Should I buy this Windows Laptop? Help!

Discussion in 'Community Discussion' started by Xanderxxx, Nov 23, 2005.

  1. Xanderxxx macrumors member

    Apr 26, 2005
    Hello everyone! I'm a 16 year old student who loves apple but has no job. My parents refuse to buy me a iBook or Powerbook because they just got my my iMac this past spring, but I could really use a laptop for school. Here's the thing. WalMart is having a sale on friday, like every other store... and they have a laptop (windows :() for only $400! I would only use for school and use my sexy iMac for everything else. I would love to buy an apple, but I only have $400 saved up, and I guess it would be good both a windows and a mac.

    Here are the system specs:
    HP Pavillion ze2308wm Notebook Computer
    - AMD Mobile Sempron 2800+ processor, 1.6 GHz.
    - 250 MB DDR SDRAM memory.
    - 40 GB hard drive.
    - CD-RW/DVD-ROM combo drive
    - 54G 802.11 big wirelessLAN
    - 15 inch TFT-XGA screen.

    I don't know a thing about windows specs, are those any good? is it an OK computer?

    Opinions are greatly appreciated!
  2. 7254278 macrumors 68020

    Apr 11, 2004
    What graphics card, if its intel extreme graphics or shared memory then I wouldnt buy it also you NEED more ram, apart from that its a good machine.
  3. Giaguara macrumors 6502a

    Nov 22, 2002
    Seen in the web tonite ... someone working for them says they have 25 of them per store. So if you want one, you'll probably have to camp overnight for it.
  4. ibook30 macrumors 6502a


    Jun 4, 2005
    2,000 light years from home
    My opinion-
    For the money it is a good buy. I use windoze laptops at work, and often check out local retailers sales,,, I'd say this is a decent price for the machine.

    Totally different question for yourself- what apps will you use in it? If you are doing basic web surfing, email, and word processing you'll be fine. Pro apps will (likely) be slow.

    I can't help but think, if you can hold off for another month or two, and save some more mony, perhaps a refurb ibook will be available.... I imagine they have this loaded with MS XP Home edition,, and that is one slow environment to work in !:) Good luck !
  5. cubist macrumors 68020

    Jul 4, 2002
    Muncie, Indiana
    Well, not much RAM, which could make it a little sluggish, and the screen res is just XGA on a 15"? Kinda low-resolution for such a big screen. I assume it's shared memory video. It's an OK laptop, and for $400 probably not a bad deal. They will probably try to sell you some kind of extended warrantee.

    Are you sure you need a laptop at all? Some folks manage to use flash drives (or iPod shuffles) to carry files to and from school. Will you need to do typing in the classroom, or would a voice recorder be adequate?

    Having both Mac and Windows is costly, not just because of the computers themselves, but because of the software and the complexity of learning two platforms.

    Now if I were a wild and crazy 16-year-old in today's world I'd sell the iMac and get a five-year-old used Thinkpad and run Linux on it. But I'm not.
  6. Chacala_Nayarit macrumors 6502


    Oct 6, 2005
    Lakewood, Washington
    You could get an older iBook G3 on eBay for 400.00.
  7. tutubibi macrumors 6502a


    Sep 18, 2003
    That Windows notebook beats iBook G3 in every category. Just needs RAM upgrade to at least 512 MB and it is very decent Windows machine.
    Very good deal for 400 $.
  8. Chacala_Nayarit macrumors 6502


    Oct 6, 2005
    Lakewood, Washington
    True. Although it does not have OS-X! :p

    XP Home means upgrading it to Pro. Up the RAM to at least 512MB. Antivirus software, and more. The total cost of owernership is? :rolleyes:
  9. SummerBreeze macrumors 6502a


    Sep 11, 2005
    Chicago, IL
    How much is OS X worth to you? I think I would rather save up five hundred extra bucks over time and get the ibook later. It's fun to have one, but you don't want one that's not as usable as the machine you're used to. Personally, I would just save the money for something else.
  10. w_parietti22 macrumors 68020

    Apr 16, 2005
    Seattle, WA
    Sell the iMac and get a PB! :D (Or a highend iBook)
  11. dotdotdot macrumors 68020

    Jan 23, 2005
  12. deanwaterman macrumors regular

    Sep 30, 2005
    Minneapolis, Minnesota
    Dude Buy A Dell

    I got an ad in my paper today doing Dell laptops for $399. They were 14.1, and decent, but you don't have to wait in line.

