Law School Discussion

Buying a Notebook Computer for Law School? The Q and A thread

tobias

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Re: Buying a Notebook Computer for Law School? The Q and A thread
« Reply #180 on: March 21, 2006, 07:06:54 PM »
Does anyone know whether or not the X41 will be able to easily run Vista? Someone claimed that the Toshiba is the only tablet out that will be able to run Vista's new interface.

It will matter eventually in any case but I just heard vista will not be out until at least January.

Officer Rod Farva

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Re: Buying a Notebook Computer for Law School? The Q and A thread
« Reply #181 on: March 21, 2006, 07:36:57 PM »
Gah, I just wrote a huge writeup of the Fujitsu T4000 and accidentally hit the back button on my browser. Damnit. Here's the link:

http://store.shopfujitsu.com/fpc/Ecommerce/PrdBridge.jsp?pclass=T4



OingoBoingo

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Re: Buying a Notebook Computer for Law School? The Q and A thread
« Reply #182 on: March 21, 2006, 08:03:40 PM »
Does anyone know whether or not the X41 will be able to easily run Vista? Someone claimed that the Toshiba is the only tablet out that will be able to run Vista's new interface.

edit: I'll add some downsides to the X41 that I've read about, since it is the tablet generating the most buzz.

1.) the included battery is definitely not the best in class (under 4 hours, according to a few reviews). The larger battery bumps the weight up to 4 lbs and changes the form factor of the x41 into a 11"x11" square. I'm not sure if the laptop sleeve would work with it.

2.) definitely not the most powerful tablet out there.

3.) definitely the slowest HD: 4200 rpm or something like that. Granted, this HD has all sorts of security measures built in.

For me, these performance issues are a pretty big deal. The Toshiba and Fujitsu both seem to be better options, although most people acknowledge the durability and security of IBM laptops to be the best. At this point I'm sold on the idea of a tablet, so if I don't get the X41, I'm not getting an IBM.



edit #2: we should make a tablet shoot-out thread, comparing and contrasting their features.

I think you may be underestimating the X41 a bit. Yes, the boot times are slower than your desktop and most desktop replacement laptops - No arguement there. In fact, the first week I got it I experienced frustration in this regard. I grew comfortable once I eliminated some of the bloatware and customized. Some two weeks later, I can say that I am more and more satisfied in this regard. To each his own. What helps and does not necessarily degrade performance (as some have suggested) is to put the machine on stand-by. I usually do a cold boot every 2 days or so. The machine snaps back to life promptly - no complaints.

I also want to talk to complaints about possible general performance issues AFTER boot-up. Yes, the system is made of humble components: 1.5 GHZ processor, 4200 RPM hard drive....yada yada yada. Stutter of the mouse pointer annoys when the hard drive is really busy (partially solved by installing more RAM). Yet for what I need the machine to do, this things excels - and then some.

Example? I have been able to play a high bitrate HD movie clip (encoded at 1080p) on this machine WITHOUT hiccuping. Thats saying something about underestimating components. HD video is demanding on a processor and video card. This thing uses shared video memory!!!! My Athlon XP 2400 desktop with a ATI 9800 pro card hiccups constantly while playing. Food for thought.

(for those wondering, I have been playing the Alexander 1080p clip on wmvhd.com)

If you need an optical drive with your tablet then you need to shop elsewhere. If not, then look no further. Your tablet has arrived :)

Oingo

phooey

Re: Buying a Notebook Computer for Law School? The Q and A thread
« Reply #183 on: March 21, 2006, 08:30:10 PM »
Hey computer people,
What do you think about the Toshiba Satellite A105-S2712 Notebook?
It looks like you can get a pretty good deal on it right now at Circuit City with rebates and all.  I just need something for internet and schoolwork- maybe some streaming NPR every now and then.  A nice big screen is a must for me.  You know, the old eyes have never been that great.

The reviews of this one say it's a pretty solid choice...any comments?

