Recommend me a laptop?

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seanoconn
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Recommend me a laptop?

Postby seanoconn » Thu Nov 22, 2012 10:37 am

My current HP Pavillion is slow and flimsy. Got a budget of £600 and I'm looking for something speedy, reactive and with a quick boot up time if possible. I won't be taking out much, so size and weight aren't an issue and I'm not into gaming.

Super quick and good build quality are the main attributes.

Any suggestions welcome.
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Fevmeister
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Re: Recommend me a laptop?

Postby Fevmeister » Thu Nov 22, 2012 13:05 pm

Sony vaio

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baldwin471
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Re: Recommend me a laptop?

Postby baldwin471 » Thu Nov 22, 2012 13:29 pm

Surface.

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Lucan2
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Re: Recommend me a laptop?

Postby Lucan2 » Thu Nov 22, 2012 14:26 pm

I recommend you a laptop.

dynamicbrick
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Re: Recommend me a laptop?

Postby dynamicbrick » Thu Nov 22, 2012 15:19 pm

If it's just for browsing, email, and photos, then I'd actually recommend you buy a solid state drive (SSD) for £70 and rebuild the HP with Linux first (Ubuntu or Linux Mint). It's free, and far less resource intensive than Windows. I'm running Mint on an old Samsung NC10 netbook with 2gb RAM, 128Gb SSD. Boot from cold to useable desktop is under 10 seconds. Don't be afraid of swapping out hard drives on laptops, it's a doddle, and Linux installs itself once you made either a CD or live USB.

If you must have a new one, and must have windows - don't go to PC World is the first thing, unless you enjoy ripping out all the OEM crap that comes installed with them. I tend to use http://www.dabs.com - cheaper, and tends to only have the bare minimum of software installed on top of Windows.

Recommendation - Lenovo are always built like absolute bricks.

Don't get a Surface - it's a tablet on Win8 RT - which is a specific tablet version of Windows; so you'll be restricted to what's in Marketplace regards software. When Surface Pro arrives, that'll have Win8 x86 - which is a full blown desktop.

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baldwin471
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Re: Recommend me a laptop?

Postby baldwin471 » Thu Nov 22, 2012 16:12 pm

dynamicbrick wrote:If it's just for browsing, email, and photos, then I'd actually recommend you buy a solid state drive (SSD) for £70 and rebuild the HP with Linux first (Ubuntu or Linux Mint). It's free, and far less resource intensive than Windows. I'm running Mint on an old Samsung NC10 netbook with 2gb RAM, 128Gb SSD. Boot from cold to useable desktop is under 10 seconds. Don't be afraid of swapping out hard drives on laptops, it's a doddle, and Linux installs itself once you made either a CD or live USB.

If you must have a new one, and must have windows - don't go to PC World is the first thing, unless you enjoy ripping out all the OEM crap that comes installed with them. I tend to use http://www.dabs.com - cheaper, and tends to only have the bare minimum of software installed on top of Windows.

Recommendation - Lenovo are always built like absolute bricks.

Don't get a Surface - it's a tablet on Win8 RT - which is a specific tablet version of Windows; so you'll be restricted to what's in Marketplace regards software. When Surface Pro arrives, that'll have Win8 x86 - which is a full blown desktop.


Well, depending on what he needs the device for (Which he hasn't told us), the Surface RT could be perfect. Light - Check, Thin - Check, Quick boot - Check, MS Office 2013 - Check, great browser - Check, Awesome keyboards - check.

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amaferanga
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Re: Recommend me a laptop?

Postby amaferanga » Thu Nov 22, 2012 16:19 pm

dynamicbrick wrote:If it's just for browsing, email, and photos, then I'd actually recommend you buy a solid state drive (SSD) for £70 and rebuild the HP with Linux first (Ubuntu or Linux Mint). It's free, and far less resource intensive than Windows. I'm running Mint on an old Samsung NC10 netbook with 2gb RAM, 128Gb SSD. Boot from cold to useable desktop is under 10 seconds. Don't be afraid of swapping out hard drives on laptops, it's a doddle, and Linux installs itself once you made either a CD or live USB.


Sorry for the thread hijack, but I have a Samsung n130 notebook and I'm considering going the Ubuntu and SSD route. Any recommendations for a 128Gb SSD? This is all new to me and I've only started thinking about it - will any 2.5" 128Gb SSD work or do I need to be careful what I buy?
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ILM Zero7
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Re: Recommend me a laptop?

