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help choosing a laptop

Last response: in Laptops & Notebooks
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August 7, 2007 3:29:46 PM

hi guys, i'm in search for a laptop for college like a lot of students at this time, and i'm having a hard time deciding amongst several laptops as i am a noob when it comes to anything techy, so i was wondering if you would give me your advice on which would be the best for my needs.

requirements:
1. will last me 5+ years
2. can handle basic web browsing/emailing, flash games, adobe photoshop, streaming videos, dvd/movies, webcam, a ton of multi-tasking and the occasional rpg-like/full screen games
3. will not lag with windows vista premium (i've heard that it is generally slow)
4. will not pick up fingerprints/scratch easily
5. has an integrated webcam, good media center and looks somewhat stylish
6. AMD turion 64 x2 or intel core 2 duo + windows vista premium
7. at least 120 gbs harddrive space

my price range is < $950, ideal is around $750-- obviously the less expensive, the better, but i also want it to run well and last long.

these are the machines i'm looking into:

1. HP Pavilion 15.4" Widescreen Notebook PC (DV-6449-US) - $750 after rebates
http://www.circuitcity.com/ssm/Specificati...ication.do...
AMD Turion 64 X2 TL-56
160GB hard drive
2GB of DDR2 memory
Built-in 802.11abgn wireless
Windows Vista Home Premium
Processor speed: 1.80GHz
Weight: 6.8 lbs.
Built-in webcam
NVIDIA GeForce Go 6150 graphics
Built-in 802.11abgn wireless

2. dell inspiron 1521 - $890 after discounts (original unconfigured price: $783)
AMD Turion™ 64 X2 Mobile Technology TL-56 (1MB/1.8GHz)
Genuine Windows Vista™ Home Premium Edition (+$29)
FREE! 2GB Shared Dual Channel DDR2 at 667MHz
FREE! 160GB* SATA Hard Drive (5400RPM)
CD / DVD writer (DVD+/-RW Drive)
56Whr Lithium Ion Battery (6 cell)
Integrated 2.0 Megapixel Webcam (+$50)
Dell Wireless 1505 Wireless-N Mini-card
ATI RADEON® Xpress1270 HyperMemory
Ruby Red color (+$50)

3. HP Pavilion DV6345us 15.4" Notebook - $850 after rebate
http://www.officemax.com/max/solutions/product/prodBloc... VCookie=yes&expansionOID=-536906913&prodBlockOID=1611584660
INTEL® Centrino® Duo Mobile Technology featuring Intel® Core 2 Duo processor T5300
( 1.73 GHz) (2MB L2 Cache / 533MHz FSB)
1024MB DDR2 System Memory (2 Dimm)
160GB 5400rpm SATA Hard Drive
Lightscribe Super Multi 8X DVD±R/RW with Double Layer Support
15.4" WXGA High-Definition BrightView Widescreen Display (1280x800)
Intel® PRO/Wireless 3945ABG Wireless
Windows® Vista Home Premium OS
1-Year Limited Hardware Warranty

ive only owned dell and sony computers and ive found dell to be very reliable, esp with customer service and the coupons/college discounts-- that's why im not sure if i'll like HP. ive also heard the battery life for HPs are terrible. based on these stats, which do you think would be best overall deal according to reliability (at least 5 years for college), portability, and cost? basically, my conflicts are:

dell-- reliable, good customer service, but slightly heavier on the wallet
HP-- similar features with a friendlier price, but unsure of performance/reliability in comparison to dell

i posted in another forum and someone asked me why i preferred AMD over intel. the only reason i'm opting for an AMD processor is because of the price. however, after a couple hours of googling, i've read that intel is more reliable and long lasting, but i'm wondering if the AMD turion x2 would still support my needs since i'm not a heavy gamer or anything. which laptop do would you find to be the best deal? i'm only looking at HP and dell laptops so if you have any other recommendations for these 2 brands, i'd appreciate it if you offered some alternatives. thanks!

More about : choosing laptop

August 8, 2007 11:45:14 PM

Just recommended the Dell to my daughter in law who will be using it the same way you will. Given she'll be running off the battery while at school suggested up grading the battery by one level, I think it added $50 Dell's on line chat support is decent. Dell makes good inexpensive laptops.
!