GF Needs Help With A New Laptop

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GF Needs Help With A New Laptop

Post by Ian7 » Tue Nov 08, 2011 9:34 pm

So my girlfriend is going off to pre-med next year and needs a new laptop (has like an IBM one from the 80's or 90's idfk) She was gonna go to Bestbuy and pick one out and have them help her (yeah I chuckled at her). So I being the manly nerd man I am said "give me the info on what you want I'll get advice from j2 about it". So here I am.

I've been recommending the Sony Vaio's. But here is what she wants:

-13"-15" inch screen
-thin and smooth outside, not heavy, thin keys (she's a girl appearances matter...)
-Needs it to last her about 4 years in pre-med (so durable I guess)
-Large hard drive for music, and 4 years worth of school.
-HD Webcam
-High Ram for multi-tasking
-DVD Drive
-Budget: Around $1000 less if possible.
OPTIONAL:
-Backlit Keyboard

Any help or points in the right direction such as brands or models is greatly appreciated if you guys need any more info just ask.
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Re: GF Needs Help With A New Laptop

Post by jermm » Tue Nov 08, 2011 9:53 pm

I will post what I said in the last thread here:
Why do you want a laptop? I'm assuming you want a system to preform "PC" tasks, which you can carry around. Right now, until the rest of the PC makers get their "Ultrabooks" out, I'd get the Air. It has a pretty good screen, the same keyboard and trackpad that the rest of the mac laptops have (which I like), and gets ~6hrs of battery life. I would get the 13in, as I think it's size (with a higher res screen+bigger battery) is better.

Now, in a year, when you can get something just as good as the $1300 Air for $700, I think I'd go with that. Even now, there are some good options. For around $100 less, there's a Lenovo that looks pretty good (http://www.theverge.com/2011/11/8/25469 ... ook-review ), and you get 256GB of SDD instead of 128.
There are two issues: no optical drive and smaller amounts of storage. She should think about how often she wants to read optical disks. I don't know how much music she has, but Spotify exists for a reason.

However, getting one under $1k right now is a bit tight. I think some will be under that closer to black Friday. The $999 11in MacBook Air I feel isn't enough of a computer, with 2GB RAM/64GB SSD.

Remember to have a backup system! I still like Dropbox the most (This is where I sneak in my Dropbox referral link: https://www.dropbox.com/referrals/NTEyN ... s_twitter9 )
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Re: GF Needs Help With A New Laptop

Post by Azzza » Tue Nov 08, 2011 9:55 pm

I had a quick look on a few websites and found that Sony is probably a good choice, just that the price would trouble you. The decent laptops are a bit above your price range. See what others say.


P.s. Do not get a Dell.
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Re: GF Needs Help With A New Laptop

Post by Ian7 » Tue Nov 08, 2011 10:22 pm

Mac is a last resort. Absolute last resort.
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Re: GF Needs Help With A New Laptop

Post by Azzza » Wed Nov 09, 2011 3:10 am

Ian7 wrote:Mac is a last resort. Absolute last resort.
As it should be. :p
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Re: GF Needs Help With A New Laptop

Post by Wolsk » Wed Nov 09, 2011 3:12 am

Azzza95 wrote:P.s. Do not get a Dell.
Why?...
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Re: GF Needs Help With A New Laptop

Post by mbaxter » Wed Nov 09, 2011 12:57 pm

Dell hasn't sucked more than others for a while now.
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Re: GF Needs Help With A New Laptop

Post by scobywhru » Wed Nov 09, 2011 1:52 pm

Go to Costco and look at the Laptops they have there, Costco PCs come with 2 yr warranty and 90 day cash return, if you don't like it bring it back. Acer and Asus actually make some nice machines that aren't bad in terms of reliability. I would also suggest she get an external HDD to backup too laptops and the HDDs within are incredibly frail.

http://www.costco.com/Browse/Product.as ... =C&topnav=
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Re: GF Needs Help With A New Laptop

Post by Azzza » Wed Nov 09, 2011 2:49 pm

Wolsk wrote:
Azzza95 wrote:P.s. Do not get a Dell.
Why?...
mbaxter wrote:Dell hasn't sucked more than others for a while now.
Because a Dell definitely wouldn't last the 4 years that it needs to. I know four people that have a Dell and they are all dying (they're 18 months old).

