Personally, I'd recommend a Dell. I know a lot of people will say never to buy a Dell, but every experience I've had with them have been more then pleasing. Only had a problem with a Dell computer once. They replaced the LCD screen to a much better one, and replaced the graphics card and doubled the Video RAM. Then, it turned out it was only a graphics driver problem... Nvidia had released some wrong driver.
I've used/owned 3 or 4 of their computers, and, honestly, every single one was nice. In fact, 4 out of the 5 computers in my house right now are Dell. This one is old as Oldman, but still runs fine!
On another note, you could go with a Mac (yes, Klaus, I said that!), however, if you are comfortable with Windows, I'd suggest you stay with it. Most new computers will also have Windows Vista (most likely the Basic edition).
Zippyjet From United States of America, joined Sep 2001, 5130 posts, RR: 13 Reply 5, posted (6 years 8 months 3 weeks 1 day 1 hour ago) and read 1790 times:
Folks, thank you for this info! I always thought Toshiba was good. Now, as you can see, I'm dealing with very limited $$$ and buying refurbished. I noticed at Tiger Direct, there are some Linovo (IBM) and Acers that are also in this price point, maybe $100.00 higher. I notice, Dells don't come on the refurb market much. It seems people hold onto them. And, yes, I'm Windows experienced. Macs are nice but tend to be pricey on all counts. I've heard IBM/Linovo are at least fair to good and have no idea regarding Acer but as I said earlier, I will stay away from Compaq/HP no matter how tempting their prices may be. And, I'm currently using a Windows 98 Pentium II computer so, how would Pentium M processors compare in the speed and efficiency department.
Some other tempting laptops....
I'll look through some computers they have there, and post some links, maybe.
EDIT - go here, and on the "stockrooms" drop down menu, select "Inspiron and XPS notebooks". Then click on price table header, to sort by price, lowest to highest. Look for something with a decent price. I'd suggest 512mb RAM. Processor, for your uses, probably won't be too big of a deal.
It is a bare-bones model from two to three generations ago, so it's basically already at or beyond the end of its useful life by now.
Can it still be used for some kinds of work? Yes, it can. Will it be any fun to use and own? You shouldn't get your hopes up on that.
Quoting Bagpiper (Reply 3): On another note, you could go with a Mac (yes, Klaus, I said that!), however, if you are comfortable with Windows, I'd suggest you stay with it.
You could. But never getting anything but more of the same may not always be a good idea, especially as most people find it easy to change to a Mac and usually say they're saving time and nerves every day after that.
Quoting Zippyjet (Reply 5): Macs are nice but tend to be pricey on all counts.
A comparison with the machine in the thread starter would indeed find that Apple doesn't have anything like that. Even the weakest model they offer costs more, but is two generations ahead, much faster and much more fully equipped.
It's true: When you're scraping the bottom of the barrel, you won't find a Mac down there - neither in price nor in the crippled feature set. But when you're looking at comparable full-duty machines, the difference in price is usually small.
The question is if the extremely low price is imperative - in that case you may indeed need to settle for a Windows-only notebook. If, however, it's a question of value for money, you'd be better served with a current-generation machine, especially one which is not just limited to running Windows - such as a MacBook.
I'll look through some computers they have there, and post some links, maybe.
Did a quick check; sadly in my cut rate price budget, it was no way Jose. Cheapest thing was a Desktop.
Here's my computing story in a zippy nutshell.
Back in spring 2000, I went to the "Market Pro Computer Show." They have them in hotel ballrooms, state fair grounds etc. A bunch of different vendors under one roof. I wanted a laptop and bygosh I left with a new laptop. It was a comp-usa model that had a Celeron processor and 4gb. It was barebones by today's standards but, for the time had a nice clear 13.1" screen. Along comes summer 2001. 4gb. does not get you too far as I found out. And, that slow celeron processor with Win 98 was barley cutting it. So, I bop along and ask if I can upgrade processors to a P II or P III. Found out at least with my laptop, I was married to the Celeron. OK, still not too bad. I was using this laptop as my day in day out computer hooking her up to speakers, cordless mouse etc. One summer day, I absent mindledly manage to short her out when hooking up my printer as I had for over a year with no problem. Zippy's laptop 2000-2001
I enjoyed using you while you lived. 2001 was a very shitty year. Anyway, money being tight, I had to settle for a used Compaq Desktop P II with Win. 98. OK for the time being and she has 20 gb. BTW, it's 6 years later and I've used 11 out of the 20gb. I post a lot of hottie pics and A-Net pics. I use photoshop Adobe 5.0 and size my pics to 800 X 600 pixels. I even have a 747 sized playlist of Napster downloaded oldies but goodies. But, today even with 512 ram, she's still slow online (Dial-Up) and freezes and I keep getting disconnected from the Internet and it ain't a laptop!
