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Old 03-19-2009, 08:21 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Laptop advice - From someone who has one

Hey everyone,

I wanted to write MY opinion on laptops, as I have seen numerous threads about people asking advice about purchasing laptops. I have repeated the same sentiments over and over and I wanted to take some time to put this out there for anyone who is thinking about buying one.
I think the first (and probably the most important) question you should ask yourself is: DO I REALLY NEED A LAPTOP???
Personally, I bought my laptop at a time where I had a functional and decent desktop(Dell Dimension 8400) My job required me to spend a lot of time on the road and away from home. I found myself away from home for days at time and I wanted to be able to browse the internet and check my email. I also thought it would be cool to game on the road. I did a lot of research into what I wanted, and waited until I found a killer deal from Dell on the XPS m1530. They had a special 3 day deal where the base price was cut, and ALL(yea, ALL) upgrades were 40% off. So I maxed nearly everything out and ended up saving over $1000.

The laptop was a great backup computer to my desktop and was great for taking to work. And then my desktop died. Currently I am stuck(yea, I said stuck) using just my laptop. To be honest with you, I havent "gamed" in over two months now. Why? It just simply isnt the same as a desktop.
Personally, I find the laptop to be far more cramped than my desktop. The ergonomics just arent the same. As far as costs go, you can get so much more with your money by getting a desktop. With a laptop, you are paying for portability, realize that! I laugh at these 17 inch "desktop replacements." They are great, but they weigh ten pounds or more. Trust me, you won't want to take that too many places with you.

If you plan on doing any substantial gaming with your laptop, you lose the portability option. That is because gaming will suck that battery dry like a Humvee eats gasoline. When you see these companies advertise battery life at 2, 5, or 10 hours, or whatever the case may be, realize that these are under optimal conditions. That is with few to no programs running and minimal screen brightness, and power saver (if it has one) at max. In other words, you will hardly see the advertised performance. So then you find yourself always needing to be near an electrical outlet. Well if that's the case, then why not stick with a desktop where you can get so much more for your money?

Also, I bought an iphone back in September. Without getting to far off topic, I can do just about everything with my iphone i.e. web-browsing, reading and posting to these forums, emailing, etc, that I could do with my laptop. About the only thing I can't do is type up a word doc, which I am willing to bet isn't too far off. So, after buying my phone guess what no longer came to work with me? Yep, the laptop. With the death of my desktop, my laptop soon was called back into action......TO FIND THESE FORUMS AND HELP ME RESEARCH MY NEW DESKTOP. I will be building my new desktop in the next few weeks here, and once it is up and running, I will probably be sending the laptop back into semi-retirement.

Now I certainately am not saying "never buy a laptop." But I am saying that if you are thinking about purchasing one, you should seriously think about whether you ABSOLUTELY need one. With what I know now, I would not have bought my laptop. It's nice to have a backup computer, but it was a rather costly backup. Again, this was all just MY opinion of MY experience with my laptop. The bottom line is do what you want. It is your money, do what you think will make you happy.
-Pure
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Old 03-19-2009, 01:43 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Laptop advice - From someone who has one

My Laptop is for business.

My desktop is for gaming. Well and some work too but gaming first.

I need and use both.
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Old 03-19-2009, 02:09 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Laptop advice - From someone who has one

Your experience is your experience. IT is not going to be the same for every person.

You find it cramped but what about those people that have smaller hands and find that the layout of the laptop is perfect for them?

Also it is very easy that a laptop can be used as a desktop replacement. Even with taking into effect the fact that they might be tied to a area near a power outlet. The option to MOVE away from the PC Desk and to a couch, dinning room or even in a hotel room is a big advantage to many people over having to sit at the same desk and not move while they are gaming.

Some like to have a TV or music going which may not be possible in their PC Room. Others have it setup so they can have WiFi go out to a garage area or whatever.

Laptops serve a different purpose for every person. Just because you find your iPhone to be a great replacement and a suitable solution for you does not mean that others should have to consider not getting a laptop over a desktop cause of factors like upgradeability and that.

Maybe these people are not worried about being able to upgrade later. Maybe they will seel the laptop to someone else and buy themselves a new one. Maybe they bought ont that offers them some options. Maybe they are just looking to the possibility and not really buying.

I have a laptop and i use it. I have used it for gaming, i have used it on trips out of town, i have even used it as a source for repairing other people PC's as well.

Sorry to say but you view on why a person should consider a laptop is very restricting. I do not see much about anything other than your personal experience. So for you having a laptop isnt necessary. But for many it is their life line. It is their business.