Postby ILM Zero7 » Thu Nov 22, 2012 16:24 pm

Sony Vaio - Z if can afford it F series if you cant
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dynamicbrick
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Re: Recommend me a laptop?

Postby dynamicbrick » Thu Nov 22, 2012 17:02 pm

baldwin471 wrote:
dynamicbrick wrote:If it's just for browsing, email, and photos, then I'd actually recommend you buy a solid state drive (SSD) for £70 and rebuild the HP with Linux first (Ubuntu or Linux Mint). It's free, and far less resource intensive than Windows. I'm running Mint on an old Samsung NC10 netbook with 2gb RAM, 128Gb SSD. Boot from cold to useable desktop is under 10 seconds. Don't be afraid of swapping out hard drives on laptops, it's a doddle, and Linux installs itself once you made either a CD or live USB.

If you must have a new one, and must have windows - don't go to PC World is the first thing, unless you enjoy ripping out all the OEM crap that comes installed with them. I tend to use http://www.dabs.com - cheaper, and tends to only have the bare minimum of software installed on top of Windows.

Recommendation - Lenovo are always built like absolute bricks.

Don't get a Surface - it's a tablet on Win8 RT - which is a specific tablet version of Windows; so you'll be restricted to what's in Marketplace regards software. When Surface Pro arrives, that'll have Win8 x86 - which is a full blown desktop.


Well, depending on what he needs the device for (Which he hasn't told us), the Surface RT could be perfect. Light - Check, Thin - Check, Quick boot - Check, MS Office 2013 - Check, great browser - Check, Awesome keyboards - check.


Yes, but as he doesn't need it to be portable it's a bit of a waste.

Nor does it have a DVD drive.

Don't get me wrong, I love the Surface - was with Microsoft on Friday playing with one, and with them again for a comparison session with the Asus RT offering and Surface. Looking forward to getting mine.

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seanoconn
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Re: Recommend me a laptop?

Postby seanoconn » Thu Nov 22, 2012 19:28 pm

dynamicbrick wrote:
baldwin471 wrote:
dynamicbrick wrote:If it's just for browsing, email, and photos, then I'd actually recommend you buy a solid state drive (SSD) for £70 and rebuild the HP with Linux first (Ubuntu or Linux Mint). It's free, and far less resource intensive than Windows. I'm running Mint on an old Samsung NC10 netbook with 2gb RAM, 128Gb SSD. Boot from cold to useable desktop is under 10 seconds. Don't be afraid of swapping out hard drives on laptops, it's a doddle, and Linux installs itself once you made either a CD or live USB.

If you must have a new one, and must have windows - don't go to PC World is the first thing, unless you enjoy ripping out all the OEM crap that comes installed with them. I tend to use http://www.dabs.com - cheaper, and tends to only have the bare minimum of software installed on top of Windows.

Recommendation - Lenovo are always built like absolute bricks.

Don't get a Surface - it's a tablet on Win8 RT - which is a specific tablet version of Windows; so you'll be restricted to what's in Marketplace regards software. When Surface Pro arrives, that'll have Win8 x86 - which is a full blown desktop.


Well, depending on what he needs the device for (Which he hasn't told us), the Surface RT could be perfect. Light - Check, Thin - Check, Quick boot - Check, MS Office 2013 - Check, great browser - Check, Awesome keyboards - check.


Yes, but as he doesn't need it to be portable it's a bit of a waste.

Nor does it have a DVD drive.

Don't get me wrong, I love the Surface - was with Microsoft on Friday playing with one, and with them again for a comparison session with the Asus RT offering and Surface. Looking forward to getting mine.

Thanks very much for the advice guys. I'm giving the HP to the Missus but will try to rebuild it and get it up to speed :D

I'm pretty green but have just been looking at the Lenovo Z580, intel core i7 with 8GB of Ram, £503. Seems good. Gonna check out the Surface now :D

A friend suggested an Ultrabook might fit my needs but a DVD drive would be handy.
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craker
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Re: Recommend me a laptop?

Postby craker » Thu Nov 22, 2012 20:02 pm

£600 sounds like a big budget IMO, you could spend half that and get a perfectly serviceable laptop (eg http://www.ebuyer.com/392477-asus-x401a-laptop-x401a-wx089v ) and get an Android tablet (we've just got a Google Nexus 7 and it's ace).

dynamicbrick
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Re: Recommend me a laptop?

Postby dynamicbrick » Thu Nov 22, 2012 20:08 pm

Don't get too hung up on the latest must-have - an Ultrabook majors on portability and light weight. Great if you're lugging it round in your briefcase on the train, less of a boon if it's sat on your desk all day. If you get a notebook (normal laptop) with an SSD - as opposed to HDD - you'll have same or better performance for the money.

