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Which computer should I choose!!??

Discussion in 'Pre-Dental' started by critterbug, Apr 29, 2004.

  1. critterbug

    critterbug I like big buttz. No Lie!
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    My school just sent me a letter giving me two options for a computer. I am currently leaning towards the DELL, as I don't have much experience with the Apples.

    Please, tell me why I should choose one over the other. Here are my options.

    DELL Latitude D600 1.7 GHz

    OR

    PowerBook G4 15-Inch 1.33 GHz

    Cost of PRECONFIGURED computers:

    Apple is approximately $2300
    Dell is approximately$2050

    Also, I think my school gives me an option to purchase these on my own instead of through the school. But I'm guessing that I could not get all the software plus the computer for much cheaper than that. If anyone has suggestions, please let me know.

    Thanks,
    critter
     
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  3. UBTom

    UBTom Class '04 official geezer
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    Hey Critter,

    You might want to check to see if your school has site licenses for various software packages. These days most schools have site licenses that you already paid for through your tuition so you can get free/reduced-price copies of software like Windows, Office, Photoshop, etc. If your school does have site licenses, you can get your own computer and still be able to get the software for free/reduced price.

    And if you are going to buy your own, if I was in your shoes my choice would be NEITHER. :laugh:

    Seriously though, I think you should go for whichever laptop format (Windows vs. Mac) you 1) feel comfortable with, 2) know how to troubleshoot, and 3) will work with your existing software you are using on your desktop rig.

    HTH!
     
  4. critterbug

    critterbug I like big buttz. No Lie!
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    :laugh:

    Yeah, I wish I could purchase neither. If it were up to me, I would get an IBM thinkpad!! But, the school says I have to purchase one of those two :thumbdown: *boooo* :thumbdown:

    So...... looks like up stuck with these two. Do you think I could save money by buying a Dell through Dell's website and trying to get all the required software on my own??
     
  5. UBTom

    UBTom Class '04 official geezer
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    Hmm...

    What are the consequences if you buy something other than what they specified? Here at my school the only consequence is that they won't troubleshoot it for you if you buy a laptop/configuration they didn't recommend.

    If I was in your shoes, even if I'm forced to buy a DULL I would get it on my own so I can have it configured with extra stuff like more RAM, bigger HD, and have them exclude things like stupid useless software packages. :D

    HTH!
     
  6. ziptree

    ziptree DDS
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    critterbug:

    If you'd buy an IBM Thinkpad, then go with the Dell...you're probably used to Windows (like I am), and switching to a Mac and having to troubleshoot it would be a big hassle, like UBTom said.

    Try to go to Dell's site and configure something similar to what you can purchase through your school and see how much it'll cost you. But don't forget to factor in that extra software! Even though it may be at a reduced cost, it'll still cost you some.!


    On an off-topic note: Congrats to you UBTom on your new DDS degree! Hope you'll stick around and enlighten us with your experiences as a dentist.
     
  7. compugirl

    compugirl Member
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    critterbug,

    i have a dell and it sucks. numerous probs ALL the time and its relatively new. i LOVE macs because they dont crash looking at it from a computer engineering standpoint (i was a computer science major in hs) apple computers are engineered in a much better fashion. Most of my profs owned apple computers in their offices. also, the apple OS is not hard to operate at all.
     
  8. x-linked

    x-linked Senior Member
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    IBM T41 OR X40 :thumbup: :thumbup: :thumbup:
     
  9. trypmo

    trypmo Arch Fiend
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    Critterbug, you heading to San Antonio?

    I'd get the Dell just b/c of software compatibility issues w macs. I know some of them tend to break down a lot, but if you're going to SA, I've heard there's very good & speedy tech support there.
     
  10. ItsGavinC

    Dentist Moderator Emeritus 15+ Year Member

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    I'd get the Powerbook, but I'm biased towards Macs.

    All my school software runs splendidly on my Macs (even though we were forced to purchase POS Dells).
     
  11. LetMeIn

    LetMeIn Member
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    Id like to point out the Compaq X1000 series. I waited a few months, looking into the right laptop for me..... 15.4" widescreen SXGA lcd (very crisp, only look into buying SXGA or SXGA+ type lcd's, even then not all lcds are created equal), 60gb, jbl onboard speakers that a pretty loud (important when you want to view class videos etc), centrino chipset (about 4-5hrs battery life), slim (about 1.5" closed), and its got a great video chipset (ati radeon 9500)... It really packs a punch and u should check it out. They were quite popular when i got mine a few months ago. I play Call of Duty and SOFII multiplayer with my laptop, and it performs flawless.
     
  12. preludexl

    preludexl Senior Member
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    *sigh*

    The man said he must choose between the dell or the apple and you people tell him to buy a compaq and an ibm. Geez Louise. Buy the Apple because it will keep its value longer despite the $300 extra. Buy it used and save yourself more money. Buy the Dell if you are tight with money. Dells arent as good as Apple in reliability or as a multimedia machine but the Latitude is a better model than the Inspiron. It's more than probable, should you buy used, that the guy you are buying it from already has all the software you need preinstalled. The only things you really need are MS Office, IE6, WMplayer, Acrobat. With these you are pretty much good to go for any school. If it doesnt have that software, rumor has it you can prob download it or borrow a buddy's. Does this answer your question?
     
