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Help finding college laptop

Last response: in Laptops & Notebooks
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January 20, 2011 1:00:01 AM

Hello, I am looking for a laptop for college. I will be in school for quite a few years getting my Doctorate. I really need help with finding a laptop that is best suited for me. I love to play games online and I multitask a lot. I need something light and battery efficient. I also desire Windows 7 operating system. It is been so long since I bought a computer that I have lost all the knowledge of what is great, and what is...well not so great. If you could help me out, I would be ever so grateful to you. Thank you for looking at my post, and thanks again in advance!

1. What is your budget?
0-900, but 1000 is maximum, I want the most bang for my buck. :D 

2. What is the size of the notebook that you are considering?
not too small of a screen, but not too large that it is bulky


3. What screen resolution do you want?
high quality?

4. Do you need a portable or desktop replacement laptop?
Since I'm going to be taking it to basically all my classes I need it to be portable, but it needs to do the work as a desktop replacement.

5. How much battery life do you need?
As much as possible. College classes are loooooong X[

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)?
Yes. Left 4 Dead 2, Minecraft, Team Fortress, Starcraft, Amnesia, and various other random games, (medium to high quality), Basically I want to be able to play any new games that come out with my laptop when they come out.

7. What other tasks do you want to do with your laptop? (Photo / Video editing,watching movies, Etc.)
I watch movies, browse the internet, countless word documents, make images with paint programs, listen to music (over 1,000 songs and growing), skype, msn, and other countless chat devices, and I multitask like crazy. So i will listen to music, play games, chat over chat device, and run various scans like avast ect.

8. How much storage (Hard Drive capacity) do you need? 250gb-300.

9. If you are considering specific sites to buy from, please post their links.

10. How long do you want to keep your laptop?
I'm going to go for a doctorate. So at least 4 or more years XD

11. What kind of Optical drive do you need? DVD ROM/Writer,Bluray ROM/Writer,Etc ?
I would like something that can burn dvd's/cds, and can read them as well.

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.
I absoutely dislike dell. I would rather rip my nails off my fingers than buy from them again. Reason: I have only had bad experiences with their company. I have had multiple hard drive failures, causing me to lose very important data, and also other various problems throughout the years of buying their product.

I do not wish to own an apple computer. I prefer windows interfaces, and the programs that can be used with windows much more than that of a mac.

13. What country do you live in?
United States

14. Please tell us any additional information if needed.

I would like it to be cheap as possible. Also I don't want my laptop prohibiting me from doing spontaneous things. Like say my friends want to go out for a bit to eat, I can go off and not have to worry about bringing dead weight with me. But long story short, I'm going to be a college student. I need a lot, but I don't at the same time.

Weight: I would like it not to weigh as much as a cinder block, as my books will be heavy enough as it is.
Looks: I want something that is also very pleasing to the eye.
Bluetooth: I would love it if it had this capability.
Touchpad: If it had the ability to turn it on or off, that would be amazing as well. Not a necessity.
Webcam: Do not need as I have that I can use. Same thing with Microphone.

More about : finding college laptop

January 20, 2011 1:28:53 AM

Quote:
How about this HP ENVY 14-1110NR Intel Core i5-460M 2.53GHz 14.5" Laptop, 4GB/640GB/Win 7/1GB Video $869.00? Nice specs. Great price. IT MIGHT meet your needs well. Hope u find the best bet.
http://www.dealstudio.com/searchdeals.php?type=id&q=d21...


Thanks for your suggestion. I like it, but I'm going to see if anyone else posts anything better to try and be a better consumer.
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January 20, 2011 2:40:17 AM

SunnyAngel -

You have some specific needs, but I don't think it will be too hard to find something at $1000.

I really like this ASUS U43JC Bamboo. Here are some specs:

Screen14" WXGA (1366x768) HDProcessor2.4 GHz Intel® Core™ i5-450M ProcessorRAM4 GB DRAM 1066 MHzStorage500 GB HDD 5400 RPMOperating systemWindows 7 Home Premium 64-bit Optical driveBlu-ray R, CD R/W, DVD R/W

It has a smaller screen, which I think will be good for portability on the go. Also, its $999, or $1000. It is also fairly nice to the eye, with the alluminum design. What do you think? Here's the link you were asking for: http://www.microsoft.com/windows/pc-scout/laptop-detail...

How does this ASUS work?

Kevin
Windows Outreach Team
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January 20, 2011 8:38:21 PM

WindowsTeam_Kevin said:
SunnyAngel -

You have some specific needs, but I don't think it will be too hard to find something at $1000.

I really like this ASUS U43JC Bamboo. Here are some specs:

Screen14" WXGA (1366x768) HDProcessor2.4 GHz Intel® Core™ i5-450M ProcessorRAM4 GB DRAM 1066 MHzStorage500 GB HDD 5400 RPMOperating systemWindows 7 Home Premium 64-bit Optical driveBlu-ray R, CD R/W, DVD R/W

It has a smaller screen, which I think will be good for portability on the go. Also, its $999, or $1000. It is also fairly nice to the eye, with the alluminum design. What do you think? Here's the link you were asking for: http://www.microsoft.com/windows/pc-scout/laptop-detail...

How does this ASUS work?

