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Computer Geeks - Laptop Help


#1

Looking at 2 different laptops.

I mostly use my computer for the internet and movies, but my current laptop is on it's way out and the 1 GB of RAM never did cut it. And the battery life has always sucked on it less than 2 hrs I'd say.

I will also most likely need to hook it up to a plasma/LCD TV for powerpoint. Not many laptops seem to have S-Video anymore, but what is the difference b/w HDMI and VGA?

HD space is important because I have a lot of movies/shows on my computer, though external HDs are cheap.

Here are the 2 I'm looking at.

$500- Decent specs, but bad battery life.
http://www.buy.com/prod/acer-aspire-as4530-6823-laptop-amd-athlon-dual-core-x2-ql-62-2-0ghz/q/loc/101/211040389.html

$700- Great specs, but $200 more, and awesome battery life just under 7 hrs

It would be nice to save $200, and I've heard HPs like to heat up, I know my current one does (though I use a cooling pad now).


#2

oh, and it would be nice to be able to play Madden on it. My current laptop can’t.


#3

If all you’re doing is internet and movies, how does 1 GB of RAM not cut it? If you were having speed problems doing those things, it was probably due to something else.

And you should be able to get a second battery for under a hundred bucks.


#4

http://www.amazon.com/Toshiba-Satellite-X205-S9800-17-inch-Processor/dp/B0010QO7AM heres mine

its a bit bulky it is a 17" but its been wonderful runs cool plays games just like my pc
been wonderful.

its a bit more in cost but I found mine local for 700

toshibas I have found are pretty decent laptops my moms is http://www.google.com/products/catalog?q=pslb8u&oe=utf-8&rls=org.mozilla:en-US:official&client=firefox-a&um=1&ie=UTF-8&cid=10602516092370190353&ei=-ukiSr_hJKj8tgO7gYWABA&sa=X&oi=product_catalog_result&ct=result&resnum=1#ps-sellers

and she uses hers every day she kind of stopped using her pc


#5

[quote]Anonymous Coward wrote:
If all you’re doing is internet and movies, how does 1 GB of RAM not cut it? If you were having speed problems doing those things, it was probably due to something else.

And you should be able to get a second battery for under a hundred bucks.[/quote]

It’s recommended to have 2 GB for Vista, and I see why.

Running the internet and a movie can sometimes cause it to lag behind.

The computer has been crashing lately, so I will need a replacement. I’m sure I would do fine with 2 GB, but I’d like to get more than have to go back later. But the HD space is important to me.


#6

oh, and I don’t like big bulky laptops even the 15.6" are almost too big IMO. I like the size of my 14

I saw a Gateway for $600 with 4 GB RAM 500 GB HD, but the size of the laptop was a turnoff.
15.6" screen wasn’t too bad, but it had a lot of space before the keyboard


#7

4GB of RAM is useless without a 64-bit OS, which they probably don’t come with.

HDMI is newer technology. In terms of powerpoint, vga or HDMI wouldn’t matter at all.

For laptops, I don’t think brands really matter that much, but personally I wouldn’t buy a HP.


#8

[quote]jehovasfitness wrote:
Anonymous Coward wrote:
If all you’re doing is internet and movies, how does 1 GB of RAM not cut it? If you were having speed problems doing those things, it was probably due to something else.

And you should be able to get a second battery for under a hundred bucks.

It’s recommended to have 2 GB for Vista, and I see why.

Running the internet and a movie can sometimes cause it to lag behind.

The computer has been crashing lately, so I will need a replacement. I’m sure I would do fine with 2 GB, but I’d like to get more than have to go back later. But the HD space is important to me.[/quote]

I forgot about the Vista issue. Running XP, I was able to shut off a bunch of services and useless graphics to get more out of my memory, but I don’t know if you can do that in Vista. Your future-proofing idea is probably good, too.

I only looked at the link to your cheaper computer, so I don’t know how they compare, but I was under the impression that the major difference was battery life. If that’s the case, a backup battery effectively doubles the life for half the price increase to the more expensive lappy.


#9

Not much of a computer geek, but when my HP crapped out I got a deal on an ACER Aspire 6930 at Best Buy. It has Dolby home theater & virtual surround sound for movies. Plus it runs very cool, whereas my HP ran hot as hell.

