What is the best laptop for the money

I am replacing a Dell 600m Inspirion which was stolen.
The machine will be mostly for MS Office Programs, primarily Word, Excel & Powerpoint and for integrating on my company and home network. When I am on the road I may watch an occasional DVD and listen to music on Rhapsody.
My old machine had Win XP Pro to enable me to work on my company network; which version of Vista will I need now, or should I stick with XP for the time being?
I do not want to buy more machine than I need, however I would like it not to be obsolete in 3 years! With that in mind what kind of CPU-AMD or Intel, and how much memory?
I liked my old Dell for it's durability and my ability to customize it.
Should I stick with it or go to Best Buy and buy a Toshiba, Gateway or HP off the shelf?
I would love to stay in the $1,000 range.
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  1. I hope someone will reply to the poster. I have almost identical needs and questions and would love some answers!
  2. The Inspiron 1520 has what you're looking for.

    It's with Intel's Core 2 Duo and you can customize it really well.

    Search online for coupons, there's a ton.

    For memory, you'll be OK with 1 GB, but I STRONGLY recommend 2 GB.

    At the rate technology is being invented, I don't think you can buy a laptop that won't be obsolete in 3 years.

    It will work, and everything, but don't expect it to run like new and run everything you throw at it. It should be fine for what you're looking for, though.
  3. Thank you; I purchased the Inspiron 1520 and so far so good.
  4. Go with Compaq (now HP) and you'll make the right choice. Any of the others will be like your last and suck too. Watch out for size of RAM and processor speed, you'll need 4gbRAM to run Window's 7 effectively.
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