View Full Version : Laptop Recommendations
01-07-2004, 02:08 AM
Seeing as how I only seldom use my desktop to its true potential (in other words, play few games as of late, don't do a lot of video editing and such), I'm seriously considering moving over to a laptop (since I am frequently on the go, plus I give several presentations a year to a local PC group).
While I know a bit about laptops, I'm curious as to what kind of machine would work best for me. As stated, I don't need a super gaming rig or desktop replacement, but I would want something relatively powerful (so that I could at least do photo editing and "some" gaming if needed (especially if I attend a LAN party).
I would probably still keep my desktop for certain duties (such as video editing), but most of my work would be done via the laptop. Wireless is important, which is why I'm somewhat leaning towards a Centrino machine.
Finally, I'm leaning more towards a machine with some sort of port replicator / docking station option (since I could dock it to my desktop monitor/keyboard when at home.
Any ideas / recommendations would be appreciated.
01-07-2004, 02:22 AM
the main brand I like is toshiba, then it would be dell.
I personally like toshiba becuase the laptop I have is done be good. it's lasted me for like 4 years and going. I've dropped it once...and it's still running strong. anywho...just my 2 cents.
01-07-2004, 02:39 AM
I did have the chance to play around with a Toshiba recently (it was a Tecra with Centrino), and it was pretty decent, although I wish the 15" display offered higher than XGA resolution.
I loooove the Dell Inspiron 8600 that came for me 2 weeks ago. 15.4" WSXGA+ screen runs at 1680x1050, and I really like having the extra space on the screen to put IM windows, Winamp player, or more than one Explorer window instead of viewing one thing at a time.
It's a Centrino and it's thinner than a desktop replacement. I got a 128MB Radeon 9600 put in since I had a 15% off coupon, it wasn't too much more. I really can't tell much difference between my desktop (9500 Pro) and this, and luckily so because I'm stuck in bed anyway recovering from the tonsilectomy :)
Check out widescreens and see if you like them. I'm really impressed with Centrino, so I think you're going down the right path there.
01-07-2004, 03:09 AM
I honestly haven't used a widescreen laptop before, but I just might have to check out my local Office Depot and take a peek at one of their HP units that apparently has a widescreen LCD (not that I'd buy an HP though).
01-07-2004, 04:24 AM
I agree 100%. The 3 features I would insist on in a laptop at the moment are a WSXGA+ screen, Centrino processor and the ATI Mobility 9600 128MB video...
The 8600 offers everything you could want in a laptop except maybe style (and that's pretty subjective--I like the looks and feel of my X1000 much more than the 8600 but I'd trade to get the ATI 9600 :wink:). Dell offers a port replicator for it, as well, but it's pretty expensive. EBay might be the way to go for that.
01-07-2004, 04:33 AM
This is when I really wish I was in the US -- I could take advantage of all these Dell deals I see... GRRRRR
As it stands, I'm looking at about $2600 Canadian for an Inspiron 8600 Pentium-M 1.6GHz / 512MB RAM / 40GB HDD / 128MB Radeon 9600 Pro video. I could shave off $200 or so by dropping down to the 64MB mobile GeforceFX 5200, but I don't know how good it would be for occasional gaming.
I was hoping to spend around $2000 Canadian or so.
01-07-2004, 01:13 PM
Originally posted by chosenfool
More expensive comparing to Dell.
01-07-2004, 01:46 PM
No one should have to get a Stinkpad.
01-10-2004, 08:49 PM
Well, I finally did some searching, and seem to be torn between two models -- the Dell Inspiron 8600 (provided I can find a good deal), and the Toshiba M30 (http://www.toshiba.ca/web/specifications.grp?lg=en§ion=1&group=1&product=2390&part=1830). The Toshiba does only use a Geforce Go5200 mobile GPU, but I'm sure that would be suitable for the types of games I'd play most often. Plus, the 6.3 pound weight sounds pretty good (not sure how much the Dell weighs).
I'll be picking the laptop up in a few months (just gotta save up a small bit more), so hopefully by then I can choose one specific machine. :)
(Edit: The Toshiba is $2300 Cdn)
Dell 8600 weights 6.9 pounds
01-10-2004, 09:52 PM
if you look at the hp/compaq machines new evo 620 allows for a basic port replicator, or even a nc6000 machine. It doesn't have the built in wireless but the 610 has a nice card that can slide right on top of the laptop
We use them at a fortune 500 company and they are great, don't compare these to their home stuff!
These are great machines
01-11-2004, 04:21 AM
Hmm, only drawback to them seems to be the graphics adapter -- I doubt the mobility Radeon 7500 could even play something like UT2003 or BF1942 at all............ basically something in between the 7500 and the Radeon 9600 would be ideal.
Of course, I love that port replicator (especially since it has DVI for my desktop LCD)........ definately makes these business-class laptops look promising. (and of course, I did notice the standard 3-year warranty too).
01-11-2004, 05:16 AM
I love my sager 5680 but it is kind of heavy. BTW, I'm looking for a thin and light notebook for my girlfriend. She wants somethings that thin and really portable.
01-11-2004, 04:47 PM
I just checked out Powernotebooks.com, and I think the guys there are going to be getting an e-mail from me in the next few days -- I'm VERY interested in the Centrino one (coincidentally, the one LPMiller gave a perfect score to in his review).
5.5 pounds, good size screen, capable graphics processor -- only complaint is that I've never heard of the company before. I'm a little hesitant to go with a lesser-known manufacturer, but if their ResellerRating is any indication, I shouldn't really have a problem.
(and as for the docking station / port replicator, I think I'll manage without one - they are way more expensive than I thought).
Any word on their warranties/accidental damage coverage? I went with Dell because they were one of the few companies that offered free repair/replacement each time you drop it or spill anything on it if you got the plan. The plan was actually free after rebate ;) I don't have to worry about carrying it like it were a full cup of scalding hot coffee.
I would be interested though if other companies started to offer this.
01-11-2004, 09:14 PM
again, I think that you should go with toshiba, Sagers are really good, yet I think that they are mostly a desktop replacement company in the sense of laptops. I wouldn't worry too much about the nvidia go compared to the ati mobile. I'm sure one is better then the other, but it shouldn't make too much of a difference. See that it's pretty much only a laptop that gonna be nulled out in the next year in a half or so. But anywho, go with the toshiba!!!
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