Everything has its pros and cons. I can sit here and list off a dozen or more cons about owning a Desktop as well. But the fact is it is personal preference. If a person wants a laptop that is their choice. It is not up to us to try and convince them that they should reconsider a desktop. If they are asking about a laptop they have already made that choice. They already know the pros vs cons for their situation. For them to be asking advice about a Laptop means that they feel it would benefit them. If not then they would be asking about building or upgrading a Desktop in another part of the forum.

We are here to assist people. Not to try and change their mind or persuade their decision because we feel that there is a better option. Only they know the full story as to why they are looking for the item they are. Only they can decide. We can only assist them on getting the best bang for their buck and helping them with their questions.
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Old 03-20-2009, 01:07 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Laptop advice - From someone who has one

I'm a firm believer have having a powerful desktop for your gaming stuff, and grabbing a netbook for your general travel needs. You know, photos, internet browsing, word processing, maybe some music, etc. Whatever. That's just my opinion.

And it's my opinion based on the fact that I paid WAY TOO MUCH for my current laptop. If netbooks had been out in force back then, I would have grabbed on of those.
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Old 03-20-2009, 01:52 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Laptop advice - From someone who has one

Desktops are meant to be fire breathing monsters with flashy lights and multiple graphics cards topped off with an overclocked multicore cpu.

Laptops should be small, light, have a battery that lasts forever and support every wireless protocol under the sun.

Gaming laptops are walking contradictions, they are stupid and a waste of cash. I had a buddy who didn't take my advice and bought a $3k alienware laptop. Now 3 years later he came back asking me to design him a core i7 desktop. Look who was right.
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Old 03-20-2009, 12:44 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Laptop advice - From someone who has one

^^ I concur so much with that.
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Old 03-20-2009, 03:16 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Laptop advice - From someone who has one

+1 to both hikariclouds and zmatt's posts.

I went with their approach and bought a netbook instead of a larger gaming laptop and am very glad I did. The netbook was a fraction of the price of even a moderate gaming laptop and is for more useful because it's more portable, runs cool, and has exceptional battery life. At this point I would never even consider getting a laptop larger than a 13.3".
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Old 03-20-2009, 03:37 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: Laptop advice - From someone who has one

Okay, perhaps I should clear a few things up here. My intent with that post was to give someone who is looking at purchasing a laptop some insight from MY perspective. At the end of the day, they will have to decide for or against buying a laptop. The decision will be theirs. Not yours, not mine, but THEIRS. I would have loved to have had the knowledge that I have now, prior to buying my laptop. But I didn't and that's nobodys fault but my own. And I know my experience is not the same as everybody elses. That is why I prefaced the original post numerous times with "this is MY opinion", or "this is my experience."
And Mak, I am going to have respectfully disagree with your statement that "If they are asking about a laptop they have already made that choice." While that may be true in some cases, I think in other instances, people are asking questions to see if what they are looking for is right for them. That is why these forums are such a valuable resource to me, and I would imagine others. We have a place where we can ask questions of people who have knowledge of a given topic.
I was by no means trying to tell people NOT to by a laptop, and I even said that in the last paragraph of the OP. I just wanted to give MY story to those who are looking for a laptop, and possibly have a potential shopper who might be on the fence in their decision to truly question their need for one as I wish I had done. And if someone is deadset in buying one, then by all means do so.
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Old 03-20-2009, 04:14 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: Laptop advice - From someone who has one

What was the point of posting a thread if you didn't want to hear other people's opinions...? You are allowed to speak your opinion, and we are allowed to post ours. Don't see a big problem with that. If you were posting something like a "guide" for people interested in buying a laptop, then why not have more opinions than yours? The more opinions the better I say, it gives a chance for the buyer to see a variety.

Don't post something if you don't want people replying to it. Simple as that.
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Old 03-20-2009, 04:27 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: Laptop advice - From someone who has one

Quote:
Originally Posted by hikaricloud View Post
What was the point of posting a thread if you didn't want to hear other people's opinions...? You are allowed to speak your opinion, and we are allowed to post ours. Don't see a big problem with that. If you were posting something like a "guide" for people interested in buying a laptop, then why not have more opinions than yours? The more opinions the better I say, it gives a chance for the buyer to see a variety.

Don't post something if you don't want people replying to it. Simple as that.
Couldn't agree with you more. I was clarifying my original post as I think some of my statements were misconstrued/misunderstood.
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