Kevin
Windows Outreach Team



Hey thanks a lot Kevin, I really like this laptop as well. It is very pleasing to the eye. Not to mention it does have some bite to it. :D  Same thing as before, I will wait to see if anyone else posts before I buy to be the best consumer thingy I can be. Thanks again for your time and effort.
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January 23, 2011 5:24:58 PM

From a consumer standpoint, I'd say the MacBook 13", or MacBook Pro 13". For college yes you'll need / want Windows, but you can always load the Mac up with Windows XP or 7.

Right now the best deal going in the price range you stated is the Macbook Pro 13". It's being sold in some corners for $999.

That's an INCREDIBLE deal for this class of device, absolutely perfect for on the go college types. Check the battery life at this link - 7 Hours 48 minutes of CONTINUOUS web surfing / wireless vs other laptops :

http://www.laptopmag.com/review/laptops/apple-macbook-p...


For the record, I don't own a Macbook. I wish I had bought one 2 1/2 years ago when I last bought a personal laptop though. The reason is #1 below. It's an investment!

1 - MUCH higher resale than any other brand. Check out Ebay - 3-4 year old macbooks sell for $450-700. Brand new ones sell for very close to retail price (people are ok with just saving the Sales TAX on one that is a month or two old if you have all the parts & receipt - see #2 below!). Broken ones sell for more than perfectly functioning PC laptops from the same time period!

2 - Local Apple stores will do warranty repair for the 1st year, no hassles, and AppleCare is an excellent no hassle insurance system for longer warranties.

3 - You can run Windows XP/ 7 *and* Mac OS X on them. If you have no use for OS X, just run Win 7. OS X has its advantages - esp for photography / graphic design etc. This is flexibility you won't have with a PC (and yes I know about hackintosh).

4 - Quality is high and consistent; you know what you're getting.

5 - If there are any problems, they are popular enough that you'll know what the problems are and what the remedies are - and Apple is usually held to task to fix those problems (as opposed to obscure models of other brands where you have a relatively small group of other owners).

6 - For what you get spec wise, they aren't really much more expensive than other brands for the small format factor.

7 - The Macbook Pro 13" I mentioned above has one of the longest battery lives in the class - Apple claims 10 hours of normal business usage, reviews show
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January 23, 2011 10:51:55 PM

I agree Shady28 (doesn't seem too shady), Macbooks are the way to go if you can afford them.

However, I know budget/preference takes presidency, Therefore I recommend the Acer Timeline X series.

They are a very close match to what you are looking for, reasons:

-Battery life, some models 8+hours
-Power/performance
-Slim/Portable
-Style (Beautiful design!)
-Price (Start at around $700)

http://www.acer.com/timelinex/eng/
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January 24, 2011 4:23:51 AM

If you can wait for Sandy Bridge laptops you should. Otherwise the HP Envy 14 is the best combination currently with 6hr battery, 5650 graphics and 14.5"/5.25lb size.
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January 24, 2011 1:05:01 PM

UniqueName said:
If you can wait for Sandy Bridge laptops you should. Otherwise the HP Envy 14 is the best combination currently with 6hr battery, 5650 graphics and 14.5"/5.25lb size.



Sandy Bridge?
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January 24, 2011 2:11:11 PM

sunnyangel37 said:
Sandy Bridge?


Sandy Bridge is the code name for the new line of processors being released this year by Intel. They are supposed to consume less power, and process graphics on the same chip (therefore eliminating the need for a graphics processor).

This is supposed to be a small revolution in mobile computing, but there is not enough information out yet to justify the hype.

AMD's equivalent is their "Fusion Core" line, which is already starting to emerge on some laptops being sold, but the ones I have seen are either too cheap/flimsy (not enough processing power, ex: Acer 5253), or too expensive to justify it (some ranging $1200+). It seems as if this type of processor is only to benefit the cheap/low end machines, by adding graphical ability while maintaining similar processing speeds (sort of like a low end Intel Atom chip, but with graphics added).

And supposedly these new chips are supposed to greatly extend battery life - as they drain less power, but the models I have seen still range in the 3-5 hour median battery life range.
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January 24, 2011 2:29:18 PM

sunnyangel37, I'm in your exact position... I want a powerful/lightweigh/affordable laptop for college.

Basically, since we are on the brink of a mobile computer revolution, it would probably benefit you to wait a few months to see what the new technology will bring. I bought my first laptop in January (2005 - 2006 i believe), and basically Dual Core processors came out 2 months later (around march) for the exact same price. So I would have had literally twice the processing power for the exact same price.

From what I've seen, March-june is when new technology enters the market (at least in the computer market), since companies want to make as much profit on previous technology in the holiday season, and then subsequently releasing new technology shortly after in order to give consumers the mindset of their technology being outdated, and a desire to purchase new technology.
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January 24, 2011 10:27:11 PM

mrhozer said:
sunnyangel37, I'm in your exact position... I want a powerful/lightweigh/affordable laptop for college.

Basically, since we are on the brink of a mobile computer revolution, it would probably benefit you to wait a few months to see what the new technology will bring. I bought my first laptop in January (2005 - 2006 i believe), and basically Dual Core processors came out 2 months later (around march) for the exact same price. So I would have had literally twice the processing power for the exact same price.

From what I've seen, March-june is when new technology enters the market (at least in the computer market), since companies want to make as much profit on previous technology in the holiday season, and then subsequently releasing new technology shortly after in order to give consumers the mindset of their technology being outdated, and a desire to purchase new technology.



I'm glad I'm not the only one in my position. I guess I will wait it out and see. I don't really need one until this fall season technically. I've gone this long without being able to play new games like Left 4 Dead 2 on this computer, might as well wait a few more months. XD
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