Depends what you're going to be using it for really - for example, for browsing and emails I've got this little Samsung 10" netbook (£70 on eBay) which I've upgraded with an SSD (£70) which with the 2Gb RAM it came with and running Linux gives almost the same theoretical performance as an 11" i5 MacBook Air - not that I wouldn't love one of them, but I can't see the point in spending £900 on something when £140 will do the same job.

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seanoconn
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Re: Recommend me a laptop?

Postby seanoconn » Thu Nov 22, 2012 20:35 pm

craker wrote:£600 sounds like a big budget IMO, you could spend half that and get a perfectly serviceable laptop (eg http://www.ebuyer.com/392477-asus-x401a-laptop-x401a-wx089v ) and get an Android tablet (we've just got a Google Nexus 7 and it's ace).

I'm happy enough with my iphone and really need a good keypad when i'm at home. I've looked into tablets but they don't really suit my needs. I would buy one as well if i could afford it though. :D
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seanoconn
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Re: Recommend me a laptop?

Postby seanoconn » Thu Nov 22, 2012 20:56 pm

dynamicbrick wrote:Don't get too hung up on the latest must-have - an Ultrabook majors on portability and light weight. Great if you're lugging it round in your briefcase on the train, less of a boon if it's sat on your desk all day. If you get a notebook (normal laptop) with an SSD - as opposed to HDD - you'll have same or better performance for the money.

Depends what you're going to be using it for really - for example, for browsing and emails I've got this little Samsung 10" netbook (£70 on eBay) which I've upgraded with an SSD (£70) which with the 2Gb RAM it came with and running Linux gives almost the same theoretical performance as an 11" i5 MacBook Air - not that I wouldn't love one of them, but I can't see the point in spending £900 on something when £140 will do the same job.

Mostly for browsing but with some video editing and i may be running a few programmes at the same time.

Would say for instance spending £500 on a notebook with i7, 8gb RAM and replacing the 1TB HDD with SSD while running linux, create something special? Or is the upgrade only worth while on cheaper notebooks?
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Re: Recommend me a laptop?

Postby ChrisAOnABike » Thu Nov 22, 2012 21:05 pm

Loving my new Samsung Chronos series 7. Core i5, 1TB hybrid HDD, 8GB, and a 1600x900 matte screen, very bright, and usable in sunlight*. Shade over 600 squids.

* Extra benefit, I don't have to look at my own reflection, as I always used to have to do with the old glossy one.
Is the gorilla tired yet?

dynamicbrick
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Re: Recommend me a laptop?

Postby dynamicbrick » Thu Nov 22, 2012 22:29 pm

seanoconn wrote:Mostly for browsing but with some video editing and i may be running a few programmes at the same time.

Would say for instance spending £500 on a notebook with i7, 8gb RAM and replacing the 1TB HDD with SSD while running linux, create something special? Or is the upgrade only worth while on cheaper notebooks?


Linux can be a bit marmite, and an awful lot of programs won't work on it unless you use a Windows Emulator (which is a major frig). On the flipside, it's resource light - typically less than 100mb RAM usage at idle... compared with God knows how much for Win7. Win8 is supposed to be more efficient, but there's no guarantee that'll run every Win7 program without issues either.

I'd not recommend SSD and Linux on a brand new lappy - for starters you'll probably invalidate the warranty, and secondly it'd rather be like upgrading a bike without riding it first. Personally I'd get the £500 laptop and leave it alone.

Sling a 128gb SSD into the old one and have a play around with Linux on that first - Linux is great at breathing new life into old machines.

In fact, rather than just talking about it, using Unetbootin http://unetbootin.sourceforge.net/ make a live CD or USB of Ubuntu http://www.ubuntu.com/ or Linux Mint http://www.linuxmint.com/ - download the ISO rather than using unetbootin's image sources, they take ages. Go into BIOS on the HP when you turn it on, and set the Boot Priority to prefer CD-ROM or USB over the HDD. It'll then run your chosen Linux live from the CD/USB and you can have play with it. Don't worry, unless you tell it to install Linux on the live desktop, it won't do anything - the Laptop is just running off the CD/USB rather than the HDD, Windows will still be there when you get back.

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mfin
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Re: Recommend me a laptop?

