plexer (4th November 2013)
As those few poor souls that follow me on Twitter (I don't recommend it) will know, i have been trying to choose a laptop for myself, rather unsucessfully. For some reason, i am finding this particulary challenging.
I find a laptop i think i'd like, and then i read a review. I'm starting to wonder whether they are actually a help or a hinderance.
So, I have a budget of £500 to possible £600. With some convincing i may be able to go higher, though people have said "why not Mac!" but i really need some convincing as to why i should shell out that extra £300.
So, what i'd really like is a good chunk of memory, a good chunk of storage and a 4th gen intel processor. I'd like to be able to do some casual gaming and the usual Office type stuff.
Anyone already got a laptop that they recommend? I was looking into Lenovo's and Dells but am happy to look elsewhere if someone can recommend a brand.
And no, it doesn't have to be a purple, but one of those nice slim ones would be nice!
plexer (4th November 2013)
I really like my macs. They've always been a pleasure to use, the support has been top-notch (I know @Norphy just got a fault fixed on his imac by applecare warranty support, even though its out of warranty) and they've never let me down.
As for the extra money, yes they cost more up front but every mac laptop I've purchased, I've kept for at least 3 years and managed to sell for a very good price afterwards because they hold their value. the last macbook pro I had, I purchased it in 2008 for about £1300 and my sister-in-law purchased it last year for my niece to use in college. They offered me £500 for it and my niece is absolutely delighted with it.
I would still recommend the Lenovo i5's from ICT-Direct. Cracking kit for a very good price Failing that, the Fujitsu Lifebook A532s I have just bought for school are very robust and not too expensive either
Ignore the fact it is from pc world, this looks pretty nice. ACER Aspire E1-572 15.6
I love my little Acer (not that model) , battery life isn't the best but I have never had a problem with it.
As for macs.... my opinion is their build quality has dropped so much in the past few years that they do not last as long as they used too. Better buying a laptop every 3-4 years rather than hoping a mac will last 6 like it used to.
Go for the Mac, its the best thing i ever did. Its just a pleasure to use and unlike any laptop i have used. £891.60 will get you a 13.3" Mac Book Air (with edu discount), its what i got couple of years ago when i did the conversion to the Mac world. Up to 12 hour battery, 128GB SSD, decent res screen, best trackpad ever, soft illuminated keyboard. If you still have some Windows only apps you need the buy Parallels Desktop for it and use Coherence mode to make the apps look like they are running within the Mac OS.
I have an original Macbook from 2006 at home which is still in daily use. It can't run the latest and greatest version of OS X any more and it won't set any performance records but it's still a perfectly usable machine which I've been delighted with over the years that I've owned it.
There's a lot of Mac loving going on in this thread, so I'll contrast.
For your needs and budget, don't get a Mac. Especially if you want to game (though this is improving with Steam and general non-Windows support improving). You may well find that the Macbook you can get in your budget is not a great spec - depends on your idea of casual gaming (Facebook games, older games and modern titles on lower settings will be fine).
There are some very nice deals around. Having bought a couple of Fujitsu models recently for friends, I can recommend something like:
VFY:AH544M7562GB | Fujitsu LIFEBOOK AH544/G32 4th Gen Core i5 8GB 1TB Windows 8.1 Laptop in Black - Laptops Direct
There are slightly cheaper versions of this model, but this hits your Haswell/RAM/storage/casual gaming needs.
I stopped look at reviews online as been looking at household appliances and I have gone with stuff I have used in the past that I know to be reliable same as I do laptops.
I still recommend that ASUS @Little-Miss that I recommended, had one go to Australia and back 6+ times and it still runs sweet as. It's been heavily used and still performs well even with all the crap my friend has managed to get on it, due to clean it up this week to keep it running longer.
The hp envy gear is quite nice and may be worth a look.
john (5th November 2013)
I have HPs. They are OK if a bit flimsy - except on some the keyboard layout is dreadful and people are forever hitting caps lock by mistake. And if you lean on the case near the trackpad, all hell breaks loose
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