, but you can get to know HPs, Sonys, Toshibas, etc.

Edited for embarrassing your/you're gaffe. The Pedant shoots his own foot.

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Ugh!

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spungo
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Icon 1 posted March 16, 2007 11:37      Profile for spungo     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by maximile:
Only three people said get a Mac. Everyone's simply posting their experiences, and trying to be helpful.

Why should she know better? As far as I can remember, we haven't had an OS flamewar for ages. There's been nothing posted since she joined to suggest that we're anything but calm, rational people (on the subject of operating systems, anyway).

So why post such obvious flamebait? Are you bored?

Fight! Fight! Fight!

Ah, I love the smell of a flame-war in the morning -- smells like... chicken!

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Shameless plug. (Please forgive me.)

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dragonman97

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Icon 1 posted March 16, 2007 15:21      Profile for dragonman97   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Personally, I won't touch HP/Compaq with a 10' pole. I detest the things.

Shroom: You know the 'nx' series is actually Compaq, right? Granted, they're supposed to be halfway decent machines, but I'm extremely prejudiced against HP/Cpq. The same goes for Sony & Toshiba. Gateway is an utter joke. If it's going to be PC laptop, I recommend either Dell or IBM/Lenovo. I can't quite speak to the latter's tech these days, but traditional Thinkpads are fine machines. Dell Latitudes aren't shabby either.

Personally, I say MacBook, and if Windows software is needed, use Boot Camp / VMware / Parellels. (I'm a diehard VMware fan, though I do hear good things about Parallels.) It might take a little bit of work to start out with, but the overall experience is great. Just now, I've been doing some DB programming on this, and it's wonderful!

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There are three things you can be sure of in life: Death, taxes, and reading about fake illnesses online...

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CommanderShroom
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Icon 1 posted March 16, 2007 15:58      Profile for CommanderShroom     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by dragonman97:

Shroom: You know the 'nx' series is actually Compaq, right?
<big snip>
I recommend either Dell or IBM/Lenovo. I can't quite speak to the latter's tech these days, but traditional Thinkpads are fine machines. Dell Latitudes aren't shabby either.

Yeah I know that the NX series are Compaqs, but I still stand by my original assesment. They are good laptops. And I do like Toshibas. I find them very nice systems. Though they are only good /after/ you wipe and rebuild them without all the 'feature' software.

But, and of course this is pure opinion, the new model Lenovos are flimsy and rather poorly thought out in many ways. No off switch for WiFi, no Firewire, less USB ports than most any model in the same price range, Cisco branded wireless cards that are of questionable quality at best.

While not horrible laptops, I really don't think they deserve the pricetag. Which is exactly how I feel about Macs. Until recently I had respect for them. But really I despise having anyone think for me. And OSX is like having your mom in computer form.

Now I might consider owning one that was wiped and running a decent OS. But fer crissakes, people think they have some type of goldmine on their hands in the used market.

I am so over the idea of owning a Mac. The more I have to use and work with them the more I hate them. Why in the world must I have to outsmart a computer in order to do mundane tasks such as creating a stupid network share? I mean really people, Macs are for your Grandmother or the asshat college kid with too much of their parents money.

But I digress.

Buy what you want boo. Cuz this is starting to look like a Ford, Chevy, Dodge fight, only using computers.

--------------------
Does he know our big secret?
Has one of us confessed?
'Bout the wires circuits and motors
Buried in our chest

Posts: 2465 | From: Utarrrrggggghhh!!!!!!!! | Registered: Mar 2003  |  IP: Logged
Mac D
BlabberMouth, the Next Generation
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Icon 1 posted March 16, 2007 18:51      Profile for Mac D     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by CommanderShroom:
Cuz this is starting to look like a Ford, Chevy, Dodge fight, only using computers.

You have been here longer then I have. Havn't you seen a pattern. It's always been that way. People here defend their computer choice more then their car choice.

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There's nothing wrong with me, This is how I'm supposed to be.

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boo
Highlie
Member # 5991

Icon 1 posted March 16, 2007 21:02      Profile for boo     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
So, to sum up: [Smile]

I should buy a;

Lenovo
IBM
NX/HP/Compaq
Gateway
Sony
Toshiba

But I shouldn't buy a;

Toshiba
NX/HP/Compaq
Sony
Gateway
Lenovo
IBM

[thumbsup]
Well, that clears things right up. [Razz]

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-ct-
BlabberMouth, the Next Generation
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Icon 1 posted March 16, 2007 23:21      Profile for -ct-   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by boo:
So, to sum up: [Smile]

I should buy a;

Lenovo
IBM
NX/HP/Compaq
Gateway
Sony
Toshiba

But I shouldn't buy a;

Toshiba
NX/HP/Compaq
Sony
Gateway
Lenovo
IBM

[thumbsup]
Well, that clears things right up. [Razz]

aaaaaaaaaand there ya are, right back to this forum's default choice, mac

--------------------
Things are always darkest... just before you pull your head out of your butt, void where prohibited, keep away from flame, surcharge(s) may apply.

www.harddriveHELL.com and demoniclemon.com

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boo
Highlie
Member # 5991

Icon 1 posted March 19, 2007 06:37      Profile for boo     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
 - D'oh! How did I forget Mac? Allow me to make that correction.


So, to sum up: [Smile]

I should buy a;

Lenovo
Mac
IBM
NX/HP/Compaq
Gateway
Sony
Toshiba

But I shouldn't buy a;

Toshiba
NX/HP/Compaq
Sony
Gateway
Lenovo
Mac
IBM

[thumbsup] heheh

Posts: 775 | From: us of a | Registered: Oct 2006  |  IP: Logged


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