She'll be good as a back up and a repository for my oldies music if I so need it. Programs and web sites that were hunky dorey with win 98 and a P II as recently as 2 years ago now make a snail look like the Concorde. I have my hottie honey screensavers I make myself with a low cost easy to use screen saver software utility. I will also be using my Adobe Photo Shop 5.0 on my new/used laptop. I do not do games. So, with my needs and history I'm hoping I'm more specific on what I'm looking for in my next computer, a laptop. My big fear as you can obviously deduce is when it comes to hooking up everything. I don't want another short out death of a laptop scenario. Down the line, I'll buy a hub which should rectify this situation but, that's up to 6 months down the line. I'm the type that on my days off would non-rev to nowhere just to boot up my laptop and write. Hope this clarifies things better.
Quoting Bagpiper (Reply 7): Its good, except only DVD-ROM, no CD-R/W, so you cannot burn CDs.
If I had to, I could burn CDs on my Sanford and Son old desktop. Of course with XP, I can download at I Tunes or some of the othere reasonably priced music online sources. The modern computing world ain't kind to old Windows 98.
I Tunes and the others don't even recognize the old dowager. And, forget about the latest Firefox or I.E. 7 browsers.
Again my friends I thank you for all this advice and input..
Klaus From Germany, joined Jul 2001, 21346 posts, RR: 54 Reply 12, posted (6 years 8 months 3 weeks 23 hours ago) and read 1734 times:
Quoting Bagpiper (Reply 10): I suggest you reread the list of what he wants to use it for.
I have... but even "browsing the internet" already means meeting ever-increasing demands for plugins and more complex content plus player applications for newer content. Depending on what exactly he's trying to do, machines of that age are already falling behind - it may still be bearable for him right now, but very little headroom left for any additional demands.
Klaus From Germany, joined Jul 2001, 21346 posts, RR: 54 Reply 14, posted (6 years 8 months 3 weeks 23 hours ago) and read 1730 times:
Quoting Zippyjet (Reply 11): My big fear as you can obviously deduce is when it comes to hooking up everything. I don't want another short out death of a laptop scenario.
That depends more on the kind (or better lack) of common grounding of your equipment and the kind of interface. USB is ostensibly "hot pluggable", but large electric potential differences can still be fatal if you're not careful (or if the machine is constructed very shoddily).
Especially with your history of starting up low and hitting the ceiling right away I would not recommend you to repeat that strategy; starting at least at the upper mid-range and being able to use the machine a lot longer is usually a better approach and even cheaper than multiple low-end replacements.
Mham001 From United States of America, joined Feb 2005, 3214 posts, RR: 3 Reply 15, posted (6 years 8 months 3 weeks 21 hours ago) and read 1717 times:
My Thinkpads have been in the $3-400 range. Ive been eyeing a T60 in the $7-800 range. But the 1.3 ghz T23 im using now does everything I need without problems. $375 at the time. Only thing I miss is USB 2.0 but I could always buy a card if it were that important. Very solid machines, just shop good and wait for one that hasnt been abused by a company road warrior. I once found one, old stock straight from a warehouse, 2 years old with a 3 year IBM warranty. $350. If you need a burner, you can easily swap it out or use an external.
Bagpiper From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR: Reply 16, posted (6 years 8 months 3 weeks 21 hours ago) and read 1713 times:
Quoting Klaus (Reply 14): starting at least at the upper mid-range and being able to use the machine a lot longer is usually a better approach and even cheaper than multiple low-end replacements.
I would recommend that too... the Dell Inspiron 1501 is a great, cheaper computer, IMO. Either that, or it's Intel chip based brother, the Inspiron 1505.
But that will be 600 bucks, maybe up to 700. Honestly though, I'd rather spend a couple hundred more up front, than buying a new laptop in 2 years.
Quoting Klaus (Reply 12): I have... but even "browsing the internet" already means meeting ever-increasing demands for plugins and more complex content plus player applications for newer content. Depending on what exactly he's trying to do, machines of that age are already falling behind - it may still be bearable for him right now, but very little headroom left for any additional demands.
Well... I've used my dad's old work laptop, a Toshiba Pentium 2, with like 128mb RAM, windows 98SE, etc. 10gb drive, I think. For just browsing the web, it still works. But, like you said, it will hit the ceiling soon. But a 1.6ghz Pentium M, which is leaps and bounds ahead of that 333mhz Pentium 2, should work for the next few years. And it all depends on what he's used to. I'm sure you and I are used to faster computers, but if he uses a Pentium 2 right now, anything will be faster.
IMO, its all based on what you're used to. If I had a Core 2 Extreme, well, there would be no way in hell I'd go to a 1.66ghz Pentium M. But if I had a Pentium 2, I would snatch the offer right up.
