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laptop recommendations

4x4junkie

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Looking to get a PC laptop for travel.

Wondering who's are the most durable these days (mostly, the screen/wires/hinges holding up to repeated opening & closing), and who's are the easiest to clean all the initial crapware off of it.

Looking to spend maybe $600 or so... 15" screen, I5-42xx-something-whatever-it-is CPU I guess (maybe the I7 if someone can come up with some convincing arguments for it).

Mostly it's just for internet browsing & email (no gaming, little-to-no video editing), though occasionally I might manage (rip) mp3 (music) files and/or run an audio processing application on it (I don't s'pose any come with 192kHz onboard soundcards do they? Guessing not, :icon_twisted: but thought I'd toss that one out here anyway just in case there is something that does)
 


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RonD

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Got my daughter a Surface 2(not Pro) for her birthday with key board.
She is 30 and her son, my grandson(2 years old) kept pulling on the screen and power cord on her old Dell and pulled off some keyboard keys.
So screen was hanging and I had to fix the power cord a few times.

Surface has magnetic power cord, so pops off if pulled, same with keyboard, no wires to break.
And I didn't know it at the time but the keyboard keys can be snapped back on if little fingers pull them off, tested and it works, lol.

She wanted windows compatible software for Office files.
It has a regular USB port.
Only 10" screen though, she did want iPad size, so it is easier to use as a tablet
It does have Miracast so I got her the $40 wireless HDMI stick that mirrors her screen to TV.
Been 5 months with a 2.5 year old, and still ticking, lol
 

veefer800canuck

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If you order a new laptop, request a complete windows reinstall disc to go with it.

An actual DVD, not just a recovery partition on the hard drive.

I'm old school, so if I want to reinstall the OS, I want to be able to do it from original media and customize my install without any bloatware.
 

4x4junkie

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Bronco II
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2.9 V6
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2.9L V6
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Manual
2WD / 4WD
4WD
Tire Size
35x12.50R15
That's a good idea about the disc (I had a harddrive issue right off the bat with my desktop... Rather than wait for a replacement, I bought another drive and reloaded XP onto it from the M$ disc (later using the replacement drive I got back for addl storage)... Boom all crapware gone! :D I bought this PC from a small independent retailer/builder though, so there actually wasn't much there to begin with).


Anyone have any input on Win7 vs 8(.1)? Any truth to something I read somewhere about 8 having some type of gov backdoor or tracking beacon installed into it and China's banning it? (seems like the same could've easily been put into 7 or XP through the update process, so not sure what all this hub-bub here is about)... :dunno:
 

alwaysFlOoReD

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I'm using win 8, not 8.1. I can't remember why I don't want to update to 8.1, something to do with the deletion of something I use all the time. It is a very different feeling OS BUT can be set up to feel like 7 easily. I really like the search function where you can start typing on the main page and it will return results seperated into apps, settings, and file types. I took a cheap night course and that definitely helped, but I'm computer challenged anyway [the software side of things].

I would look into milspec laptops if you think things will be abused.
 
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adsm08

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I know nothing about any "government back door" in Windows 8.

As far as 7 vs 8, I think I prefer 7. I've had my new laptop for about a week now, and I like it, but I have having trouble getting a grasp on some of the changes made to the system for 8. It's hard to find things. It's hard to find the search. And the security drives me nuts. I don't want to have to sign in to my computer every time I open it. I do want to keep the mail app signed into my email account. Apparently I can't have it both ways at the same time.

I will say that 8 is easier to use if you have a touch screen. I have played with it with and without the touch screen, and it is def geared towards touch screen.

I really like my new computer, but it sounds like it might not meet your needs. I have no onboard cd/dvd drive, it's an external unit bought separately, a core i3 is the best processor you can get, and the hard drive isn't that big, only 500ish gig.
 

alwaysFlOoReD

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You better not use any smartphone or cloud based computing, or storage if you're worried about big brother.
 

