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Old 01-19-2007, 10:30 AM
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Need a laptop-what should I get?

Ok so my Dell laptop is going on 5 years old, which may as well be eons in computer time. It lived through college and many a beer spill on the keyboard, being banged around, etc... It now makes a weird beeping noise on startup, the battery is totally shot, and the fan is broken so the thermal shutdown kicks in after its been running for a while.

So how about I tell you what I do with a laptop and you tell me what you think I need? This would help me out because while I'm computer literate, I don't know if I'm going to realize the difference between a 1.6 GHz processor and a 2 GHz processor, and I'm not really sure what dual channel memory is, etc...

Here is what I will do with a laptop on a daily basis:

Surf the internet, manage e-mail, and waste valuable work time on www.powerstroke.org

Use free Wi-Fi hotspots wherever possible (school/coffee joints mostly) and connect wirelessly to my home network

Manage my iTunes

Watch DVDs

Burn CDs

Use Microsoft Office for work and school (Powerpoint, Word, Excel-Don't really need desktop publisher)

Manage my digital camera pictures

Manage maps and software for a GPS

I reeeeeeally want a 17" screen

That's basically it. Does anyone have suggestions on what might be a good fit for me within a price range of about $1200-1500?
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Old 01-19-2007, 11:07 AM
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i would suggest buying another dell... they have really good customer service.... if you want to watch dvd's going with a 2.0 processor is prob best if this laptop is gonna last you another 3+years.... 1g of ram is more than enough for what you need it too... since you want to store music on it get at least 40gigs of hd space.....

2.0 processor
1gig of ram
40+gig HD
dvd burner
a decent video card

add anything else but you should have at least those basic stuff

goodluck...
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Old 01-19-2007, 11:09 AM
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My favorite laptop is a blonde with big ol' bazongas!!!!
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Old 01-19-2007, 12:15 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Worm Drowner View Post
My favorite laptop is a blonde with big ol' bazongas!!!!
Good one! I like the avatar of the Big Fella too.

OH AH UP THE RA!
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Old 01-20-2007, 11:43 AM
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Yeah Dell makes some laptops that will take of you. One thing to keep in mind with buying a laptop the hard drive is sensitive, so try not to drop it, you know common sense crap. When they designed hard disks back in the day they were never made with the intention of being used in a mobile platform. I think flash will take over in 5 years or so. Anyways as I was saying something like a Dell latitude D620 with a 1.6GHz processor will take care of you just fine. Personally I say go with 1 GB of RAM and a 128MB video card cause Vista the new Windows is very graphics heavy which means it would eat 512MB like a fat kid eats cake. Make sure your wireless card is a 802.11g band card, which is the faster band, most hotspots use a g band. Also if you are just going to be doing standard issue AIM, internet, email, porn jk stuff then a Mac laptop is not a bad idea, they are just a little pricey. Hope that helps.
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Old 01-20-2007, 05:20 PM
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For laptops IMO its Dell or HP.
My HP has been a good, and I travled a bunch with a Dell (beat the mess out of it) and it held up nice.

FYI if you're looking at the Inspiron 9400 for the 17", I'v know one guy who has sent his 9400 back twice because of display problems.

If you can get to tech support forums on Dell, read some of the posts from the owners of the modles you're looking at.

RET
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Old 01-20-2007, 05:25 PM
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If you go with a dell check out their scratch and dent puters! Much better price, and the same warranty. My roomate bought one, and you can't tell it from a new one. When he got it the hardive wasn't working, and they had somone here within a week to install a new one! If I buy one its gonna be a dell
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Old 01-21-2007, 11:07 AM
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Very good suggestions. I bought a Toshiba almost solely based on price and I haven't been disappointed with it. I bought it after my Gateway crashed while traveling and I was using it as a GPS (beats the heck out of those puny dedicated GPS units). Unfortunately I made the mistake of placing some padding under it to reduce vibration and while in the LA area, where it is hot even in Feb/Mar, and it turns out that I inadvertenly blocked the cooling air for the CPU. Big Mistake! After two unsuccessful diagnostics trips (at a cost of about $150) with no success I reinstalled the operating system, again with no success. Several suggestions were made that the CPU had been toasted and discovering that for the cost of repairing the unit I could buy a newer computer with better performance. I had already bought the replacement because I was traveling and had become dependent on the laptop for GPS - I don't even carry paper maps when traveling (even a GPS needs some backup). When I got home I decided to tear into the laptop and discovered that the thermal compound between the CPU and its heatsink had been turned to soot. I cleaned off the residue and reapplied thermal compound and the unit performed longer before shutting down. Tried an auxillary cooling fan but that didn't help. Noticed that the CPU fan wasn't running so decided to tie it directly to the 5 volt power supply (which I located by using a digital multimeter) and keep it running continuously. The Gateway has now replaced my wife's desktop and it runs almost continuously since it functions as the print server for our two printers in our home office. When I travel with my new laptop I keep it on a base that is then isolated by foam from the piece of plywood that I use as a desktop while traveling. Everything is held in place by a restraining strap.
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