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Old 04-27-2006, 07:24 PM   #1
moonbaseone
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Question Need help/advice getting a Laptop!!!

Hello everyone. I am looking to get me a Laptop for the 1st time. I know alittle bit about PC's, but never had a laptop. I have been doing my research as much as I could.

Now, allow me to explain my situation. I was recently hurt at work, so I will be off for awhile. I am staying with family and am not supposed to walk much or do to much. I broke my toe and I'm supposed to stay off of it for a few weeks.

I had already planned on getting a laptop before this happened. So now I am really planning on getting one, and soon.

Thing is, I have 2 websites that I want/need to stay working on, and currently, I am not using my pc, which is at home.

Ok, the house I am at now doesn't have a pc. That's the main reason I need a laptop now. I am still looking into what I need. I am thinking of something that is setup with these features:

A Pentium M processor
60GB Hard drive
Monitor about 15". Hopefully widescreen
Atleast 512 MB memory
I will need a Thumbpad. I donot like the eraser-head.
A DVDRW/CDRW combo drive.

I will be using this laptop to:
Work on my sites 1st and foremost.
Watch DVDs and listen to music.
Email, MS Word, Print documents.
And digital pictures.

I am not too concerned with how big/heavy it is.

OK, here's the big thing. the house I am at now has Dial-up. NO DSL or Cable access. I have DSL at home, but will be using it here for the next few weeks till I get alittle better. I see that most Laptops come with a built-in Wireless or I can just get that added so I can get a router and use this laptop at home on my DSL network. My question is, do I have to by another card to use it here and use the Dial-up connection? And if so, I am guessing that's all pretty easy to set up?

Also, what Brands do you recemmond? So far I will be looking at HP, Toshiba, Sony Vaio and maybe Gateway. I've have a Gateway PC and it has been very good to me.

My price range is around $1000 to $1200. Also, I will not be ordering this laptop. I will be physically buying it at the store.

THANKS for any help and advice.

Also, incase your wondering, I am currently making this post and browsing these Forums on my BlackBerry 8700c.
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Old 04-27-2006, 08:18 PM   #2
Czar

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If you're not concerned about weight and won't be using the machine for graphically-demanding applications such as video editing or high-res Photoshop work, don't worry about Vaios or higher end HPs.

The specs you noted are pretty standard in most entry-level laptops these days (with the possible exception of the DVDRW which might be a small upgrade). As such, a basic Dell Inspiron might be perfect for you. Otherwise, Gateway, BenQ or Gatway may be your next best bets. The only brand I'd avoid in that price range is Compaq - simply because their proprietary restore discs give you less control over your machine than a simpler box.

Most laptops in the lower end of the market will include built-in, dial-up modems as standard so that shouldn't cost you a cent extra.
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Old 04-27-2006, 08:43 PM   #3
moonbaseone
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Czar
If you're not concerned about weight and won't be using the machine for graphically-demanding applications such as video editing or high-res Photoshop work, don't worry about Vaios or higher end HPs.

The specs you noted are pretty standard in most entry-level laptops these days (with the possible exception of the DVDRW which might be a small upgrade). As such, a basic Dell Inspiron might be perfect for you. Otherwise, Gateway, BenQ or Gatway may be your next best bets. The only brand I'd avoid in that price range is Compaq - simply because their proprietary restore discs give you less control over your machine than a simpler box.

Most laptops in the lower end of the market will include built-in, dial-up modems as standard so that shouldn't cost you a cent extra.
THANKS for the quick response. I like Gateway products. I currently have a Gateway PC that is about 4 years old. I never really had any trouble with it and their customer service has been superb in my experience. I would take a look at Dell, but you can't buy them at a store physically right?

Also, I am glad to hear that the dial-up modem is built in already. I guess I thught those were being phased out like the floppy. LOL

Also, the only thing I might use my laptop that may take a lot of memory is to edit pictures and make animated gifs using ULead Gif Animator 5.0. Or, I may beusing MS photo Editor program. But, I will not be working with live video or anything like that. I will be running PowerDVD though.

Also, the DVDRW/CDRW comdo drive really isn't necessary. I will be happy with just a DVDRW drive.

So it looks like I may take a look at the Gateways. I don't think I've heard of BenQ???

And, you say that its not necessary to spend the $$$ on a sony or hp with my specs and needs right?

Well, ofcourse if I catch one on sale or for a few bucks more, but otherwise, stick with the Gateway right?

