1. Dismiss Notice
  2. Download free Tapatalk for iPhone or Tapatalk for Android for your phone and follow the SDN forums with push notifications.
    Dismiss Notice

getting laptop for college...

Discussion in 'Tech: Medical Apps, iOS, Android, medical devices' started by Hoosiers15, May 28, 2008.

  1. Hoosiers15

    2+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2008
    Messages:
    25
    Likes Received:
    0
    Status:
    Pre-Pharmacy
    I am now a high school senior and I want to start researching computers for when I go to college. Right now I dont really know alot about macs, but I really like the MacBook, which I can get for $999. My parents seem like they want to get me a pc, most likely a dell laptop. What I need to know are some reasons why I should get one or the other, and maybe some suggestions if you pick pc over a mac. I pretty much want to know which will be better in college, a mac or a pc.
     
  2. Note: SDN Members do not see this ad.

  3. pylorus

    Joined:
    May 15, 2008
    Messages:
    2
    Likes Received:
    0
    you're the one who's going to be stuck using the damn thing - not your parents. Do you want to have computer headaches at the same time as worrying about school?
    Yes?
    Then, the answer is simple: get the dell.

    If you want a reliable machine that is simple to use, can share Office documents just fine with PCs, and has a very clean interface, get mac!
    Some programs, like MSN, may have more features for PCs. But I wouldn't trade ease of use/fewer software bugs for the option to add "winks" to messages and... uhh I'm not sure what other features PCs have to offer.

    MAC ALL THE WAY!

    http://www.apple.com/getamac/
     
  4. emcee

    5+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Feb 2, 2008
    Messages:
    31
    Likes Received:
    0
    You could also install Windows XP or Vista onto your Mac, therefore having the option to use two operating systems on one laptop!! I would definitely go for the mac (well, it's what I'm getting soon!), it is simplistic, clean, sleek and easy to carry around!
     
  5. pylorus

    Joined:
    May 15, 2008
    Messages:
    2
    Likes Received:
    0
  6. Ollie123

    10+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2007
    Messages:
    4,635
    Likes Received:
    1,044
    Status:
    Psychology Student
    I've got a Dell Latitude. HD was a lemon (I'm guessing damaged in shipping), so Dell came out and replaced it the next day. Other than that, zero problems so far. I don't like the inspiron line, but I don't know anyone who has had problems with a latitude model (save for the folks who don't know anything about computers and break things).

    I'm not a big fan of Dell desktops, but their laptops seem pretty solid, retail for quite a bit less, and many professional organizations give a discount on Dell (I got $400 off mine!). They're not high-end, but if you aren't looking for that, I don't think there's anything wrong with Dell.
     
  7. Slaiby

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2008
    Messages:
    9
    Likes Received:
    0
    Status:
    Medical Student
    Everyone I know who has ever gotten a Dell Laptop has hated it! All of them broke at least once if not several times within the first year of owning it. Dell desktop are more reliable but the laptops just aren't very solid.

    If you have to get a PC, Lenovo Thinkpad laptops are the most reliable, and macs are great too, just never buy a first generation anything from Apple, that includes the Air, Apple takes at least one generation to get any product right.
     
  8. TMP-SMX

    TMP-SMX Senior Member
    Moderator Emeritus Gold Donor Classifieds Approved 10+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2006
    Messages:
    3,620
    Likes Received:
    70
    Status:
    Attending Physician
    Go Mac.

    By the way, it's kind of hard to define first generation these days on Apple products. If they change the case and give it a speed bump and more RAM is it first generation. (iMacs last July). Would that make the most recent update a second generation as it used the same case with a new processor and different RAM?
     
  9. Ollie123

    10+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2007
    Messages:
    4,635
    Likes Received:
    1,044
    Status:
    Psychology Student
    Out of curiosity, were these from the inspiron line?

    I'd agree to avoid those. But their business models (Latitudes) seem alot more sturdy. I've had mine a year now with zero problems since the initial HD incident:) I have 2-3 friends with them and no one has problems. Then again I think alot of it is pretty subjective - everyone has a preference and avoids product lines based off what a couple people they know said. I don't know if anyone has ever done a comprehensive consumer report failure-rate for various retail PCs, but it would be interesting to see the results.

    My dislike for their desktops stems more from the difficulty upgrading them, but that's true of basically any retail computer. As per my other thread, I'm done with them and am now sticking to making my own. SO much better in almost every way:)
     
  10. ClockworkDoc

    7+ Year Member

    Joined:
    May 9, 2005
    Messages:
    884
    Likes Received:
    2
    Status:
    Resident [Any Field]
    Get a Gateway C-142XL (~$1090).

    Its a really good laptop for the price and its convertable into a tablet PC. Although you may never use it in the tablet mode, its nice that it is there. The downside is the weight (almost 7lbs), but it will give you a good forearm workout.
     
  11. xanthomondo

    xanthomondo nom nom nom
    Removed Physician 10+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2006
    Messages:
    15,650
    Likes Received:
    19
    Status:
    Resident [Any Field]
    Again, depends how you treat it.

