Jump to content

Looking For A Laptop...


Recommended Posts

Well, I'm looking to buy my first laptop, and I was wondering if any of you had recommendations... here are my requirements:

  • 2.0ghz C2D or faster (no pentium dual core)
  • 14.1" or 14.0" Screen (no bigger, no smaller)
  • 802.11 G -and- N internal (chipset needs linux support)
  • Bluetooth with EDR (linux support would be awesome here but it's not necessary)
My budget is sub-$800, but sub-$700 would be even better. I would also really like to avoid Compaq even though I know HP bought them. Thanks~
Link to post
Share on other sites

I've had great luck with the Acer Aspire series. Light, built like tanks, and they use an Atheros wireless chipset, so Linux hasnt been an issue.

They also tend to hover below the $700 price point.

Link to post
Share on other sites
Well, I'm looking to buy my first laptop, and I was wondering if any of you had recommendations... here are my requirements:

  • 2.0ghz C2D or faster (no pentium dual core)
  • 14.1" or 14.0" Screen (no bigger, no smaller)
  • 802.11 G -and- N internal (chipset needs linux support)
  • Bluetooth with EDR (linux support would be awesome here but it's not necessary)
My budget is sub-$800, but sub-$700 would be even better. I would also really like to avoid Compaq even though I know HP bought them. Thanks~

I was going to suggest the Dell Inspiron 13 (Inspiron 1318). I got just about every option except the core 2 duo and ended up at $600. The C2D will put you right in your price range. It's got Wifi-N, bluetooth, web camera, slot load DVD writer, 250GB drive, 4 GB ram (I bougt it with 1GB and then bought 4GB from Crucial for $47.00).

What got me was the 85whr battery good for 6hrs.

It runs 1280x800 but it is a 13.3" screen, I know you didn't want anything smaller but I find it to be a happy medium.

It came loaded with Vista home basic though. However, I used a Dell Vista business recovery CD on it and installed that over top of Basic home and it never asked me to re-activate ;)

BTW, from what I've read on the ubuntu forums the wifi-N card is compatible and is the better option over the other BG card that I believe used Broacom *ick*.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I could write a book on this ... but will spare you... (or try) -

But will share this much - I worked for Compaq (which was DEC before that), then HP, and Intel - But am curious why you're balking at the Intel chipset? Is this a Linux thing? Either way, given the nature of the economy and the state of "electronics", I question AMD's future (plus the i7 is suppose to be the ballz!) But the fact that you're setting out specifically to buy a laptop (vs. desktop) - I will toss my 2 cents in based on my experience as I've had prolly 20+ laptops in the past 10 years for work and pleasure... and while I'll probably piss off some people here, I can back everything I say with facts (and 1 class action lawsuit against HP/Compaq) - LOL

Anyway - Price is not really gonna be your issue - For sub-$800 you'll be able to find something pretty decent.. As far as brands, I would only suggest 3... Sony, Toshiba and Apple MB/MBPro (way over $800 though) so that leaves Sony and Toshiba.

Sony has great USA-based support, usually Blu-Ray equipped, plays well with PSP and TV add-ons, and the quality is aces... I've had 3 and just sold my 17" HDNA for the new MBPro 17" (which I'm running both Vista and Leopard on and LOVE it!) I'll never go back to a PC... ever... Toshiba is a rock - and will last a lifetime - Rugged (unlike Dell POS!) Dell desktops are "ok"... but their laptops suck... keys fall off - screens break etc etc etc - IBM/Lenevo are rugged too - but overpriced for what you get. The only drawback to Toshiba is that they made the HD-DVD drive and put them in all their units... so you're kinda stuck with that technology...

Anyway - like I said, I could write a book on what sucks - AC adaptor on Compaq's/HP's ALWAYS break off -and you'll have to get a new motherboard to repair ($699!) - And since CompUSA went BK, there's really no local "service centers" for CPQ/HP anymore... Plus the little "rubber feet" fall off and they (HP) dumbed down the sound/speakers when they bought out CPQ... I've also heard that they are doing away with the CPQ line here soon... so if you have to pick between the 2 - take the HP even though it's lesser quality.

The previous poster suggested Acer I think? (Don't have that post open right now) but only know them for their boards and desktops - but know the Hak5 gang speaks highly of their netbooks... so - might be worth looking at? - but I think if you put it next to a Sony - it's like comparing a VW to a Porsche - so make sure you look at the casing - keys / keyboard and screens... as that's where they cut corners.

I buy allot from TigerDirect (like junk monitors and 1TB HDD as they have pretty good pricing) but saw they have some Acer's on sale as well as a Toshiba for $599 - The only complaint I've ever heard about Toshiba was their Wi-Fi setup... can be flaky at times.. but think they've ironed that out since N came out.

