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New notebook on a budget

Last response: in Laptops & Notebooks
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January 6, 2012 5:28:30 PM

Unfortunately, I've found myself in the position of needing a new notebook without having a budget. I've been budgeting for new tires, but my laptop was stolen so I need to find good deals for both. Don't know much about all the specifics, sadly- one was purchased for me, and my last one was recommended.

1. What is your budget?
$500

2. What is the size of the notebook that you are considering?
14"-15.6"

3. What screen resolution do you want?
? I'm guessing basic since I don't know

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

5. How much battery life do you need?
I'd like 4-5 hours, but can easily plug in

6. Do you want to play games with your laptop?
Sims3 is my guilty pleasure- believe I ran it on med. settings.

7. What other tasks do you want to do with your laptop?
I do the basics- surf, shop, watch videos (Hulu, Megavideo), word processing. Lots of tabs open at once, though.

8. How much storage (Hard Drive capacity) do you need?
Erm... again, basic?

9. If you are considering specific sites to buy from, please post their links.
I've been surfing BestBuy, but anything that can ship/pick up quickly.

10. How long do you want to keep your laptop?
3-4 yrs.

11. What kind of Optical drive do you need? DVD ROM/Writer,Bluray ROM/Writer,Etc ?
?

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 know lots of people don't like them, but I've mostly used Dells and never had an issue. Open to other brands, though.

13. What country do you live in?
USA

14. Please tell us any additional information if needed.
Again, looking for a basic budget notebook. I've looked around, but there are so many that are essentially the same I don't know where to go. Main uses are surfing, storing documents (old research papers, resumes, work documents in Excel/Word/PowerPoint), watching video, and some Sims.

Any suggestions are highly appreciated!

More about : notebook budget

a c 572 D Laptop
January 6, 2012 9:01:08 PM

Hello graype18;

If you can order from NewEgg and can avoid the sales tax these could be good options:
HP ProBook 4530s 15" notebook $500
Core i3 2310M 2.10GHz CPU, 4GB RAM, 320GB 7200rpm HDD, 15.6" 1366x768 LCD w/ Intel HD 3000 graphics.

HP ProBook 4530s Review


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January 8, 2012 6:45:20 AM

Thanks for the responses! Ordering online is fine as long as S&H is reasonable and doesn't take ages. Leaning towards the HP or Lenovo, I think. I'm assuming the Lenovo is better for Sims because of the different processor- i3 vs. AMD. Is that something that makes a huge difference? I don't want slower speed/other sacrifices just to be able to run Sims on high settings instead of medium.
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January 8, 2012 7:21:29 AM

graype18 said:
Thanks for the responses! Ordering online is fine as long as S&H is reasonable and doesn't take ages. Leaning towards the HP or Lenovo, I think. I'm assuming the Lenovo is better for Sims because of the different processor- i3 vs. AMD. Is that something that makes a huge difference? I don't want slower speed/other sacrifices just to be able to run Sims on high settings instead of medium.


The i3 is slightly better as a CPU, but not by much. AMD's GPU is FAR better than built in Intel. The AMD uses turbo boost, which speeds up the processor as long as it's not getting hot, so it goes up to 2.4Ghz. This also means it won't get as hot in a laptop since it will slow down rather than overheating. AMD also has 4 cores, so it will be faster in programs using more cores. If you use Firefox (I think Chrome has it too, not sure about IE), turn on hardware acceleration. The GPU will be better for watching videos online and surfing.

(Plus that Lenovo has a serious price cut ATM)
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January 9, 2012 3:12:51 PM

Thanks again guys! I think I'm going with the Lenovo (before the price jumps again!), but my brother is also looking for a basic, cheap notebook and is leaning towards the HP. So, you got two with one stone. :) 
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