questionsi need a new laptop. where can i find a good deal?

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lol! Who woulda thunk?

I guess I'm a bit skeptical about buying from a company I don't know and assumed most (if not all) of the deals on here would be companies I've never heard of.

I don't have great luck with computers and am not very knowledgeable so figured I should go with one of the big guys.

I'll give it a shot.
Thanks for pointing out the very obvious ;)

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So, I did find a deal on here that looks good for me.

http://deals.woot.com/deals/details/1b657f4c-2ba7-4f0a-b22d-ebddb5da4952/dell-inspiron-15-2-3ghz-windows-7#0

I am leaning toward Dell but my problem is I don't know hardware. Software is my thing. I'm clueless when it comes to hardware, though.

Previously I had been leaning toward the Dell Studio so my obvious question would be, what's the difference between an Inspiron and a Studio? I know they use the marketing names to differentiate quality but have no idea what's the better quality Inspiron or Studio?

Help?

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@jasmine: I've built many a computer from the ground up, so I know components at least decently. I'm not any sort of Linux whiz, so I'm not super into that, but I can give a few tips that may be helpful.

Mostly, the difference in those Dell lines is for marketing. There is a slight plus to the Studio line over Inspirons in build-quality, but if you're really looking for Dell's best quality, the Studio XPS is far more durable, and typically pumped with higher power components.

As to the deal that you found, I'd stay away from it. The processor is really just rehashed, old tech, repackaged so they could say it's newer. Of course, it's difficult to point you anywhere without more detail as to what price-range you had in mind, or what you will/won't be doing with a machine, but my typical advice for laptops is that you want nothing less than the new Intel Core i3/5 lines. The i7 is nice, but power hungry. And anything less than 4GB of RAM isn't usually a good idea with 64 bit systems.

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cont'd

Dell is usually a fairly safe bet. HP is also pretty good. They like to bash each other on reliability ratings, but having owned and worked with both (my current laptop is an HP on steroids), they're comparable as long as you treat them well.

Video cards aren't usually a big deal with these, unless you want to game, so if you're just into watching videos occasionally, the built-in graphics are usually sufficient. I'd recommend having an HDMI-out for using a monitor, as they're fairly universal for better quality stuff, and very easy to use.

Another note on RAM: Don't get it in odd numbers, like 3GB. One of the major pluses in RAM, especially with 64 bit systems is multi-channel, which can drastically improve performance without massive numbers, but requires two (or more), identical slots - i.e. two 2GB sticks, or three 2GB sticks.

Those are some general pointers, but once you have more specifics as to what you'd like, I can try to point you more directly. Cheers!

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Wow. Thanks!

With prices being so low I'm thinking that for my needs (Which are fairly modest, I think.) I should be able to get away with spending around $600.00.

I found some laptops being offered with a 25% discount here:

http://www.dell.com/content/products/features.aspx/affiliates-coupon-desktops?c=us&cs=19&l=en&s=dhs&dgc=CJ&cid=47997&lid=1471088&acd=10712695-1547706-

And it looks like I could get the Studio 19 for just under $600. I want something that's not considered outdated by today's standards so if I have to pay more for something more mainstream, I'm fine with that.

I know..."outdated" is tough to quantify but I'm not sure how else to put it.

What are your thoughts on the Studio 19?

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Oops. I didn't realize you had a second post when I posted the deal so if there's something in the deal that goes contrary to what you mentioned, just disregard it.

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After taking a look at the XPS that looks to be more than I want to spend.
Unfortunately, since they really look to be some nice computers.

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@jasmine: Studio one 19 isn't really a laptop, but it looks cool.

a lot of companies on here are legit newegg, amazon, dell, best buy just off the top of my head get deals posted. You can weed out the weird ones from places which seem sketchy to you.

http://deals.woot.com/deals/advancedsearch if you used advanced search you can even tell it which stores you don't want to see.

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@hobbit: "Studio one 19 isn't really a laptop, but it looks cool."

See?? Now that's what I mean! I just don't know enough about this stuff.

Thanks for the advice. I'll just keep searching.

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@jasmine: I think what @hobbit meant when she said that it wasn't really a laptop was the form-factor. The 19 is just that - 19 inches on the diagonal, which is absolutely ginormous, by normal laptop standards. Larger machines just aren't as portable. "Typical" laptop sizes range from 14"-16," roughly, with some being as small as 13," and some as large as 17"... However, if you're looking for general use, 15.6" is a standard, and usually the cheapest size in the market.

And with your $600 target, I'd definitely try for an Intel Core i3, at least 4GB of DDR3 RAM (that'd be 2sticks x 2GB, running in dual channel), and while you won't likely find something with a powerhouse graphics card, at least something with an HDMI port would be respectable. If you're not in too much of a hurry, I'll keep an eye out for you.

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@arosiriak: Thanks again!
I may find that $600 is too low so I can be a bit flexible on price.
Thanks for keeping a look out, but I tend to be impulsive about stuff like this so I'll probably have something purchased within the next few days.

Appreciate the help!

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Here's a page from Dell where I've isolated the laptops with Intel Core i3 and at least 4GB of DDR3 RAM.

If any stand out as particularly good or particularly bad choices with price not being a consideration, I'd appreciate your input:

http://outlet.us.dell.com/ARBOnlineSales/Online/InventorySearch.aspx?brandId=2201&c=us&cs=22&l=en&s=dfh

I can't wait to get this over with so I can get back to doing something I'm competent in. :)

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Ok...could someone please explain this??

I picked Choose on one of the products to see what options they recommend and the last one says this:

Refurbished Monitors
Monitor not included with system purchase

PLEASE tell me this doesn't mean what I think it does....the prices they quote are only for the bottom part of the computer?? Is that normal??

Never heard of this before.