which laptop?

Discussion in 'Buying Tips and Advice' started by Ja Di ksw, Oct 3, 2005.

  1. Ja Di ksw macrumors 65816

    Ja Di ksw

    Apr 9, 2003
    I have a friend I owe favors to who does not know much about computers and wants me to pick one for him to buy. However, I cannot convince him to buy an Apple yet :(. He wants a windows laptop now for his mother that he can occasionally travel with, and later when he gets one that is mainly for himself he says he will look into Apple. I don't know anything about windows machines, though, and could use some help. Here are his specifications:

    Doesn't care about the size, it can be a think, heavy clunker.
    He isn't going to use it for anything that requires lots of power. Mainly using MS Office, the internet, and some scholarly apps (such as EndNote).
    Screen roughly 15" (he likes my PB screen size).
    Good brand - one that is reliable (yeah yeah, I want him to get an Apple too).
    It doesn't have to be some super top of the line machine, but he is ok with spending money to make sure it is a reliable computer.
    He was thinking an IBM, having heard they make good computers.

    Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thank you in advance.
  2. VanMac macrumors 6502a


    May 26, 2005
    Rampaging Tokyo
  3. Ja Di ksw thread starter macrumors 65816

    Ja Di ksw

    Apr 9, 2003
  4. javiercr macrumors 6502


    Apr 12, 2005
    I think the compaq v2000 series is ok

    IBM is not really IBM anymore and they are ugly as hell

    Sony makes some big but thin laptops with really nice screens if you like the glossy type, not sure about reliability

    I had a toshiba laptop that is the single most realiable piece of technology i have ever owned, so i can recoment a 445cdx Pentium 1 from 1997 :) (still runs today)
  5. Ja Di ksw thread starter macrumors 65816

    Ja Di ksw

    Apr 9, 2003
    I've heard bad things about compaq. A friend went to a University where all students were given compaqs, he said they were horrible machines that broke on everyone in the University. Granted, this was 3 or 4 years ago.

    Ugly doesn't matter, reliable does.

    I take it you're not selling your laptop :)
  6. NATO macrumors 68000


    Feb 14, 2005
    Northern Ireland
    I would consider a Compaq. My girlfriend needed a new laptop and searched high and low for one which suited her needs (unfortunately a Mac was out of the question for her), but it came down to a Compaq due to the price and spec. Out of all the PC laptops I seen, I would have went for the Compaq too if I wasn't getting a Powerbook. It is rugged, well specced and cost effective. It also looked the least fugly (all PC laptops are hideous imo)

    Of course do your best to convince that an Apple is in their best interest, but failing that I would certainly consider a Compaq if a Wintel laptop is required.
  7. plinden macrumors 68040


    Apr 8, 2004
    This is something that's difficult to decide even for someone who knows about PCs. I would recommend the Thinkpad.

    Check the laptop reviews on CNET - http://reviews.cnet.com/Notebooks/2001-3121_7-0.html?tag=cnetfd.dir. Compare the ones you like the look of, but make sure you read the user comments. Bear in mind that CNET gives Dells higher marks than you would expect (I'm not implying anything, but Dell are one of the site's biggest sponsors)

    For instance, Thinkpads get lower marks from the reviewers on CNET, but higher user ratings, e.g. compared to the Dell 600m, the Thinkpad T42 gets 6.6 vs 7.3 in the review, but 7.5 vs 5.3 user ratings.

    The Dell 600m is fairly light for a consumer laptop (5.5 lbs for a 14" screen) but seems to have motherboard problems (http://reviews.cnet.com/Dell_Inspir...20948919.html?tag=srtrtng&ord=ratingValue+asc

    Thinkpads are good and reliable but comparatively expensive - the styling grows on you. I hated the look of the Thinkpad my employer got me but I quite like it now.

    Although Thinkpads are no longer "made" by IBM, but by Lenovo, they were actually manufactured by Lenovo when they were IBM branded, so their quality shouldn't suffer too much in comparison.
  8. tekmoe macrumors 68000

    Feb 12, 2005
    if not apple, definitely ibm thinkpad. they are tanks. i speak from expierence. i have owned 3 of them and each one is still working. one of them is over 6 years old. my work has bought me a t42 and i have been using it for about 8 months now. freakin' awesome! (with the exception of winblows.) it is a really sweet laptop. very thin and it's solid as hell. i throw it around and it takes the abuse with a smile. that's what they are made for.

    i work for the IT dept here at the company and i order all the desktops/laptops. i've seen plenty of laptops come and go, but the ones that are still standing are the good old thinkpads. i just can't stress it enough. hp's suck. compaqs suck. sony's suck. they are built like crap and can't take any abuse whatsoever. (neither can a powerbook, but then, you are supposed to treat a powerbook like its worth a million dollars.)

    if you can't convince the boy to buy an apple, make him get a thinkpad. the z series is very tempting as i almost used my 17" powerbook money to buy one................
  9. Guitarius macrumors 6502a


    Jul 8, 2004
    I say, of course, get him and Apple.

    But, if he doesn't want, and such lax criteria, take him to Best Buy or something and get the cheapest one he likes... Just my two cents though.

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