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laptop...whats best company

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April 29, 2007 10:44:39 PM

hey guys what would you say the best company for buying a laptop is?...alienware and voodoo and falcon-nw are too pricy...and i customized a fairly good laptop for a good price with HP...what do you guys think is the best company to go with? budget around 1500

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April 30, 2007 12:25:46 AM

Quote:
hey guys what would you say the best company for buying a laptop is?...alienware and voodoo and falcon-nw are too pricy...and i customized a fairly good laptop for a good price with HP...what do you guys think is the best company to go with? budget around 1500


I'd like to know too. I need a laptop soon..
April 30, 2007 12:47:41 AM

it depends on what you're planning to do with it. If you need one to just do simple tasks like chatting and music/movies, i'd go for a simple dell inspiron.

If you plan on playing lightweight games... i'd go for an asus or toshiba.. you could find a decent gaming one on newegg for around 1500.

personally, i find gaming laptops a waste of money.
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April 30, 2007 1:07:26 AM

I see that your name is "ihateibuypower", so I won't suggest that.... :D  (Not that I was going to in the first place; I hear nothing but bad from that company)


I LOVE my Dell XPS M1710. Battery life sucks, it weighs a ton, but it runs every game out right now. (Crysis scares me)

If your looking for a good laptop deal, I would watch www.dealstobuy.com. They tend to have good laptop deals. At your price range, I would look for anything with a Core 2 Duo and a Geforce Go7600 in it. That should suit you well.

Best of Luck
April 30, 2007 1:15:32 AM

aright here are the specifics....would very much like a long lasting battery life...the glossy screen if possible (the hard one thats not like actually hard...not the typical screen), good graphics screen, will play warcraft 3 TFT on it but that doesnt take much...lots of music and movies and its gonna be 15.4 inches i know that...ill take a look at some asus ones but right now HP is the best i can find
April 30, 2007 1:19:43 AM

Quote:
hey guys what would you say the best company for buying a laptop is?...alienware and voodoo and falcon-nw are too pricy...and i customized a fairly good laptop for a good price with HP...what do you guys think is the best company to go with? budget around 1500

IMO HP is good enough.
Toshiba is also good too, with the bonus of stability, but at the cost of appearance.
Asus is not as good as you may think, but if you want to go for that, its fine too.

Dell... i would think twice before going for it. Dell's laptop is known for lacking in stability and reliability.

Don't ever go for Sony, unless you're really into appearance. For the same money, you can have a HP with better hardware.
April 30, 2007 1:20:53 AM

I would go with Dell. Check out www.dealcatcher.com for coupon codes that will save you some additional dough on Dell machines. Generally I've found Dell machines to be more reliable than HPs. Although, I would still get a decent warranty with it. This is an area I've have had much better experience with Dell than HP. When an HP is out of warranty, they won't even talk to you for free. If you buy the Dell through their small business division, you get US based phone support rather than India. Dealcatcher has a separate section for Dell SB too.

Ryan
April 30, 2007 1:34:02 AM

hmm, well all 15.4 inch laptops i've ever tried (dell, asus, acer) had lasted 2.5 -3 hours with music/ couple shows and some chit chattin.. im not sure if battery life is something you should set high expectations for.

As for what viperabyss said.... im not so sure you can generalize dell's laptops just like that. Have you even witnessed this... "instability" or the lacking of reliability you speak of?

THey have different classes of laptops and the latitude series is quite a jump from the inspiron series, kind of like jumping from toyota into lexus
April 30, 2007 1:34:33 AM

Quote:
hey guys what would you say the best company for buying a laptop is?...alienware and voodoo and falcon-nw are too pricy...and i customized a fairly good laptop for a good price with HP...what do you guys think is the best company to go with? budget around 1500

IMO HP is good enough.
Toshiba is also good too, with the bonus of stability, but at the cost of appearance.
Asus is not as good as you may think, but if you want to go for that, its fine too.

Dell... i would think twice before going for it. Dell's laptop is known for lacking in stability and reliability.

Don't ever go for Sony, unless you're really into appearance. For the same money, you can have a HP with better hardware.

My 6 yr old INspiron 8200 is still chugging along. My dads 4 yr old 8600 is running without one issue yet. My friends 8500 died after 5 yrs. Intense

Go for Dell or Toshiba. Dell constantly has better relaiblity ratings than HP from Consumer Reports and PCMag.

If all the gaming u want is Warcraft3, then you dont need a graphics card.

