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Best Laptop for Student

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by ch0sen1, Jan 6, 2009.

  1. ch0sen1

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    My dell e1505 over heated and needs a new mother board :(

    Cheaper to buy a new one, and I want a very nice laptop that is NOT AN APPLE, which is very fast and reliable. What are the most popular ones these days for students?

    Thanks
     
  2. airplanes

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    #2 airplanes, Jan 6, 2009
    Last edited: Jan 6, 2009
  3. Depakote

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    I like lenovo and they're actually pretty reasonably priced if you buy online.

    SL400 is a good one. I'm replacing my dead laptop with that.
     
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  4. SB100

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    What about a Mapple?
     
  5. Captain Fantastic

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    Why rule out Apple? They make great laptops and I'd rank them among the best suited and among the most popular machines for students these days. You can dual boot to Windows if you like so you can have the best of both worlds. Just curious.
     
  6. armybound

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    Let me know how you like it. I'm going to end up going with the SL300.
     
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  7. Dr Lyss

    Dr Lyss Professional Student
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    :thumbup::thumbup:

    my dell overheated THREE times my freshman year, not to mention the two times it crashed due to viruses... got my macbook and never looked back =)
     
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  8. engineeredout

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    I was gonna suggest the lenovo. DO NOT get a sony. I can't even begin to describe how disappointing my sony was, and I've heard the same thing from many other people. It was certainly not a cheap computer when I bought it, and **** keeps ****ing up on it. I'm talking physical damage for no reason whatsoever.

    Motherboard X 2
    HD
    Ram chips
    CD ROM
    Battery X 3

    And no I didn't drop it/leave it on the surface of the sun. If I didn't have an extended warrenty with compUSA I would have been completely screwed. It cost 400$ for the warrenty but it paid for itself many times over. I can't wait until this year is over so I can get myself a new one, probably a lenovo.
     
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  9. MeatTornado

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    you would be very hard pressed to find someone who is unhappy with their macbook.

    no clue why you want to rule them out...you can even run windows on your mac if you must.
     
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  10. MilkmanAl

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    Cost? Macs are seriously expensive. I'd get a Lenovo. Can't beat that Mg chassis.
     
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  11. armybound

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    I like my Macbook pro, but cost-wise, it's not the most effective solution. You have to pay considerably more to get comparable hardware on a Macbook than, say, a Lenovo, and then you have to pay for the VMWare Fusion, Windows, Office, etc on top of all of it.
     
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  12. Jolie South

    Jolie South is invoking Domo. . .
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    when did you go to the darkside and buy the macbook?
     
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  13. armybound

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    Work gave it to me about 3 months ago.
     
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  14. htownpremie

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    how do people's laptops overheat?? i've been a laptop owner for about 10 years, and i've never had it happen, although it's happened to a lot of my friends... is it because you leave it on all day??
     
  15. armybound

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    I used to leave mine on all day with the lid closed.. which apparently is very, very bad for your computer.
     
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  16. NickNaylor

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    I highly recommend the Lenovo. I got one a couple of summers ago and it's still working just like it did the first day I used it. I've only had one problem with it and it wasn't that big of a deal.

    Plus, it helps when a parent works for IBM and you get a 50% discount off retail...
     
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  17. MeatTornado

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    if you aren't doing hardcore graphics-intensive things on the go then you definitely don't need a macbook pro...for the vast majority the most basic macbook (which is $949 with the educational discount) will do just fine.

    A macbook with a 2.1Ghz processor is not automatically inferior to a PC laptop that has a 2.4Ghz processor. You can't really compare them like that because the hardware and software aspects of a mac make it faster and it handles heat alot better than a PC. It also has far superior battery life.

    you can't look at computer hardware components like GPA....a higher number doesn't necessarily make a better computer!
     
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  18. armybound

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    Though the 2.1 Ghz Mac might not be vastly inferior, what's the point of settling for less just because you think the machine is cute?

    You can price out a 13" Lenovo (SL300) with 2.4Ghz Core 2 Duo, 3 gigs RAM, 6-cell battery, and 3 year warranty for well under $1000 (~$850). Is the Mac really worth paying the same amount or more for?
     
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  19. armybound

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    I will pay you $100 to hook me up with that discount :)
     
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  20. SDN2013

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    Lenovo thinkpad or fujitsu lifebook
     
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  21. scrubsaresexy

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    No one else has mentioned it, but I really love my hp :) The wireless card went up after about two years and sometimes the cd-rom drive acts a little screwy, but other than that, my computer works really well even though it's three years old. If you order it directly from hp, it can get kind of pricey, but if you look around, stores often have hp laptops on sale for really reasonable prices.
     
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  22. SirGecko

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    I just bought an HP TX2500 this summer and I love it. If you are at all inclined to get a tablet I would recommend looking into this computer. (it works well as both a tablet and a regular old laptop)
     
  23. efitzpat

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    Dell was selling computers with defective batteries and fans that literally burst into flames (youtube it - there are some funny but very scary movies). They had a battery recall once, but it still happened.