And, THANKS for the help.
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Old 04-27-2006, 09:00 PM   #4
Czar

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Well, it depends. If you're looking for a scalable, long-term solution, then a higher end box may give you more life, but if you just want something simple, that does what you need it to now and that you're happy to replace two years down the road, then the most basic PentiumM/Centrino laptop offered by Dell, Gateway or even a vanilla brand should do.

With Vaios and HPs, you're often paying for better quality displays and relatively expensive bundled OEM software (such as Adobe Premiere LE where Vaios are concerned). If you don't need an extremely crisp, high-res display, a lightweight construction or the other perks that Vaios and nicer HPs bring to the table, then the extra expense might be a waste.

Incidentally, all DVDRW drives will also burn CDRW discs, so that's not a problem. Also, Ulead GIF Animator and MS Photo Editor are quite lean applications, so they won't drain your resources much at all.

Gateway might be your best bet if you don't want to buy online. They bailed out of Australia a few years ago, so I can't report on their quality personally, but they still seem to have a reasonable service reputation amongst the cheaper providers in the markets where they still operate.
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Old 04-27-2006, 09:31 PM   #5
moonbaseone
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Czar
Well, it depends. If you're looking for a scalable, long-term solution, then a higher end box may give you more life, but if you just want something simple, that does what you need it to now and that you're happy to replace two years down the road, then the most basic PentiumM/Centrino laptop offered by Dell, Gateway or even a vanilla brand should do.

With Vaios and HPs, you're often paying for better quality displays and relatively expensive bundled OEM software (such as Adobe Premiere LE where Vaios are concerned). If you don't need an extremely crisp, high-res display, a lightweight construction or the other perks that Vaios and nicer HPs bring to the table, then the extra expense might be a waste.

Incidentally, all DVDRW drives will also burn CDRW discs, so that's not a problem. Also, Ulead GIF Animator and MS Photo Editor are quite lean applications, so they won't drain your resources much at all.

Gateway might be your best bet if you don't want to buy online. They bailed out of Australia a few years ago, so I can't report on their quality personally, but they still seem to have a reasonable service reputation amongst the cheaper providers in the markets where they still operate.
Again THANKS for the help.

I have done some more reading and while I like Gateway, in listening to what you said, I might look at HP or Sony. See, I don't really plan on upgrading my laptop anytime soon unless absutely necessary. That's one reason why I still have my pc that I got in 2002. It works, and when it breaks, 9 times out of 10 I can fix it. At most, I want a new keyboard and a new LCD monitor. But other than that it gets the job done.

So, any laptop that I get now, I want it to last as I am not to worried about having the latest and greatest once its outdated.

Also, in doing more research, seems like a few people aren't happy with Gateway's customer service. Might be your usual unhappy group, but a few people stated that when they needed a disk from Gateway(recovery disk I believe it was), they had to wait 3 - 5 weeks for it, while their laptops were pretty much paper weights. Now, I have never had to wait on Gateway to send me anything so I cannot vouch for this.

Also, I am somewhat a sucker for a nice screen/display.

So, with all this being said, I think I may look at the Sony or HP offerings. And, I do like the software bundles they offer. That's a big reason why I picked my gateway a few years back.

Thanks for your help. Hopefully I will be able to make it into BestBuy or Circuit city next week.
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Old 04-28-2006, 04:14 AM   #6
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I've been very happy with my Toshiba laptop.
The latest Satelite Pro model (the newest version of what I have) offers everything you're after - I would say it is on a similar level to an HP laptop.

Sony's are on a slightly different level though if you ask me.

Tim
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Old 04-28-2006, 02:45 PM   #7
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I have a Vaio and love it. It powers along silently, brightly and without the bulk of similarly specced laptops. Their components can be a little unreliable in some models, however. That is, I had a hard-drive failure within a matter of days after purchasing mine and, after searching the net for fixes, I found that this was a relatively common problem with the model I have.

If you do choose to go down the Vaio route, perform a couple of searches on your specific model before purchasing, just to make sure it doesn't have any common design flaws.
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Old 04-28-2006, 04:11 PM   #8
moonbaseone
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Quote:
Originally Posted by masm50
I've been very happy with my Toshiba laptop.
The latest Satelite Pro model (the newest version of what I have) offers everything you're after - I would say it is on a similar level to an HP laptop.

Sony's are on a slightly different level though if you ask me.

Tim
Thanks. I have been looking at some Toshibas online and I plan on checking them out when I go to the store, hopefully this Monday.

So, right now, my choices will mainly be between HP, Sony, and Toishiba. I've seen a couple of HP's that had everything I was looking for at a resonable price. But, I've also seen a couple of Toshibas that had a few extras for not that much more.