If you are using Vista, get 2gigs of ram.

Here is what I would get for your range:
http://www.dell.com/content/topics/segtopic.aspx/servic...

Dell Inspiron E1505 base no warranty extesion $700
15.4" Glossy LCD (Truelife)
Intel Core Duo 1.83ghz +40
Vista Home Premium +30
2gb ddr2 533 (667is a ripoff) +150
120gb 5400rpm hd +55
dvd burner +40
256mb GeForce 7300 +100
9 Cell battery (in the e1405 got 8hr battery life :)  +50

TOTAL: $1161.... that is with a 1yr warranty

Trust me get a dell laptop not desktop
April 30, 2007 1:37:19 AM

Personally I'd rank the major vendors in this order Toshiba, HP, Asus, Dell, Sony, and so on. I recently helped set my mom up with a pretty nice HP laptop, I love it and wish I had one. :D 
April 30, 2007 1:37:39 AM

Quote:
hey guys what would you say the best company for buying a laptop is?...alienware and voodoo and falcon-nw are too pricy...and i customized a fairly good laptop for a good price with HP...what do you guys think is the best company to go with? budget around 1500



Macbook/Mackbook pro

:D 
April 30, 2007 1:47:01 AM

ehh dell is sorta out of the question, because i hate them and the laptop i got from them is shit (kinda old but whatever)...i can make the same kind of laptop from HP and i trust them more...also they have 12 cell batterys for very long life...ill look at some acer's though...and ASUS is wayyyy too expensive, but some look great
April 30, 2007 1:48:50 AM

I'd say look at HP's consumer lines, they're far and above better in build quality than Dell's. HP's business models are of an even higher quality, solid as Thinkpads and the such.
April 30, 2007 2:01:27 AM

Try the top-of-the-line Toshiba A100/A105, it's got a Core 2 Duo, 2 gigs of RAM and a Go 7600. My friend has essentially the same laptop, but from a couple of generations ago with a Go 6600 in it, and it's a nice laptop, pretty fast, and games work fine on it. Right now here in Canada, you can get the highest-spec'd A100 for $1500 Canadian, so that should translate to around $1300 USD.
April 30, 2007 2:14:26 AM

aright here's what im lookin at for right now...
heres toshiba
Processor
Processor Type * : Core™2 Duo Processor Number * : T5500 Processor Speed * : 1.66GHz
Operating System **
Genuine Windows Vista™ Ultimate (32-bit)
Memory Size *
2048MB
Display Size *
15.4" widescreen
Display Type *
Widescreen XGA with TruBrite® Technology
Display Resolution *
1280x800
Graphics Engine *
Graphics Media Accelerator 950
Graphics Memory *
8MB-256MB dynamically allocated shared graphics memory
Hard Drive Size *
240GB: 120GB HDD+120GB HDD
Hard Drive Speed
5400rpm
Optical Drives *
DVD-SuperMulti drive (+/-R double layer)
Wireless LAN * ♣
Intel® PRO/Wireless 3945ABG (802.11a/b/g)
Bluetooth *
No Bluetooth (No Antenna)
Input Devices
85 key US keyboard, Hot Key Functions, Windows Key Function, Dual Mode Pad, CD/DVD Buttons, Application Launch Button
Security
Finger Print Reader, Password Security, Security Cable Lock Slot, Hot Key Security
Modem
V.92 Modem
LAN
10/100/1000
Audio
Standard stereo speakers, Built-in microphone, Headphone jack (stereo), Microphone jack (mono)
AC Adapter
75W (19V 3.95A) Auto-sensing, 100-240V / 50-60Hz input
Battery Type
Li-Ion (4000mAh)
PC Card Slots
1-Type II PC Card Slot
PC Express Slot
No PC Express Slot
Media Port
5-in-1 Bridge Media Adapter
USB Slots
4-USB (2.0)
iLINK
i.LINK™ IEEE-1394
S-Video
TV-out (S Video)
Software *
Microsoft Works, TOSHIBA ConfigFree®, TOSHIBA Disc Creator, TOSHIBA Game Console, TOSHIBA Speech System, Ulead® DVD MovieFactory® for Toshiba, InterVideo® WinDVD® 8 SD
Weight
Starting at 6.0 lbs.
Color
Onyx Blue Metallic
Warranty *
1-Yr Parts and Labor, 1-Year Battery