    I know a few of the inspiron models that lasted over 6 years before kicking the bucket
     
  12. xanthomondo

    xanthomondo nom nom nom
    Removed Physician 10+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2006
    Messages:
    15,650
    Likes Received:
    19
    Status:
    Resident [Any Field]
    haha yeah, I have my latitude from 2000 (when windows 2000 first came out) and it still works flawlessly (minus the whole being kinda outdated thing)...the only problem with these is that theyre overpriced just like macs
     
  13. xanthomondo

    xanthomondo nom nom nom
    Removed Physician 10+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2006
    Messages:
    15,650
    Likes Received:
    19
    Status:
    Resident [Any Field]
    i can attest to this...

    did they ever fix your pixel?
     
  14. Slaiby

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2008
    Messages:
    9
    Likes Received:
    0
    Status:
    Medical Student
    I think all of the Dells that I know of people having problems with were Inspirons.

    I would classify a first generation mac product as anytime there is a major overhaul to a system, beyond faster processor and more memory or graphics card. Such as when the first imac G5s came out, the first intel macs, macbook air, when they introduced the magnetic power cord, etc...

    Basically anytime some new technology is first introduced into the mac line you need to be careful, they tend to be buggy, especially the first several months they are out.

    When the bugs are worked out though, Macs are great, especially now that you can load windows on them, here really isn't a reason to avoid them, except for the price.

    One more thing, if you do go with a mac, be sure to make sure you have enough memory, I'm not sure if its still the case but typically they ship by default with about half the memory that they needed. You'll want at least a gig and preferably 2 gigs.
     
  15. ClockworkDoc

    7+ Year Member

    Joined:
    May 9, 2005
    Messages:
    884
    Likes Received:
    2
    Status:
    Resident [Any Field]
    They are sending someone out to take care of that blue bastard.
     
  16. TMP-SMX

    TMP-SMX Senior Member
    Moderator Emeritus Gold Donor Classifieds Approved 10+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2006
    Messages:
    3,620
    Likes Received:
    70
    Status:
    Attending Physician
    Macs are not overpriced. There is just nothing available on the low end and not comparable.

    As for RAM, more RAM the better. Just never buy it from Apple. Get it from OWC (macsales.com), Newegg, or Crucial.
     
  17. xanthomondo

    xanthomondo nom nom nom
    Removed Physician 10+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2006
    Messages:
    15,650
    Likes Received:
    19
    Status:
    Resident [Any Field]
    if you built two identical machines, one mac and one pc (such as HP) the HP would be a lot cheaper
     
  18. TMP-SMX

    TMP-SMX Senior Member
    Moderator Emeritus Gold Donor Classifieds Approved 10+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2006
    Messages:
    3,620
    Likes Received:
    70
    Status:
    Attending Physician
    I think "a lot" should be defined. First, it depends which configuration you are comparing. Trying to compare the blackbook to hps? You can't even compare the blackbook to regular MBs. The paint color is a premium on that one.

    Never use Apple's BTO options. Buying your own hard drive allows for larger capacity at lower prices. Though their BTO 250 GB HDD for the notebooks isn't too bad in the ed store. RAM will always be overpriced for them.

    Next, the OS is hard to compare. While looking at hp's notebooks it looks like they allow a free upgrade to the 64 bit Vista. So that's a good thing as if you ever want more than 4 GB of RAM it is a requirement.

    The last curveball in the comparison is if the purchaser is a student. $100 off a printer and $200 off an iPod? I see HP gives a $70 rebate on an HP printer. Plus, the upgrade cycle for PCs is still faster so the best deals on Macs can be had right after an update. For students, the best is during the summer, after an update, and with the iPod/Printer deal going on.

    For the hp dv2700t with a free upgrade to 64-bit vista home premium, 2.4 GHz C2D T8300 same as the 2.4 GHz MB, 14.1" widescreen monitor (close as HP and Apple gets), free 2 GB upgrade same as MB, X3100 same as MB, Wireless N plus bluetooth had to BTO but standard on MB, 250 GB HDD on both had to add on MB at the premium of $90.

    In the end, the customized hp comes out to $1182.99 with a $100 instant rebate. The MB with the larger 250GB HDD comes out to 1289.00 with ed pricing. In the end it comes down to which OS you prefer.
     
    #17 TMP-SMX, May 31, 2008
    Last edited: May 31, 2008
  19. Finding Chi

    2+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Apr 25, 2008
    Messages:
    32
    Likes Received:
    0
    Status:
    Resident [Any Field]
    I have a plug to make for HP.

    A few years ago, my apt flooded due to a certain natural disaster. 1-2 mo later I returned to the house to salvage what I could. I found my roommate's HP laptop on the floor. Presumably it had been underwater for about a week. Just for the heck of it, I pressed the power button, and the SOB turned on like nothing had happened. Now there's some hardiness for you...
     
