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Recommended laptop

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  • Laptops
  • Games
Last response: in Laptop General Discussion
August 8, 2009 5:18:22 PM

1_What is your budget?
I live in Israel, so my budget is around 5000-7000NIS (1300-1800$)

2_What is the size of the notebook that you are considering?
15.4", 15.6".

3_What screen resolution do you want?
Doesn't matter.

4_Do you need a portable or desktop replacement laptop?
both

5_How much battery life do you need?
Doesn't matter.

6_Do you want to play games with your laptop? If so then please list the games that you want to with the settings that you want for these games. (Low,Medium or High)?
Not for games, needed for programming.

7_What other tasks do you want to do with your laptop? (Photo / Video editing, surfing the web, playing music, watching movies, Etc.)
The purpose of the laptop is programming, but also surfing the web, playing music, watching movies etc.

8_How much storage (H.D.D Capacity) do you need?
not less than 250GB.

9_If you are considering specific sites to buy from, please post the links to them.
None

10_How long do you want to keep your laptop?
At least 3 years.

11_If you would like to mention some other things about purchasing your ideal laptop, post them.
Reliable, meant for hot weather, not too fragile.

12_Please tell us about the brands that you prefer to buy from them and the brands that you don't like and explain the reasons.
Mostly going towards Dell, open for suggestions.

13_What country do you live in?
Israel.


Thank you very much.

More about : recommended laptop

a b D Laptop
August 8, 2009 5:30:11 PM

I would take a Thinkpad T500 for this. They're built better than most other machines out there, and their keyboards are usually a step above other notebooks', which is pretty important for you. If you really want a reliable machine, that's what I'd choose.

You could probably get along with the base model with Intel graphics (upgrade it to 4GB of RAM and a larger hard disk), but if you're planning on playing HD movies, you can move up to the machine with a 3650 in it.

Take a look at the whole T500 family here:
http://shop.lenovo.com/SEUILibrary/controller/e/web/Len...


Edit: Also, you could do with pretty much any of the Sager 15.4" line. Like Lenovo machines, Sagers seem to be built better than the competition.
http://www.sagernotebook.com/category_browse.php?cid=&l...
August 9, 2009 6:31:58 PM

Thank you frozenlead.

I just found out that laptops here cost like twice the price there. So I would say that i need something for less than 1000$.

Other than that, I dun really understand why the t500 family is so expensive, their specs are not that high (compared to dells for example).

P.s they don't sell Sager here.

Thank you!!
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a b D Laptop
August 9, 2009 7:04:16 PM

Lenovo is a premium brand, and those are business class notebooks. They've a larger price because of it.

But, they're also pretty robust. But, if Lenovo is too expensive, Dell is a good alternative, and you get a bit more bang-for-buck with them. IMO, it has a greater chance of breaking, but, treat it well and it should serve you well.
August 15, 2009 1:29:03 PM

Hey,

I looked up for some LG laptops, I'm just wondering why none ever recommend them?
The LG RD510-T.AD35E P8600 2.4GHz got perfect specs for a low price, should I be concerned? :) 

thanks!!
a b D Laptop
August 16, 2009 4:38:23 AM

elrondemon said:
Hey,

I looked up for some LG laptops, I'm just wondering why none ever recommend them?
The LG RD510-T.AD35E P8600 2.4GHz got perfect specs for a low price, should I be concerned? :) 

thanks!!


I dunno. I don't recommend LG because when it comes to laptops, they just aren't a name that comes to mind. Not like Dell, HP, Toshiba, etc. The rest of LG's product line is usually pretty decent, I just haven't used one of their laptops. That's going to be up to you.
August 16, 2009 7:10:46 AM

Regarding brands, here's my take:

Panasonic: Personally, I think these are the best laptops available today. In terms of size, weight, portability, battery life, dependability, etc. However, even a low end Toughbook starts at $1600. These were meant to be portable, and thus have features you might not need.

Toshiba/Sony: Roughly equivalent in features, service, value, etc. Sony is slightly more expensive than Toshiba, so Toshibas are the better value.

Dell/HP: It's either a love it/hate it reaction from most users, usually centered around customer service, which means inconsistent customer service.

eMachines, EEpc, Gateway, Compaq: These generally have the worst reputations. Only take a chance on one of these if the purchase price is 1/2 or less of a similar machine from Toshiba/Sony.

MacBooks: Starting at $1000, these are generally for the user who doesn't want to do research. Macbooks are simple and work well right out of the box, but since Apple has a monopoly on hardware, expect to pay 2-4X as much for the same features as a PC laptop. This is a good option for people who aren't computer savvy.

I bought my laptop from Office Depot. They usually have double rebate sales on select laptops. I bought mine with $150 off from two rebates. However, I'm not sure they will do international sales.

www.pricewatch.com has a few vendors that will do international sales.

Regarding features, here's what to look for:

Size: As a general rule, very big or very small is cheaper. If you want a desktop replacement, aim for a 15.5" or larger. 13-14" are the most expensive.