Also Includes:
# Microsoft® Works, Onyx Blue Metallic color, 5-in-1 Bridge Media Adapter, FingerPrint Reader, Standard stereo speakers, Duo Mode Pad™ pointing device, 4-USB (2.0) ports, i.LINK™ IEEE-1394, TV-out (S-Video), 10/100 LAN port, V.92 modem port, Monitor port, Microphone jack (monaural), headphone jack (stereo)

Your Price: $1,329.99

AND HERES HP
Intel(R) Core(TM) 2 Duo T5600(1.83GHz/2MB L2Cache)
15.4" WXGA BrightView Widescreen (1280x800)
BrightView improves color contrast in your images and video.
256MB NVIDIA(R) GeForce(R) Go 7400
HP Imprint Finish + Microphone + Webcam
2GB DDR2 System Memory (2 Dimm)
160GB 5400RPM SATA Hard Drive
LightScribe Super Multi 8X DVD+/-RW w/Double Layer
12 Cell Lithium Ion Battery
1-year HP Accidental Damage Protection with Express Repair extended service plan

PRICE $1,337.98
April 30, 2007 2:19:34 AM

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

I bought an Acer one year ago. I was very weary about buying an Acer laptop. I have a friend in Canada that sells them, and he told me that so far they have been very tough little notebooks(he knew I wasn't going to buy one from him). At any rate, I bought my notebook, and took it along with me on my deployment to the desert. It survived a rather brutal environment. It constantly had sand and dust in it. It has been an OUTSTANDING notebook, and I only had one problem. A screw came lose that was holding the slot loading DVD drive in, and it fell out onto the tile floor about 4 times. I was still in the desert so I couldn't just send it to acer, or pick up some screws. So, I removed on of the screws holding the hinge cover on, and put it into the bracket holding the drive in. I think someone goofed, because I haven't had any problems with the drive since. For the price, I would recommend the acer. The X1600 in it does rather well for me. I play BF2142 on this notebook and do rather well.

The only gripe I have is that the notebook gets warm while gaming. You might want to invest in a laptop cooler.

I have owned Dell, had experience through family with HP notebooks, and have messed around on Macs and Alienware. For the price, unless I have missed something similarly configured which costs less, this cannot be beat.

wes

Edit: I believe the X1600 would be a better choice for a mobile GPU than the 7400Go. However, that is a very well configured HP at a good price point. I would go with the HP or the Acer(I would choose the Acer though, better GPU).
April 30, 2007 2:27:44 AM

i understand what youre saying, but the hp is better configured for a better price, and it will be in a safe environment :D ...it sounds like all this acer is is tough and hp also has a great battery and a few nice little gadgets...im looking for opinions on these laptops...which one OR do you hav ea better one with better stuff in it for same/cheaper price...thanks for input guys
April 30, 2007 2:33:07 AM

I recomend Toshiba, not as stylish as some, but my god they can take a beating and still work. If your not to worried about banging it around then a HP should be fine too.
April 30, 2007 2:56:29 AM

i have a compaq and it works great. I personally prefer compaq or hp because they arent overpriced like other brands.
April 30, 2007 2:58:56 AM

I like the ASUS F3JP, Here in Oz it costs about $1600 so it should be your price range. It has a C2D and ATI x1700.
April 30, 2007 2:58:58 AM

I agree that the HP has more memory, but if you want to game, it has a worse GPU. However, it will probably be more than enough to game on. I like HP, and they have EXCELLENT service when they have problems. My dad has an HP and the screen went out on it. Well, they picked it up at his house, and had it back to him in about 3 days. It went out again, and the second time they gave him a free battery. But, excellent and fast service. They make good products. I think my dads laptop had freak problems, but they took care of them.

But other than the HP having more memory, they are similarly configured. But the Acer has the edge in GPU power.

wes
April 30, 2007 3:00:31 AM

Jack,

I don't think the 950 would work to well for gaming would it? He said he would like to game on it, as well as all the rest of the stuff. Would GMA950 actually work for a gaming machine?

wes
April 30, 2007 3:05:57 AM

lol warcraft 3 is hardly a game for modern computers...it should have no problem...it has no problem on my current laptop other than my laptop overheats..but i have 1 gig ram and amd 3700+
April 30, 2007 3:06:48 AM