So yea, I am going to go through the sales papers this Sunday and see what store I will be stopping in. I will try to get there when they open seeing as I am on crutches plus, I don't want to have to worry about traffic or the crowds, and hopefully the sales person will be able to help me more. I am pretty sure I will go to Bestbuy as I have had good experiences with them in the past, plus I have a few Reward Zone Dollars I can use to save the extra $$$. But, I will check the papers Sunday to see who offers the better deal.

Also, I am curious, what did you mean by your comment about the Sony Viaos?
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Old 04-28-2006, 09:54 PM   #9
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Both my Dad and one of my flatmates have a vaio, and neither has had any problems at all.

The screen on both of these vaio's are noticeably brighter and cleaner than any other laptop (or lcd screen for that matter) that I have seen. I would say that of all the laptops I've seen, and fixing people's problems at uni means I've seen a lot, the Vaio screen is the best, followed by the Toshiba ones (widescreen) that you get on some models like the Satelite Pro.

I had a problem with the power circuits on my laptop that appeared after about 18 months, but (within warranty) Toshiba fixed it for free and quickly. I don't know if you are a student or if you get student deals on computers where you live, but here in the UK,Toshiba offers very good discounts for uni students (reducing the price by about 20%) for certain institutions whcih made my laptop a very good deal.

Also, I liked getting Windows XP Pro withmy laptop. I don't know whether this is standard for Toshiba or not (possibly just student deal), but it is useful and both examples of vaios I've seen also had it installed. The vaios also had Photoshop LE installed which is pretty good, while the uni deal Toshiba (and possibly others) gives MS OneNote. I would prefer Photoshop to be honest as I've never used OneNote.

One feature on my Satelite Pro laptop that I have actually used a lot is the TV-Out (with S-Video port), as this means that my laptop can play homemade dvds of partoes and stuff that is obviously not official, as well as foreign region encoded DVDs which I bought on my gap year and don't play on my dvd player which is very very annoying. The S-Video port is a lifesaver in these occasions and has always worked without any problems. This is something that the vaio's don't have (as far as I've seen), but is certainly worth having.

Tim

Last edited by masm50; 04-28-2006 at 09:54 PM.
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Old 04-29-2006, 09:36 AM   #10
moonbaseone
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Czar
I have a Vaio and love it. It powers along silently, brightly and without the bulk of similarly specced laptops. Their components can be a little unreliable in some models, however. That is, I had a hard-drive failure within a matter of days after purchasing mine and, after searching the net for fixes, I found that this was a relatively common problem with the model I have.

If you do choose to go down the Vaio route, perform a couple of searches on your specific model before purchasing, just to make sure it doesn't have any common design flaws.
Thanks. I will definetly be looking at the Sony Vaios. And yea, I figure there is always a chance that something could go wrong a few days/weeks after you get a new laptop. So, hopefully I will get lucky like I did with my desktop a few years ago.

Also, I am seeing some really good deals online for all 3 brands, but I still prefer to go into the store and physically play with them before I buy. Who knows, I might be happy with a 14" screen andbe able to save a few bucks. Also, I want to make sure I am comfortable with the keyboard and the thumbpad, seeing as I have really just been on my desktop all these years.

So tomorrow, I will go through the sales papers and Monday I will hop(broken toe here) to take a look at them. I will try to get there when the store opens to avoid any crowds. It should be pretty slow Monday, especially with the Protests, which they estimate 300,000 will be there.

I have a couple of other questions:

Seeing as these laptops come with a 56k modem, I should be able to plug them in the wall and be surfing right away right? It's been awhile since I've used dial-up. This will only be tomporary though(Thank God).

Also, I am still wondering about hooking up a wireless DSL router. Is it as simple as plugging everything up and your set? Thing is, my house has 2 lines, and the ONLY DSL jack is in the basement, and I want to be able to use my laptop in the 2nd floor bedroom.

Again, THANKS for the help guys.
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Old 08-03-2013, 11:20 PM   #11
thietkelogo
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Default Laptop vaio core i3 have low speed

Hi, i just bought a new laptop sony vaio core i3 SVE14132CVW for 5 days

Intel® Core™ i3-3120M 2.50 GHz
Window 8 64 bit
HDD: 320 GB (Serial ATA, 5400 rpm)
2 GB (2 GB (SO-DIMM) x 1) DDR3 SDRAM*2

I do not know why my laptop have low speed during using it, i just open internet explorer, word file and adobe illustrator software. Please help.
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