Tiger laptop link: http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/Ca...N-_-cat_17-_-GS

Good luck!

B

Yeah, this is a nice ride compared to any Dell

http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/Se...;Sku=T24-150064

Link to post
Share on other sites

Personally I would save up a little more and get the White MacBook, it is really good value for what you get. The only thing it doesn't meet on your criteria is the 14" screen, personally I think the 14" screen is dead, hardly any manufacturers make them any more, because the 15.4" is a lot cheaper and the 13.3" gives a reasonable step down from the 15.4". Given that all of those screen sizes generally have the same 1280x800 resolution, I don't think it really makes much a of difference between 14" and 13".

At $999, I would then save a little, put 4GB of memory in it (dirt cheap) and a 320GB 7,200rpm hard disk in it, again, really cheap. If you can get access to Apple Higher Education discount then you can get about 15% off straight way.

This thread will probably turn into a flame war now, knowing some of the people on the forum, hopefully they'll keep to themselves though.

Link to post
Share on other sites

The 14.1" wide screen is hardly a dead format mate...

As for laptops, Apple sell high quality kit with a few quirks that to some people are annoying, to others its not something they care about. Dell, I like there business kit due to the warranties and they're quite cheap for something basic. Apple won't come to your house to fix a broken laptop but Dell will, usually on the next working day. So if you live miles away from your apple store and have a habit of dropping things or drunken flatmates, take this into account. Thinkpads are also nice machines, as are HP's. Just make sure you get a next-day/on-site warranty for the hardware.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Well thanks for all of the advice, but I've settled on the Dell Inspiron 1420, since it's on sale now for $707 with a 2.4ghz C2D, which is a really important thing to me, since the processor is the one thing you can't really upgrade it laptops and this one is going to have to last me for a while.

Link to post
Share on other sites

i have a couple xps m1330s abso love them. if youre looking for a 14inch screen i would take a look at the hp dv4 series. i just recently ordered a dv3 and cant wait for it to get here.but the dv series looks like hp is really bringin it. i think i might get a dv2 also. amd is about to put the smack down with their new eon platforms.

Link to post
Share on other sites

2.2 Ghz, AMD Turion 64 X2. (Sorry, I like AMD's machines.)

Screen Size: 14.1"

$549.99

http://www.bestbuy.com/site/olspage.jsp;js...d=1218073821681

Doesn't ahve the 802.11 N and no BlueTooth, but I would probably by a USB adapter for that anyway. One that you can insert into a pringles can with USB extension cable for a longer range uni-directional antenna.

Expandable to 8gig of ram, so find a trade off on the Wifi/bluetooth stuff and buy seperate linux compatable adapters. With the saved money lef tover on yoru budget, you can afford to buy some extra accessories, like the wifi dongles, etc.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Hey drOp what video card does that dell have in it?

Just wondering, cause I've been looking around myself and the system you've described is very close to what I'm looking for.

Thanks

Link to post
Share on other sites

@vector: Has AMD announced a date for the eon? If it's not too far out then I'd just like to wait.

@digip: I love AMDs (I'm on my Phenom desktop right now ^-^) but the Turion is noticeably slow compared to a C2D.

@3vmike: It has a 8400M GS w/ 128mb.

Link to post
Share on other sites
@vector: Has AMD announced a date for the eon? If it's not too far out then I'd just like to wait.

@digip: I love AMDs (I'm on my Phenom desktop right now ^-^) but the Turion is noticeably slow compared to a C2D.

@3vmike: It has a 8400M GS w/ 128mb.

sorry dr0p i meant Amd Neo, not eon. im not sure when the exact availability date is and ive only seen one ultra portable so far that features is and thats the dv2 from hp and right now its only available on pre order. but i want one bad. i might even pre order one , not sure yet.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Some of the Compaq stuff is quite nice, not really seen a lot of their stuff since HP bought them out, their old kit used to be quite good. I've had a fair share of laptops and would say that Dell are pretty much a good all round choice, if you're ordering online I'd recommend giving them a quick call and just let them know that you are looking elsewhere perhaps spec a similar laptop and see if you can't "fudge" the price. I have ordered Dell kit for friends before (as I order for my business I have more leverage) however Dell will normally offer upgrades for no cost provided you can haggle and don't expect miracles. Calling Dell closer to month ends can be handy as well; they'll often give you major discounts to meet monthly sales quotas.

If you plan on moving your laptop around a lot, I would personally avoid Sony's. I have an S1XP at home that my partner uses (it was mine before I gave it to her) it's coming up to 5 years old and starting to show its age. The Sony's our executives have all had have died horrible deaths, and I found the support on them to be rubbish.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...