Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast
Results 1 to 25 of 41
  1. #1
    don't try this at home
    Reputation: moschika's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    1,597

    sort of OT - laptops

    i'm thinking of getting laptop so my wife could check out internet stuff, school work, etc. while I can still check out MTBR - of course (this is the On Topic part)

    any suggestions? we are looking in the <$1500 range.
    right now are 2 main contenders are a Toshiba or HP but that's only because we just started looking and those 2 seemed most appealing. but are very open to suggestions. so what's a good laptop, built-in wi-fi, good speed, etc.?

  2. #2
    mtbr member
    Reputation: imjps's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    Posts
    1,430

    Apple PowerBook

    Got one for my daughter last year. Works like a charm. Easy to use. Virtually virus & worm free.

    Wish I had one instead of my P-O-S Dell.

  3. #3
    don't try this at home
    Reputation: moschika's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    1,597
    Quote Originally Posted by imjps
    Got one for my daughter last year. Works like a charm. Easy to use. Virtually virus & worm free.

    Wish I had one instead of my P-O-S Dell.
    what about compatibility with my desktop. i want to be able to pop files from one to the other with ease. and i don't want to start an apple v. pc war.

  4. #4
    Shortcutting Hikabiker
    Reputation: Acme54321's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Posts
    2,739
    I have a Dell Inspiron 5100 and it's been great to me, no problems at all. I don't think it really matters but I'm running XP Pro. If you want to carry it around though this is not the one, it's a porker.

  5. #5
    Trail rider and racer
    Reputation: Trevor!'s Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    Posts
    4,693
    Quote Originally Posted by moschika
    what about compatibility with my desktop. i want to be able to pop files from one to the other with ease. and i don't want to start an apple v. pc war.
    Hey I am running an Apple Powerbook and have to use a PC from time to time at university when working on papers.

    Even more so now with Apples OS X operating system, compatibility is really a non issue. Work on a PC with Excel, word, powerpoint, photoshop, image ready file and then just save to what ever media you wish and put it on your mac, and you will have no problems opening it.

    One thing I really like about the Powerbook range is the light weight, minimal footprint that they have, I still find your big contenders like Dell, HP etc are still too big, bulky and not the great wearing in contrast to the apples.

    Be sure to drop into your local Apple Store or your authorized dealer and take a look, they really do work great.

    I use an Airport too, which makes networking hassle free, I can be wrenching my bike and have my Powerbook beside me checking instruction on bleeding brakes or what not on the net.

    Trev!

  6. #6
    ballbuster
    Reputation: pimpbot's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    Posts
    12,489

    I'd say go Dell

    But just so you know, they ship with spyware and adware pre-installed. No kidding. The Dell techs are also instructed not to help you remove it.

    I'd say check out the Apple stuff too. Solid stuff, and with OSX, it fileshares with Wintendos just fine.

    Heck, dump the desktop and get a dock. You can have it all.

  7. #7
    Rider of Bikes
    Reputation: bikeboyjeff's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    224

    check them out

    I would also recommend at least checking out the Apple Powerbook. I've had my 12" Powerbook for one year already and I love it. Most of your concerns with pc compatibility will be dispelled. You don't have to be worried about starting a war.
    [SIZE="5"]dirtyharrys.net[/SIZE]
    http://dirtyharrys.net

  8. #8
    Single Speed Junkie
    Reputation: crux's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    3,106
    Quote Originally Posted by imjps

    Wish I had one instead of my P-O-S Dell.
    What are you attemptng to say about Dell labtops?
    have one and has performed flawlessly, except for having to replace the touch pad in the first few months, followed by motherboard, montior, hard-drive, and now the keyboard needs replaced. Bought mine in 2000 with a three year waranty for over $4k total, customer service would not honor repairs through the end of contract. If only I knew ahead of time would of not paid $20 for any POS Dell labtop. Save your frustraton and go wth a relable machne.

    BTW can you guess what eys are no longer worng on ths POS.

  9. #9
    cut like the fog.
    Reputation: bones's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    Posts
    356

    I went for Dell

    I just bought a dell inspiron 8600 for work/home. So far, amazing little confuser, lighter than I expected, thinner than I expected. I researched a bunch of different ones including the toshibas, acers, compaq/HP, and some other customs.

    Reviews on the net were generally very positive about the dells. A few individual reviewers had negatives but it was mainly about the dell customer service, of which I can't comment on.