Quote:
aright here's what im lookin at for right now...
heres toshiba
Processor
Processor Type * : Core™2 Duo Processor Number * : T5500 Processor Speed * : 1.66GHz
Operating System **
Genuine Windows Vista™ Ultimate (32-bit)
Memory Size *
2048MB
Display Size *
15.4" widescreen
Display Type *
Widescreen XGA with TruBrite® Technology
Display Resolution *
1280x800
Graphics Engine *
Graphics Media Accelerator 950
Graphics Memory *
8MB-256MB dynamically allocated shared graphics memory
Hard Drive Size *
240GB: 120GB HDD+120GB HDD
Hard Drive Speed
5400rpm
Optical Drives *
DVD-SuperMulti drive (+/-R double layer)
Wireless LAN * ♣
Intel® PRO/Wireless 3945ABG (802.11a/b/g)
Bluetooth *
No Bluetooth (No Antenna)
Input Devices
85 key US keyboard, Hot Key Functions, Windows Key Function, Dual Mode Pad, CD/DVD Buttons, Application Launch Button
Security
Finger Print Reader, Password Security, Security Cable Lock Slot, Hot Key Security
Modem
V.92 Modem
LAN
10/100/1000
Audio
Standard stereo speakers, Built-in microphone, Headphone jack (stereo), Microphone jack (mono)
AC Adapter
75W (19V 3.95A) Auto-sensing, 100-240V / 50-60Hz input
Battery Type
Li-Ion (4000mAh)
PC Card Slots
1-Type II PC Card Slot
PC Express Slot
No PC Express Slot
Media Port
5-in-1 Bridge Media Adapter
USB Slots
4-USB (2.0)
iLINK
i.LINK™ IEEE-1394
S-Video
TV-out (S Video)
Software *
Microsoft Works, TOSHIBA ConfigFree®, TOSHIBA Disc Creator, TOSHIBA Game Console, TOSHIBA Speech System, Ulead® DVD MovieFactory® for Toshiba, InterVideo® WinDVD® 8 SD
Weight
Starting at 6.0 lbs.
Color
Onyx Blue Metallic
Warranty *
1-Yr Parts and Labor, 1-Year Battery

Also Includes:
# Microsoft® Works, Onyx Blue Metallic color, 5-in-1 Bridge Media Adapter, FingerPrint Reader, Standard stereo speakers, Duo Mode Pad™ pointing device, 4-USB (2.0) ports, i.LINK™ IEEE-1394, TV-out (S-Video), 10/100 LAN port, V.92 modem port, Monitor port, Microphone jack (monaural), headphone jack (stereo)

Your Price: $1,329.99

AND HERES HP
Intel(R) Core(TM) 2 Duo T5600(1.83GHz/2MB L2Cache)
15.4" WXGA BrightView Widescreen (1280x800)
BrightView improves color contrast in your images and video.
256MB NVIDIA(R) GeForce(R) Go 7400
HP Imprint Finish + Microphone + Webcam
2GB DDR2 System Memory (2 Dimm)
160GB 5400RPM SATA Hard Drive
LightScribe Super Multi 8X DVD+/-RW w/Double Layer
12 Cell Lithium Ion Battery
1-year HP Accidental Damage Protection with Express Repair extended service plan

PRICE $1,337.98

I like my hp but toshiba builds very reliable laps.
the Hp has better graphics by far and I believe the Toshiba steels a little of that 2 Gigs of ram.(something to consider)
for that reason alone I would get the HP
April 30, 2007 3:11:08 AM

Oh,

Yeah, if you aren't going to play any other games than old ones, it would do fine.

wes
April 30, 2007 3:19:59 AM

I would say HP or Toshiba, or Sony if you have money to blow. But really, what is the point of a superpowered laptop? A high end desktop is half as much, and you can get a lower end core duo laptop with a gig of RAM for travel with the extra cash. Why spend that much to game on the road when the battery will be the real bottleneck? If you want to blow an extra $500 just to play games with the graphics cranked up in your hotel room, I won't argue. It's your choice! :) 
April 30, 2007 3:42:52 AM

I agree with what you are saying, but for me it's been nice to have the capable notebook. I stay gone for long periods, and go places where I cannot take a desktop, so the notebook has been quite handy. If it were just short trips, I would not have bought this Acer notebook. But, I bought mine for $1069, with a 120gb hd, X1600, 15.4, DVD Super Multi(whatever the hell that means), 1 gig of memory(don't need 2 gigs at this resolution), and a measily Core Duo(not Core 2) but it is still plenty fast. Nice notebook for a grand.

wes
April 30, 2007 3:50:29 AM

That sounds like a good reason to me! There are mediums, like small form factors that u can carry around, but a powerful laptop would be ideal in your situation.

