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Need advice on a new budget laptop

Last response: in Laptops & Notebooks
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a b D Laptop
September 15, 2010 1:01:48 PM

I am looking for a laptop for a family member who is not a computer-wiz. I will run the initial setup and uninstall bloatware etc., but other than that I don't visit her that often, so the laptop should be low maintenance and reliable.


Regarding the common questions: I live in Denmark and need to buy the computer at a retailer. Therefore I would think you'd have a hard time finding a suitable laptop for me. Instead I have searched the different retailers and found four systems and I would greatly appreciate any comment and/or suggestion as to which is the best.
I have answered the questions needed for you to understand my choices.

I don't need a gaming laptop, neither do I need something with a Celeron processor and integrated graphics - so basically an allrounder :) 


4. Do you need a portable or desktop replacement laptop?
Mostly a desktop replacement.

5. How much battery life do you need?
Not too important as it will be plugged in most of the time, but 1½-2 hours would be nice.


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)?
No games at all.


7. What other tasks do you want to do with your laptop? (Photo / Video editing,watching movies, Etc.)
Word processing, (wireless) internet browsing and watching movies.


8. How much storage (Hard Drive capacity) do you need?
Just the standad 250 - 500GB that most laptops come with these days.


9. If you are considering specific sites to buy from, please post their links.
http://www.expert.dk/
http://www.elgiganten.dk/
In Danish unfortunately.


10. How long do you want to keep your laptop?
As long as possible :) 
It is only going to be replaced if it breaks down or some extremely radical new invention renders it unable to perform simple Word processing and web-browsing (I doubt it ;) )


11. What kind of Optical drive do you need? DVD ROM/Writer,Bluray ROM/Writer,Etc ?
Just the standard CD/DVD rewrite drive.


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.
Asus and Toshiba are the most preferable; my own Toshiba is running smoothly without a single problem and has been doing so for 4½ years now. Asus has a respectable name IMO.

I used to think HP was great, but I have read several bad things about them recently, especially the 3-year laptop malfunction survey from SquareTrade, so now I'm not so sure. My local computer warehouse has excellent deals on two HP machines though, so I'm not ruling them out completely.

Acer and Compaq are absolute no-nos. I've had a horrible Compaq desktop in the past and my girlfriend's Acer laptop is also giving us problems.


13. What country do you live in?
Denmark


14. Please tell us any additional information if needed.
I know that my needs are too small to warrant a dedicated GPU, but I have had so bad experiences in the past with integrated graphics that I really think it is worth to throw in a few more money to get the dedicated.


I currently have these four machines in mind:
Toshiba Satellite C650D-12J
AMD Athlon II Dual-Core P320 2,1GHz
3GB DDR3
320GB HDD (5400rpm)
ATI Radeon HD 4250
15.6'' WXGA (1366 x 768)
Windows 7 Home Premium 64
CD/DVD +/- RW DL
http://www.elgiganten.dk/product/pc-hardware/barbare-co...

Price: ~700$


ASUS K52DR-EX047V
AMD Athlon X2 Dual-Core P320 2,1GHz
4GB DDR3
500GB HDD (5400rpm)
ATI Mobility Radeon HD5470, 1GB
15.6'' LED (1366 x 768)
Windows 7 Home Premium
CD/DVD +/- RW DL
http://www.asus.com/product.aspx?P_ID=eaAlHSngNQMAv1M1

Price: ~870$


HP G62-a36SO
Intel Core i3 330 M 2,13GHz
4GB DDR3
500GB HDD (7200rpm)
ATI Mobility Radeon HD5470, 512MB
15.6'' LED (1366 x 768)
Windows 7 Home Premium
CD/DVD +/- RW DL
http://www.elgiganten.dk/product/pc-hardware/barbare-co...

Price: ~870$


HP G62-a12SO
AMD Turion II Dual Core P520 2,3GHz
4GB DDR3
320GB HDD (7200rpm)
ATI Mobility Radeon HD 4250
15.6'' LED (1366 x 768)
Windows 7 Home Premium
CD/DVD +/- RW DL
http://www.elgiganten.dk/product/pc-hardware/barbare-co...

Price: ~700$


As I said the HP laptops looks like they've the best deals, but if they break down after two years or require a lot of attention, I would rather go with one of the others...

Thank you!

More about : advice budget laptop

a b D Laptop
September 15, 2010 5:16:39 PM

Go with the ASUS K52DR-EX047V
AMD Athlon X2 Dual-Core P320 2.1GHz.

ASUS laptops have good build quality (from what i have seen)
and HD5470 is good GPU for basic needs(future proofing- not for playing games but for other stuffs like OS).

its only downside is AMD Athlon X2 Dual-Core P320 2.1GHz.

The AMD Athlon II P320 is an entry level dual core processor for laptops. Compared to the faster Phenom II and Turion II processors of 2010, the Athlon II P320 features only a 64 Bit FPU (Floating Point Unit), and not 128 Bit as the Athlon II Desktop.

The Athlon II P320 offers an integrated DDR3-1066 (or 800 according to Wikipedia) dual-channel memory controller and a 1.6 GHz HyperTransport 3.0 link (HT3200) to the chipset.

The performance of the Athlon P320 should be on par with a 1.9-2.1 GHz clocked Celeron / Pentium Penryn processor of 2009. First Passmark CPU scores are similar to a Intel Celeron T3100 with 1.9 GHz.(Acc. to notebookcheck)

But as you said Celeron like processor would do it will work just fine for you.

!