1. #1
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    Default Need help with purchasing a new laptop

    This question is directed toward all the computer geeks out there, and anyone else who might be able to help.

    I'm looking to buy a new laptop. I have $1500 to spend.

    here is what I need:
    40+ Gig HD
    512 megs RAM
    14+ inch monitor
    3+ USB ports
    Wireless and Wired ethernet 802.11b
    CD-R, preferably DVD-R
    no celeron processors
    Pentium 4 2.8 Ghz or M 1.5Ghz
    keyboard and touchpad mouse
    decent sound system (built in, for watching DVDs or listening to music)

    right now i'm looking at the HP Compaq Business Notebook nx5000. anyone else have any better ideas? and if you do know of a better one, please post the link to the exact model, i'd be interested in checking it out.

    oh, I had a medion laptop, but it was stolen. hence the reason i'm looking to replace it. so small companies (with satisfied customers) will be considered.
    Last edited by DrParasite; 12-28-2004 at 03:33 PM.
    If my basic HazMat training has taught me nothing else, it's that if you see a glowing green monkey running away from something, follow that monkey!

    FF/EMT/DBP

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    Dell. Hands down.

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    I was looking at Dell, but if I look at what I want in a dell, the price jumps another $500. and that's not including the shipping costs
    If my basic HazMat training has taught me nothing else, it's that if you see a glowing green monkey running away from something, follow that monkey!

    FF/EMT/DBP

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    Given the choice, I'd go Dell over HP any day. HP computers are highly unreliable and the customer service is not so great. I have an averatec computer, and I'm very happy with it. I know, it's probably not a brand you've ever heard of. They're a small company that just sells laptops. One good thing about buying from a small company is that the computer does not come with loads of useless software that you don't need.

    www.averatec.com

    http://www.averatec.com/notebooks/6100series.htm

    The 6130HS meets all of the specs you're looking for. I have a 3250HS and am very happy with it. Also, whatever you get, get the extended warranty. Extended warranties are a waste of money for most electronics, with the exception of laptops. Studies from consumer reports and PCWorld have shown this to be true.

    Eric

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    Originally posted by DrParasite
    I was looking at Dell, but if I look at what I want in a dell, the price jumps another $500. and that's not including the shipping costs
    Do not oder your Dell over the internet. Order it on the phone. Very often, you can get the CSR to honor any specials that may have just expired. such as free upgrades, free memnory, and/or free shipping. I own 3 Dells, (1 laptop). I haven't paid for shipping yet. I also got at least one upgrade each time.

    Also, they are slowly moving their tech help call centers back to the US. People didn't appreciate talking to someone in India and they are responding to the marketplace.


    I wouldn't own an HP or a Compaq unless I was in the market for a doorstop.

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    Originally posted by GeorgeWendtCFI



    Also, they are slowly moving their tech help call centers back to the US. People didn't appreciate talking to someone in India and they are responding to the marketplace.


    This is the reason I did not buy a second Dell. You needed a damn magic decoder phone to try to understand what the hell the person was saying. If you were able to make it out the only technical advice they gave was to reset you computer so it was "new just like outta da box"

    Glad to hear they switched back. Dell makes an great computer.

    Rigin

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    Go to dell.com and price out an Inspiron 700m. Then call the order line and work a deal. Right now they are offering free shipping, a free internal wireless card and a combo drive upgrade. You won't be disappointed. Also, ditch one of the USB's and go Bluetooth.
    My posts reflect my views and opinions, not the organization I work for or my IAFF local. Some of which they may not agree. I.A.C.O.J. member
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    Originally posted by SPFDRum
    Go to dell.com and price out an Inspiron 700m. Then call the order line and work a deal. Right now they are offering free shipping, a free internal wireless card and a combo drive upgrade. You won't be disappointed. Also, ditch one of the USB's and go Bluetooth.
    Educate me about Bluetooth, please. I can't stand not knowing about something.

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    Originally posted by GeorgeWendtCFI


    Educate me about Bluetooth, please. I can't stand not knowing about something.
    Bluetooth is in a clam shell is electronic devices talking to each other and shareing data wirelessly over a small area, 30 ish feet in most cases.

    Bluetooth



    Edit for link
    Last edited by stm4710; 12-28-2004 at 03:25 PM.
    I dont suffer from insanity, I enjoy every minute of it.

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    Oh yeah, go Dell.
    I dont suffer from insanity, I enjoy every minute of it.