I've never had a laptop before, will I need to buy a router for internet or is that unnecessary?  Thanks.

tobias

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Re: Buying a Notebook Computer for Law School? The Q and A thread
« Reply #184 on: March 21, 2006, 08:49:32 PM »
I have a toshiba laptop I use as a spare because my dell is not routinely functional, and it is a workhorse!! It is at least 7 years old and I have never had a problem with it.

phooey

Re: Buying a Notebook Computer for Law School? The Q and A thread
« Reply #185 on: March 21, 2006, 08:55:44 PM »
Thanks.  I've heard they're dependable, that's my main requirement.  I'll throw myself off a bridge if my computer blows up on me before finals.

Hey, any insight on the internet question?  I seriously have no idea how to get internet on a laptop. Will I be able to just pick up internet vibes wherever I go?  :)

OingoBoingo

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Re: Buying a Notebook Computer for Law School? The Q and A thread
« Reply #186 on: March 21, 2006, 09:17:39 PM »
Update:

I have figured out that the speed issue that I have is most likely due to a router incompatibility with the wireless card of which I can do nothing about. I was going to replace the router with something that could do printer sharing and/or telephony (read: Vonage). It is a 2.5 year old Linksys wireless B unit. Perhaps I'll do something this summer.

The included Zinio reader is a neat program. I'm not really an avid magazine buyer but this type of application seems useful. I think they only offer magazines through their website. I could not see that they offer fiction/non-fiction books. Maybe there is another vendor out there (Amazon?). It would be also nice if we could purchase class texts in PDF format (probably pie in the sky but oh well).

I have done some tweaking, removed some programs and experienced a noticable gain in boot up time speed. My wife's laptop still boots up faster - it's just not as much faster as it used to be.

Oingo

Solved the speed and connectivity issue. The problem was the channel selection. It seems that the other 6 routers in the neighborhood are on channel 6. A switch to channel 11 solved all problems - yah!!!!!

Oingo.


Typhoon Longwang

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Re: Buying a Notebook Computer for Law School? The Q and A thread
« Reply #187 on: March 21, 2006, 09:30:20 PM »
Does anyone know whether or not the X41 will be able to easily run Vista? Someone claimed that the Toshiba is the only tablet out that will be able to run Vista's new interface.

It should be able to run Vista but it may not be able to run "Glass" well.  I think the bottom end of integrated graphics cards that will be able to run glass includes the most recent Intel 950 integrate graphics system.  The X41 doesn't have this...it's got the Intel 900 graphics chipset.  Vista will probably be an overated system resource hog anyway - I suspect Windows XP will become the new Windows 2000.


Hey computer people,
What do you think about the Toshiba Satellite A105-S2712 Notebook?
It looks like you can get a pretty good deal on it right now at Circuit City with rebates and all.  I just need something for internet and schoolwork- maybe some streaming NPR every now and then.  A nice big screen is a must for me.  You know, the old eyes have never been that great.

The reviews of this one say it's a pretty solid choice...any comments?

I've never had a laptop before, will I need to buy a router for internet or is that unnecessary?  Thanks.

Definitely go to a computer store and try one out.  I've tried a few Sattelites and they always feel kind of cheap...the touchpads weren't very good (even after adjustments) and the ones I used were highly underpowered.

As an aside, I must say that I dropped by a CompUSA and looked at the Sony SZ series and I was pretty impressed.  I'll go back at some point and spend more time messing around with it, but for an ultra-portable it looks pretty good.  I know Sony has some infamous support but I'm pretty impressed by the SZ's specs and I've heard good things about earlier Vaios.

phooey

Re: Buying a Notebook Computer for Law School? The Q and A thread
« Reply #188 on: March 22, 2006, 11:36:42 AM »
Nope.  I use dial-up.

OingoBoingo

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Re: Buying a Notebook Computer for Law School? The Q and A thread
« Reply #189 on: March 22, 2006, 12:29:06 PM »
Nope.  I use dial-up.

Most Laptops have built in 56 K dial up modems - even the ultraportables like the X41.
Curious, how much do you pay for dial up? Depending on where you are you can score a low tier DSL plan for as low as $14.99 a month.

Oingo.