    I finally went dell mainly because of warranty (the toshiba warranty is crap), and the customization. I put everything I wanted into it for 500 less than toshiba with a three year everything covered warranty versus toshiba's one year manufacturer warranty.

    good luck,
    b.
    [SIZE=3][SIZE=2]
    [/SIZE]
    [/SIZE]
    [SIZE=3][SIZE=2][/SIZE][/SIZE]

  10. #10
    newbee
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Posts
    14
    I've got a Toshiba 409 for about 5 months now...17" widescreen (awesome, LOVE it for movies and multitasking), 2.8 P4 HyperThreading, 512mb DDR, 80gig HD, DVD multi-drive (burns cd-r/rw, dvd +/- R/RW/RAM) built-in Wireless G. It's every bit as powerful as my desktop really. I can take it anywhere, although for a laptop it's a little heavy due to it's size, but I don't mind that at all.

    Chris

  11. #11
    thats my red stapler
    Reputation: jimjo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    408
    Quote Originally Posted by moschika
    i'm thinking of getting laptop so my wife could check out internet stuff, school work, etc. while I can still check out MTBR - of course (this is the On Topic part)

    any suggestions? we are looking in the <$1500 range.
    right now are 2 main contenders are a Toshiba or HP but that's only because we just started looking and those 2 seemed most appealing. but are very open to suggestions. so what's a good laptop, built-in wi-fi, good speed, etc.?
    i just got the HP zd7000 and it is AWESOME!!! i cant say enough good things about it i got it fully loaded (as a desktop replacement) for about 2200 and it got great reviews on zdnet
    [SIZE=2]when the going gets tough the world gets reduced to one pedal stroke at a time[/SIZE]

  12. #12
    old timer retro grouch...
    Reputation: Doug's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    228

    Another mac guy..

    I use PCs at work and routinely make Excel, Word, Powerpoint, and Photoshop documents. I just email them back and forth from how to work and never have a problem. Office 2004 ships in a month and is said to be the best office yet (mac or PC).

    Also, the mac will come with the iLife package. Photo organizing/editing program (though you will want to download GIMP for free), music player, movie editing softwar, and if you get a DVD-R equipped one (12" powerbook has it for around $1500) you can even burn your own DVDs.

    If you are worried about the lack of software, don't be. For most PC apps there is either a mac version or a title from another company. Networking is easy too. I have an emac on my church's PC network. I just plugged it in, and the network guy assigned it a spot on the network (or whateve he did...it just took a minute).

    And then there are viruses. There are a total of 0 for OS X. I get worms all the time from my PC friends. I just delete them and move along. They just don't do anything to OS X.

    I will say that with proper configuration, software, and care a good PC can be as reliable as a Mac. Mac's just don't take as much effort to get them that way. One thing that can't be denied is resale value. Yes they cost a bit more up front (not much more when you consider the cost of a similar PC...the Toshiba mentioned below is maybe $100 less than a 17" powerbook and a butt ugly anchor in comparison.) My 1999 powerbook was $2500 new. I have gotten offers of $800 for it now. Find my any PC that holds nearly 25% of its value after years.

  13. #13
    Part-time rider
    Reputation: K-Zero's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    210

    A bit of warning about mac fanatics...

    Moschika,

    As a former mac fanatics myself, I have to warn you that anytime you post a question re: "what computer to buy?", you'll probably get a disproportionate number of people suggesting a mac. This isn't because mac really is loved by more people than pc, it's just that many mac users are like cult-members and love to convert you to their religion.

    Bottom line -- if you're happy with your PC then you're in the right path looking at Toshiba and HP. I would also suggest Dell, and also Sony (beautiful screen). And remember, mac is used by less than 3% of users worldwide. So it's not like MacOS is necessary stronger against virus than PC, it's just that nobody bothers to creat a virus that would only effect such a small percentage of computers.

    Just my $0.02,
    K-Zero
    "It's not how good you are, it's how good you want to be"

  14. #14
    old timer retro grouch...
    Reputation: Doug's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    228
    Quote Originally Posted by K-Zero
    Moschika,

    As a former mac fanatics myself, I have to warn you that anytime you post a question re: "what computer to buy?", you'll probably get a disproportionate number of people suggesting a mac. This isn't because mac really is loved by more people than pc, it's just that many mac users are like cult-members and love to convert you to their religion.

    Bottom line -- if you're happy with your PC then you're in the right path looking at Toshiba and HP. I would also suggest Dell, and also Sony (beautiful screen). And remember, mac is used by less than 3% of users worldwide. So it's not like MacOS is necessary stronger against virus than PC, it's just that nobody bothers to creat a virus that would only effect such a small percentage of computers.

    Just my $0.02,
    K-Zero
    Hey, now! Its up close to 5% now!

  15. #15
    don't try this at home
    Reputation: moschika's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    1,597
    thanks for everyone's reply. we'll take a look at the Apples since compatibility with our home and work pc's doesn't seem to be an issue anymore. when we bought our gateway desktop a couple years ago it was still an issue and i sometimes bring stuff home from work, therefore...

  16. #16
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Posts
    243
    Virtually none of the big PC makers actually make their own laptops. They do a desgin based off standard components, which is implemented by one of 3 or 4 companies located in various places in Asia. There's really not a whole lot of difference between a Dell or a Gateway or a HP or whatever.