Battery: Batteries come in 3 cell, 6 cell (4000mAh), 9 cell, 12 cell, etc. Usually, 3 and 6 cell batteries will not stick out of the bottom of the laptop, but 9+ will. My 15.5" Toshiba L305 runs for 3 hours on a 6 cell, while a Macbook will run 5-7 hours. Even if you get a netbook, 6 cell (aka 4000 mAh) is the minimum.

Weight: the Holy grail of laptops is under 4.5 lbs. However, if you are looking for a desktop replacement, it doesn't matter. Also, don't forget about the cords, power converter, case, etc. A 7 lb computer can run 10lbs or more with accessories in the case. Panasonic Toughbooks and Macbooks are under 4lbs with 13-14" screens.

Wireless: Nearly all notebooks today come with Wireless G cards. Wireless N is better, but rare. Wireless B is doodoo, don't get that. Most notebooks allow upgrade of the wireless card. The Macbook AirCard appears to have better range and power than PC cards.

Video card: desktop replacement laptops will often allow for video card upgrades. You just stick a regular card right in there. However, just remember: if you want a laptop, don't expect great game performance.

TV out: The hardest way to connect to a TV is through the VGA port. SVideo or HDMI are much easier. If you are planning to use a TV with your computer to watch movies or videos, you can save yourself a lot of hassle by getting a laptop with a TV port.

Note about netbooks: by definition, a netbook is a laptop without an optical drive. However, as a general rule, they also have single core processors horrible features. If you are thinking about getting one, remember that a netbook with an external optical drive is the same cost as a low end laptop.

edit:

CPU: Laptop CPU's come in 3 types: single core, dual core, quad core. Like size, the medium one is the one you want to get. Single core laptop CPUs are usually Atoms, and they are meant for low power consumption. This doesn't mean they are better, just slower. The Atom, for example, usually runs at 1.8 Ghz, and in power saving mode, .9 ghz. Usually, Atoms are used in netbooks and their speed cannot be adjusted. Quad cores, as you can imagine, take a lot of power, even when running at half speed. Therefore, a dual core is the best compromise between speed, power and power consumption. If you are running a desktop replacement that will never be moved and will always be plugged in, the quad is better.

DVD: There's not much difference between DVD's, but really you shouldn't be burning DVD's on battery. The Toshiba Multidrive is slower than average, which makes it more efficient when runnning on battery. However, for a desktop replacement, feel free to get a high speed drive that may do Lightscribe as well.

Operating system: I like how Vista works with laptops. The power saving options allow for high control over the contrast and CPU speed, which directly affects battery life. You should be careful of trying to downgrade to XP on today's laptops. While you do see some resource savings, the hassle is just not worth it. The reason is that nearly all laptops today have custom-made OS's that include specific drivers for your specific build. If you want XP, you are far better off buying a notebook that includes it. Some laptops today come with free OS's like Linux. You save a few bucks, but the hassle of getting the drivers is not worth it, imho.
a b D Laptop
August 16, 2009 10:27:13 PM

1) what do you mean by "regular card" under your video card explanation?

2) I don't necessarily agree with your netbook definition. To me a netbook isn't really just a laptop without an optical drive. They are specifically made machines designed to pretty much do what their name implies; surf the net. They are designed to be smaller and light then a normal laptop and don't come with all sorts of fancy features because they weren't made with those tasks in mind.

3) as far as CPUs: atoms are designed for netbooks and yes they are meant for battery life, but for the most part the things that you will be doing on a netbook don't need much power. Intel has also come out with dual core atom processors but just aren't allowing them in netbooks at the moment. I would expect that to change in the near future though.
August 17, 2009 4:43:04 AM

I double checked on that. When I was researching my laptop, I saw what looked like a video card being installed into a bottom panel, I guess that was a picture of RAM installation.
a b D Laptop
August 18, 2009 1:59:07 AM

Superhal said:
I double checked on that. When I was researching my laptop, I saw what looked like a video card being installed into a bottom panel, I guess that was a picture of RAM installation.



Yeah. Some laptops, mostly ones designed for gaming, can have their cards upgraded. But because they don't use the same type of cards as desktops, they are harder to find and generally more expensive.
August 18, 2009 6:16:02 PM

Thank you very much for your replies.

I'm currently trying to decide between:

Dell Studio 1555 and Dell Latitude E5500.

probably will buy the 1555. Whats your opinion?
August 22, 2009 7:26:12 AM

Dell Studio 1555:
P8600 2.4Ghz
4GB
320GB 7200rpm
x4500
FullHD Led 15.6
Vista Premium


I'm not sure about the 4500mhd graphics accelerator. I'm planning to use some graphics programs, I know they need mostly CPU and RAM but working in the viewports requires some GPU, is the 4500mhd really slow? and adding 200$ for the radeon 4570 worth it?

a b D Laptop
August 22, 2009 7:33:53 AM

What programs will you be using?
And you only listed one machine's specs.