Purchasing a Laptop For The Mom

Discussion in 'Mobile Computing' started by Crystallization, Jun 14, 2012.

  1. Crystallization

    Crystallization New Member

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    So that time has come. The current computer is dieing a slow and brutal death. It's now 10 years old, a dinosaur in computer years, and can barely run the most basic processes without crashing. The Mom is fed up!

    So, I ask for everyone's expertise in determining which Laptop I should buy for the Mom. Basic uses will be:

    • Watching YouTube videos
    • Using MS Word
    • Using multiple media players at once :p
    • And...it's hard to even say it...Zune -_-

    My assumptions are that she'll need a dual-core CPU, 3GB-4GB of RAM, a 150GB-250GB Hard Drive, a Number Pad (because all Moms need a Number Pad for some reason :p), a 15"-17" screen and something that's reliable (won't break down in the next 2 years).

    The current budget is rather small, $200-$300, because a second one will also be purchased for another family member. So please, if you may, tell me what's good. :)
     
  2. Judas

    Judas Obvious Closet Brony Pony

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    pick 2:

    Quality - Cheap - Fast

    You really cannot have all 3 for 200-300 dollars..... trust me.... it's a one in a million chance.

    Hell i can't even get a netbook for that price.. and they are 10" and majority of the dual core ones are $400.

    Your best bet is ebay or buying 2nd hand.... and then you have to juggle the good possibility of it being bad.....

    expecting 2 years out of something like that is gonna be a tough one to swallow.... specially considering that some of the cheap cheap netbooks in that pricerange barely have 1 year warranty... and if they do fail within the first year, many of the manufacturers will battle you to the near death to delay and postpone and screw you around until they can say "warranties up.... haha... to bad.... buy a new one"

    EVERY single person that I haven't sold a laptop to due to being "to expensive" has later come in after buying a cheaper one (usually in around the 500-600 dollar range MAX) and either has something to fix on it or to make it go faster or whatever. I'm still surprised to see laptops being sold with 1gb of ram... but yeah, that's one place in which cutting back to make it cheaper effects it.

    Actually i can't remember the model of the laptop.. but a manufacturer stuck a intel based netbook atom cpu .. single core.... into a 14" laptop with 1gb of ddr2 ram. Surfice it to say, the guy that bought it thought it was an amazing deal without realizing how quickly the machine would "deteriorate" performance wise. Just about any computer today has a hard time running things with a single core. Specially when they are running in around the 1.2-1.6ghz range.

    I'm specifically sell nothing lower end than an intel i3... preferrably in the up to date generation simply due to retaining it's speed and they are a reliable cpu. I avoid the lower end models.

    This of course results in being a touch more expensive. And every single laptop i've sold in the past year has now had a Seagate Momentus XT 7200 500gb hardrive installed (solid state hybrid). And boy does it make a massive difference. I don't expect everyone to get that... but at least try and tango with a i3 model...

    try to get an i3 for under 500 is going to get difficult.... those that have picked up for under 500 have had a significantly high failure or dislike rate.
     
    Last edited: Jun 14, 2012
  3. mkk

    mkk Well-Known Member

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    I'm afraid you're left to the crap range in that budget and will have few options. But just in case you can find say a Lenovo instead of an Acer or HP, you'll be a little bit better off. Look for outgoing models on sale. Avoid systems with Intel Atom or AMD E-series CPU's for performance reasons. You'll probably find a Celeron or Pentium at best, but they're Mom-OK. :)

    I managed to find my mom a low end Lenovo Thinkpad last christmas, but it was on sale and I haven't seen an as good deal since. It had a Pentium (Sandy Bridge) and even when I use it myself it feels pretty snappy. Thinkpad series are better built and, at least here in Sweden, recieves much better support for being of a business class of systems.
     
  4. Crystallization

    Crystallization New Member

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    Okay than. There's a bit to consider here. I'll discuss with the Mom about perhaps raising the budget a bit. She certainly doesn't require a powerhouse. Getting it within even the lowest range Sandy Bridge processor should be pretty good but the GPU doesn't have to be that great. USB 2.0 is fine and I'll get her an external CD/DVD ROM should she need it. Therefore, no need for a built-in one.

    Honestly, now that I think about it, I think even 2GB will be fine. I pretty much optimized the heck out of Windows XP so that it uses just over 100MB on startup (including video and sound drivers), so that leaves quite a bit of RAM for other programs to work with. And considering that she has been using a 30GB for years now, let's take that HDD down to 100GB. :p

    So here's the new minimum:

    • At least an i3 Sandy Bridge processor
    • 2GB or RAM
    • 100GB HDD
    • No built-in CD/DVD ROM
    • 14" Screen
    • A no frills GPU

    Thanks for the assistance. :)
     
  5. Liqourice

    Liqourice Well-Known Member

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    I doubt you'll find anything with a harddrive smaller than 300GB these days, unless it's an SSD but then your budget won't hold. :)
     
  6. Judas

    Judas Obvious Closet Brony Pony

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    yeah it's not cost effective to build a hardrive with a single platter small than 250gb nowadays.

    the intergrated iGPU on the i3 or sandy bridge pentium/celeron cpus will have a good amount of jam so no additional gpu would be required.

    Take a look at Asus's A54C-TS91 ... it's cheaper than the 14" displays i can currently order.... and it uses an intel Pentium dual core... packs 4gb of ram (this is considered standard today, anything lower is usually 3gb and any higher is usually 6 or 8gb now.

    my cost on one is $416 dollars..... Considering i'm in canada, typically in the united states it's about 10-15% cheaper putting it just about in reach.
     
  7. Calliers

    Calliers Administrator/Editor Staff Member

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    Get the Razer Blade, it's only $2700. :)

    Just joking, have a look at the Acer Aspire AS7560-7808. It's going for $549 here in Canada.

    http://www.ncix.com/products/?sku=69609&vpn=NX.RKJAA.003&manufacture=Acer

    As you'll see from the link it's specs are:-

    - AMD A6-3420M
    - 6GB RAM
    - 500GB HDD
    - AMD Radeon 6520G (which is a bonus because it would probably run some games)

    And it's 17.3 inches.
     

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