@OP:Your situation doesn't sound like a good video card is worth the money. Spending $1500 on a laptop with your purposes sounds like extreme overkill, but hey, it's your money!
April 30, 2007 4:22:03 AM

I am a reseller, and have been for over 10 years.
I have sold, in that time, over 200 laptops, from around 8 different companies.
I have built around 40 laptops from barebones chassis up.

Here are the facts:
1) Avoid Gigabyte - their optical drives fail revoltingly often.
2) Avoid ASUS (at least in New Zealand) as the repair service can take upwards of 2 months. Mainboards can have "issues".
3) Avoid laptops which do not have a magnesium, or aluminium frame. If you can twist it, it's a piece of crap.
4) Make sure that you get WIFI and Bluetooth built in.
5) The most reliable laptops in the world are made by Toshiba - no one else even comes close.
6) Avoid Sony, unless you have money where your brain should be.
7) Avoid plastic where possible: dropping will fuck it.

That's about all I can pass along to you.
April 30, 2007 7:27:42 AM

Yeah, small form factor would not have worked. Just think about military travel, if I can't carry it on, it would get destroyed. When you have a bunch of uniformed guys having to unload upwards of 500 heavy arse bags, they tend to get into a rush, especially when it's 135 degree F outside. Anything valuable was carried on with me, and anything breakable was as well. I tried to look into the SFF arena, instead of a notebook, but the monitor was the big problem. I did not have the space to carry a monitor on with me. So, my Acer was the next best choice for $1069. Couldn't beat this time last year, but some of the other makers this year are making more competitive similarly configured notebooks, so not it's not the only choice in the targeted price range.

wes
a c 433 D Laptop
a b α HP
April 30, 2007 7:28:59 AM

When I first decided to buy a laptop around 4 years ago, I bought an IBM Thinkpad. It's a tough little thing and still works fine today, but I no longer have much need for a laptop nowadays. Good 'ol Pentium M 1.5GHz.

If I were to buy another laptop today, the Lenovo Thinkpads (IBM sold their notebook division) would be amongst the first laptops I would look at.
April 30, 2007 9:35:31 AM

Quote:
I am a reseller, and have been for over 10 years.
I have sold, in that time, over 200 laptops, from around 8 different companies.
I have built around 40 laptops from barebones chassis up.

Here are the facts:
1) Avoid Gigabyte - their optical drives fail revoltingly often.
2) Avoid ASUS (at least in New Zealand) as the repair service can take upwards of 2 months. Mainboards can have "issues".
3) Avoid laptops which do not have a magnesium, or aluminium frame. If you can twist it, it's a piece of crap.
4) Make sure that you get WIFI and Bluetooth built in.
5) The most reliable laptops in the world are made by Toshiba - no one else even comes close.
6) Avoid Sony, unless you have money where your brain should be.
7) Avoid plastic where possible: dropping will **** it.

That's about all I can pass along to you.


I agree with you about almost everything you wrote, but, I thought the Thinkpads were the most reliable laptops in the world.
April 30, 2007 10:02:39 AM

I was in the market for a laptop about a year ago. I spent a long time comparing laptops from different companies, and finally bought a Toshiba Qosmio laptop ( supposed to be a well built models from Toshiba, on top of the Satelite line ). But guess what? I only kept it for about 3 weeks; returned it to get a Fujitsu Lifebook and never looked back.
If you think Toshiba was top rated, I will give you a personal rating: Toshiba Qosmio = 6 out of 10, Fujitsu Lifebook = 9 out of 10 ( I save the 10 for the super laptop).
Yes, I have seen all the others...Acers, Dells, HP, Compaq, etc... they are all cheap looking and poorly built. Toshiba and Lenovo are about the same in quality but Lenovo is geared more for business.
If you haven't seen a Lifebook yet, do yourself a favor and look for one. There is no freaking air vents on the bottom of the laptop to prevent you from using your laptop on your bed or carpet, and it doesn't fry your lap while using it. The thing is built as tough as a tank yet stil looking very elegant. And the screen, hm... how can I say this...after a year, it still looks better than my new Samsung 22" widescreen lcd.
My coworker just bought a new Lifebook last month and gave his junky HP to his wife, after seeing my laptop. I took a look at his new laptop and the built quality is still there, infact it looks even better than mine. I was impressed.
April 30, 2007 10:48:56 AM

@ Mobius:

Had much experience with Panasonics? What about their toughbooks?
April 30, 2007 10:56:33 AM

