Laptop recommendations

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Hi folks

I've spent the past few days Googling various ways to try to find some
direct comparisons between laptop models where I can select some basic
criteria and have a few options presented.  Most of the hits I'm getting are
etailer-oriented, and therefore suspect.

This will be for a lady running her one-person business, so price is always
important.  Whatever laptop is selected, she will likely also take the 2 or
3 year support plan, as she is not a techie by any stretch.  I'm her
"computer guy" doing her a favor, but I'm a programmer and know nothing
about the current laptop market.  I did tell her that she will expect to pay
somehwere between $1K and $1.3K for a reasonable machine with 2-yr warranty.
Hope that's reasonable.  Her requirements seem to be in the low-end range of
technology, with many models to choose from.

Have looked at Dell 600M and 1000 series, HP ZV5000's and Pavillions, some
Compaqs and Toshibas, and Sonys.  She'll want to deal with a big name brand,
so I suspect an HP or Dell with get the nod.

So, I'll ask the assembled brain trust and see if anyone has any reasonable
suggestions.  Many thanks to anyone who takes the time to read and respond.
If anyone knows of good sites for model comparisons, that'd be great too.


Weight: Not too important, as this unit will not be travelling much - more
of a desktop replacement with occassional portability.
Processor/Speed:  The existing desktop is ancient and slow, so anything will
seem lightening fast.  One particular CAD program will be used, but no
restrictions on processors or OS known.  I'd be more concerned that it run
without heating problems.  Lets say a CPU clocking at 1.5 or above with
reasonable BUS speed.
Screen: 14" minimum, good image of course.  15" would be nice.  The CAD
screens can be zoomed, so super-fine resolution is not required.  Lets say ~
1200 X 800.
Hard drive : 40 MB min, 5400 rpm min
Memory : 512, video shared memory acceptable.

Audio/Video features:  Would like to be able to play audio and video DVDs
and burn CDs.  Also a video out port (to TV) would be great.  Enhanced sound
is not a requirement.  Saw that some of the HPs come with remote control for
audio/video, which would be neat but not essential.

Graphics:  Don't think anything special is needed.  Seems many models in
this range use ATI Radeon?

Networking:  Good question.

Controls: standard mouse and keyboard necessary, wireless or USB pluggable.
Also need 1-2 USBs for thumb drive and other add-ons like printer when

Re: Laptop recommendations

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As a Linux partisan, I hate to say it, but your friend should buy a
Macintosh.  She might have to pay a little bit more for it than she
would for comparable Wintel iron, but at least she will escape from
Microsoft hell.  If she buys a Macintosh, then every time you hear
about another Windows virus outbreak on TV, you can feel happy to have
saved her from dealing with it.

Re: Laptop recommendations

I don't disagree with you, but probably I wasn't clear with the lack of OS
dependence.  I meant that she could go Win2K or XP flavors of Windows.

Her main CAD design program is definitely mainstream windows, so that's a
Maybe she'll decide on one of the HPs that has a Linux partition.  Saw that
and thought it might be interesting, even tho it seems designed to support
A/V activities without booting windows.

Tnx for the response.

"Paul Rubin" < wrote in message
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Re: Laptop recommendations

On 02 Mar 2005 19:46:04 -0800, Paul Rubin
< wrote:

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As a recent convert, I agree.

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