  13. BiOGoly

    BiOGoly PharmD, BCGP
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    Dell is evil. They are also over priced. I'd get the apple, but i wouldn't get it from the school if possible...2300 is pricey for a 1.33 unless its fully loaded with superdrive. Apple is really the best laptop you can buy, you can really "feel" the quality...they put thought into almost every little feature. I went with a compaq x1000 a few months ago and i'm very statisfied...but if it wasn't for the price i definately would have gone with the apple...
     
  14. Biogirl361

    Biogirl361 1K Member
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    like others said, i would go with the dell even if for no reason other than i feel that if it was myself i would feel uncomfortable/out of element using a mac when i am so used to using a pc.

    off topic... do any of you dental school students (or undergrads, i guess it doesn't matter) use a tablet pc? i am interested in getting one before i start d school next year and am looking for other people's experiences with them.
    thanks!
     
  15. blankguy

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    Having used Macs and PCs. Go with the Mac. Nothing worse than having Windows act up on you.
    Windows XP<----eXtra Pain
     
  16. UBTom

    UBTom Class '04 official geezer
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    I don't know how true that is. Right now nobody wants my piece-of-**** powerbook G3 even though I'm giving it away. :D

    The fact of the matter is, every laptop a school makes its entering freshmen buy will be obsolete by the time they are midway through their sophomore year.

    Which is why I advocate that the student should buy the format he/she is 1) most comfortable with, 2) knows how to troubleshoot, and 3) will work with his/her existing computer's software.

    Seeing the nightmare of trying to get a whole class to switch to using Macs during my freshman year has convinced me that starting dental school is neither the time nor place to experiment and try new formats, especially if the school is going to force you to run software that will DIRECTLY impact your academic performance such as electronic textbooks.

    Thus, I recommend that for dental school, if you are used to Mac, then buy a powerbook. If you are used to Windows, then go PC laptop!
     
  17. critterbug

    critterbug I like big buttz. No Lie!
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    That seems like some solid advice. :thumbup: I am now even leaning further towards the dell.

    Thanks ya'll
     
  18. abina81

    abina81 Member
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    i work for Laptop Support at the Business School at my university. Dell makes really bad laptops and Apples are great overall, espically there powerbooks.....No competition Powerbook all the way.

    abina81
     
  19. gryffindor

    Dentist 10+ Year Member

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    Listen to the wise, newly-minted DDS UBTom here. Four years later, I still don't know how to use this Macintosh G3 my school made us buy. I was getting comfortable with Windows when I started dental school and was forced to abruptly change.

    I hate to admit it, but I don't even know how to download free programs like AIM onto the Mac. The ITS help department just says "Follow the prompts" but it doesn't seem to work so easily, and then there's that Stuff-It expander thingy that drives me nuts, so I just don't bother.

    But I'm stuck with it for another year. The only "cool" thing I can say about my laptop when I describe it is "You know the laptop Carrie uses in 'Sex and the City' to write her column in every episode? Yeah, I have the same one."

    So if you know nothing about Macs, don't stress yourself with trying to learn a new operating system while trying to learn Head and Neck anatomy at the same time.
     
  20. Dentalist

    Dentalist carpe diem
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    $2K for labtop?? Wow.. that sounds pretty expensive to me.

    I bought mine for $1300 and it works fine.
     
  21. jojo88

    jojo88 Member
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    Why don't yo get the Mac and then buy VirtualPC...you get the best of both worlds, a Mac and a windows operating system...I have never had a problem with virtualPC
     
  22. UBTom

    UBTom Class '04 official geezer
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    Actually, that's even worse.

    I can guarantee that almost anyone new to Mac will have problems with it.

    Every single one of the 89 students in my class was required by my school to purchase a Powerbook G3 with Virtual PC. Almost nobody in my class are familiar with Apples when we started. Consequently no one knew how to properly configure VirtualPC or troubleshoot it, and almost nobody uses it. We have no time to learn how to configure it, nor can we spare the time to send it to IT and put our computers out of commission for a day or two for them to work on it.

    I've said it before and I'll say it again: When you are a freshman in dental school, you are up to your ears in Gross, Histo, Biochem, and all the other heavy-hitting basic science courses. The last thing you need is a different platform which requires a substancial investment in time and effort to become proficient at, especially if your school uses an electronic textbook.

    In such cases, the KISS principle applies-- Keep It Simple, Stupid.

    Forget that Mac-vs-PC argument and just buy the platform you are most familiar with. Your sanity will thank you.
     
  23. gryffindor

    Dentist 10+ Year Member

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    Yup, I would be one of the 89 students Tom mentioned whose Virtual PC program is still brand-new, wrapped in plastic and sitting somewhere in my parent's basement.

    Too bad I wasn't savvy enough to sell it on e-bay like some of my other classmates when we first got it back in August 2000.
     
  24. rezzdogg

    rezzdogg Member
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    I am getting a powerbook myself. I have always been a PC user, and just want a change. I've used the powerbook for the past couple months and and simply love it.
     

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