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    Originally posted by GeorgeWendtCFI
    Educate me about Bluetooth, please. I can't stand not knowing about something.
    omg, i think this is a first

    but in all seriousness, jesse is quite right. the idea behind bluetooth is the creation of a dynamic PAN (Personal Area Network), where your PDA, cell phone, watch, computer, printer, and every other electonic gizmo you could think of would be interconnected, all without wires. and it would be a dynamic network, where once your PDA got in range of your computer, it would automaticly connected to the PAN.

    it was supposedly the new "buzz topic" about a year ago, but it really hasn't lived up to it's buzz (for various reasons). it's starting to be more available, but I think USB is still more commonly used.
    If my basic HazMat training has taught me nothing else, it's that if you see a glowing green monkey running away from something, follow that monkey!

    FF/EMT/DBP

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    I bought a Toshiba Sattelite for the Station...GREAT Computer!!! Now someday maybe I'll be able to get one of my own...

    Seriously..try this link

    http://www.toshibadirect.com/td/b2c/...AOEM&WT.srch=1


    If is doesn't work...just search Toshiba sattelite

    A word of advice..get more than you need now


    As for speakers...hands down

    http://www.cetaceasound.com/pas1portdescription.htm

    Presentation Audio system...Better than the movie theater!!


    Combined the two products are great for powerpoint presentations and education


    Yes...my 5yr old son know more about computers than I ever will, but these are great to use. Good luck.

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    George,
    Bluetooth, though slow out of the gate for windows,but gaining speed, has been well supported by Mac. It allows you to sync bluetooth compatable phones, pda's, mice, keyboards, your home entertainment center, GPS, and many other devices via a low wattage wireless connection, even IrDA is only good for line of site. The best part of the system is there is no real set up, ie network protocals, to screw up. A great example is Bluetooth phones and headsets, no wires.
    Check this site out How Things Work-Bluetooth.
    I'm not getting any younger, and wireless Bluetooth GPS and my laptop make a map much easier to read!
    My posts reflect my views and opinions, not the organization I work for or my IAFF local. Some of which they may not agree. I.A.C.O.J. member
    "I ask, Sir, what is the militia? It is the whole people. To disarm the people is the best and most effectual way to enslave them."
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    Co-author of the Second Amendment
    during Virginia's Convention to Ratify the Constitution, 1788
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    Originally posted by SPFDRum
    George,
    Bluetooth, though slow out of the gate for windows,but gaining speed, has been well supported by Mac. It allows you to sync bluetooth compatable phones, pda's, mice, keyboards, your home entertainment center, GPS, and many other devices via a low wattage wireless connection, even IrDA is only good for line of site. The best part of the system is there is no real set up, ie network protocals, to screw up. A great example is Bluetooth phones and headsets, no wires.
    Check this site out How Things Work-Bluetooth.
    I'm not getting any younger, and wireless Bluetooth GPS and my laptop make a map much easier to read!
    Thanks for the link. What about security?

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    George,
    That is/was one of the issues when bluetooth came out. There were quite a few instances of people picking up other people's info out of their PDA's, cell phones, etc. It was also practice for "kids" to try to connect to other people's bluetooth equipment and "spam" them. I haven't looked into it recently and don't know for sure if the problem has been resolved.
    The comments made by me are my opinions only, not of the Fire and EMS services I am affiliated with.

    I have lost my mind..has anyone seen it? it's not worth much..but it's mine

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    In Bluetooth, there is 3 security modes:
    Security Mode 1: non-secure
    Security Mode 2: service level enforced security
    Security Mode 3: link level enforced security
    That detirmine which systems or items can communicate, then each individual packet is encrypted, though like any other 128-bit encryption, it can be broken. The best defense for that is the week signal, so you are not broadcasting down the block...
    My posts reflect my views and opinions, not the organization I work for or my IAFF local. Some of which they may not agree. I.A.C.O.J. member
    "I ask, Sir, what is the militia? It is the whole people. To disarm the people is the best and most effectual way to enslave them."
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    anyone else have a suggestions about what type of computer I can get, as well as what type to get?
    If my basic HazMat training has taught me nothing else, it's that if you see a glowing green monkey running away from something, follow that monkey!

    FF/EMT/DBP

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    Dell. No question.
    "This thread is being closed as it is off-topic and not related to the fire industry." - Isn't that what the Off Duty forum was for?

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    I've been buying and/or supporting laptops at work for over 10 years and the hands down best machine is Dell. I can count the hardware failures we've experienced on one hand.

    I've also had good experiences from a reliability standpoint with IBM Thinkpads but they simply couldn't touch Dell when it came to price/performance.

    Also, based on my experience the only good things that come in black and white spotted packaging are steaks.

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    I've been involved in purchasing and supporting computers for close to 15 years, and Dell has been my computer of choice for the past 6-7 years. Service, support, reliability...