Quote:
I was in the market for a laptop about a year ago. I spent a long time comparing laptops from different companies, and finally bought a Toshiba Qosmio laptop ( supposed to be a well built models from Toshiba, on top of the Satelite line ). But guess what? I only kept it for about 3 weeks; returned it to get a Fujitsu Lifebook and never looked back.
If you think Toshiba was top rated, I will give you a personal rating: Toshiba Qosmio = 6 out of 10, Fujitsu Lifebook = 9 out of 10 ( I save the 10 for the super laptop).
Yes, I have seen all the others...Acers, Dells, HP, Compaq, etc... they are all cheap looking and poorly built. Toshiba and Lenovo are about the same in quality but Lenovo is geared more for business.
If you haven't seen a Lifebook yet, do yourself a favor and look for one. There is no freaking air vents on the bottom of the laptop to prevent you from using your laptop on your bed or carpet, and it doesn't fry your lap while using it. The thing is built as tough as a tank yet stil looking very elegant. And the screen, hm... how can I say this...after a year, it still looks better than my new Samsung 22" widescreen lcd.
My coworker just bought a new Lifebook last month and gave his junky HP to his wife, after seeing my laptop. I took a look at his new laptop and the built quality is still there, infact it looks even better than mine. I was impressed.


can you be more specific about the models you and your pal bought? there are many lifebook models out there, what kind of grafichs do they have? what cpu? display? etc
April 30, 2007 12:12:18 PM

Between those two i would take the Toshiba. Personally i am an HP fan and the HP I have is pretty much the same specs as yours except it came with 1 GB instead of two (not a problem, I bought 2 GB for 80$ and sold my other 2x512 chips for 40$) and it had XP. paid 750 for it! The reason I am saying to stay away from HP right now is because of how they built their new laptops. This new glossy finish is a pain in the a**, a buddy of mine bought one and it is always dirty. The other thing is that the new HPs have no latchs on the top to lock it closed. So it is really only the hinges holding the lid closed and while my friends laptop is about 7 months newer than mine his screen is already looser than mine.

P.S. Toshiba have very crappy hinges on their screens. I have 3 friends whos had to send in their laptops to Toshiba to have the hinges fixed.
April 30, 2007 12:16:10 PM

I had 2 laptops until now, a Toshiba P100 and currently a Dell XPS M1710.

What I can tell you, but only about these 2 products is that the Dell laptop is WAY better than the Toshiba.

The configurations were almost similar but the XPS is much faster, runs cooler and the battery life is almost twice compared with the Toshiba.

The only think at witch the Toshiba was better was at the quality of the display witch I must admit is superior to that of Dell's.

Note that they were both high end laptops ~2500 $ so I think that the comparison is a valid one.
April 30, 2007 12:19:04 PM

Quote:
I was in the market for a laptop about a year ago. I spent a long time comparing laptops from different companies, and finally bought a Toshiba Qosmio laptop ( supposed to be a well built models from Toshiba, on top of the Satelite line ). But guess what? I only kept it for about 3 weeks; returned it to get a Fujitsu Lifebook and never looked back.
If you think Toshiba was top rated, I will give you a personal rating: Toshiba Qosmio = 6 out of 10, Fujitsu Lifebook = 9 out of 10 ( I save the 10 for the super laptop).
Yes, I have seen all the others...Acers, Dells, HP, Compaq, etc... they are all cheap looking and poorly built. Toshiba and Lenovo are about the same in quality but Lenovo is geared more for business.
If you haven't seen a Lifebook yet, do yourself a favor and look for one. There is no freaking air vents on the bottom of the laptop to prevent you from using your laptop on your bed or carpet, and it doesn't fry your lap while using it. The thing is built as tough as a tank yet stil looking very elegant. And the screen, hm... how can I say this...after a year, it still looks better than my new Samsung 22" widescreen lcd.
My coworker just bought a new Lifebook last month and gave his junky HP to his wife, after seeing my laptop. I took a look at his new laptop and the built quality is still there, infact it looks even better than mine. I was impressed.


I agree, Toshiba is overrated ... I was very disappointed of my Toshiba P100 laptop on witch I paid ~2500$ , I finally managed to sell it and bought the Dell XPS 1710 and I'm a very happy man now.
April 30, 2007 1:05:14 PM

If you are planning on playing games and need a high performance notebook I can't comment - if however, you are looking for a run of the mill unit for browsing, e-mail, etc. I say go with the least expensive unit with the features you want. I recently looked at an Acer that was $399 at Best Buy and seriously considered it but went for a Toshiba that had 1Gb of RAM, a dual core proc and Vista Home Premium for $599 with free Best Buy financing. I am completely happy with it - it is not the lightest and probably does not have the best battery life but does everything I need with ease.

