T Nation

Techsavvys: New Laptop

hey guys, i need to get a new laptop for college and so i kept searching until i found some laptops the thing is i need a small one 14" and the smaller the better so i can take it to college with me easily, here’s what i found:

HP DV 2945 SE:
AMD turion 64X2 , 2mb cashe ,4gb ram ,320 HDD ,geforce 7150 ,dvd rw , 14.1" display ,webcam.

HP DV 2855:
intel core2duo ,2.1ghz ,3 mb cashe ,2gb ram ,250gb hdd ,geforce 8400 ,dvd rw ,bluetooth ,webcam , 14.1 display

macbook:
2.1 ghz intel core2duo ,4mb cashe ,1gb ram expandable to 4gb ,160gb hdd ,dvd rom cd-rw ,intel gma x3100 ,13.3" display , webcam and mic.

eversince i could remember iwanted a macbook i found one and i
though about getting it but iam scared that i wouldn’t be able to deal with it been a windows user 4ever plus it costs a little more so which laptop do u think is better?

Since most colleges unless it states otherwise run Microsoft products. Networking and running windows inside mac is possible but if your asking for help from us I don’t think its usable for you or practical. So for get the Mac.

My vote is on the core2duo.

[quote]dirtbag wrote:
My vote is on the core2duo.[/quote]

For sure, and 2GBs of RAM as well.

Not sure how much I like HP notebooks in general (prefer Lenovo and Dell for sure) but at this time of the year, you should be planning to wait until you see the Black Friday sales (day after thanksgvg) and the rest of the upcoming holiday sales pricing.

I love my macbook pro. Absolutely love it. I was a long-time and hardcore windows guy; I was the one that made fun of the cult-of-mac, and now I’m one of “them”. You won’t regret it.

Frankly, I can’t see ever going back. But juuuust in case I want to, macbooks can run windows OS now (did you know that?). The bootcamp application is part of Leopard, so if you get a new macbook you’ll be able to boot up Windows on another partition of your hard drive. That way if you have any applications you can’t find for Mac you can go back.

Personally, I rarely use it.

You do pay a premium for the macs, no doubt about that. But in return I’ve personally gotten about 10 fold less problems with funky behavior than on any windows box I ever owned.

It takes some time to get used to–it’s best if you have a proficient mac power-user to help you set up and get used to it. Not necessary though, just convenient. It will take a few days, but you can do it pretty fast. After a couple weeks I didn’t have any real problems at all.

I do have a macbook pro, not the macbook. And I always wanted an X64, but my vote is for a souped up macbook.

chance to do over again, here’s what I’d do

DO NOT get an AMD, it will wipe the battery dead in about an hour even on “power saver”

If you get Vista, get minimum 2GB RAM, 3-4 being more ideal

the thing is i really hate vista because its soooooooo bugged and i prefer xp much better to deal with.

and i have like 5 friends who own macs and they are telling me the same get mac and put xp on it if u feel the need to go back then use the xp.

the mac will cost 75$ more bucks thats it, and they’ll give me a discount if i up the ram to 4gb so all in all the mac will cost about 150$ more in total???

iam not trying to gain approval iam just trying to get facts straight because i won’t be getting a new laptop for about another 5 years or so , so i just need to get something good and durable.

I vote mac, especially for college, here’s why:

  • Tons of scientific apps to choose from, so really there isn’t any barriers there (especially if you are in chemistry or biology)

  • You can get MS Office student edition for like 120$ (includes word, excel, outlook, powerpoint).

  • using your college’s online site (e-learning software) won’t be an issue.

  • You can upgrade them with standard PC parts now (ram, hd)

  • You can turn word documents and class notes to .pdf format, which is good for sharing your work.

  • If you or one of your buddies has an lcd tv, just hook up the mac and you have an instant way to watch tv shows/movies via iTunes.

Give the Linux OS a try…you might like it.

Vista actually works surprisingly well once you tweak it “a bit”, still heavy for laptop use though and I’d rather downgrade to XP…

http://www.howtogeek.com/howto/windows-vista/disable-user-account-control-uac-the-easy-way-on-windows-vista/ [quote]How to remove annoying pop-ups from Vista (and to lessen it’s security but who cares, shouldn’t use built in Microcrap security anyway).[/quote]

32bit Vista doesn’t support more than 3GB of RAM, but that’s hardly an issue for basic users.

Out of your options I would pick the HP DV 2855, because it would allow me to play games from this century as well as run Vista somewhat smoothly after tweaking it.

thnx for the help guys i got the hp , i wanted the mac badly but the 2.1 was out because the new macbook hit the streets which is out of budget

I’m sorry, just have to mention a few things here -

[quote]ab_power wrote:
I vote mac, especially for college, here’s why:

  • Tons of scientific apps to choose from, so really there isn’t any barriers there (especially if you are in chemistry or biology)
    [/quote]

95% of those are available for Windows as well, and if not, there’s a similar one. The whole “scientists use Macs” spiel is a crock of crap, especially as VTK, ITK, simTK, etc are all available as source or pre-compiled for Windows. Microsoft also offers their development tools for free to students (hey kiddies, the first one’s free!), so if any software development is needed, the full-featured tools are there.

The Mac versions of Office are fucked in the ass, and not in the good way. Excel routinely has problems with advanced calculations it’s supposed to do and the graphing capabilities are buggy as hell. Word is just flat out unstable if you use it for anything other than typing text, and at that point you might as well use a basic text editor. Outlook sucks on the Windows versions, good luck with a badly done port.

It actually might be. Many of these sorts of suites are coded poorly in order to work with IE; Blackboard freaks out if Safari or Firefox are used when you try to do some things, as do some other similar suites. It may also work okay; hard to say until you try.

Yep, though you can do the same with any laptop. No one uses custom hardware anymore.

Microsoft offers a free plugin for Word to do that as well. OpenOffice.org also has that option by default, which I’d recommend if the university doesn’t have a free version of Office available.

That’s easy to do on Windows as well, nothing special about using OS X in this sense.

A note to the OP - don’t get a laptop with a GeForce 8xxx video processor. The current crop is prone to early failure, be it Mac, HP, Dell, whatever. There was a problem in the fabrication process that’s causing premature failure.

I just got an ASUS eee and love it. Threw on an install of XP lite and the little guy is the most responsive machine I’ve ever used, including a box with 8 cores and 8GiB of RAM and a SAS stripe. Go figure.

-Dan

wow thats a super pc , do u have a link??

[quote]dyskee wrote:
wow thats a super pc , do u have a link??[/quote]

It’s a fairly customized machine; I used nLite to custom build Windows with only the pieces I need. It’s also a Netbook, so the size may either be a blessing or a curse. If you have the know-how to tweak it the way you need it it’s a pretty cool machine.

You can take a look at http://eeepc.asus.com/global/. I have a 901. You can also get a different Atom based netbook and swap the normal hard drives for an SSD and it will be even more responsive.

The key is slimming down the OS though, and only installing the software you need. Even a pentium III will feel pretty responsive with the right software.

That 8 core box I mentioned is pretty weighed down by Windows x64.

I sell computers.
My favorite laptop right now is the HP Pavilion DV9925NR. For $699.00 (at my store) you cannot go wrong.