As a side note, this weekend I picked up a wireless speaker system called the Mint 220, which is slick! It was about $135 at Best Buy, and allows you to play your music wirelessly from your computer. I plugged it in upstairs, and it pickes up from the computer downstairs. It’s no Bose system, but for 1/10th the price I’m liking it a whole lot.


#10

[quote]hardgnr wrote:
4GB of RAM is useless without a 64-bit OS, which they probably don’t come with.

HDMI is newer technology. In terms of powerpoint, vga or HDMI wouldn’t matter at all.

For laptops, I don’t think brands really matter that much, but personally I wouldn’t buy a HP.[/quote]

They put 4GB in them because it’s a pointless exercise to put in 3.5GB. 64 bit Vista is also amazingly stable and quite responsive with 4GB and above; if the machines you’re looking at come with that, it’s a good choice. Vista 32 is okay, though you might consider disabling Superfetch if you end up with 2GB of RAM.

HDMI transmits audio in addition to video. VGA just does video, though HDMI is a little bit crisper at higher resolutions.

Playing modern games on a budget laptop isn’t going to go well yet.

I wouldn’t buy an HP either on moral grounds - their printers have fucked me over too many times. They don’t deserve money.


#11

[quote]hardgnr wrote:
4GB of RAM is useless without a 64-bit OS, which they probably don’t come with.

HDMI is newer technology. In terms of powerpoint, vga or HDMI wouldn’t matter at all.

For laptops, I don’t think brands really matter that much, but personally I wouldn’t buy a HP.[/quote]

Actually a lot more PCs are shipping with Vista 64 bit. Desktops, laptops, etc. Which means 4 GB isn’t useless.

a VGA port is all you need to connect to a projector.


#12

[quote]jehovasfitness wrote:
Looking at 2 different laptops.

I mostly use my computer for the internet and movies, but my current laptop is on it’s way out and the 1 GB of RAM never did cut it. And the battery life has always sucked on it less than 2 hrs I’d say.

I will also most likely need to hook it up to a plasma/LCD TV for powerpoint. Not many laptops seem to have S-Video anymore, but what is the difference b/w HDMI and VGA?

HD space is important because I have a lot of movies/shows on my computer, though external HDs are cheap.

Here are the 2 I’m looking at.

$500- Decent specs, but bad battery life.
http://www.buy.com/prod/acer-aspire-as4530-6823-laptop-amd-athlon-dual-core-x2-ql-62-2-0ghz/q/loc/101/211040389.html

$700- Great specs, but $200 more, and awesome battery life just under 7 hrs
http://www.bestbuy.com/site/olspage.jsp?skuId=9167698&type=product&id=1218041148844

It would be nice to save $200, and I’ve heard HPs like to heat up, I know my current one does (though I use a cooling pad now).[/quote]

Hey JF. Be sure and have a good backup before it dies completely!

I’d personally stay away from the AMD CPUs in laptops. They just don’t perform nearly as well as the Core 2 Duo CPUs. I usually tell my clients to purchase the manufacturer’s extended warranty if you buy a laptop. Desktops are not as important since alot of desktop components are so cheap and easily replaced, not so on a laptop. Most laptops wont’ have HDMI yet, pretty much all LCD TV’s have a VGA or DVI input, either will work with a VGA port(DVI requires an adapter).

Here are some deals I gathered today from http://www.dealnews.com/

http://dealnews.com/Gateway-M-D7818-u-Core-2-Duo-2-GHz-16-Widescreen-Laptop-for-600-15-s-h/299582.html

http://dealnews.com/Dell-Inspiron-15-Core-2-Duo-2-GHz-16-Laptop-for-424-29-s-h/299530.html

http://dealnews.com/Toshiba-Satellite-Core-2-Duo-2-GHz-15-Widescreen-Laptop-for-580-15-shipping/299583.html

You can also find decent deals sometimes on the Dell Outlet, http://www.outlet.dell.com I buy my personal laptops there, getting a refurbished business class notebook(comes with three year warranty). Pricing can be good if there are special promotions or coupon codes. You have to know EXACTLY what you are looking for going this route.