If you are looking for something built a little nicer but still not a gaming rig then maybe look at a ThinkPad.
April 30, 2007 4:56:39 PM

aright i really dont like IBMs i know theyre good but i just cant deal with them...and my friend has a 1gb stick he'll sell to me but it wont be the same type as the one in the HP (i dont think it will be a problem)...i want it to run cool and quiet, even if it doesnt play warcraft 3 well, because i go to boarding school and dont play it much at all...also i looked at the lifebooks and they seem a little expensive for what they are...maybe it was the site i was looking from but hp is still the best i can find for the price, and they are reliable enough. however, im still flexible with this situation so if you show me (give me link) a good laptop thatd be great
April 30, 2007 5:17:00 PM

Another vote for Acer. Battery life isn't as good as some of the others, but that's upgradeable, as is the 512 Mb mine came with. Those are my only two complaints...maybe if I gamed more I'd want to replace the video card, but it's fine for movies...

I got it about a year ago with an intel 1.6 Ghz, 80 Gb HDD, 512Mb Ram,XP Pro, 15.4"screen, onboard wireless, 3 USB ports, line in,line out, and mic in jacks. It was about $1000 (Can) by the time the smoke cleared. I expect you could get a pretty sweet acer for your budget. At the time I was looking mine was the most bang for the buck.
April 30, 2007 6:03:19 PM

I agree, Acer is very good for its price. My first choice would be to try to configure a Lenovo with a decent video card. My family has one Acer, 2 Lenovos, and a compact lightweight Sony, all a year or less old. We like them all, but they aren't used for gaming.
April 30, 2007 6:11:08 PM

Actually, one of the best laptop brands out there is Fujitsu. They cost quite a bit though. I personally go with whatever is cheapest, especially for what you want to do with the laptop. The single most important thing is the battery size (watt/hr). I know HP laptops can be purchased with an double-capacity battery, giving you around 8 hours of use, so their models may be more appealing to you.
April 30, 2007 8:42:07 PM

My laptop model is an N3530; came with a T2250 but I bought a T2600 from ebay for around $300 back then and replace it with ( and use the T2250 to power my desktop on the Aopen board, running @ 3.0+ghz now and it is smoking + low energy usage + super cool running). It has an X1400 for the GPU, Sata password protected 5400rpm 120 gig HDD, and all the other bells and whistles ( DVD+-R, Memory card readers, bluetooth,...etc.) I am using it to play WOW @ its screen max resolution (1440X900) and it is doing great. Don't get me wrong, the graphic power of the X1400 is no where near my desktop's oced X850PE ( and this one is getting old, I need a new video card ), but it does live up to your expectation.
I don't know the exact model of my friend's Lifebook but it came with the new Merom chip, using the 950G for graphic. Everything on his looks a little better than mine ( finger print reader, casing...) except for his sound ( mine has the best sound, even better than HP's ). I don't know if it was because he's running Vista and sound driver Vista is still screwy. Also, I tried WOW on his laptop and it seems somewhat slower than mine; could be because of both Vista and the 950G.
But seriously, if you are shopping for a new laptop, I got a few tips for you from my personal expiriences.
-If you are looking for the absolute best bang for the buck, please do go for whatever cheapest brand you can find.
-If you are looking to buy it for gaming power ( and ignore the battery life, the weight, size which you will have to carry around ) pick the one with the best GPU. My X1400 will play most of the games out right now, but you will have to turn down most of eye candies. Get the X1600 or the Go7600 if you are medium into gaming only and use your laptop for other stuffs. GPU can not be upgraded, so pick the one that suits your need.
-Casing is also not upgradable and Fujitsu has the best, tough, beautiful and high quality. I haven't seen the Tough Book yet, so best is probably over rated :D 
- Screen is not upgradable ( and probably is the deciding factor for the laptop price nowaday ) The Toshiba Qosmio has a very good screen but the Fujitsu's screen will best it by a good margin. I believe Fujitsu also makes screen for Sony laptop too, so you can look at a Sony for comparison. Most people overlook the screen feature, but think about it, it is probably the only thing that you will look at while using your laptop.
- CPU is most likely upradable, so don't worry it about it too much.
- Memory is upgradable and it is cheaper to get it from somewhere else, not from the manufacturer
- HDD is upgradable
- Look for the one that doesn't have the heat vent blowing out on the side of of it, because it is annoying to have your hand heat up while using the laptop with a mouse ( Acers, HP always do this )
-The Fujitsu has no air vents whatsoever on the bottom of the laptop, which is a big plus. Now, you can use it on any surface without worrying about blocking the air flows.
April 30, 2007 8:50:12 PM

