Dell Notebook Damaged - Replacement Needed

  Ben Avery 16:58 01 Feb 05
Locked

G'day,

After a long time of happy use, my Dell has suffered a fatal blow in the form of a certain person knocking it to the floor, replacement inevitable. As it will (hopefully) be partly covered under my contents insurance I will be looking at about £1,000 to replace. I will be looking for the follwing as would appreciate suggestions and comments on my options so far...

* The laptop will be used for webdesign (Studio MX), photo/image editing (some graphics reach 100MB+ in design stage so I want a good graphics card), Office applications (incl. large databases) as well as being my main PC for SAGE accounting etc.

* It will at times be connected to a network (100mbps LAN at present but would like the option of wireless in the future).

* It will be travelling with me quite a bit but to be honest this is mostly done by car so weight is not a HUGE problem although I'm tempted to go the Mobile Pentium M route if possible.

I have been looking at Dell (I know I can trust them) and Acer but could do with suggestions.

Would this be a reasonable spec for what I need:

- 1.7Ghz (or faster) Pentium M Processor (or equiv)

- 512MB (or more) DDR RAM

- 40GB HDD (no need for larger really but speed would be nice

- Radeon 9600 (or equiv) graphics card

- CD/RW (Dual format DVD/RW preferred but not essential)

I've looked at the Dell Inspiron and Latitude range and can appear to get a good price on a D600 even if I go up to a 2GHz processor.

Any suggestions welcome.

Ben

  FelixTCat 20:59 01 Feb 05

You've probably answered your own question.

You might like to think about 1 GByte RAM to work with large graphics. You may also find that the Pentium M is slow when rendering large graphics files.

Since weight(and, presumably, battery life) is not a problem, you might like to consider an Athlon-64 processor laptop. Windows XP 64-bit will be out soon and this gives a much better upgrade path.

For £1000 you should be ale to get an Athlon 64 3200 processor, 512 MB or 1 GB RAM, Radeon 9600 or 9700 graphics and 60 - 80 GByte hard disk.

  Ben Avery 09:37 03 Feb 05

One Lappy I was interested in was the Dell D600 (specs below) and I should've mentioned in my earlier post that battery life is reasonably important as I can't always plug in after arriving at destinations in the car - hence the Pentium M processor preference. If I'm wrong on this please let me know!

**************************************************


Dell D600 Specs (£972.00 excl. VAT incl. Shipping):

* Pentium M 755 (2Ghz, "MB L2 Cache, 400Mhz)

* 14.1" SXGA+ TFT Display

* Windows XP Pro SP2 (NTFS Formatted)

* 6 Cell 53WHr Lithium-Ion Primary Battery

* Internal 56K V.92 Modem

* Modular 8X DVD+RW with Decoder Software

* Intel ProWireless 2200 802.11b/g Mini PCI card

* 3 Year Next Business Day On Site Service

* 768MB 266MHz DDRAM Memory (1x512 = 1x266)

* D-Family 90W AC Adapter

* (No Floppy, No Complete Care, No Carry Case)

= £972.00 Excl. VAT, Incl. Shipping

**************************************************

Does this seem like a reasonable deal?

Could I get a similar or better deal with an Acer?

BA

  Ben Avery 09:38 03 Feb 05

One Lappy I was interested in was the Dell D600 (specs below) and I should've mentioned in my earlier post that battery life is reasonably important as I can't always plug in after arriving at destinations in the car - hence the Pentium M processor preference. If I'm wrong on this please let me know!

**************************************************


Dell D600 Specs (£972.00 excl. VAT incl. Shipping):

* Pentium M 755 (2Ghz, "MB L2 Cache, 400Mhz)

* 14.1" SXGA+ TFT Display

* Windows XP Pro SP2 (NTFS Formatted)

* 6 Cell 53WHr Lithium-Ion Primary Battery

* Internal 56K V.92 Modem

* Modular 8X DVD+RW with Decoder Software

* Intel ProWireless 2200 802.11b/g Mini PCI card

* 3 Year Next Business Day On Site Service

* 768MB 266MHz DDRAM Memory (1x512 = 1x266)

* D-Family 90W AC Adapter

* 40GB (5400rpm EIDE ATA-100 Hard Disk)

* (No Floppy, No Complete Care, No Carry Case)

= £972.00 Excl. VAT, Incl. Shipping

**************************************************

Does this seem like a reasonable deal?

Could I get a similar or better deal with an Acer?

BA

  Ben Avery 09:39 03 Feb 05

Ignore 1st Post!

  FelixTCat 12:39 03 Feb 05

Frankly, that looks a bit expensive. Everybody will give you different opinions on different makes of laptop. If you are spending £1000 it is worth doing a little research. Get a copy of Computer Shopper and compare specs in the adverts.

For example, I have a Gericom laptop from Aldi for £799 inc VAT which has a 1.7 GHz M processor, Ati 9700 128 MByte graphics chip, 15" screen, 80 GByte disk, 512 MByte memory, 2 years warranty and carry case, otherwise like the Dell. It is a rebadged MSI M510 laptop, but none the worse for that.

  Ben Avery 16:48 04 Feb 05

click here

Would that be ok for my requirements?

BA

  fuzzyone 17:15 04 Feb 05

click here

You might find these to your liking

  fuzzyone 17:17 04 Feb 05

click here

Or these if you want to go the 64bit route.

  FelixTCat 17:29 04 Feb 05

Plugged into the mains, it'll run like shit off a shovel, but the battery life will be poor - one of the reviews says 2 hours, but you can't guarantee much more than half that, particularly for rendering large graphics.

It has the new trend for widescreens, which is fine for movies, but in my view not as good as a normal 15" monitor, which will render 1400x1050 rather than this one's 1280x800

It is future-proof with its 64-bit processor, so that you can take advantage of XP 64 when it comes out, provided that the programs you need are also recompiled for 64-bit XP. You could even run Linux 64-bit straight away if there are suitable programs available.

The largeish hard drive will be useful.

Have a look at this: click here
The warranty looks better, though with Acer's upgrade, the prices are similar. I have bought from Mesh and have never had any problems.

Ultimately, it is up to you - these are only examples of what you can get for £1000 inc VAT.

  Ben Avery 11:25 07 Feb 05

I've decided I like the Acer laptops rather more than the others I've seen, and after much deliberation I'm torn between a few of their models and would truly appreciate anyone's thoughts on pro's and con's with each regarding my requirements which include the above and I'm considering replacing my Desktop later with a far more accessible TFT monitor, keybord, mouse and docking port for the Acer. This means it may also be used for the occasional movie:

Acer Travelmate 4502WLMi @ £820 inc VAT click here (I really like the curved keyboard on this one too!)

Acer Aspire 1524WLMi @ 853 inc VAT click here

Acer Aspire 1683WLMi Glare @ £849 inc VAT click here

Acer Aspire 2023WLMi @ 957 inc VAT click here (this one is possible a little pricey but I may be able to stretch too it if the advantages would be worthwhile)


Any comments and thoughts appreciated.

BA

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