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Old 11-08-2005, 01:01 PM   #1
mpaone
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Question Quick SE opinion needed this week... what laptop to buy

I'm not very knowledgable on the options, and don't have time to reseach as in depth as I normally do... so what is your opinion?

My price range is about $1,000- $1,500 and it has to be good for pics, graphics (not games) have a wireless air card port and sufficient memory but nothing too crazy.

My initial considerations were Powerbook G4 and Sony VAIO but the former is too much with the options I want.

Thanks,
-Mike.
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Old 11-08-2005, 01:07 PM   #2
crazyhorse
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Anything with a 64 bit AMD processor gets my vote unless you go G4 route =)
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Old 11-08-2005, 01:12 PM   #3
mpaone
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crazyhorse
Anything with a 64 bit AMD processor gets my vote unless you go G4 route =)

Yeaaa... the G4 is what I REALLY want so I should just pony up I guess. Especially since I only upgrade like once every 5 years. Hmmm...

-Mike.
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Old 11-08-2005, 01:36 PM   #4
Calamity Jesus
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If you really must have a laptop, get an IBM Thinkpad. They're durable.

Apple Powerbooks are some of the most fragile things I've ever seen. They look great, but that thin metal case dents easily and provides no protection for the LCD. Handle with extreme care. The iBook G4 is a much better option.

If you like to replace your hardware every two years, avoid 64bit systems for now.. no real use. If you're going to keep it a long time (like your 5 years or more), the AMD processors are nice, but realize that you're buying a system that loses some of the basic 32bit features in favor of being 64bit compatible. Why? Well, because much of the software available today is made for 'traditional' 32bit systems.
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Old 11-08-2005, 01:58 PM   #5
mpaone
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Beaverboy
If you really must have a laptop, get an IBM Thinkpad. They're durable.

Apple Powerbooks are some of the most fragile things I've ever seen. They look great, but that thin metal case dents easily and provides no protection for the LCD. Handle with extreme care. The iBook G4 is a much better option.

If you like to replace your hardware every two years, avoid 64bit systems for now.. no real use. If you're going to keep it a long time (like your 5 years or more), the AMD processors are nice, but realize that you're buying a system that loses some of the basic 32bit features in favor of being 64bit compatible. Why? Well, because much of the software available today is made for 'traditional' 32bit systems.
Problem with the iBook is that it does not accept a VZW air card and that is a requirement.

Never looked into IBM, I'll have to research some more.

-Mike.
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Old 11-08-2005, 02:21 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Beaverboy
Apple Powerbooks are some of the most fragile things I've ever seen. They look great, but that thin metal case dents easily and provides no protection for the LCD. Handle with extreme care.
Bullhockey!

I've own3d pretty much every PowerBook Apple have ever made and every one of them has been tough and reliable.

The PowerBook does have WiFi & Bluetooth built in but for a VZW aircard you'll need the PCMCIA slotted 15" or 17" PowerBook which pushes the Mac out of your price range. Shame. Think of all the time you might have saved not having to fight the built-in malware of a Windows system. Good hunting.

Simon
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Old 11-08-2005, 02:25 PM   #7
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Agreed on the IBM laptop for toughness. Mines been around the world with me a couple times and it always fires right up. If you want lightweight and small, look at the X-series. Like the X30/40. For a little more mass but plenty of power, I use a T41p daily.

I had a Sony Vaio...never again. And I'd avoid Dell laptops too
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Old 11-08-2005, 03:08 PM   #8
Calamity Jesus
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Quote:
Originally Posted by simoniac
Bullhockey!

I've own3d pretty much every PowerBook Apple have ever made and every one of them has been tough and reliable.
Please tell that to my gently handled PowerBooks at work.. with the dented cases and cooresponding marks on the LCD.
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Old 11-08-2005, 03:28 PM   #9
CU04BlackWRX
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I would agree with the Powerbook suggestion. I have an iMac G4, PowerMac G5, Mac mini, iBook G3, PowerBook G4, & an iPod Photo as well. Apple is the best for your work. Airport Extreme will work with anything so you won't need an external card. 802.11g is all the same so it doesn't matter what card you have. Trust me on this one, Apple is the best, having owned an IBM Thinkpad and still have an HP Centrino Laptop. I currently have $26,000 worth of XServe's, XServe RAID's, Quad PowerMac's coming in for my new company as well.
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Old 11-08-2005, 03:28 PM   #10
simoniac
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Well, I'm sorry to hear that they fared so poorly. Unusual in my experience.