    I go the Ad for the HP also and it says $488.00

    I got a hodunk WalMart by me and I was thinking of going @ 5am and buying and then reselling on ebay.
  13. EricNau Moderator emeritus


    Apr 27, 2005
    San Francisco, CA
    Buying Software for two computers? Ouch!

    It's good for the money, but that doesn't make it good. The main problems I see are the RAM, and the HDD. Neither one will get you very far.
    I don't know much about AMD, but I don't think that processor is great either.

    If you can use school computers, just buy a flash drive like cubist said. And put that $400 towards an iBook.
  14. amin macrumors 6502a


    Aug 17, 2003
    Boston, MA
    It is more than okay for most things. Sounds like a good value. When you get a few more bucks, you can throw in a bit more RAM. I say go for it!
  15. runninmac macrumors 65816


    Jan 20, 2005
    Rockford MI
    Best buy has a cheeper laptop but appears to be about the same in proformace. Correct me if im wrong...

    Edit i dont know if this site is pulling my leg or not but Circut City should have this...
    PS: site here
  16. jefhatfield Retired


    Jul 9, 2000
    for that price, it's a great deal...and it's an hp vs. some no name brand...of course it would be better if it was a sony, toshiba, ibm, or even dell, or gateway imo

    hp isn't great but it's not terrible, but then again we are talking about $400 dollars would even be worth it, low ram and all, at $500 dollars
  17. tutubibi macrumors 6502a


    Sep 18, 2003
    Why would somebody need upgrade to XP Pro? Home edition is good enough for everyday use. RAM needs upgrade to 512 MB. Antivirus software is optional, I never used any on any of my Windows machines. Just be smart enough not to use IE and Outloook. Even with antivirus sw and extra RAM cost is still under $ 500 so it's great deal for a brand name notebook.
  18. Les Kern macrumors 68040

    Les Kern

    Apr 26, 2002
    400 bucks? Are you CRAZY? Go get it now... even though it's at that Kraptacular Wal-Mart.
    Avoid "White Trash Tuesdays" at all cost.
  19. EricNau Moderator emeritus


    Apr 27, 2005
    San Francisco, CA
    What is the difference between Home & Pro, besides a couple hundred dollars?
  20. yojitani macrumors 68000


    Apr 28, 2005
    An octopus's garden
    I concur with everyone else here. Go ahead and get it, just be careful. XP Pro is easier as far as I'm concerned - especially for admin. things. Your school might have a OS purchasing program so you might be able to get XPPro for free or at a reduced rate. I can get it through my university for about $5 (still too much for the headache, but..) - OSX is $10, by the way:p

    Also, I would recommend Kerio firewall for security, as well as the AVG Anti-virus. Just had a long talk with some local tech guys the other day who would install these programs as a matter of course for their customers. Also, avoid outlook, outlook express, and explorer. I've heard a lot of good things about Mozilla's Thunderbird as a replacement client.

    You can get by on the RAM, I'd say. It sucks but XP and your basic software will run.

    Oh.. and also make sure you learn how to maintenance your windoze. You need to defrag the drive every so often. You might also want to invest in some sort of registry checker - norton utilities or, cheaper, registry first aid. Be careful with these though. You don't want to mess up your registry any more than it messes itself up.

    Finally, be prepared to spend a bit of extra time tinkering with the laptop. You might believe at times that Windows is an OS opposed to you getting your work done. While it's true, it functions normally sometimes too:D .

    Don't let this last part put you off. I switched to Mac because a) I wanted to spend less time messing with the machine so I could get on with my work and b) I could afford it (ok. there were other reasons too). But since you can't afford it, I'd go for the walmart offer. Use it minimally, and it will probably give you minimal headaches.

    (oh, and if you haven't worked on a windoze for a long time, be prepared for an ugly OS - had this experience recently... ewwwe!).


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