Looking for similar laptops that will last me all my college years

I'm going to be a sophmore this coming year in college and so I would want a laptop that will last me for the next three years (I'm already getting the 3 year warranty for any laptop I'm going to get just in case) and have looked at dell and toshiba and HP and right now HP is my favorite with these specs:
Operating system Genuine Windows Vista Home Premium with Service Pack 1 (32-bit)
Processor Intel(R) Core(TM) 2 Duo Processor T8100 (2.10GHz)
Display 15.4" diagonal WXGA High-Definition HP BrightView Widescreen Display (1280 x 800)
Memory 3GB DDR2 System Memory (2 Dimm)
Graphics Card 50% OFF 256MB NVIDIA GeForce 8400M GS - For Core 2 Duo Processors
Personalization HP Imprint Finish (Radiance) + Fingerprint Reader + Webcam + Microphone edit
Networking Intel(R) PRO/Wireless 4965AGN Network Connection
Hard Drive FREE Upgrade to 250GB 5400RPM SATA Hard Drive from 160GB 5400RPM SATA Hard Drive!!
Primary CD/DVD Drive SuperMulti 8X DVD+/-R/RW with Double Layer Support
Primary Battery 6 Cell Lithium Ion Battery
OS and Recovery Media System Recovery DVD with Genuine Windows Vista Home Premium (32-bit)
Productivity Software Microsoft(R) Works 9.0
Your additional options:
Home printers and All-in-ones HP Deskjet D1455 Printer
Price $1,252.98*
Instant rebate -$100.00
Mail-in rebate -$70.00
Total: $1,082.98
You saved 13.6%


Now my questions are: Would it be beneficial in the long run to get 4 gigs of ram instead of 3 for an extra $100?
And would it be beneficial to upgrade from a 2.10 ghz to a 2.40 for an extra $125?
Those are my two big questions for this specific computer and does anyone by chance know a similar computer like this for around the same price or cheaper or whatever? I just want to keep my options open as much as possible. :)
15 answers Last reply
More about looking similar laptops college years
  1. What are you going to be using the computer for?
    Examples are gaming, word processing, rendering, surfing the net etc.
    If you look at dell, and I am assuming that you are looking at the Inspiron line, use coupon codes such as "Use code 204G$$GHGQHNMV to save 25% off $999.00+ on this Dell Inspiron laptop." or "Use code 5B$SH9S?7?J7LP to save 30% off $1,299.00+ on this Dell Inspiron laptop."

    Hope this helps.
  2. Enginerd said:
    What are you going to be using the computer for?
    Examples are gaming, word processing, rendering, surfing the net etc.
    If you look at dell, and I am assuming that you are looking at the Inspiron line, use coupon codes such as "Use code 204G$$GHGQHNMV to save 25% off $999.00+ on this Dell Inspiron laptop." or "Use code 5B$SH9S?7?J7LP to save 30% off $1,299.00+ on this Dell Inspiron laptop."

    Hope this helps.


    It'll be a mixture of all of them, well except rendering. And I don't want to play the latest games on it but I do want it to surf the net and play older games and such that aren't brand spanking new.
    Also, where did you find the coupon codes for the Dells? And are there any for HP?
  3. Use google to search for coupon codes. Just type "(company name) (model of computer) coupon".

    Also what type of games do you like to play? (There is a pretty big difference between bejeweled and Star Wars Battlefront, at least in graphics requirements.)
  4. If you're looking to do any gaming, get some type of 8600m card.
  5. Enginerd said:
    Use google to search for coupon codes. Just type "(company name) (model of computer) coupon".

    Also what type of games do you like to play? (There is a pretty big difference between bejeweled and Star Wars Battlefront, at least in graphics requirements.)


    Yeah you do have a point, but I don't want to spend a whole lot on a video card, which is sort of why I like the 50% off 256MB 8400M GS, even if I don't know how really good it is, but if there's another card out there that will last me for 3 years with no troubles, then yeah I may take that depending on how much it is. But I guess games like Fear or something is something I'd like to play on it. Maybe the orange pack or something. But nothing top of the line over the next 3 years, that's why I have my 360. :) But I'd still want to be able to play decent games though.
  6. Yeah. Get nothing below an 8600m GS. It's nowhere near top of the line, and it should pass you by.
  7. Well, for old games, the 8400m GS might do it, but it won't be able to handle FEAR at any decent resolution. If you want gaming, I'd suggest an 8600m GT, but it again depends on how much you can spend.

    FEAR fps source: http://www.notebookcheck.net/NVidia-GeForce-8400M-GS.3709.0.html
  8. Awesome, thanks for the heads up on the video card. However, HP doesn't have one that goes up that far. Their dv9700t series only goes up to 8600M GS and I really don't want a 17" as it's gonna be portable a lot going to classes and such for college, so I would only want a 15", so it's hard finding something like that without costing a bundle. Any ideas?
  9. Try dell, HP, Asus, Sager..shop around. I'll look some stuffs up.
  10. Alright so now I see that you do have some graphics requirements. Now for dell an inspiron will not be an option because they have integrated graphics. Also for an XPS from dell customized will take you out of your price range, which I am assuming is about $1,100.

