Laptop for 11 yr old

  David-235429 08:17 27 Sep 06

I am looking to buy a laptop under £400 and have seen a Gateway notebook click here

with an AMD Sempon 3200 and an NVIDIA GeForce Go 6100 graphics card for £365. Its got an XVGA screen, WiFi 802.11g and for the money looks to be a reasonably good buy. He'll use it for homework but also to play on line games like Runescape. I know I cant expect much for less than £400. Can anyone tell me if this will be a suitable Notebook for him.

Many thanks

  Stuartli 08:44 27 Sep 06

Is there any particular reason for it to be a laptop - an 11-year-old doesn't seem likely to be carrying it around school?

You can get a much better system for similar or less money buying barebones equipment plus a CRT or TFT monitor, now at remarkably low prices for 17in models.

For instance:

click here

or others from the barebones link in the left hand menu.

A 17in refurbished monitor at £20:

click here

or Scan etc sell brand new ones at keen prices.

  David-235429 08:56 27 Sep 06

Thanks but as his Mum and I are divorced he spends time at both houses and we also go away in our caravan so he needs the portability of a notebook

  D@ve 10:57 27 Sep 06

Runescape isn't a very graphically intense game. The spec of that laptop will be fine for homework and any games he'll play through an internet browser. Unless he wants to buy new games, you shouldn't have a problem

  The Kestrel 15:49 27 Sep 06

My son bought a Gateway computer, albeit a slightly more expensive model, from Staples recently and is very plaesed with the machine. As I understand it, Gateway have a good reputation in the business world and have just returned to the home laptop market.

  The Kestrel 18:46 27 Sep 06

Meant to add the following to my previous post.

11 year olds can be more computer 'savvy' than many adults, so don't think your son needs anything but a regular laptop. My son bought a slightly more expensive Gateway laptop from Staples a few weeks ago and is very pleased with it.

I would recommend that you buy the Student/Teacher Educational version of Microsoft Office as your son will probably be using this software at school and the laptop only comes with Works and a 60 day trial of the above mentioned software.

  bjh 11:37 28 Sep 06

Acer are a "good" cheap brand and, in my experience, more reliable than some.

This model
click here
would fit your requirements, and the 3 year warranty might be worth considering (at £59, it's good value ~ normally I'd run a mile form them, but with an 11 year old at the helm...)

I have not had that model myself, but I have used other Acer laptops. They've been fine for me.

There is a review of a very similar model on (hiss, boo) Computer Shopper mag website - note the best buy awards on that page!

  terryf 11:41 28 Sep 06

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