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  1. #1
    ABW Ambassador JoyUnltd's Avatar
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    Laptop Recommendations?
    My niece is looking for a laptop, not Mac & asked for my help. I'm a Mac person, so don't know much about PC processors, different brands, etc. She needs basic functions: go online, write papers, save photos, etc. Doesn't need HDMI output, doesn't play online games, etc. Would like to spend no more than $300-$400.

    1. I'm seeing Intel and AMD processors mostly. Any differences to be aware about?

    2. Dell, Gateway, HP, Sony, Toshiba, Asus...my head is spinning.

    I think basic hardware reliability is her main concern. Any recommendations? Should she consider factory refurbished? I've done this with Mac peripherals, never had problems, but don't know the PC world.
    Renée
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  2. #2
    ABW Ambassador Bob Lawrence's Avatar
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    I wouldn't recommend a refurbished as warranty is usually only 30 to 90 days.
    My main pick would be a Toshiba have 2 and wouldn't part with either.
    Acer is also a good brand and I believe they have become #1 in Laptops.
    Just make sure it doesn't come with mywinlock program, it's a bite to remove if you get a virus on the laptop.
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  3. #3
    ABW Ambassador I.M.O.G.'s Avatar
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    I like the thinkpad T line, although it would be hard to fit into your price range. Have you looked at netbooks? That may fit your price range, but they wont come with the computing power you may be interested in. The price range is alright for a regular laptop, but for anything more than web browsing you will want to expand the price.
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  4. #4
    SEO: A Specialty - Web Design: Slow or outsourced andbeyond's Avatar
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    Yes the price is pretty low but is probably possible. It would have to be a little limited on the CPU, memory and Hard Drive size.

    I actually bought one from Best Buy in that range and it is 15.6 inch screen, dual core Intel processor and usuable. I like cheap laptops as they can get dropped and stolen easily.

    I would get a Sunday paper in your area and look for the deals. Walk in the door at Best Buy or Walmart and ask to see the model on sale. It is often not centrally located and sometimes the price is not labeled. The managers want to sell the expensive ones.

  5. #5
    ABW Ambassador writerguy's Avatar
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    Just over a month ago, I bought an Acer AS5552-7474 from Amazon.com. It came with 4 gigs of RAM, a 320 gig hard drive, and a quad-four processor. I bought an 8-gig RAM update kit from a third party. So I now have a quad-four laptop with a wonderful "chicklet" style keyboard (I think most Macs have those; it's a keyboard with the keys separated instead of joined by the typical squishy cushion most PC keyboards have.)

    The whole cost with the upgrade was around $460. The computer without the 8 gig RAM, just keeping the 4 gigs it comes with, is $399 at Amazon.com

    I've been using that Acer now steadily for most of a month and love it. I enjoy it more than any laptop I've had except for one feature: The little built-in mouse pad is placed a little too far to the left of the case, and that mouse pad works sort of irratically no matter how much I tweak the settings. But I have a really nice wireless mouse that I use 99% of the time anyway, so that's not really an issue.

    This particular laptop seems to meet your price range, and I would recommend it based on my month's use of it.

    Just my 2 cents!

    Gary
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  6. #6
    OPM and Moderator Chuck Hamrick's Avatar
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    The original iPad was running about $400 when the iPad 2 came out and may have dropped. That was for the low end with just wifi.

  7. #7
    ...and a Pirate's heart. Convergence's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JoyUnltd View Post
    ...basic functions: go online, write papers, save photos, etc. Doesn't need HDMI output, doesn't play online games, etc. Would like to spend no more than $300-$400.
    Friend recently got an Acer Netbook that she uses for just such activities and seems to work fine...
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  8. #8
    OPM and Moderator Chuck Hamrick's Avatar
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    ASUS is a 20+ year motherboard manufacturer and has lower cost laptops. They are the exclusive maker of netbook motherboards unless someone entered the market in the last year. My son has one of their laptops and it screams!

  9. #9
    ABW Ambassador JoyUnltd's Avatar
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    Thank you all! OK, will scratch the refurbished.

    Thinkpad, yes, know the high quality. Bought a manufacturer refurbished online for my ex many years ago. His boss was so impressed with the price that he bought them for all his court reporters, but had IT person to deal with any problems. Not in that position now.

    andbeyond: I hear ya about the cheap laptops, my POV also.

    Ironically, just rec'd an email before I posted the above that she decided she wants a Mac again (yep, first one was stolen). I will NEVER bother anyone again when researching for a 20-something. Have to remember that their minds change at least 20 dozen times the first few days, lol!

    P.S. Thank you all for your recommendations, just in case she changes her mind again!
    Last edited by JoyUnltd; October 24th, 2011 at 04:10 PM. Reason: P.S.
    Renée
    Pay no attention to that woman behind the curtain. -Wizardress of Oz

  10. #10
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    Cool Laptop Recommendations?
    I want to buy a laptop for my cousin who is in 5th standard. I want one which has games, vocabulary, maths and other software to improve personality.

  11. #11
    Outsourced Program Manager Chris -  AMWSO's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JoyUnltd View Post

    Ironically, just rec'd an email before I posted the above that she decided she wants a Mac again (yep, first one was stolen). I will NEVER bother anyone again when researching for a 20-something. Have to remember that their minds change at least 20 dozen times the first few days, lol!
    Ha ha lucky I read that before I went into my 1000 word recommendation :-)...okay it was around 10 words
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