Postby mfin » Thu Nov 22, 2012 23:43 pm

amaferanga wrote:
dynamicbrick wrote:If it's just for browsing, email, and photos, then I'd actually recommend you buy a solid state drive (SSD) for £70 and rebuild the HP with Linux first (Ubuntu or Linux Mint). It's free, and far less resource intensive than Windows. I'm running Mint on an old Samsung NC10 netbook with 2gb RAM, 128Gb SSD. Boot from cold to useable desktop is under 10 seconds. Don't be afraid of swapping out hard drives on laptops, it's a doddle, and Linux installs itself once you made either a CD or live USB.


Sorry for the thread hijack, but I have a Samsung n130 notebook and I'm considering going the Ubuntu and SSD route. Any recommendations for a 128Gb SSD? This is all new to me and I've only started thinking about it - will any 2.5" 128Gb SSD work or do I need to be careful what I buy?


Ive got 256gb version of this 128gb one £77.99
http://www.amazon.co.uk/Samsung-2-5inch-Notebook-Accessory-Norton/dp/B005OK6VJU/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1353627594&sr=8-1

...I also have 256gb version of this 128gb one, £77.20
http://www.amazon.co.uk/Crucial-128GB-Internal-Solid-State/dp/B004W2JKZI/ref=sr_1_1?s=computers&ie=UTF8&qid=1353627682&sr=1-1

There's bugger all to tell between them really, Id buy the Samsung. Both are SATA3 but will work fine in any Laptop that's SATA, doesn't have to run SATA3, can run as SATA2, so not too much thinking to do at all.

256gb version is a quite a few more quid...
http://www.amazon.co.uk/Samsung-2-5inch-Notebook-Accessory-Norton/dp/B005OK6VLS/ref=sr_1_2?s=computers&ie=UTF8&qid=1353627774&sr=1-2
.

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ILM Zero7
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Re: Recommend me a laptop?

Postby ILM Zero7 » Fri Nov 23, 2012 07:15 am

seanoconn wrote: just been looking at the Lenovo Z580, intel core i7 with 8GB of Ram, £503. Seems good. .


i am typing this on an old Lenovo G550, which I bought specifically to run the Tacx Real time videos - hence the dedicated graphics memory and 17 inch size. It has been good, but is now slow and bulky. not that any of that changes its original purpose aility, its just size and speed for other stuff is so much better with newer machines.. I suppose the best compromise is a small light slim laptop which is fast, and a nice big monitor ?
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seanoconn
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Re: Recommend me a laptop?

Postby seanoconn » Fri Nov 23, 2012 08:28 am

dynamicbrick wrote:
seanoconn wrote:Mostly for browsing but with some video editing and i may be running a few programmes at the same time.

Would say for instance spending £500 on a notebook with i7, 8gb RAM and replacing the 1TB HDD with SSD while running linux, create something special? Or is the upgrade only worth while on cheaper notebooks?


Linux can be a bit marmitbe, and an awful lot of programs won't work on it unless you use a Windows Emulator (which is a major frig). On the flipside, it's resource light - typically less than 100mb RAM usage at idle... compared with God knows how much for Win7. Win8 is supposed to be more efficient, but there's no guarantee that'll run every Win7 program without issues either.

I'd not recommend SSD and Linux on a brand new lappy - for starters you'll probably invalidate the warranty, and secondly it'd rather be like upgrading a bike without riding it first. Personally I'd get the £500 laptop and leave it alone.

Sling a 128gb SSD into the old one and have a play around with Linux on that first - Linux is great at breathing new life into old machines.

In fact, rather than just talking about it, using Unetbootin http://unetbootin.sourceforge.net/ make a live CD or USB of Ubuntu http://www.ubuntu.com/ or Linux Mint http://www.linuxmint.com/ - download the ISO rather than using unetbootin's image sources, they take ages. Go into BIOS on the HP when you turn it on, and set the Boot Priority to prefer CD-ROM or USB over the HgDD. It'll then run your chosen Linux live from the CD/USB and you can have play with it. Don't worry, unless you tell it to install Linux on the live desktop, it won't do anything - the Laptop is just running off the CD/USB rather than the HDD, Windows will still be there when you get back.

Thanks very much Dynamicbrick. I've learned a lot in a short space of time, thanks to your comprehensive and easy to understand advice, which I'll be referring back to when I update my old laptop. Top man. :D

And with the experience gained from updating the HP, hopefully this will be the last time I need to for out decent money for a laptop.
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Re: Recommend me a laptop?

Postby Pinno » Fri Nov 23, 2012 20:18 pm

I'll keep yer costs down - £5 and its yours. Fits on your lap. No power required. Prints lovely.

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