Quantcast What should I Buy? Dell vs Lenovo vs HP? And then which model?

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    Us What should I Buy? Dell vs Lenovo vs HP? And then which model?

    I'm trying to figure out which is the best laptop for me. At first I figured I would spend $400-$600 on a door-buster special in order to replace my 9 year-old Dell desktop. I'm tired of asking my friend to copy CDs for me (mostly of medical files) and can't add a burner to my work laptop (15" regular screen IBM T43 which works great but is a bit heavy). I have DSL service and Sprint wireless broadband for the work laptop (external card, so I can use the service on any computer but can't count on having it forever as job situation may change in a few months).

    As I started looking into models and reading up on different features I got a little carried away and am now prepared to spend for a laptop that will probably have more featue/capability than I need. I've decided to spend for 2GB, a faster (7200rpm) hard drive if offered, Dual-layer burner with HD if reasonable, Wireless N connectivity, Bluetooth, etc. I'm not sure if getting discrete graphics is worthwhile as this seems to be one of the major items that drives up price (and HP doesn't seem to offer it). I'd like to have a laptop that can be upgraded as new technologies come out (or as I expand my computer usage/knowledge).

    Anyway, do I go with a Dell, Lenovo, or HP? If Dell, do I configure an Inspiron or XPS (Vostro doesn't seem to offer as many feature options)? For Lenovo I'm looking at T61. HP has too many different model #s which makes it hard to compare the pre-configured models at BestBuy, Circuit City, and their site. As many of the reviews say, HP seems to be less expensive than the others, but you don't get as many choices on things like screen/resolution, graphics card, etc. The XPS seems to be very expensive (especially considering that the discount offer out there forces you to get the 3-year extended warranty).

    Any input is appreciated. Also, is getting the TV tuner card worth it? I don't really travel, so that's not the reason I'm considering it. I'm just a full-time couch potato and would learn to use DVR and download features. I've been a Tivo enthusiast for about 7 years and currently also have a dual-tunor DVR from Comcast.

    Here's some more info as I copied the general questions and filled in the answers. Thanks.

    General Questions

    1) What is your budget?
    $800 to $1200

    2) What size notebook would you prefer?
    a. Ultraportable; 12" screen or less
    b. Thin and Light; 13" - 14" screen
    c. Mainstream; 15" - 16" screen
    d. Desktop Replacement; 17"+ screen

    14 or 15-inch. The 15-inch widescreens seem a bit too big to carry around.

    3) Please select your country's flag as a post icon and tell us what country are you buying this in.

    4) Are there any brands that you prefer or any you really don't like?
    No preference

    5) What tasks will you be performing with the notebook?
    Mostly Internet and email. Burning/copying discs of medical files. Downloading movies/TV shows. Will probably want to conect with my Tivo and in the future may want to add a TV card to use the laptop as a DVR.

    6) Will you be taking the notebook with you to different places or leaving it on your desk?
    Some travel, but not a huge amount. Mostly using at home on my couch.

    7) Will you be playing games on it; if so, which games?
    Some, but nothing real advanced

    8) How many hours of battery life do you need?
    2.5-3 hours. Enough for a movie

    9) Do you mind buying online without seeing the notebook in person?
    No

    10) What OS do you prefer? Windows (XP or Vista), Mac OS, Linux, etc.
    No preference. I would choose XP but I have a feeling that in a couple of years everything will be offered on Vista and XP won't be supported.

    Screen Specifics

    11) Would you prefer standard or widescreen?
    Seems widescreen is all that's offered for 14 and 15-inch models.

    12) From the choices below, what screen resolutions would you prefer?

    Standard
    a. XGA -1024x768 - Large and easy to read text + graphics icons, but you fit less stuff on the screen.
    b. SXGA - 1400x1050 - Compromise resolution between XGA and UXGA.
    c. UXGA - 1600x1200 - Very small text and graphics icons, you can fit lots of stuff on the screen.

    Widescreen
    d. WXGA or WXGA+ - 1280x768/800 or 1440x900; Wider viewing version of XGA, good for movie viewing or spreadsheets.
    e. WSXGA+ - 1680x1050; Wider viewing version of SXGA, good for movie viewing or spreadsheets.
    f. WUXGA - 1920x1200; Wider viewing version of UXGA, good for movie viewing or spreadsheets.

    C, D, or E

    13) Do you want a glossy/reflective screen or a matte/non-glossy screen?
    I know the glossy provides a better picture, but the glare seems to be a big issue. I think a matte may be better for me.

    Build Quality and Design

    14) Are the notebook's looks and stylishness important to you?
    No

    15) When are you buying this laptop and how long do you want this laptop to last?
    Within the next week or so. Hopefully several years (with upgrades as needed)

    Notebook Components

    16) How much hard drive space do you want; 40GB to 200GB?
    Not important to me. I plan on downloading some stuff but with a burner I don't think this is too important. I may opt for an external drive in the future in order to provide more space and a back-up.

    17) Do you need an optical drive? If yes, a DVD, Blu-Ray or HD-DVD drive?
    Yes. DVD. HD and Blu-Ray seem too expensive for now, though if I had it I would connect the laptop to my TV in order to use the drive.

  2. #2
    EJS
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    Default Re: What should I Buy? Dell vs Lenovo vs HP? And then which model?

    I know others will jump in with suggestions on your choices so i will leave that to them. Especially since I am currently in the same situation as you looking at the same companies.

    However, I would suggest not getting the TV tuner and look at a product called HDHomerun. Its a networked digital tuner. Tuck it away somewhere out of site and any computer on your network can access it to watch TV.

    EJ

  3. #3
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    Default Re: What should I Buy? Dell vs Lenovo vs HP? And then which model?

    Since you want something to last a few years, a business laptop is a better option than the Consumer laptops.
    I would recommend the Thinkpad T61, Dell latitude, or HP 6910p.

    Go to this website www.lenovo.com/cpp
    and use this code 110271
    Last edited by Han Bao Quan; 5th January 2008 at 01:29 AM.
    Thinkpad R50
    Thinkpad T42
    Thinkpad T61
    Thinkpad W510
    WOODEN HP 8710w with 20-Cell battery
    HP Pavilion Dv7.
    Asus K53E

    International CES 2010 coverage

  4. #4
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    Default Re: What should I Buy? Dell vs Lenovo vs HP? And then which model?

    does the code works without limited time ty alot it seems i can save 400 with that

  5. #5
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    Default Re: What should I Buy? Dell vs Lenovo vs HP? And then which model?

    I'm not sure how long it will last, somebody else posting the similar thing but it was "IBM shareholder Purchase..." something. I have no clue how do they get it. Lenovo seems doesn't advertise much about their discounts.
    BTW, somebody posted that code too, I didn't post it.
    Last edited by Han Bao Quan; 5th January 2008 at 01:46 AM.
    Thinkpad R50
    Thinkpad T42
    Thinkpad T61
    Thinkpad W510
    WOODEN HP 8710w with 20-Cell battery
    HP Pavilion Dv7.
    Asus K53E

    International CES 2010 coverage

  6. #6
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    Default Re: What should I Buy? Dell vs Lenovo vs HP? And then which model?

    Here are three good choices Dell XPS M1530, Lenovo Thinkpad T61p, and the HP dv8510p. All three are well built machines and have 15.4" screens

    The dell has the best graphics card which will be useful for gaming and whatching HD or Blu-Ray (either on the monitor or your TV).

    The Lenovo is a buisness class notebook it will more for writing papers, surfing the internet, and doing some light gaming. Lenovo is also known for excellent build quality.

    The HP is also a buisness class notebook it will be good for light gaming, and watching regular dvd's.

    As for weight:

    Dell 5.78 Lbs
    Lenovo 6.50Lbs
    HP 7.00Lbs

    Right now Dell is offering a $669 discount onnthe M1530 so you'll probaly be able to get the best deal there.

  7. #7
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    Default Re: What should I Buy? Dell vs Lenovo vs HP? And then which model?

    I forgot also look at what student discounts you can get

  8. #8
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    Default Re: What should I Buy? Dell vs Lenovo vs HP? And then which model?

    Quote Originally Posted by M1530 View Post
    The dell has the best graphics card which will be useful for gaming and whatching HD or Blu-Ray (either on the monitor or your TV).
    the graphic cards in the XPS and Thinkpad T61p are equal in power. Quadro 570m = 8600GT GDDR3.
    The integrated card will be fine for watching HD-DVD or Blue ray.

    The Lenovo is a buisness class notebook it will more for writing papers, surfing the internet, and doing some light gaming. Lenovo is also known for excellent build quality.
    Almost all the laptops can be used for writing papers, surfing the internet and doing some light gaming. Thinkpad is designed for more business use, not just that. Lenovo is not known for excellent build quality, Thinkpad is. The consumer notebooks of Lenovo are average at best.

    The HP is also a buisness class notebook it will be good for light gaming, and watching regular dvd's.
    Again, every laptop can watch regular DVDs, and do light gaming. HP business class notebook is designed for business use, same as Thinkpad. Both of the two are better built than the XPS.

    Right now Dell is offering a $669 discount onnthe M1530 so you'll probaly be able to get the best deal there.
    He wants something that last several years, I doubt the XPS can do that. Plus the 8600GT would be a waste for what he needs.

    Not to mention you're wrong on the weights, The HP is one of the thinnest and lightest 15.4'' laptops around.
    The XPS starts at 5.9 pounds with 6-cell battery (6.29 pounds with 9-cell)
    Last edited by Han Bao Quan; 5th January 2008 at 02:06 AM.
    Thinkpad R50
    Thinkpad T42
    Thinkpad T61
    Thinkpad W510
    WOODEN HP 8710w with 20-Cell battery
    HP Pavilion Dv7.
    Asus K53E

    International CES 2010 coverage

 

 

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