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A friend of mine is off to college this fall (as am I), and she wants a laptop. Nothing fancy, no 3D software, no video / audio editing or stuff like that. Trouble is, she only has about $500 to spend. What would be a decent Windows laptop for the price? 

 

Also, which of the US / UK (or other) retailers should I choose if I want to order from outside those countries (namely Eastern Europe)?

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Posted

That's the best way to put it, really. A tablet is an absolutely ridiculous suggestion in place of a laptop for college.

Absolutely, this is what I was trying to say earlier, but certain people are insistent on tablets. I think tablets complement laptops/desktops, but should not be used in college as a lone device. If you have ever tried typing something of length on a tablet, you will instantly regret it and wish you had a real keyboard (not to mention the other benefits of having a laptop vs. tablet)

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Coming from someone who has used one, I agree with him.

 

That touchscreen isn't going to make your laptop run smoother/faster.  It isn't going to increase your storage.  It is going to be this cool gimmick that lasts a week until you are fed up with the smudges on the screen and are bored with it.  Then you find yourself wishing you had more ram to make the stuttering pos run better, or a little bit more storage for your music/etc.

 

If you are on a budget, consider the core things first, and focus less on gimmicky items that may, or may not hold long term value.

i don't know what kind of screen your laptop has, but i've never had significant smudging issues on my tablet PCs. perhaps you've never had the chance of adapting to having a touchscreen available. I rarely use the touchpad. mostly touch + stylus. works sooo much better than a little touchpad for most things. (but of course, my tablet PC also wasn't a budget computer, I paid a premium for the functionality)

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i don't know what kind of screen your laptop has, but i've never had significant smudging issues on my tablet PCs. perhaps you've never had the chance of adapting to having a touchscreen available. I rarely use the touchpad. mostly touch + stylus. works sooo much better than a little touchpad for most things. (but of course, my tablet PC also wasn't a budget computer, I paid a premium for the functionality)

 

n1z2.jpg

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Posted

i want to lick that screen.

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Posted

n1z2.jpg

 

eww that's gross. glossy screen huh. don't have anything nearly that bad on my Surface, possibly different oil-output.

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Posted

I'd go for an hp probook

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Posted

****ty quality, it'll break quickly

 

starts at $670

 

In 2011 I got an 14 inch HP ProBook 6450B i5 3gb of ram off eBay for like $399 Free shipping and a free 80GB SSD .. Still using it to this day.

 

eww that's gross. glossy screen huh. don't have anything nearly that bad on my Surface, possibly different oil-output.

 

Not really, I don't think, it's an acer w500

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(Using bold because I think this is really good advice)

 

Going to college? Get a tablet or a convertible PC with Wacom pen support. Try to find something in that price range, even if it's used.

 

That's what I did when I went to college back in '06. OneNote is incredibly useful for college. All your notes, papers, everything on your PC. Synced with Skydrive and you'll never lose anything if you lose your PC, and your notes will always be available as long as a PC is nearby. You can even acess them on your phone!

 

Use that, and other apps like Evernote, and you'll become much more efficent at managing all the information that you'll get in classes than people with just a tradicional PC.

 

By the way, to you Modern UI haters, from experience, using a pen and touch in XP Tablet PC Edition 2005 was awful. Vista and 7 got much better, but it still felt like you just replaced the mouse with your finger. The "Modern UI" was definitely need for everything to just flow together. And I speak from experience by using a convertible PC since then.

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Posted

****ty quality, it'll break quickly

 

starts at $670

 

here's one for less than $500

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I have to agree with the point about having an active digitizer and software that takes full advantage of it. People who haven't used one will inevitably see tablets as giant iPhones, and make some stupid comment about consumer vs producer devices, and what they don't get is that sometimes you consume material and sometimes you produce it and the dockable tablets give you the option of switching between one and the other.

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Posted

****ty quality, it'll break quickly

 

starts at $670

 

Starts at $520, if you look on other websites there maybe a better deal.

 

This is my 2nd HP laptop, none failed on me. The ProBook was slept on, fell from the bed, still survived. The HP DV6-7000, I have been using for almost 2 years now, a powerhouse, and yet to fail on me, it has been abused to.

 

If you would have taken time to look/review the laptop, you might have come to a different conclusion.

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