Here's an interesting story: I was in the UK for a few months recently, with my PB G4, and working from my father's cottage. I'm usually quite careful with my laptop but this time I had put it into it's case without closing the zipper. I slung the bag over my shoulder and out popped the computer. It fell > 3 ft onto a stone slab floor. Ouch! There're not many laptops that would survive that abuse. The case got a bit bent and it wouldn't close properly. It also would spontaneously put itself into sleep mode at the slightest touch - not condusive to laptop operation :-) . Well, my son stripped the whole thing down to the bare chassis and straightened it out. After reassembly it still had some problem closing and would still go into sleep mode unbidden. I called Applecare support and, ahem, conviced them that it was experiencing some hardware problems. (They didn't ask me if I had dropped it.) UPS came to the door next day (Thursday) and took it away. I watched its repair status online anxiously expecting a phone from the technician at any time. On Monday the repair status was still "in repair" but I received an email from Apple stating that they had fixed it and shipped it back to me. It would take up to 2 business days for shipping. I swear, 20 minutes later UPS was at the door with my PB! (They must have shipped it on Friday). All shiny and fixed! The had replaced quite a number of parts and at no cost to me. I don't feel <i><b>too</i></b> guilty since I've directly or indirectly generated 10's (or more likely 100's) of thousands of dollars worth of business for them. Lucky me.

I've rarely had to use AppleCare in the past but I've always had excellent service from them

Simon
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Old 11-08-2005, 03:40 PM   #11
mpaone
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CU04BlackWRX
Airport Extreme will work with anything so you won't need an external card. 802.11g is all the same so it doesn't matter what card you have.
Trust me, it will work for most folks but I'm a VZW employee and need to use a card to access the broadband network.

Apple really sounds like the way to go then. I'm not very abusive on my things (well aside from my cell phone ) so it should be fine.

Thanks SO much for all of the feedback so far, I really appreciate it.

-Mike.
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Old 11-08-2005, 03:46 PM   #12
martel
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Beaverboy
If you really must have a laptop, get an IBM Thinkpad. They're durable.

Apple Powerbooks are some of the most fragile things I've ever seen. They look great, but that thin metal case dents easily and provides no protection for the LCD. Handle with extreme care. The iBook G4 is a much better option.
*cough*

i worked for IBM for 4 years. Had about 5 different thinkpads. While they weren't exactly fragile they aren't worth the money either.

I've had a 1.25ghz powerbook since I left IBM (coming up on 2 years). No problems at all. I am careful with it but it also comes to work with me on my motercycle sometimes. PB FTW!
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Old 11-08-2005, 03:50 PM   #13
martel
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Quote:
Originally Posted by simoniac
I slung the bag over my shoulder and out popped the computer. It fell > 3 ft onto a stone slab floor. Ouch! There're not many laptops that would survive that abuse.

oof...

buddy of mine has the 1.25 also. It so far has survived: falling from his xterra onto asphalt twice, his wife dropping it from the kitchen table, his 2 daughters.

go apple
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Old 11-08-2005, 04:24 PM   #14
HoOn
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For the Money, I can recommend a Dell especially when you get the Laptops for a good price due to coupons. I have the 17" 9300 Inspiron with the Nvidia Go6800 and its an awesome laptop. I bought it for around 1200 using a $750 coupon. The screen is awesome too. There are many other laptops out there but I think for the money the Dell laptops are very good.

- John

Oh check out notebookforums.com for more insite


IBdellsucks
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Old 11-08-2005, 04:42 PM   #15
Longfury
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I am on a Powerbook G4 right now. Its the latest 15" model and its great. I love this thing.

Now if I could play every games I own on a Mac I would not own a PC.

Powerbooks FTW

If you can wait rumor has it the new Intel based Powerbooks will be out early next year ahead of schedule. The new Mac Mini maybe out in Jan. Thats 6 months ahead of predictions.
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Old 11-08-2005, 04:47 PM   #16
Calamity Jesus
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I stand corrected about the PowerBooks. Someone must have been handling ours with unusual carelessness, then. Other than the case durability issues we've had, they've been flawless.

We're going through Dell Laptop Power Supply hell lately. Unfortunately I can't reccomend them from my own experience. Nearly half of all of our Dell Laptops have ended needing some sort of repair within 3 years... but good warrantys save us there.

The thing I didn't really mention before is that.. I hate laptops with a passion.
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