ebay laptop purchase

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I'm trying to buy a wireless notebook on eBay for $100 or less to use
in Starbucks, and I'm having some trouble.  I've been mostly bidding on
Dells, but I think they might be overpriced.  Out of the following

HP, Compaq

is there any that's really targeted to the value-conscious consumer?
Basically, I'm looking for a notebook equivalent of eMachines.

Also, on a bit of an aside, if you have a wireless card, can you plug
an Ethernet cable into it?  I'm wondering if I'll be able to use this
thing at Kinko's.  


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Re: ebay laptop purchase

On 9 Aug 2005 13:19:31 -0700, bob@coolgroups.com wrote:

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You'll be lucky to find anything that works for $100 or less much less
including a wireless card.

Expect to pay $350 up for just about any working (and that's still a
crapshoot) laptop on Ebay.

The problem is the idiots who are more into winning the bidding than
they are in the product they are buying. They almost always drive the
price up way past what the item is worth.

I was looking for an IBM T21 or T22 and checked ebay. Every one went
for $450 - 500, and some even passed $550 regardless of condition,
with OS or without, small hard drive or big, 256Mb or 512Mb RAM, etc.
Then the sellers are all charging $25 - 40 shipping.

I ended up picking up a T22 with W2K installed for $400 w. free
shipping from an online surplus computer dealer. Better deal, less

Re: ebay laptop purchase

try the thinkpad 500 series.  its only 100mhz, but it should do for
your purposes.  its mainly known as the tp500 or 560 (thats the one my
sister has).  you have to have patince with the speed and you'll have
to find a 16 bit card instead of 32 bit cardbus (usually wireless b)

good luck!

Re: ebay laptop purchase

Jed wrote:
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I think you are right....basically you are competing to buy a notebook
of unknown quality from someone who may or may not be reputable.

That being said....I recently purchased a Dell LS400 (I think that is
what it was called for around $300 (including shipping).   It was in
fairly nice condition and included a wireless card.   I ended up buying
a replacement keyboard (I think for $25 but not sure) and it is a nice
little notebook.

Re: ebay laptop purchase

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as another poster said, you'll be lucky to get a working machine let alone
wireless. The IBM 560X with 233 MHz processor or even the 200 MHz processor
would be quite viable but you'll need a wireless PC card as well. The
problem with most low price machunes, even working ones is that they are
usually quite old with dead or dying batteries and a good replacement
battery will cost as much or more than the laptop.
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I'm not aware of a wireless card with an ethernet jack in it. But the PC
cards with ethernet jack are quite cheap.

I'm wondering if I'll be able to use this
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Re: ebay laptop purchase

I wisk you good luck but <$100 might be tough. Keep and eye out for Dell
Latitude CPi's in the 266mhz-300mhz range. I've seen them go for $150-$200.

I've been beating the crap out of my CPi 300 for the past six years and
my brothers has had a 266 for a little longer. They've both  been
trouble free and suprisingly good performers. Parts and accesories are
cheap and readily available online.

Best Regards,


bob@coolgroups.com wrote:
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Re: ebay laptop purchase

Don't overlook the Thinkpad 365XD series.
Will run Windows 98 with upgraded RAM to 72MB and really not bad for
the buck. Takes 16bit PCMCIA cards. Drawbacks are no USB and DSTN
display. Had mine 1999 with only a battery replacement. I take it
everywhere I travel. I won't be out much if it gets dropped or stolen.

Re: ebay laptop purchase

You are pushing this to do it for less than $100 with anything really
reasonable.  I'd look at Toshiba, the 300 series models (300 to 335; the
"CDS" are "dual scan" screens, the "CDT" are the much better active
matrix TFT), or the 4000 series, especially (if you can find one) the
4020CDT, which would be an excellent choice for your use and might be
close to $100.

Do not consider any 400 series machine below 440, and do not consider
any 400 series machine that does not have an active matrix screen
(generally, this means CDT).  You can find LOTS of 440 to 495 series
machines well under $100 (sometimes, you can find 440's for $10), but
that is a Pentium 133MHz and it's performance will be VERY marginal.

Note that Toshiba models ending in zero are identical to the same model
ending in "5"; that is, a 440CDT and a 445CDT are identical, as are a
4010CDT and a 4015CDT.  The "5" models were originally sold through a
different hardware channel and had a different software bundle
installed, and possibly a different warranty, but the actual hardware is
exactly the same.

bob@coolgroups.com wrote:

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