I am currently seeking to purchase a new laptop for school-related work and web development, as well as some web browsing (and something that can play DVDs well is always a plus). So, I went to TigerDirect.com and found what I thought to be a decent deal on a Systemax Venture Mobile XVI Notebook PC. It fell within my price range with the deal (it's now $500 down from $700), and I thought this would be good for what I need it to do.
However, I was recently told by a friend that Systemax is not a great name in computers. Seeing that he has been a professional in the field for years, it worried me and made me think twice about purchasing this specific laptop from Systemax. The link to the laptop's specs and information is here.
Please review it, if you wish, and also let me know if you have ever had any issues with the Systemax brand in general. As I've said, I don't need a super laptop that is going to play the latest games on high settings, I just want something that does some good work and has some good specs, and falls around the price range of $500 or less.
It doesn't seem like a bad laptop spec wise, at least for your planned use. Just keep in mind that when it comes to electronics, you usually get what you pay for. Basically, it should hold up alright, but if you notice anything out of the ordinary in the first year, don't hesitate to send it in to get it checked out under the guise of the factory warranty.
I ended up doing a more thorough search for Systemax reviews, and I found that their customer service was not reliable and they do not seem to honor their warranties. While this may not be true of all customers, it was enough to push me to look for a different deal. I ended up raising my price range and I found a nice Asus laptop that fits my needs and then some.