    The 'Centrino' stuff touted by Intel is pretty much plain old marketing. The processors do save a bit of battery life, but there's nothing intrisicly 'wireless' about a Centrino-enabled laptop - you still have to have a wifi card for it to work. You can run a standard pc-card wifi solution, or go for one of the internal mini-pc card solutions. The internal solution looks better, but most do not have the reception ability of an 'external' card. This isn't important in most hotspots, but if yours is marginal, it might make the difference between being able to connect and not.

    All major PC makers pre-install 'partner' software. I wouldn't classify it as ad-ware or spyware - more like marketing ware. If you don't want it, just reformat the HD and reinstall the OS as soon as you get the machine. It'll only take about 10 minutes to do and you guarantee that you start with a clean slate. (as an aside, make sure your vendor provides the CD fo the OS and all other software - some of the really cheap vendors out there do not - which means you're stuck with whatever they installed at the factory).

    Make sure you get a machine designed to fit your needs. If you're looking for a desktop replacement, get something fast with a large screen, and don't fret too much about weight or battery life. If you're getting something to lug through airports 5 days a week - focus on size and battery life over performance.

    I would suggest that you choose the cheapest solution that covers your needs and offers a decent warranty and support. Warranty on a laptop is important - the failure rate is significantly higher than a desktop due to its operating environment, and fixing it is more costly due to the integrated nature. I'm biased, since I work for one of the big PC companies - so I'll skip any brand recommendations.

  17. #17
    Keep rollin'
    Reputation: InnocentCriminal's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Posts
    193

    You think that's a porker? Try the 8600!

    Quote Originally Posted by Acme54321
    I have a Dell Inspiron 5100 and it's been great to me, no problems at all. I don't think it really matters but I'm running XP Pro. If you want to carry it around though this is not the one, it's a porker.
    I picked up a Dell 8600 a couple months ago through a deal I get at work.(They buy the computer and you pay them back without interest) I think the thing weighs close to 9 lbs.

    I love the 15.5" wide screen, great for watching movies and stuff. I just wish I would have gotten one of the upgraded screens. So far, no problems, I love having wireless internet, surfing while someone else is on the desktop is quite convenient.

    ...ic...
    ---What good is a man who won't take a stand?---

  18. #18
    swashbucklerette
    Reputation: Pirate Girl's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    Posts
    329
    I just got a laptop off of eBay for $200 (which was my price limit). I wanted something cheap to take on the road so that I could write up my race reports. I've just got Office and Photoshop Elements on it. I then had a computer-geek friend of mine come over and network the laptop together with the PC, so that both could be on the internet at the same time. It works fine for what I need it to do, and I saved some dough. It's just not as snazzy as the new laptops, but that wasn't a biggie for me.

  19. #19
    Shortcutting Hikabiker
    Reputation: Acme54321's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Posts
    2,739
    Quote Originally Posted by InnocentCriminal
    I picked up a Dell 8600 a couple months ago through a deal I get at work.(They buy the computer and you pay them back without interest) I think the thing weighs close to 9 lbs.

    I love the 15.5" wide screen, great for watching movies and stuff. I just wish I would have gotten one of the upgraded screens. So far, no problems, I love having wireless internet, surfing while someone else is on the desktop is quite convenient.

    ...ic...
    I saw somewhere the 5100 was over 8.5 lbs and we all know it is probably heavier than that. As far as Dell costumer service goes they were great for me. i was given a Inspiron 1100 for graduation but I wanted something a little more powerful for college (engineering) so I returned it. Dell took it back no questions asked eventhough the return period was over, then I upgraded to the 5100 and have had zero problems with it for the year I have had it.

  20. #20
    zeebot
    Reputation: Spookykinkajou's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    1,125
    I have both a mac and a pc laptop. the mac looks cooler, has some interesting features that the pc will never be able to emulate but overall for the average user that knows windows i would suggest just sticking with windows. if you are tech-savy go for the MAC because it does have some great uses for people that use digital cameras or ipods a lot.

    positives for mac: neat looking, slim design, efficient operating system thats pretty easy to learn coming from windows if you are willing to tinker around a bit, never crashes or bogs down after extended use, great software for camera and itunes(itunes seems to work better for me in mac vs the pc version.) lightweight, nice battery life.

    negatives: I don't really like the 12" version. i've noticed on some websites the display is ridiculously small to read.. sometimes its just blurred out. i noticed this mostly in drop down windows within safari or mozilla/ie. 15" is great but then you are talking a pretty significant rise in cost. i dont know exactly what the prices are these days so that may not be totally accurate. some internet pages dont work properly in safari which is far superior to the other browsers available for the mac, in my opinion. an example is my fleet online banking. i had to use IE, which i think sucks, to log in. i'm sure these minor issues are being resolved but they are out there.