4x4junkie

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4WD
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35x12.50R15
Yeah cloud-based stuff I have no interest at all in. I've been reading about 8.1's integration with M$'s "One-Drive" service (I would assume this can be turned off)... It just has me curious what other P.I. beacons it's broadcasting (not necessarily just for big brother, but big corporations & marketing firms who then sell it away to anyone willing to pay for it). This day & age with all the hacking scandals, sleaziness, and other shit going on, seems you can never be diligent enough about your privacy anymore. :sad:

The touch screen is another thing too... I guess it saves some amount of clicking when navigating maps, but that aside, I've gotten around fine without one for 16 years, do I really need it now?


It certainly seems Win 7 is much more my style... My only concern with 7 is having been put in this same boat before where M$ decides to kick your ass out to the curb, and then every other company decides to jump ship at the same time. I'd rather not be here again for the longest time possible if I don't have to (this is what forced me off of ME back around '08, I couldn't use any of the cameras, printer/scanners, other softwares that were available at the time because it was no longer supported). Now I'm beginning to see stuff that doesn't support XP, which I suspect 7 may soon be the next in line. :icon_confused:


Oh well, I guess I've rambled on too much already about this (looks like a double-edged sword either way)...

Appreciate your responses guys. :cool: Off to do some more laptop hunting...


Edit:
I don't seem to be seeing many mil-spec or "rugged" laptops... I think they're all out of my price range (or I'm not looking in the right places). I found a couple "Toughbooks" Panasonic makes, but they were 3-5× above my price range. Any other names I should be looking for? I guess I could stretch my budget another hundred or two if needed but that'd be pushing it.
 
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RonD

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For toughness use a laptop with SSD vs usual HDD
HDD are the standard hard drives that use a spinning disc, they work fine unless they are bumped or dropped while spinning, then you can have a problem, BIG problem.

SSD are solid state hard drives, no moving parts, similar to a giant USB stick, they cost more for less storage but much better in a portable computer.
 

4x4junkie

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Make / Model
Bronco II
Engine Type
2.9 V6
Engine Size
2.9L V6
Transmission
Manual
2WD / 4WD
4WD
Tire Size
35x12.50R15
Good tip, though my worry wasn't so much dropping or impacting it, I was more concerned about overall quality-of-construction, such as wiring in the screen hinges that fails prematurely after repeated opening & closing it, keyboards getting flaky, fragility of the screen itself, that kind of stuff.

I'm starting to think they must all be about the same... I've looked at a number of them and pretty much every one had flimsy-feeling screens. The crapware/bloatware thing I'm still curious on though, since two stores I went to had them all locked down with passwords so you couldn't get into them at all (two guys at one store swore by Asus... Anyone here have any dirt on Asus laptops?
 

alwaysFlOoReD

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I'm running an Asus k53t series laptop. AMD A6-3400m 1.4GHz radeon 6720 1GB graphics, 4GB ram, 500GB hd, dvd player. I paid ~ C$400 about 4 years ago. It came with W-7 but I bought W-8 upgrade for $40.00 so I could practice at home for a course [used W-8] I took. It came with some bloatware but I just deleted it. It plays the games I want but not at full resolution any more. The laptop is starting to show it's age. I had to pop the top and stuff some paper behind the power inlet so it would keep making a connection...a known problem with this series. The opposite corner hinge area is loose, right by the power button, I don't know why as I haven't knowingly stressed it there.
I think it's been a good deal overall.

Richard
 

4x4junkie

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Location
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Make / Model
Bronco II
Engine Type
2.9 V6
Engine Size
2.9L V6
Transmission
Manual
2WD / 4WD
4WD
Tire Size
35x12.50R15
Sounds like you might have a broken solder joint where the power jack goes down to the PC board (probably not that unusual on a 4-yo unit).

I will keep Asus in mind then. Thanks for the rundown. :beer:
 

WarHawk-AVG

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My credo
Semper Fi
P.S. Keep the heatsink clean...even those small HS eat dust...and if you smoke near your laptop you get the ooey gooey tar dust...ask me how I know ;)

click for full size






My buddy was wondering why his laptop would turn on and run fine for about 5 minutes, then shut down and restart...hmmmm
 

alwaysFlOoReD

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The one time I contacted Asus for help they responded within 8 hours and walked me through the fix, very helpful.
I figured out why the corner was loose...there is a couple of screws missing.
I will check my heat sink and do a clean-up, I've been noticing the fan is running more often. Thanks.

Richard
 

nisa

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Something Acer, they make that kind of stuff for low prices.
 

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