Law School Discussion

Recommend a laptop!!!

Recommend a laptop!!!
« on: May 26, 2005, 07:37:11 PM »
Hi. Which company would you recommend?
I want one with large screen - 15inch or 17 inch.
How about dell?
Lots of people have dells, but don't know it's because cheap or that's great for use.

Thanks.  :)

Re: Recommend a laptop!!!
« Reply #1 on: May 26, 2005, 08:12:59 PM »
I am the new, and happy, owner of a IBM (now Lenovo) ThinkPad T43.  15" screen, 1GB RAM, 60GB HD, fingerprint security, SXGA screen, etc.  It's great, I love it, I'd highly recommend it to anyone looking for a laptop for anything, including law school.  The keyboard is close to perfect, a plus for typing all those notes, it has built in wireless of course, built in bluetooth for PDA syncing or wireless mousing around, and the wonderful ThinkVantage suite of tools that makes customizing your laptop a snap and turns it into a highly functional and optimized tool.  I couldn't be happier about the buy, and thanks to my student discount it wasn't that pricy either.  And, as a plus, it plays games pretty well for those spare moments when you need to detox from your studies (I have Knights of the Old Republic running fine on the thing).  After owning computers (desk- and laptop) for 20 years this is the best piece of technology I've ever used.  Highly recommend.

Re: Recommend a laptop!!!
« Reply #2 on: May 26, 2005, 08:39:29 PM »
How much did it set you back?


  • *****
  • 13570
    • View Profile
Re: Recommend a laptop!!!
« Reply #3 on: May 26, 2005, 09:14:55 PM »
15" widescreen Apple Powerbook.

Or if you don't want an Apple, I agree with the 15" IBM T43.


Re: Recommend a laptop!!!
« Reply #4 on: May 27, 2005, 05:21:35 AM »
I just got a Toshiba Satellite and love it.  It has a 15.4" screen and a full size keyboard but it is so slim that it is light.  I replaced a Dell and would never buy from them again.  Even if you have a machine that works their customer service is the crappiest. 

Re: Recommend a laptop!!!
« Reply #5 on: May 27, 2005, 05:22:39 AM »
How much did it set you back?

basic list was $2050, but after tax and a service upgrade from 3-year depot to 3-year on-site, and shipping, it totaled $2600

Re: Recommend a laptop!!!
« Reply #6 on: May 27, 2005, 10:52:02 AM »
Does anyone have experience with Best Buy?  As I understand it, if you get a warranty through them, they will fix your laptop and all you have to do is bring it into the store (rather than mailing it).


  • ***
  • 93
  • Vrroom.
    • View Profile
    • Email
Re: Recommend a laptop!!!
« Reply #7 on: May 27, 2005, 11:14:12 AM »
I worked there.  On almost any item, I would try to dissuade you from Best Buy's extended warranty.  Laptops are one of the few exceptions.  The biggest reason I can think of to actually buy the extension is the laptop's battery.  If it displays a decrease in average life by the end of the warranty, they'll replace it free of charge.  They also cover dead pixels and a variety of other issues that the manufacturer typically would not service.

If you weren't attending LS, I would really try to talk you into an Apple.  The early poster's experience certainly hasn't mirrored mine.  I've got a 12" iBook, the very bottom of the line, and I love it dearly.  It's stable and fast, the operating system is intuitive, and I've yet to find anything that I could do with a PC that I can't do with the Mac.  The only exception is law school exams, which at most schools require a PC running Windows XP.  Darn.

You'll hear a lot of people arguing for one brand or another, but the truth is that all laptops are pretty darn similar.  I would honestly buy the cheapest one that fits your needs.  The biggest tasks driving hardware development are media editing and games, and it doesn't sound like either of those are priorities for you.  Even something relatively low end should work out fine for all three years.

Dell has a lot of brand recognition because they advertise incessantly.  They probably aren't the best value available.  Their machines are pretty good, basically the same as anyone else, but my experiences with their customer support have generally been pretty terrible.  The big advantage of Dell is that since they sell so many machines, replacement parts are widely available and relatively inexpensive.  The same can be said for Compaq/HP.  Big volume has its advantages.

If I was going to recommend any one brand, I would probably steer you toward eMachines.  Their early machines were, without exception, the worst computers in the world.  Seriously.  They were terrible.  Sometime in the last few years, they really cleaned up their act.  If you check out Consumer Reports, epinions, etc., I think you'll find that eMachines is one of the most consistently highly rated brands in terms of customer support and value.  And, happily, their machines are ridiculously cheap.

My $.02.