J_Hallgren From United States of America, joined Jun 2000, 1507 posts, RR: 0 Reply 17, posted (6 years 8 months 3 weeks 21 hours ago) and read 1711 times:
I'm on my 3rd used Dell laptop...Have upgraded each time to a newer unit...the oldest was sold to a friend...still have my other W98SE unit as worst-case backup...bought them via DFS Auctions, which is where Dell Financial Systems auctions the off-lease units that have been refurb'd as needed...my only caution would be to look at actual serial/tag info for unit and find one that still has some warranty left on it...each of mine had at least 6 mths and I used it to correct some minor issues that were overlooked in refurb process...they actually came to my house and fixed it!
I've bought the Latitude series as they tend to be corporate use and thus have better warranty options.
Regarding heat: I'm now using a 1Ghz running W2K and I can keep it for a couple of hours on my lap, even with shorts on, without any heat issues, at least for what I use it for..not sure how more recent models are, but when I'm net surfing and thus fairly low CPU, my system temp shows as about 110-120 F on avg...
Zippyjet From United States of America, joined Sep 2001, 5130 posts, RR: 13 Reply 18, posted (6 years 8 months 3 weeks 21 hours ago) and read 1704 times:
Quoting Bagpiper (Reply 16): But if I had a Pentium 2, I would snatch the offer right up.
Again, I appreciate all your help...thanks to everyone. Unfortunatly, putting any more money in my old rig and holding our is not an option for me. With gas, utilities rising and our economy hitting the skids, I like many have to count my pennies.
Interestingly that original laptop, set me back over $800.00. Last Fall, I hauled my old desktop into the shop, upped the RAM, had a deep embedded worm or virus removed and for close to $200.00 was able to again go onlne but, it seemed as slow if not slower than before. Part of that $200 was the addition of a CD/DVD burner but, that was only like $35.00.
And, my computing habits, I try to be very carefull/attentive.
Always run Ad-Aware at end of weekends
Always clean cookies, cache, delete Internet history
Run de-frag at least monthly
Run Norton Virus scan weekly.
Automatically keep Norton running and live e-mail/Internet virus definition updates going
But, have been told, that with Win 98, and the old processor and to a lesser extent having dial-up, many of the so called newer definitions are not available for me and, my rig isn't fast enough to keep up. Though it could take like 20 minutes, I used to be able to completly download music (Napster/Kazaa-Lite) with no problems. Many a time, the download was half that in time. Forget that now. 95% of my A-Net and other online activity is on high speed computers. On my own, basically I can get online and thats about it.
In my area, DSL isn't available. Supposedly Verizon controls the slots and they are all taken. But, even if I had high speed on my old machine, it could only go so far and Windows 98 is now a white elephant albatross. I'm guessing that XP Home and XP pro has at least two to three years left of usability before obsolescence sets in. Vista is still new and I understand you need a beefy computer to run it right. And, XP has a decent reputation and stability. I'm being realistic in that this next computer would be OK for a two to four (four optimistically) useful lifespan. What I have now has been obsolete for at least the last 2 to 4 years. My position is, driving a Yugo may suck but it sure as hell beats relying on the Baltimore MTA to get from point A to point B. It's any port in a storm and for under $500 these laptops are palatable compared to nothing.
I'd be running:
Quoting Klaus (Reply 14): That depends more on the kind (or better lack) of common grounding of your equipment and the kind of interface. USB is ostensibly "hot pluggable", but large electric potential differences can still be fatal if you're not careful (or if the machine is constructed very shoddily).
Please clarify. The machine I shorted out probably was new in 1998 or 1999. I now, know, to "ground" anything before just plugging away. And, aren't laptops sturdier than my original? BTW, that "Comp USA" was supposedly a very low low end Compaq model. Comp USA looked at me like I was from Mars when I took my machine in back in 2001.
And, Pentium M is better than P 4? It was easier back in the day. You had Ghetto Celeron, P II, then PIII then PIV. The Centrino, M etc. makes things a little trickier to figure out.
While a Pentium 4 with massive power pumped into it (in a desktop machine) can be faster than a Pentium M (in a laptop), the Pentium 4 will deplete any laptop battery in a very short time (some manufacturers actually built such machines!).
The current Core architecture is basically an upgraded derivative of the Pentium M architecture - saving power has been the key to overcome the threat of a meltdown which became a crippling factor for the Pentium 4. And even the current Xeon chips are ultimately multi-core Pentium M descendants, just with massively upgraded performance.
Bagpiper From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR: Reply 20, posted (6 years 8 months 3 weeks 20 hours ago) and read 1690 times:
Centrino is just a combination of bells and whistles along with a basic processor.