Dell are alright for looks and half decent in the beginning but never buy one if you intend on keeping it for an extended period of time.
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Re: GF Needs Help With A New Laptop

Post by scobywhru » Wed Nov 09, 2011 2:52 pm

Eh? My family buys IBM/Lenovo and Dell the newest one is 3-4yrs old and still used daily, it really depends entirely on how you treat them especially the batteries.
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Re: GF Needs Help With A New Laptop

Post by Azzza » Wed Nov 09, 2011 3:24 pm

The newer Dell laptops (about a year old) are starting to die already. The older ones are better, they have lasted longer so I see why you family's laptops are still working.
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Re: GF Needs Help With A New Laptop

Post by scobywhru » Wed Nov 09, 2011 3:37 pm

it probably has more to do with model Latitude VS Inspirion then general build quality, at least it isn't Toshiba never had one of those last through warranty. Generally they don't buy the "consumer" line of products.
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Re: GF Needs Help With A New Laptop

Post by Tasslehoff [eLa] » Thu Nov 10, 2011 1:28 am

asus laptops have a great global warranty.. i've owned two.. the first one i bought 2 years ago started getting all weird with the screen. called in tech support and shipped it in. they replaced it with a brand new one (backed up all my stuff).

my second asus is a G73jw ROG gaming laptop. that thing is a beast, but they trackpad drivers are utter shit. ASUS apparently fixed it with their drivers but i haven't gotten around to checking.

the new Asus UX31 Zenbook ultralaptop (or Asus UX21 cheaper version!) compares nicely with the macbook air. The designs are similar, and the mini-hdmi is what really gets me as you can hook it up to a TV with a hdmi-->mini hdmi cable and watch movies. that and you still get windows 7 and all its bootlegging glory. At the price point of $1099, it's a little bit over your girlfriends budget, but it fits all the requirements of being slim, sexy, durable (great warranty), and being versatile using Windows 7 (i.e. save $$ on software via torrenting).

http://www.amazon.com/Zenbook-UX31E-DH5 ... B005SY32Q2

i'm thinking of buying this for my GF next year when my computer fund from my work free's up in the new year. should be goooood times. With a two year global warranty, if the laptop starts going to shit after the 2 years, she always has the option of sending it in, and then it will last her another 2 solid years after that, if not longer.
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Re: GF Needs Help With A New Laptop

Post by Snugglebear » Thu Nov 10, 2011 2:41 am

The Zenbook reviews are pretty decent thus far but watch out for the SSD space and the trackpad. My company sources most of its equipment from Dell and we've had a perfect track record with Latitudes and even Vostro laptops... actually using one right now. Ultimately, yes, most of your luck is going to be with how you treat it. This Vostro I'm using has been well cared for and works just as good as new after a couple years. One of the companies we work closely with uses Thinkpads exclusively, and those just get wrecked by their staff. But it's not the laptop, it's the staff.

Now that I need another personal laptop to begin some non-corporate sanctioned work, I'm in the same boat as her. My needs are pretty much the same - priority on portability and need for big external monitors, but with a larger budget. While the Zenbooks look nice, I really need a backlit keyboard and don't trust 1st generation products. Since we have some more corporate Latitudes dropping Friday/Monday I may just get a duplicate of those if well impressed or a go for a 13" Macbook Pro and dual boot (still have a G3 iBook and have used OS X since 10.1 - and like it).

Whatever she decides, plan for:
1) A good sleeve to protect it
2) An external drive to backup to
3) One or two memory sticks to backup to (seriously, I had to spend a vacation in Hawaii rewriting a paper in grad skool due to a PG&E brownout nuking a PC)
4) A replacement battery after 2-3 years
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Re: GF Needs Help With A New Laptop

Post by Eviltechie » Fri Nov 11, 2011 12:03 am

While I don't own a macbook, I do use one at school occasionally. I can attest that the trackpads on them are absolutely wonderful. Browsing the web and being able to scroll, and go forward and back using only your fingers is great.
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