    My dell has needed 2 batteries, crashed twice, and the touch pad mouse stopped working long ago. I just decided to go with a MacBook. Expensive? YES. Worth it. Yes. The interest on my credit card will definitely haunt me, but the hassle free world of Mac is wonderful. You might try to investigate it a little more
     
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  24. amakhosidlo

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    Another vote for Lenovo. Just replaced my dying inspiron with an SL400, and I've never been more impressed with a laptop. NO heat problems whatsoever, and it's quieter than my gf's $2400 macbook pro.
    There's a coupon code floating around online somewhere for $50 off their online price, which brings the price on a core2d/2gig/160gb machine to an unbelievable $550. It doesn't get any cheaper than that...
     
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  25. MeatTornado

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    though i've become a huge mac fan after being a mac hater i don't think you should buy one if you can't afford it
     
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  26. flaahless

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    hahaha that's what they all say
     
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  27. eagledriver

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    YES. I had planned on using Windows on my macbook pro, but after trying their OS, I'll never go back.

    Don't forget you get a discount (~10%) as a student. Still pricey, but hey ever buck counts. You get what you pay for.

    www.apple.com/education/store/
     
  28. JackInTheBox

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    I don't think leaving the lid closed is bad for any laptop. The vents are usually on the bottom and sides. People run into overheating because they often use their laptops on their beds or couches. The laptop sinks into the cushion and the vents get blocked.


    Actually, you can usually compare them like that because the Macbooks and PC laptops generally use the same hardware inside. And Macbooks don't "handle heat alot [sic] better." Heat is heat, and any well designed laptop will handle it fine. I would say it's the Macbooks that are poorly engineered. The new generation of Macbooks has had problems with the trackpad, the sleep/wake functions, 3rd party RAM, and won't run at full speed on AC power alone.


    Throw in another vote for a Thinkpad. They're rugged and built like tanks. Throw in their AWESOME keyboards, a Trackpoint, and the Thinkvantage software and you've got one hell of a laptop.
     
  29. ButImLETired

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    I'm a little sad that most med schools aren't too Mac-friendly. It seems medical software and all those online resources tend to be PC-only. I am a new Mac user (have a macbook pro) and love it. I was planning on getting a new laptop for school just for weight purposes (it's a little heavy to tote around every day to class) but I was gonna go mac again, and get an air or something. However, it sounds like PC is the better way to go. I think I'm going to go for a Lenovo X300 since it seems to be the lightest laptop they make that still has a trackpad....
     
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  30. beachblonde

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    Is that the tx2z series now?

    I would love to get a tablet for my new laptop, and the HP ones look pretty sweet. If only Apple made tablets, I would be all over that.

    And I don't get the overheating thing with laptops. I know people who have fried laptops, but I don't understand how they did that! I tend to close mine, put it in its case, and stuff it in my bag and forget about it. It hasn't cooked yet (fingers crossed).
     
  31. Ibn Rushd

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  32. Dr Lyss

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    I never put my Dell on my bed. I left it on a wooden desk but apparently I needed to buy a stand that tilted it so the bottom was always exposed. It got so hot it literally melted my hard drive. Ridiculous.
     
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  33. Dr Lyss

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    really? that sucks. A lot of the comps in med school libraries are macs so they have to be able to run most of the software. Maybe it is just more difficult to find.
     
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  34. ch0sen1

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    Sorry, I am a total noob to IBM's, but I have also heard a lot of great things about lenovo. Because its IBM, does that mean it does not run on Windows XP, and are a lot of the programs on regular windows laptops still suitable on the lenovo?
     
  35. armybound

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    I don't have the $2000+ to drop on a MBP.
     
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  36. SDN2013

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  37. armybound

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    I'm telling you, I'm using what most people probably consider top-of-the-line Macbook, and I do not recommend it to people who will be going where XP is required. Yes, you can run VMWare or Parallels, and yes you can dual-boot, but it's not the same.

    Don't get me wrong, I actually do really like my MBP.. but for the money, and for the sake of simplicity, the Mac is not the solution. That is not to say that you will not be fine with a Mac, as I'm sure thousands of medical students are currently proving, but it is not THE best solution for incoming med students. It is one solution, but not the one everyone should spend hand-over-fist for.
     
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  38. MilkmanAl

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    For those of you who've had problems with overheating laptops, I strongly recommend a laptop cooler. It's the best $40 you'll ever spend. Even if you don't anticipate having heat problems, cooler hardware means better reliability and longevity.
     
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  39. niranjan162

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    This is wrong now. Apple has been moving away from their proprietary crap and now uses more main stream parts in their computers. I wanted to see how much of a difference there was So i went to Apple and HP's website and configured nearly identical computers. The mac was around $1000 more. I knew they were pricey but for the same parts thats outta control. And dont tell me that a 2.1ghz core 2 runs faster in a mac than a 2.4 ghz Core 2 in a PC simply cuz its a mac.

    I agree with this as well. My friends laptop would always overheat when watching a movie. Solution put a book under it while its on the bed so the airvents dont get blocked.