    On newegg you can find many good deals.

    Here are two possibilities:
    #1)
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16834227039
    This is the iBUYPOWER CRZ-93G NoteBook
    It has:
    Intel Core 2 Duo T8300(2.40GHz)
    15.4" Wide XGA
    2GB Memory DDR2 667
    160GB HDD 5400rpm
    Dual layer DVD Burner
    NVIDIA GeForce 8600M GT

    For $1,099.99

    #2)
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16834115458
    This is the Acer Aspire AS5920-6574 NoteBook

    It has:
    Intel Core 2 Duo T8100(2.10GHz)
    15.4" Wide XGA
    3GB Memory DDR2 667
    250GB HDD 5400rpm
    DVD Super Multi
    NVIDIA GeForce 8600M GT

    For $1,049.99

    From the first you get a better CPU but less memory and a smaller hard drive. (Or with the second you get a slightly less powerful CPU but more RAM and bigger hard drive.)

    You have to decide which one is more important to you and your needs. Also take into account that RAM is usually very easy to replace/upgrade. Also you may say that 160GB is enough compared to the 250GB. Then choose #1. However you may also say that the extra CPU power is not important and you would rather have more RAM and hard disk space. Then choose #2.

    Both have the 8600 so you will have enough power for light gaming.

    Hope this helps.
  11. Wow, those are two really good laptops, all of which have what I'm looking for. Couple of other questions as well...this would be the very first laptop that I own, how easy would it be to install more ram? Because I would prefer to have hopefully 4, if not minimum 3 gigs so that it should be able to last me all 3 years.
    Another question: I was looking around newegg and they do have a 3 year warranty for about the same price as the HP I was looking at, all it says is: Day 1 Notebook ADH Service Net Warranty. Anyone have any use with this? I was reading up on it and it sounds decent, but that's what it's supposed to do. Thanks for all the help thus far! :)
  12. For both of the laptops that I mentioned, they have the Intel PM965 Chipset. This means that they are upgradeable to a maximum of 4 GB (2x2GB) of RAM. So upgrading to 4GB of RAM (2x2GB) should not be a problem.

    Now for the actual physical installation(upgrade) of the RAM. RAM is actually the easiest upgrade you can do on your computer(Laptop or Desktop). On most laptops these days, most manufactures put a slot on the bottom of the laptop with a few screws to have easy access to the RAM. Many tutorials can be found about replacing/upgrading RAM. Just do a google search. In simple context it is: For an upgrade, plug in the new RAM to an unused slot. For a replacement (which is actually an upgrade, but you have no open slots left so you will have to remove an old stick to put in the new stick), unplug an old stick of RAM and put a new stick of RAM in its place.

    For the warranty question, I have no idea.

    Also for graphics cards, you can see the performance echelon of mobile graphics cards here:
    http://www.notebookcheck.net/Mobile-Graphics-Cards-Benchmark-List.844.0.html
    (At the top you can even set it to show F.E.A.R. and Doom 3 avg. benchmarks (in fps))
  13. I was looking through newegg for other laptops since you found those 2 pretty good ones and I came across this one:
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16834220308
    ASUS M51 Series M51Sn-X2

    CPU Type: Intel Core 2 Duo T8300 (2.40GHz)
    Screen: 15.4" WXGA
    Memory Size: 4GB DDR2
    Hard Disk: 250GB
    Optical Drive: DVD Super Multi
    Graphics Card: NVIDIA GeForce 9500M GS
    For: 1,199.99 Which is only $100 more than the iBuyPower one which isn't bad at all and it has more memory than both of them, and the one i included at the beginning, and a better video card as well. So for an extra hundred or so, I get a gig more memory, a better video card, and a more powerful processor.
    What is everyone's thoughts on this? Thanks!
  14. Go for it. The 9500M GS is actually better than the 8600M. You get at decent size hard drive, more ram, and a good CPU.

    I say all systems go! :kaola:
  15. http://www.xoticpc.com/sager-np2098-custom-laptop-built-compal-khlb2-p-2581.html?wconfigure=yes

    Sager NP2098 Custom Laptop (Built on the Compal KHLB2)
    15.6" HD 16:9 WXGA Super Clear Ultra Bright Glossy LED Screen (1366x768)
    Intel® P8700 45nm "Montevina" Core™2 Duo 2.53GHz w/3MB L2 On-die cache - 1066MHz FSB 25 watt
    ATI HD4650 512MB PCI-Express DDR3
    4,096MB DDR3 1066MHz Dual Channel Memory (2 SODIMMS) (Requires Vista 64-Bit to utilize Full 4GB)
    320GB 7200RPM (Serial-ATA II 300 - 16MB Cache)
    Internal 3-in-1 Card Reader (SD/MMC/MS)
    Internal Bluetooth + EDR
    Built-in Intel® PRO/Wireless 5100 802.11 a/g/n
    Built in 2.0 Megapixel Camera
    Integrated Fingerprint Reader

    Regular Price $957.00

    Sager 3 Year Parts & Labor Warranty, Lifetime Sager Toll Free Support ($129)
    or
    3 Year Parts/Labor Warranty 24/7 Tech Support w/ LCD Accidental Damage Protection ($349)
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