  20. JoeNamaMD

    JoeNamaMD Membership Revoked
    Removed

    Joined:
    Jan 31, 2004
    Messages:
    1,396
    Likes Received:
    1
    If you are a college student, get a MacBook, forget about Wintel machines unless you are looking to use your PC as an arcade machine. I think your parents would move into the Apple column if they knew that most Wintel machines are glorified arcades.
     
  21. Ollie123

    10+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2007
    Messages:
    4,635
    Likes Received:
    1,044
    Status:
    Psychology Student
    I'm a little confused by the last post, wasn't Mac even using their fusion with the iPod, media and other "fun" stuff as their selling point not that long ago? Whereas windows was the boring business suit computer?For me, the biggest draw to windows is the fact that there is tons of software I use (programming suites, some stats packages, and a couple others) that simply isn't available on mac. Of course, you can always dual boot, but given I've never had the problems with Windows many cite as advantages for Mac (e.g. fewer viruses/spyware, instability, etc.), I just couldn't come up with a good reason to get one. Anyways, I'm just a bit confused by the last post. What do you mean by arcade machine? As in Windows can run games that Macs can't? I guess that's true, but one could just as easily say Macs are for people more concerned with playing with their cameras and downloading MP3s then doing work (please note: I'm not saying this, it just seems an equivalent argument).Is there something I'm missing?
     
  22. Slaiby

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2008
    Messages:
    9
    Likes Received:
    0
    Status:
    Medical Student
    My sentiments exactly. People can bash windows or mac based machines as much as they like but when it comes down to it the real determining factors should be:

    Price

    Will it run the software you want?

    Do you like the OS interface?

    I use Macs at work and own several windows PCs at home, and honestly I like them all, but I know that at work I need a mac because there are certain programs that either don't work on a PC or the windows version just isn't as intuitive to use when designed for that OS. Then again I've had way more problems with my mac at work crashing than my pcs at home, hence the never buy first generation mac product rule.

    But, on the other hand, at home I would feel lost without my PC for the exact same reasons, things that work on windows that don't work on macs. Plus for me I'm a computer tinkerer so I like to be able to change out hardware on my PC which I don't think I would feel safe doing on a mac. And you really can't be windows compatibility.

    My suggestion is if money isn't the issue then go to a mac store and spend a good amount of time testing out the macs, you want to be sure that you're going to enjoy working on it. (I personally hate mac keyboards) Do some research and make sure that the programs you want will run on a mac.
     
  23. TMP-SMX

    TMP-SMX Senior Member
    Moderator Emeritus Gold Donor Classifieds Approved 10+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2006
    Messages:
    3,620
    Likes Received:
    70
    Status:
    Attending Physician
    Boot camp makes needing a PC and a mac at home irrelevant since you can run Windows or OS X. I still agree though that if you don't like the Mac OS then you shouldn't get a Mac. Though I think most people learn fast and will like it.
     
  24. Ollie123

    10+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2007
    Messages:
    4,635
    Likes Received:
    1,044
    Status:
    Psychology Student
    That's true, but my reasoning was that probably 90% of the time I need to boot into Windows, so Mac would just basically be eating HD space.I don't have a problem with Macs, I just really don't get the following they seem to have and the seething hatred so many have for anything that is not Macintosh. To me, its a very simple matter of which OS can run the software I use most often. The answer was Windows, so that's what I go with. Then again, I've never had anywhere near the problems with Windows many seem to have.
     
  25. DrJosephKim

    DrJosephKim Advisor
    Physician SDN Advisor 7+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2008
    Messages:
    1,386
    Likes Received:
    8
    I've had several different Dell laptops with zero problems. When you're dealing with any company that generates such a high volume of machines, you're likely to have some problems. Survey enough people who own Macs, Sony, HP, Dell, etc. You'll hear the same thing. Some will love them, others will hate them.

    Why buy a Mac if you can convert a standard PC into a Mac?

    Have you heard of the OSx86 project? Take a look: (link removed)

    I was able to convert an old laptop and have OS X running on it. It's a fun project, but not for the weak-hearted since it can get technically complex at times.
     
    #24 DrJosephKim, Jun 5, 2008
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 6, 2008
  26. TMP-SMX

    TMP-SMX Senior Member
    Moderator Emeritus Gold Donor Classifieds Approved 10+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2006
    Messages:
    3,620
    Likes Received:
    70
    Status:
    Attending Physician
    That's terrible advice. Why are you trying to advertise something that breaks the EULA. Updating those machines is a nightmare.
     
  27. Milamber

    Milamber Grand Poomba
    2+ Year Member

    Joined:
    Feb 22, 2008
    Messages:
    318
    Likes Received:
    0
    Status:
    Medical Student
    The problem with your advice is that when it times to update the OS it may become problematic. Not to mention OS X on a non apple machine is unsupported by Apple and if you have any problems you can't go to an apple store and get support.

    The other thing is that you want a machine that works and you don't have to tinker with it. If you have a second machine that you like to tinker then fine but your primary machine should be ready to run over 95% of the time. What good is having a computer that you constantly have to fix?
     

Share This Page