    As to the OP, it depends on what u do with ur computer. Is all do u surf the web and email word proc? Do u carry ur comp around with u alot? Do you play games?

    IBM's are regular PC's they use windows as their platform. But answer those questions and we can help you pick a computer to suit ur needs.

    Apple has a great business plan, Which is two pronged. Make something that the lay person can use very easily, 2nd make it very proprietary. While the 2nd part locks the lay person in with mac forever, it also makes it a pain in the ass for developers to write software and people who want more customization and like to fiddle etc. This is why Macs are not so great for business machines, unless ur business is graphic editing or wutever.
     
  40. rockydoc

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    I have some friends who are heavy into the graphics arts stuff and they tell me that macs are really good for any media stuff you are doing, however, for simple academic stuff like you will need in medical school, you do not need all that extra crap. Its up to you how you will be using your computer....if you do a lot of media stuff, then maybe a mac would seem a lot better....but if you are just gonna do your school work, then I dont think a mac is worth the money.
     
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  41. armybound

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    yeah, that's the only way I used my laptop. I'd always lay on my bed and surf with it on my stomach, then leave the lid closed and leave it on when I went to bed. I've heard that's bad for the computer because it also dissipates heat through the keyboard, which is why Macbooks turn off when the lid is closed, despite having vents on the bottom.
     
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  42. linguini

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  43. chemnerd89

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    I have a Dell XPS M1130

    It's light, small, has a camera, and a fingerprint scanner(?)

    I like it.
     
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  44. niranjan162

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  45. JackInTheBox

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    If you go with the X series, go with the X301 over the X300. If you can learn to love the Trackpoint, the X200 or X200 Tablet are also good options.


    Pure FUD. Vista runs just fine. You only run into problems if you don't have enough RAM (<2 GB). With memory prices the way they are, I wouldn't be surprised to find 4 gigs in a box of Cracker Jacks. Windows 7 will most likely run even faster than Vista or XP.


    Lenovo bought out IBM's laptop division, so all Thinkpad, Ideapad, and other laptops are now just Lenovo Thinkpads. They're regular laptops that will run Windows, but with the traditional Thinkpad quality.
     
  46. fxny12004

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    coming from a IT background, with a little over 10 years experience, i recommend you get a PC laptop and not a MAC. Macs are good for multimedia editing ONLY. They are in my opinion overpriced, and their "good looks" is what you are really paying for. Not for performance. Of course i am a little biased.. but i believe mac products speak for themselves. If i were you, i would wait a couple of more days until the Consumer Electronics Show commences and ends. It begins on Jan 8 and ends on the 11th. There, dell will *most* likely announce their new Studio XPS laptop line up, with the new 1320 (13inch laptop) and 1640 (16 inch laptop). They will soon move into production and in my estimation will be shipping by early February. In my opinion its worth the wait and i believe price will be very reasonable as dell has announced an aggresive plan to deal with the current economic problem. i am myself waiting for the announcement in order to purchase one of them. Other options of course include Asus laptops which are absolutely great and realiable. Sager, Clevo, and of course Alienwares are also other options, though theyve been having problems with their problems. It all really depends really on what you are planning to do and how much you are willing to spend.

    ;)my $.02
     
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  47. alehar

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    I'm rocking a 3.5 year old Dell Latitude d810 right now (got it when I went into engineering via a student discount). I've had very few problems, the only ones being due to viruses that got on the computer.

    The thing I've been looking into is the tablet PC's. I've had trouble in the past with remembering to print lectures, losing them, or just tossing them out to clear some of the garbage, so I think it may be useful to get a laptop so I can write on the slides. I think I'll probably get a new laptop and won't just get some drawing pad peripheral, so that's out. Any suggestions as to good, reliable, and preferably cheap tablet PC's?
     
  48. JackInTheBox

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    The Thinkpad tablets are good and reliable, but not cheap. You might be able to find deals on the old X61 tablets since they've been phased out in favor of the X200 line.


    I would recommend waiting until the summer to buy any new laptop. Intel is supposed to release the mobile Nehalem chips later this year, meaning you'll be able to buy the best of the best or get good deals on previous generation tech as vendors try to clear inventory.
     
  49. MeatTornado

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    macs can do everything a PC can do except they start up basically twice as fast, can start windows in seconds with VMware and the battery lasts much longer

    examples? i've been using it for a year now and have noticed absolutely no difference at all....it is basically like running windows on a PC.

    macs have always integrated their motherboards with the components alot better than PCs. if you watch the video for the new macbook you'll see what i mean but PCs just consist of parts thrown together that may or may not work so well together and that have differing life expectancies. this superior integration and better management of components is what makes macs run faster. Also windows is a terribly slow and inefficient OS compared to Mac OS which doesn't help.

    also don't forget that you can get a free ipod touch and printer with your new macbook come the summer. that's basically like a $400 discount.
     
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  50. Sharka

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    Netbooks are pretty decent if you're only looking to surf the web or word process and you can find some for less than $400. They're about 3lbs and your can carry them just about anywhere. It's a great secondary computer.
     

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