Looking for a new daily driver for my wife

Discussion in 'What Notebook Should I Buy?' started by odin243, Mar 16, 2020.

  1. odin243

    odin243 Notebook Prophet

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    Looking for a new daily driver for my wife. She will use this all day for a work from home job, and occasionally use it for movies/games as well. We travel constantly, so mobility and durability are the most important factors.

    Mainly looking to get a good list of models, likely from the last 1-3 years worth of business or premium consumer notebooks that I can hunt down used deals for. Any advice on what age range or processor generation I should be targeting for this budget would also be great.

    EDIT: Her current laptop is an Acer R13 (R7-371T). It's fine, the touch screen is nice, the "convertible" features seem mostly gimmicky. Overall something slightly more powerful and slightly better built would be nice.

    General Questions

    1) What is your budget?
    $800 USD (ish). That is the ballpark I would ideally like to spend, but something a little higher would not be out of the question. Definitely need to stay under $1k.

    2) What size notebook would you prefer?
    Something in the 12"-13" range.
    3) In which country will you be buying this notebook?
    USA

    4) Are there any brands that you prefer or any you really don't like?
    Personally I like Thinkpads and Latitudes. I've also had good experiences with Asus, other Lenovos (e.g. Yoga), and XPS.
    5) Would you consider laptops that are refurbished/redistributed?
    Almost certainly looking for a refurb.

    6) What are the primary tasks will you be performing with this notebook?
    This will be a daily driver for my wife. She does training, support, & implementation for a software company. The most common tasks are video calls and screen sharing, with other line-of-business-type web applications.

    7) Will you be taking the notebook with you to different places, leaving it on your desk or both?
    We both travel full time, so this needs to be very portable. Working the better part of a day (4-6 hours) while continually web browsing and video calling from a coffee shop or library would be the norm. Plugs are often available, but not always.

    8) Will you be playing games on your notebook? (If so, please state which games or types of games?)
    Some minor gaming would be likely (Oblivion on lowest settings would probably be the most intensive). For reference, she currently does this on an Intel 4400 HD and is ok with the experience.

    9) How many hours of battery life do you need?
    She would need to be able to rely on it to last 6 hours of pretty hard usage. Likely that means a stated spec of 10-12 hours.

    10) Would you prefer to see the notebooks you're considering before purchasing it or buying a notebook on-line without seeing it is OK?
    I'm expecting to buy online.

    11) What OS do you prefer? Windows, Mac OS, Linux, Chrome OS, etc.
    We'll be putting Windows 10 Pro on it, but if it comes with that already it would be a minor convenience.

    Screen Specifics

    12) What screen resolution(s) would you prefer? (See further below for explanations.)

    13) Do you want a glossy/reflective screen or a matte/non-glossy screen? (See further below for explanations.)

    Build Quality and Design

    14) Are the notebook's looks and stylishness important to you?
    Somewhat. Working on this thing is a major part of her life, so it shouldn't be completely unappealing. Looks are definitely secondary to build quality/reliability/suitability though.

    Notebook Components

    15) How much hard drive space do you need?
    It would be nice if a regular SSD as well as an M2 drive was supported, both for extra space as well as for the possibility of putting a dedicated Linux drive in at some point. That being said, we would upgrade the SSD ourselves if the one it comes with is smaller than 512GB.

    Timing, Warranty and Longevity


    16) When are you buying this laptop?
    ASAP.

    17) How long do you expect to use this laptop?
    As long as it lasts I suppose.

    18) How long could you afford to do without your laptop if it were to fail?
    Worst comes to worst I can always get something crappy at Walmart.... that being said, build quality is pretty important.

    19) Would you be willing to pay significantly extra for on-site warranty, or would it be acceptable to you to have to ship the laptop to the vendor for repair with perhaps a week or more outage?
    I'm not worried about repairs.
     
    Last edited: Mar 16, 2020
  2. Charles P. Jefferies

    Charles P. Jefferies Lead Moderator Super Moderator

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    The Dell Business Outlet has an 18 percent off coupon for the Latitude 12" 7200 convertible. You'd have no problem getting one around or under $800. Comes with a three-year warranty, too. Pretty hard to beat that.

    Try to get one with 16GB of RAM because it's soldered/non-upgradeable.

    Charles
     
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  3. kojack

    kojack Notebook Virtuoso

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    Beat me to it Charles. I was just going to say the same thing. To the O.P. if you sign up for Rakuten, you get an additional 4 Percent off the dell refurb business machines.
     
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  4. ZaZ

    ZaZ Super Model Super Moderator

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    ThinkPad X series, the OG of business ultraportables, might be worth a look, though the Dell is tough to beat from a value perspective. If you want a power bump, one of the low watt quad cores will get you there.
     
  5. odin243

    odin243 Notebook Prophet

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    Thanks guys! The dell outlet had fallen off of my radar, that's a great tip! I've also been looking at various predecessors to the current X1 Yoga model, which look pretty good as well.
     
  6. kojack

    kojack Notebook Virtuoso

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    Just a heads up, again, on rakuten, lenovo has 9% cash back. that's pretty significant return there. I was looking at the 27" creators all in one, and would get 265 bucks cash back.
     
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