Intel's Chips, starting with Pentium 2, are:
Pentium 4 (ok for Desktops, too hot hot and inefficient for laptops)
Pentium M (M for Mobile, a redesigned Pentium 3 chip)
Pentium D (D for Dual Core, desktops only afaik)
Core Duo (dual core, newer than Pentium D, desktops and laptops)
Core 2 Duo (multi core, latest multi core chip pentium makes, desktops and laptops)
i say multi core there, because they also have a quad core version of it (Core 2 Extreme)
Then, along side that, there is:
Have you checked out ebay? Brings the price down about 100 bucks on some of the Dell laptops...
Not to be nosey (you don't have to tell me, if you'd rather not), but what is your budget?
Zippyjet From United States of America, joined Sep 2001, 5130 posts, RR: 13 Reply 21, posted (6 years 8 months 3 weeks 20 hours ago) and read 1690 times:
Quoting Klaus (Reply 19): And buying another Yugo every two years is still more expensive and less satisfying than buying a car which costs twice as much every six years... That is the idea.
I agree with you but, time and money are not on my side. I can't justify spending another $$ on my old crap and holding out. Cost of living keeps going up and up and up. I like a laptop because, when I owned one, I was able to do the work I needed on the road whenever and wherever I wanted. Sadly, my willpower is zippo and when I'm at home on my desktop, I get on the Internet and can't get off unless my crappy Compaq f's up which is always and that does the trick. I anticipate making extra income with my laptop. No, it's not a Zippyjet web cam showing me and my cat in the nude at home. So, hopefully, with the extra earned $$$ I can go balls out and buy quality hopefully within the next couple of years. With my Ghetto 98 Compaq, meet Mr. Slim and Mr. None for that! I forgot to ask, with M processors, what is average battery life? Using Word? My old original laptop lasted 3 hours and change on a charge when doing Word. If more intensive stuff like photoshop I got around 2 hours battery life. Regarding heating issues, even I can pony up $25 to buy one of those laptop cooler surfaces. In regard to laptop durability, I'm trying to compare those Dell and IBM refurbished models on Tiger Direct to see how they'd hold up. Though they may be a generation old, they seemed to do the trick for the road warriers. And chances are, individuals who owned those type laptops are probably still using them and satisfied with them.
Brons2 From United States of America, joined Sep 2001, 2981 posts, RR: 5 Reply 23, posted (6 years 8 months 3 weeks 18 hours ago) and read 1664 times:
why don't you just upgrade the RAM on your P2 desktop and install Windows 2000 Professional? No, it's not the latest and greatest, but it's still supported by Microsoft, it wil be an order of magnitude more reliable than 98, you can install modern software on it and most importantly it should have acceptable performance with a Pentium II desktop, given at least 512 MB of RAM.
Firings, if well done, are good for employee morale.
We have a number of these machines in our corporate laptop fleet (all IBM/Lenovo Think Pads of various iterations) and the T40 has been reliable. I would recommend purchasing an extra 512 MB RAM stick for Windows XP though. We have 1GB of RAM in ours and it makes a big difference.
We have a 3 year replacement cycle on all laptops, and I always take an old one that is being retired for my personal use, so maybe next fiscal year I will upgrade from an R32 to a T40!
Firings, if well done, are good for employee morale.
Zippyjet From United States of America, joined Sep 2001, 5130 posts, RR: 13 Reply 25, posted (6 years 8 months 3 weeks 17 hours ago) and read 1655 times:
Quoting Brons2 (Reply 23): why don't you just upgrade the RAM on your P2 desktop
Forgot to mention, been there done that. And, no improvement. Was considering the Win 2000 but, the overall reliability of my desktop leaves much to be desired. My modem is fine but, I keep getting disconnected from the Internet. With Earthlink, I've adjusted all the speeds etc. for optimal perfomance. Had Verizon test the line on multiple occasions for noise, no problem on that. And honestly, I'm not getting any younger. Life is passing me by. When I'm not working (for FL), over at my parents, swimming, It's me and my 20 pound tubby tabby cat on my computer. When I had my laptop, I got out on nice days, had the laptop booted up, wrote and was with the rest of the world. And, one can't take a desktop to the john whilest on the throne. I used to compute while on the toilet. Now, when I hit it rich, I'll have a bathroom to beat the band. I can't take an aged desktop onboard one of our 717 or 737-700s and fly to nowhere and write at 35,000 feet.
Even after 6 years, I miss the convenience of a laptop.
With my laptop back in 2000, I had a friend who was a massage therapist student. I wrote a brief article for his assignment and for my effort recieved a 90 minute full body sports massage at no $$$ cost to me. He literally took me apart and put me back together again better than new. He had to write a short story on why he became a student in sports massage. I incorporated his backstory of his competitive marathon running, swimming and yoga exploits back in his native Fillipines. Of course, with Office 97 and Zippyjet style I provided him with a kick ass report.