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Getting best laptop for my Dad

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Last response: in Laptops & Notebooks
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December 19, 2010 10:57:10 PM

Hi tom's community.

Here is yet again another reader asking a question on which laptop to buy.
This time it's for my dad. He help me bought couple of PCs over the years, so I just feel like it's time to repay back the favor ( since I already start working). Actually he can buy one anytime ( his pension 3x my salary :o  ) but like they say, it's the thought that matters :D  . Since I know my dad's usage habit best, I'm gonna ask using our good moderator's asking guideline ;) 

1. What is your budget?
I'm not from the USA, but usually get the same lappy of around the same price 2-3 weeks after US release. So I'd say around $700 max.

2. What is the size of the notebook that you are considering?
Between 12.1" and 13.3". Not too big (want it portable) and not to small for my dad's aging sight :D 

3. What screen resolution do you want?
The typical minimum 1366x768.

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

5. How much battery life do you need?
If possible, at least 6 hours of wifi+surfing, occasional word processing and e-book. Max 3 tasks with max 5 tabs in Chrome.

6. (skip, no gaming)

7. What other tasks do you want to do with your laptop? (Photo / Video editing,watching movies, Etc.)
The surfing includes flash video. Occasional non-HD videos, rare 720p, very rare 1080p(almost never).

8. How much storage (Hard Drive capacity) do you need?
Cheapest but fast one, like 7200rpm 320GB. If I can save somewhere else, kinda considering 32/64GB SSD. He uses external drive for archiving stuff.

9. (skip, not related)

10. How long do you want to keep your laptop?
At least 3 years. But with this kinda usage, I think any decent lappy can last 5 years or more, right?

11. (skip, no optical needed)

12. Dell, Lenovo, Acer, Asus, HP, Sony(but a bit pricey) any that have good reputation. Eventually, they're all the same on the inside :p 

13. What country do you live in?
Malaysia. So far Dell, Sony have the easiest to reach after sales support. But HP, Acer and Asus aren't that bad either.

14. Additional?
Preferably ULV CPU, weighs at 1.47kg, USB 3.0(gonna buy him external USB 3.0 HDD later), HDMI (so he can use my 21" monitor when he feels like it).
I've been follow SandyBridge and Zacate a bit, but needs to wait a while longer. But tech improves fast, too fast, so anything good around this couple of months is OK. After many consideration, this is the most ideal criteria I could think of for my dad's new lappy. Maybe overkill with the SSD, but I really want it to be very snappy and has a fast boot.
I did consider Asus Eee PC 1215N, but still not convinced with Atom's value over time since I target 3-5 years of usage.
That's all I guess. Thanks in advance :sol: 

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December 20, 2010 3:36:02 AM

Thanks for the suggestion cloudy2010, that is a good lappy for the price with usb-esata alternatives :) 

@Avro Arrow yeah I read your article a couple of weeks back. Couldn't agree more. Notice this line in my first post?
"Eventually, they're all the same on the inside :p  ".
I'm being a bit nitpicking here since this will be a present, would have care less if I buy for myself :p 

While looking at cloudy2010's suggestion, I came across the U260. Looks sweet, it hits several sweet spot; 12.5", 3pounds, ULV Core i series; though those come with a premium price and no USB 3.0 /USB-eSATA :??: 
Am I actually asking too much for a laptop.. hahaha :lol: 
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December 20, 2010 3:42:43 AM

Well sure, it's for your father. I'd be nit-picking too. Well no, I wouldn't... my father is not very computer savvy and he has the same cheap laptop I do and he's happy as hell with it. :sol: 
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December 20, 2010 4:13:26 AM

Avro Arrow said:
Well sure, it's for your father. I'd be nit-picking too. Well no, I wouldn't... my father is not very computer savvy and he has the same cheap laptop I do and he's happy as hell with it. :sol: 


Good for both of you :D 
And on my side, my dad's the one who thought me about computers :p 

BTW, anyone know if someone already put up a battery life comparison chart, that would be great :D 
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