    Now, for laptops, IBM and Toshiba also make some quality laptops. As you have found, you will pay more, but in my opinion, the cost is well worth it.

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    DrParasite, what model do you have? I'm runnign on the Inspiron 5100 and have had absolutely no complaints during the year I've had it. Let me/us know how you like it.
    The comments made by me are my opinions only, not of the Fire and EMS services I am affiliated with.

    I have lost my mind..has anyone seen it? it's not worth much..but it's mine

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    I'm surprised no one has mentioned an Apple
    A'int No Rocket Scientist's in The Firehall

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    SYSTEM SPECIFICATION
    Inspiron 1150 Notebook: Mobile Intel Pentium 4 Processor 2.80GHz, 15-inch XGA
    Microsoft Windows XP Home

    Operating System: Microsoft Windows XP Home
    Memory: 1 GB DDR SDRAM 266MHz (2 DIMMs)
    Hard Disk Drive: 60 GB EIDE Hard Drive (5400 RPM)
    NoteBook Screen: 15 inch XGA Notebook Screen
    Modem: Internal Modem
    Network Interface Card: Internal NIC
    Wireless 1350 Internal Wireless
    DVD Drive: 8x DVD +/- RW w/dbl layer write capability

    Software: Software
    Software
    WordPerfect Productivity Suite 12.0
    Software
    AOL 8.0 ISP Software
    McAfee 5.0 Security Software - 90-Day Trial
    Microsoft Encyclopedia 2004
    Music Match 8.2 Basic
    DVD Software
    DPS Paint Shop Pro Try and Buy Software
    PAINT SHOP PRO 4.0 STANDARD
    Record Now! Deluxe Software
    Resource CD
    Software
    AOL 9.0 ISP Software
    Adobe Acrobat 6.0
    Dell/My Way Home Page
    Dell Support Software
    Image Restore Software
    AOL 9.0 ISP Software
    Software
    Software
    Net Zero ISP
    Software CD

    Misc: AOL Sofware Documentation
    90W AC Adapter
    Shipping Material
    Shipping Material
    Keyboard on Notebook
    8 Cell Notebook Battery

    total was less than $1500 w/o taxes
    If my basic HazMat training has taught me nothing else, it's that if you see a glowing green monkey running away from something, follow that monkey!

    FF/EMT/DBP

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    ok, so I cancelled the above laptop, and got this one instead. it looked like a better one to me:

    Inspiron 600M Notebook: Mobile Intel Pentium M Processor 1.6GHz, 14.1-inch XGA
    Microsoft Windows XP Home

    Operating System: Microsoft Windows XP Home
    Memory: 1 GB DDR SDRAM 266MHz (2 DIMMs)
    Hard Disk Drive: 80 GB EIDE Hard Drive (8600 RPM, I think)
    NoteBook Screen: 14.1 inch XGA Notebook Screen
    Modem: Internal Modem
    Network Interface Card: Intel Internal NIC Wireless 1350 Internal Wireless
    DVD Drive: 8x DVD +/- RW w/dbl layer write capability

    Software: Software
    Software
    WordPerfect Productivity Suite 12.0
    Software
    AOL 8.0 ISP Software
    McAfee 5.0 Security Software - 90-Day Trial
    Microsoft Encyclopedia 2004
    Music Match 8.2 Basic
    DVD Software
    DPS Paint Shop Pro Try and Buy Software
    PAINT SHOP PRO 5.1 STANDARD
    Windows Media Player 10
    Record Now! Deluxe Software
    Resource CD
    Software
    AOL 9.0 ISP Software
    Adobe Acrobat 6.0
    Dell/My Way Home Page
    Dell Support Software
    Image Restore Software
    AOL 9.0 ISP Software
    Software
    Software
    Net Zero ISP
    Software CD

    Misc: AOL Sofware Documentation
    90W AC Adapter
    Shipping Material
    Shipping Material
    Keyboard on Notebook
    8 Cell Notebook Battery

    total cost was $1450 before tax, no S/H

    thanks for everyone's help, I'll let post in a few weeks if Dell is as good as everyone said they were.
    If my basic HazMat training has taught me nothing else, it's that if you see a glowing green monkey running away from something, follow that monkey!

    FF/EMT/DBP

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    I've had a Dell laptop for three years, and it's a great computer. I've needed service twice, and Dell came right to the house, and the response was prompt.

    My husband's company uses Dell, and he's been real pleased, too.

    Our son has a Sony. It's been fine, but we got it at a discount electronics store, and we've had to send it away twice. It took 2 weeks to get it back both times.

    Good luck.

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