  21. #21
    mtbr member
    Reputation: the Inbred's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    1,480
    Quote Originally Posted by TechniKal
    ...
    sounds a little biased to me....

    i've got a 4yr old Toshiba laptop that has had 0 issues up until recently. the monitor doesn't stay up. sucks, but i've used the hell out of it. the way i see it, it's a hit-or-miss situation. you might buy a Dell and have the HD crap out within a year 'cause as we all know, Dells suck and outsource their tech support. keep austin weird, damnit! (kidding) or it might last you 4yrs with little problems. same with Toshiba, etc. my laptop has a massive 6.4G HD and 64M of RAM. if i were using it just for school and internet, it'd be fine and dandy, and probably cost like $500 new now (if that much). however, trying to run CAD and Photoshop/Paint Shop Pro, it really lags...obviously.

    like TK said, get something to satisfy your needs. i-net and school work doesn't really require too much of a computer. i'd like to make one suggestion, though...get a laptop that has both a 3.5 and cd/dvd/whatever drive.

  22. #22
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Mikey's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    232

    Hey Pimpbot! re: Spyware

    Exactly what spyware/adware comes preinstalled on a Dell?

    I recently helped my mom navigate buying a laptop, and she got a Dell Inspiron 600m with Windows XP Home. Do I need to help her clean some stuff off of it (remotely)? It's not like she downloads KaZaA with all of its attendant spyware.

    Thanks.

  23. #23
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Mackie's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    Posts
    200
    Quote Originally Posted by Doug
    Hey, now! Its up close to 5% now!
    And here in academia, it seems like it floats around 95%!

  24. #24
    old timer retro grouch...
    Reputation: Doug's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    228
    Quote Originally Posted by Spookykinkajou
    some internet pages dont work properly in safari which is far superior to the other browsers available for the mac, in my opinion. an example is my fleet online banking. i had to use IE, which i think sucks, to log in. i'm sure these minor issues are being resolved but they are out there.
    FireFox....go, download now! Much better than safari. I use it for all my banking, credit cards and other secure sites. I have not used IE in months.

    And for all looking at Macs, don't forget to check out the refurbs. They are a bit less than new and come with all the same parts, warrentee, and are each inspected to work rather than one out of 100 like they are off the production line.

  25. #25
    .
    Reputation: frank n. beans's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    804
    Quote Originally Posted by moschika
    i'm thinking of getting laptop so my wife could check out internet stuff, school work, etc. while I can still check out MTBR - of course (this is the On Topic part)

    any suggestions? we are looking in the <$1500 range.
    right now are 2 main contenders are a Toshiba or HP but that's only because we just started looking and those 2 seemed most appealing. but are very open to suggestions. so what's a good laptop, built-in wi-fi, good speed, etc.?
    People tend to make a big deal about CPU speed and I really do not think that is wise for a laptop. The bottleneck is going to be the hard drive and ALL laptops use slow hard drives. So you can have a fast cpu but it still takes a (relatively) long time to load anything off the HD. There is no need for the latest and greatest cpu when you are mainly going to be composing email, browsing the internet, office apps, etc.

    Think mobility and ease of use. Something small and light, something with a long battery life, something that can handle being transported a lot. Built in Wifi is nice, that way you do not have an extra pcmcia card sticking out of the side getting snagged on things. Small and light makes it easier to bring along.

    Long battery life: A laptop with a short batter life means you will either have to make sure that beast is fully charged before heading down to coffeeshop / park / etc OR carry an extra 2 lbs of charger and cord with you. Suddenly that 8lb laptop with a monster screen just gained a little more weight.

    Look at prices of replacement batteries. Some brands are really expensive. All batteries wear out after a certain number of cycles.

    My next laptop will be an IBM. The ones I have used feel pretty solid and seem to be built pretty well. I am going for the smaller screen too (less weight, less bulk, lasts longer on batteries).

    No internal cd/ dvd - extra weight and bulk. Not needed anyways, other than to install the OS + software. External usb drives are relatively cheap.

    Bike content: I sometimes use a laptop in exchange for dollars which buys bike parts.

Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast

Similar Threads

  1. OT: Need info for riding in the North of Spain
    By DIRT BOY in forum Weight Weenies
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 03-15-2004, 04:35 PM
  2. OT: years ago, someone posted a link to some hoopties...
    By skeeter in forum General Discussion
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 02-19-2004, 01:42 PM
  3. Can now sort by Thread Creation Date...
    By francois in forum Site Feedback/Issues
    Replies: 5
    Last Post: 01-18-2004, 08:58 AM
  4. What sort order are others using?
    By FireDog46 in forum Shocks and Suspension
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 01-16-2004, 11:55 AM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •