Hello. I am a student who is getting ready to go abroad to Germany for graduate school. I have owned a Compaq Presario 1200 throughout my undergraduate "career", but I am now looking to upgrade some things from my current model. My range is $1500 +/- $100 or so. I was hoping for some advice on laptops that accel in these features:
I want (kind of in this order):
1) (long) battery life
2) 15" widescreen display
3) good multi card reader
4) metal case (requirement of my dad)
5) and I guess lastly is a cd burner and intergrated wireless
I don't mind switching brands etc. and don't necessarily need the fastest processor and such, but the faster the better as long as the price is not jacked up too high. I do a lot of research on this type of stuff, but sometimes it's overwhelming and you just want to get some opinions directly for you. Thanks for any help.
ps. for Germany I will need a 220 volt power supply but I guess that should not be a big deal; I can order one when I get there maybe?
The Compaq R3000 and HP z(x/v)5000 series are good computers with 4 hours battery life with the 12 cell, built in wireless, cd burners, and multi card readers, however they aren't metal cases. It also easliy falls within your price range.
I checked out hpshopping.com and went to customize a HP zd5000 and kept most of the standard specs (as you "listed" above) but added built in bluetooth for $29 and changed a few other minor things and it came out to $1273 with $50 mail-in-rebate. It seems like a pretty sweet deal.
The other item I have been scouring the internet for is a laptop bookbag. I think I have it narrowed down to two, albeit quite different choices.
1) Jansport Optimizer bookbag - Jansport is obviously a name to "trust" and everything I have read about this bag has essentially been positive. I need something for the laptop but more importantly that is able to hold a couple large textbooks. This one seems to fit the bill and is not too "ostentatious" or bulky from what I have read.
2) I also, when abroad, plan on doing a bit of traveling in Europe and have considered buying a 2-in-1 type of bag for "school" and "travel"... so I came across the Spire USA travel bag (I have a friend who owns the smaller VoltXL version). I am guessing this bag is quite a bit larger and could double as a travel bag better than the jansport. The only thing that worries me about this bag is it being too big for everyday school use; I don't want to stick out like a sore thumb. Anyone ever use this bag and did you think it was too large for everyday use?
also, anyone know of a detailed review for the bag. I found a really nice one for the Volt series and the-gadgeteer, but was hoping there would be something similar for the .
for the 15.4" HP I've found kensington makes a great backpack to fit the laptop. Don't remember the name, but has 2 side pockets, to drink pouches, 2 front pockets, 1 main pocket w/ laptop pocket, 1 thing on top for "mp3 player"
The only requirement that is hard to come by is the metal case. Most manufacturers stay away from them because they add quite a bit of weight to the machines. You can find some manufacturers that use magnesium alloy cases, or there is always Apple G4s, which use aluminum cases. Be careful with the Apples, however, as they use the cases to dissipate heat.
For all of your other requirements, the eMachines m6805 fits the bill quite nicely. It has a 15.4" WXGA display, 512 mb RAM, 60 gb hard drive, DVD/CD-RW combo drive, and a mobile Athlon 64 3000+ processor with an ATI Mobility Radeon 9600 w/ 64 mb VRAM. It is only $1399.99 after mail in rebates. The great part is an upgrade, with a mobile Athlon 64 3200+ and a DVD+-RW drive is the same part from BestBuy after mail-in rebates.