HP's business line is quite on par with Lenevo's (i.e., Thinkpads) in most respects, and often for the same price or cheaper for being better equipped.
April 30, 2007 9:10:14 PM

aright i also found this computer...cheaper but relatively the same (budget went down to around 1300) its a fujitsu lifebook A6020
LifeBook A6020 Notebook

• Intel® Core™ 2 Duo Processor T5500 (1.66 GHz, 2 MB L2 cache, 667 MHz FSB)
• Genuine Windows Vista™ Home Premium with
Microsoft® Works and
Microsoft® Office Home and Student 2007 (60-Day Trial)
• 15.4" Color-enhanced Crystal View WXGA display
• 2 GB DDR2 667 MHz SDRAM memory
(1 GB x 2)
• 120 GB P-ATA, 4200 rpm hard drive1 with Shock Sensor protection
• Dual-Layer Multi-Format DVD Writer
• Integrated Fingerprint Sensor (also works as Scroll Button)
• Multinational2 56K3 V.90 modem and Gigabit Ethernet LAN
• Integrated Intel Pro Wireless 3945ABG Network Connection (802.11a/b/g)
• Integrated Bluetooth wireless
• 5 USB 2.0, IEEE 1394, Memory Stick®/SD/xD slot, PC Card slot, ExpressCard™ slot
• Main battery: Lithium ion (6-cell, 10.8V, 4000 mAh, 43.2 WHr); rated up to 2.75 hours4
• Standard spill-resistant keyboard
• Remote Control for Genuine Windows Vista™ Home Premium
• One-year International Limited Warranty
• M-code: FPCM32021

PRICE 1,249
April 30, 2007 10:09:36 PM

I often take contracts that last 3-12 months, and with each contract, I generally get issued a new laptop, so I've been through quite a few.

I usually get a Dell, but I've also gotten Sonys and HP's on occasion. I think the most important thing to remember is that the laptop isn't always as good as it seems on paper.

In short, I had an HP DV-series laptop that was 1/2 the cost of a Vaio "Mobile Workstation" and was much, much faster. They both had similar specs (in-fact, the Vaio had slightly higher specs).

Dells are simply garbage nowadays: especially their laptops. They're PAINFULLY slow. The sonys are all-bark-and-no-bite. They look nice, but they're really slow and overpriced. It's a real shame, too.

I highly recommend HP, only because the ones I've used have always performed really well under some pretty heavy workloads, even if the specs were less than other laptops I'd used.

Other than that, unless you can choose the model of the hard drive, get a cheap one and replace it with something you get aftermarket. The hard drives and RAM are both high-margin items with regards to laptops. For example, the Dell laptop I'm on now cost > $1,000 to put an extra 1 GB of RAM into, and that was after "corporate discount." (Dell latitude 610, about 3 mos. ago).

Laptop hard drives are really slow, so make sure you get a good one when you drop the cash. Make sure you compare prices on newegg.com when "Upgrading" modular components, too. You can usually get them cheaper aftermarket without voiding your warranty.
April 30, 2007 10:21:42 PM

Quote:
120 GB P-ATA, 4200 rpm hard drive1 with Shock Sensor protection


Your laptop will be the recipient of a brutal beating after about 10 minutes of use with this HDD :) 

You're definately going to want a 7200RPM drive. If you need storage space, it's a better idea to buy an external HD.

There are few things you'll notice more than the speed of your hard drive. One thing about laptops is that you turn them on and off a lot. This means you'll be loading windows a lot (or coming out of hibernation), both of which willl go painfully slow with a slow HD. (There's always STR, but that never works well).

AFor example, a 100GB 7200 RPM drive is $100 on newegg. 2GB so-DIMM DDR2 is also $100. Check those against what you're paying to upgrade the base model to what you have spec'd. I like to have a spare drive for my laptop. Dual-boot is not-so-nice on a laptop, so I like to swap out my drives when I need to switch to/from Linux.
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