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Picking a new laptop?

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  • T3hk1w1

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    Jun 27, 2008
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    Well folks, I'm in the market for a new laptop. I'm looking for a Windows unit to take over as my primary laptop from my current computer. I'm currently running a Mac (iBook G4, OS 10.4, 1.42GHz PowerPC) and am new to Windows machines. I've used 'em, but I dunno much about the system software, especially GUIs in general. I'm looking for a computer that will handle just about anything I can throw at it for a couple years, with the exception of some of the new games(Oblivion, Crysis System, etc). These are the minimum requirements I have come up with so far.

    Screen-15"-17" widescreen, 1440x900 or better
    Processor-2.4 GHz or better
    Hard drive-250GB
    RAM-2GB or better
    Video card-256MB
    DVD+/-RW drive
    best wireless card I can find

    I'm looking for suggestions on that, and also what platform to get. I'm leaning toward the Dell XPS series, but I'm open to suggestions.
    Anyone think I ought to wipe Vista off and install XP?
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    Texas1911

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    I would put XP on it. Vista would probably consume more energy since it taxes the system resources so much with all the background junk.

    XP has everything you could need, and is perfectly stable.

    Technically since you'll own a Vista license you could put it on a desktop. I just wouldn't want all the additional heat and energy usage in a laptop.
     

    Cyfer

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    May 29, 2008
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    I second Texas1911 on the XP. To get Vista to run smoothly (especially on a laptop and if you're going to run Aero) you'll need as much RAM as possible, 4GBs. All the PC's, laptops that come in with Vista for us are immediately reinstalled with Windows XP. I don't even boot the machine up to see if Vista is even running.

    I guess you're next option would be to select a brand (i.e. Dell, HP, Sony, IBM, etc...) With brand, make sure you also look at their support and warranty for the laptop.
     

    JKTex

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    Mar 11, 2008
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    I can't speak for the difference between a desktop and laptop and Vista, but I too was a Vista hater. Then I got a new PC that had Vista Home Premium on it, and I couldn't find my XP Pro CD so that when it showed up, I could flatten it.

    Well, I hate change and hate Vista just from all the issues especially networking. I have the new PC and I'm running Vista. :D

    Networking has a couple minor quirks but it works great on my network. So far nothing has been a problem and it runs great. I'm kinda liking it.

    One thing, I think Vista will only recognize 3 Gb RAM which bites because it could use more, but my PC has 3 GB and it runs fine.

    I don't hate it anymore.
     

    Thumper_6119

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    Jun 19, 2008
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    I'm sure some will not agree with this, but I prefer Dell's. (I do IT for a living at a corporate law firm). Regardless of which OS you go with, max out the resources. Video Card, Memory, and processor(s) (Quad core if you can afford it). Also, if you can afford it, get a Blu-Ray burner as an optical drive. I got an XPS M1730, and I just love it. (A bit pricey though). If you go Dell, it's SOOOO worth it to get the 3 year warranty. I've never had Dell hassle me one time about service issues (which have not been many considering how many machines we have). Granted, my specs are cost follows perfermance.
     

    Cyfer

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    I'm sure some will not agree with this, but I prefer Dell's. (I do IT for a living at a corporate law firm). Regardless of which OS you go with, max out the resources. Video Card, Memory, and processor(s) (Quad core if you can afford it). Also, if you can afford it, get a Blu-Ray burner as an optical drive. I got an XPS M1730, and I just love it. (A bit pricey though). If you go Dell, it's SOOOO worth it to get the 3 year warranty. I've never had Dell hassle me one time about service issues (which have not been many considering how many machines we have). Granted, my specs are cost follows perfermance.


    I totally second Thumper's comments about Dell, Blu Ray, warranty, etc... I prefer Dell and in all my corporate Healthcare facilities, we've always utilized Dell as our workstations. but HP and IBM for our servers.
     

    carneyman

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    Feb 23, 2008
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    Go Dell or Alienware...mostly you are buying a name, but the high end products are good, if you can afford them. the dell XPS's are pretty good. Really, it would be nice if you could just build your own laptop, but that would be hard...

    +1 on the xp. We won a laptop with Vista on it, and it just wasn't as fast as it should have been. It has since been sold and has allowed me to build a desktop with all I needed/wanted!
     

    SIG_Fiend

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    Having literally worked on, built from the ground up, and debugged something like 3,000+ computers in the last 10 years or so, I've had my fair share of experience with most of the various Microsoft OS'. Believe me when I say this, just go with XP and save yourself a lot of trouble. ;) Typically with most Microsoft OS', usually the first iteration is fairly buggy, and then usually a year or 2 down the line most of the kinks are worked out. Vista is a HUGE memory hog compared to XP as well, which is a bad thing especially for a laptop. Software and hardware are already moving quickly into being Vista based, with the whole DirectX 10 standard and all. I'm avoiding Vista until the last possible second. My only real complaints about it is that it was completely unnecessary for them to change the entire layout and functionality of the OS, and it is very memory intensive. I really don't understand why they couldn't just keep the same XP-style layout and just build on that, or at the least do like XP and give you an option of what menu layout you prefer. It makes you basically have to re-learn everything, which is just plain lame and pointless (making things harder than they have to be). The way software is these days, I'm sure within a year or less someone will already have some sort of mod out that will convert Vista's menu systems into the XP style or XP "classic" style.

    As far as Vista maximum ram support:

    32-Bit
    -Vista Starter = 1GB
    -All Other Variants = 4GB

    64-Bit
    -Home Basic = 8 GB.
    -Home Premium = 16 GB.
    -Business, Enterprise, and Ultimate = 128 GB (yep, that's correct, not a typo)

    God, why does Microsoft have to continually make stuff more complicated. There should be one level of ram support for the individual versions, and another for the commercial/business versions, no need for 10 different support levels. ;)
     

    Texas1911

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    HKFiend is the type of guy to monkey with options and settings for a week. If anyone knows how to break a piece of software, or know what isn't easily broken, it's him.
     
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