It's not that I HATE IBM ThinkPads - they had a LOT of nice features that WAY too many slightly different models which made supporting them a nightmware in a corporate environment. I haven't worked with them for awhile - so it's possible that they've gotten better.
You can spend ALOT of money or get something very decent for <$1000. I'm not sure spending the extra money for a high-end, name brand buys you THAT MUCH more when it comes to laptops. You can spend big $$$ ($1,900+) on a Panasonic ToughBook - if you need military grade durability - but I doubt you'd need this level of durability in an academic environment. I have ALWAYS had good luck with Toshiba products, although they tend to be more pricey than Dell or Gateway.
Don't just focus on BRAND - but rather, first start with the minimum configuration you're looking for. Obviously, you want something with WiFi built in, a decent sized hard drive, enough RAM to run Windows (XP or VISTA - the new ones ONLY ship with Vista) quickly, and a decent speed processor. I wouldn't go with ANYTHING Celeron - as Celerons are essentially low-end, castrated Pentiums! AMDs can give you good cost/performance, but they tend to run too hot. I would look for a Intel Core 2 Duo Mobil based laptop, 2Gb RAM and a 160Gb hard drive or larger. You'll also probably want a CD/DVD RW drive built in and a decent sized display (15" and higher are nice).
Again - I was suprisingly pleased with the two Gateway models I recently configured for college students. They were around $850 and easily available at local Circuit City stores. I've not had any problems with either of these laptops so far. They're fast, have nice, large, bright 15" displays and lots of nice features.
Hope all of this helps.
I would check out that site I provided in my previous post.
- John Hook
Yea I hear ya...
Like I said in the first post I know basically what I want hardware wise I was just curious if there's any names I should try to avoid.
As far as what I want in a laptop, I want it for multimedia and some light gaming (as far as gaming goes, I'm not spending big bucks on a gaming laptop that'll be a wasted investment. I just want it for light gaming, which in essence means I'm gunna get a chip put in.)
Hardware wise like I said I built a Dell XPS M1530 that fit most of my needs.
basic over view just:
Core 2 Duo 2.2 ghz
3 GB RAM (came standard I believe)
256 MB nVida 8600m GT
also comes with a built in Wireless N adapter, DVD/CD writer/reader, 250GB HDD and other basics like that.
the XPS' I belive also come standard 2 year warranty and I tacked on 2 year Accidental Damage and it came out to 1500 and change. I also wanted atleast a 15in screen and it had that. So I thought it was nice.
So hardware's more or less figured out.
Nothing to bad on the gaming end of things because I still do plan on building an actual gaming PC at some point.
But now I'm almost second guessing myself because I built a comparable with the Dell Inspiron 1720 (17in screen) and it came out to about the same. So now I'm thinking ya know Inspiron (17in) or XPS and I've barely even looked at any HP's yet.
Some of the HP's I did look at were very cost effective. So many options.
I may post some of the laptops, specs, and prices I'm looking at because I'm having trouble deciding lol.
So yea more research to do.
Edited by Caffiene_Powered, 07 April 2008 - 09:48 PM.