HP Brightview vs Toshiba TruBrite, outdoors and PC specs, advice needed

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I have a choice, as I see it, mainly between 2 notebooks in my price range
(sub $800). What I'm going to use it for is doing some digital camcording
inside client's houses, say 5 to 10 minutes worth, which will go online.
However, I plan to give the clients a raw or lightly edited CD/DVD after the
shoot for their review. So I heard I would benefit from a little better than
your standard video card found on most low-end notebooks. Light-scribe is
nice, so I can burn a custom label for my client's on the spot.

OK, which of these two notebooks should I use. Again, a big concern, given
my thread title is how the screen will perform outside in daylight, as I can
see using it at least part-time outside. Also, I can accept the 14.1" screen
size, don't want something too bulky. I tried looking up screen reviews and
got mixed results, some say TruBrite is better than Brightview, some say
Brightview is better, some say they're pretty much the same thing. I read
one HP review that said HP's have a lot of light leakage, but that review
was one or two years ago.

I already bought a HP Pavilion dv2125nr at Best Buy today, but it's sitting
still in the box, unopened, as if I open and return, I'm slammed with a 15%
re-stocking fee. I want to get opinions before I open it. No fee if returned
unopened. That cost me $749 after an in-store $200 rebate. The "contender"
that I am also "eyeing" is a Toshiba Satellite A105-S4284, at CompUSA for
$699 after $150 mail in rebates.

They both have a firewire port, which I'll need for the camcorder, both have
S-video out, MCE 2005.

I can't find the HP product on-line, but the specs on the box are:

AMD Turion 64 X2 Mobile Technology TL-50 and 256KB + 256KB L2 cache (1.6
HP Quick Play and HP Remote Control, and headphones (not real concerned
about these)
14.1" WXGA High-Definition Brightview Widescreen Display (1280 X 800)
120 GB 5400 rpm Hard Drive (I think most if not all low end notebooks are
1024MB DDR2 SDRAM (2 Dimm)
nVidia GeForce Go 6150 video graphics
up to 256MB video memory (shared)
LightScribe Super Multi 8X DVD+/-RW with Double Layer Support
802.11b/g WLAN (doesn't mention Ethernet, I assume it's there)
5 in 1 Digital Media Reader
ExpressCard/54 PC Card Slot
Expansion Port 3
6 cell Li-ion 43 Whr battery
Vista capable

I read on line somewhere that the GeForce Go 6150 supports 32/64/128 but
didn't see 256 mentioned, something new?

Now I don't see anything on the box about Firewire ports, but the sale clerk
informed me it has one.

Now for the Toshiba, got their spec sheet:

Intel Centrino CoreDuo Processor T2050 1.6Ghz, 533 Bus speed, 2 MB L2 Cache
size, Intel 945GM chipset
1GB DDR2-SDRAM max 4 GB (I think I read somewhere max is only 2 GB on HP,
but that's minor to me)
2 memory slots
100 GB hard drive, speed not given (vs 120 HP)
CD/DVD specs seem similar but without LightScribe (was told only HP offers
Additional Drives: DL DVD Super-Multi (2 drives total? sounds like same
drive referenced 1 line above)
Sound support: 3D audio (HP didn't give audio spec, but video more
Video Chipset: Intel Graphics media Accelerator (GMA) 950
Shared Video RAM (max): 128MB (HP was 256?)
Resolution: 1280 X 800
Display: 15.4" TruBrite screen technology
Port connectors:
Video: 1 RGB monitor output, 1 S-video output
Audio: 1 mic input, 1 headphone output
Data: 1 iLink IEEE-1394
4 USB 2.0 (I think the HP has 3)
1 RJ-45 LAN
1 RJ-11 modem (will probably never use dial-up)

Card Slots:
has 1 each of memory stick, memory stick pro, SD/MMC, xD Picture card,
Express card 34, Expresscard 54, Type II/Type 1 PC card

Network: Ethernet 10/100
Wireless: 802.11 a/b/g (HP didn't mention "a", but will I *really* need
this, b/g good enough so far).
56K modem which I probably won't use
1 3.5 hour battery
MCE2005 Vista capable

Again a decent screen I can use outside is a must. Any advice very much
appreciated. Thanks much.

Re: HP Brightview vs Toshiba TruBrite, outdoors and PC specs, advice needed

DK1000 wrote:

Can't tell you anything about the particular laptops, but I can
discuss outside readability.

Management Summary: If you're planning on doing video editing outside...
forget it!

The parameters you need are never specified because they're horrible.
You're interested in the contrast ratio between the display and the
reflection from outside light.  It's not possible to generate enough
light to "overcome" outside ambient.  Best you can do is enhance
contrast by reducing reflections, which significantly diminishes actual
brightness and makes
the device less desirable for the other 99.99% of buyers.

There are reflections from every surface in the stack between the user
and the pixels.  Big problem is the outside surface.  You have to use
really good multi-layer antireflective coatings.  Think camera lens.
And we all know what happens when you put a fingeprint on a camera lens.
That's why you won't see them on a laptop.

Reflections inside the optical stack, can be significantly reduced by
using polarizing filters as the first element.
We used to use circular polarization on emissive displays.
You lose >half your light, but gain siginificantly in constrast ratio
for high ambient conditions, depending on the relative reflectivity of
surfaces inside the optical stack.
Not sure what happens when you try to put
a circular polarizer on the polarized light from a TFT.  May get
interesting patterns.  Take a look at your TFT with polarized
sunglasses.  There are interesting artifacts present.

Bottom line is that what you need adds significantly to cost and
significantly reduces the numbers on published specs.  99.99% of us
wouldn't buy.

You'd get more bang for the buck by tinting the windows on your
SUV or building a light-shielding alcove inside.

Last time I checked, lightscribe took forever to burn the label.
If your time is valuable, you many wanna forgo this capability.
You can probably buy an inkjet CD printer for less than the cost
of your time to do a couple of lightscribes.

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Re: HP Brightview vs Toshiba TruBrite, outdoors and PC specs, advice needed

Thanks Mike,

I'll take the HP back and keep looking/researching screens. And thanks very
much for the info on LightScribe. I Googled it, and yes, everyone else is
saying what you said, it will take too long to burn a label. I never thought
of thinking about if that would be a long process, so LightScribe will not
be a priority my laptop. My new desktop has Lightscribe, which I never tried
yet, so if I do want to burn labels, I'll use my desktop to burn them in
advance, and then just write the data side at the client's house.

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