Computer help/advice
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    Computer help/advice

    Ok, here is my situation. I have a Toshiba laptop that is primarily used as a desktop replacement. It recently died and needs a new motherboard. They apparently don't stock the board anymore and it would have to come from overseas. Cost to repair laptop is $385. Should I fix it or buy a new one? There is data on the laptop I need to retrieve, but I can always pull the hod's and copy it to a new pc. I would consider replacing it with a desktop as I have a net book and an iPad that I use when I need mobility.

    Question is, repair or replace? If I replace, what should I get that would be better than the laptop specs at a good price? I think for $600 if I could get an upgrade in a desktop I would do it. I do use it for some light gaming which the current laptop was just barely strong enough to handle. I'm not familiar with component specs anymore, so I don't even know which graphics cards are any good these days. Laptop specs are below. Suggestions? Thanks.

    Product Features
    17.1-inch (diagonal) WXGA plus TruBright TFT Widescreen LCD Display, 1440 x 900 resolution
    2.00 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo Processor P7350 with 3MB L2 Cache
    3072MB PC6400 DDR2 SDRAM memory, 500GB using 2 x 250GB (5400RPM) Hard Drives (SATA), ATI Mobility Radeon HD 3650
    DVD SuperMulti with Labelflash drive supporting 11 formats, Atheros 802.11 b/g wireless LAN
    Windows Vista Home Premium, dims in inches: 15.8 x 11.4 x 1.38/1.50, Starting at 7.39 lbs.
    Processor, Memory, and Motherboard
    Hardware Platform: PC
    Processor: 2 GHz Intel Core Duo
    Number of Processors: 2
    RAM: 3000 MB
    RAM Type: DDR2 SDRAM
    Hard Drive
    Size: 500 GB
    Type: Serial ATA
    Cases and Expandability
    Size (LWH): 15.8 inches, 11.4 inches, 1.38 inches



  2. #2
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    Re: Computer help/advice

    I don't need a monitor or anything...



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    Re: Computer help/advice

    Build your own desktop, it is easy and you could put together a nice gaming rig for under $500. Check out Newegg.com - Computer Parts, PC Components, Laptop Computers, LED LCD TV, Digital Cameras and more!



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    Re: Computer help/advice

    Quote Originally Posted by tiberius View Post
    Build your own desktop, it is easy and you could put together a nice gaming rig for under $500. Check out Newegg.com - Computer Parts, PC Components, Laptop Computers, LED LCD TV, Digital Cameras and more!
    Yah, I've done that before, but don't really have the time right now. Looking for something pre-built that I won't have to fuss with. Unless you want to build it for me. I guess if someone had a "parts list" for a complete system on new egg that I could just order and not spend a bunch of time figuring out I could have my IT guy build it and give him $25 or something... Usually buying an OS ends up raising the cost to build it beyond what a pre built system costs anyway doesn't it?



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    Re: Computer help/advice

    Quote Originally Posted by Clone1450 View Post
    Yah, I've done that before, but don't really have the time right now. Looking for something pre-built that I won't have to fuss with. Unless you want to build it for me. I guess if someone had a "parts list" for a complete system on new egg that I could just order and not spend a bunch of time figuring out I could have my IT guy build it and give him $25 or something... Usually buying an OS ends up raising the cost to build it beyond what a pre built system costs anyway doesn't it?
    Do you have the install disks for your (now unused) Windows installation? If so, I would just use those. IANAL, and the legal details may not work here, but I've always thought of the OS purchase as a license. So if I choose to stop using one computer and begin using another, I shouldn't have to purchase another license unless I either want to switch OSes or keep using the first machine. Since your laptop is dead I think this would be a clear-cut case of the original machine not being used anytime in the future, so I would have no ethical/moral qualms about using its installation media on your new computer. And if I'm wrong in my approach, I doubt that Microsoft is interested in hunting down users like you since you're not torrenting their product all across the internet.



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    Re: Computer help/advice

    Dude, unless you buy a retail version of Windows, everything that comes with computers these days is on system disks that are specific to the system/brand and won't work in anything else.



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    Re: Computer help/advice

    Build a desktop quad core no brainer



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    Re: Computer help/advice

    I've built my last 5 desktops but I have to admit that unless you want something really special, it's probably as cheap to just buy one from Dell.



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    Re: Computer help/advice

    Yeah but I love picking my own custom parts



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    Re: Computer help/advice

    Quote Originally Posted by dmclone View Post
    I've built my last 5 desktops but I have to admit that unless you want something really special, it's probably as cheap to just buy one from Dell.
    I'm looking for recommendations...



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    Re: Computer help/advice

    I'll weigh in here. I usually build my own via parts from newegg. I personally like doing that and you can get a good deal if you do the research and buy parts when they they are on special. As previously mentioned the OS part is really a killer these days because Dell and the other biggies essentially get it for free whereas home builders get stuck paying 100-200 bucks. And MS wonders why there are so many pirates. Anyway, given your timetable and lack of time to do a custom build yourself the best route would probably be to buy one off the self.

    Now, in case you don't know one of the very best times to buy a laptop happens to be right now (early to mid Aug gets the back to schoolers and off to college crowd). Retailers have real good deals right now on laptops. Check Staples, Office Max, Office Depot, Best Buy. I've used Staples a lot (Merle Hay store) and they usually have online coupons for additional discounts (you can even buy Staples coupons for use on new purchases ... can save you an additional $50 or so). I've checked Newegg prices on laptops and they are no better than your local store ... see above. There is one big gottcha with the above strategy and it may be a big one; depends on you. The machines you will find at the above are usually the entry level machines; which will probably mean about the same config or thereabouts as the one that just died on you. And will probably be a 15.6 inch screen to boot.

    If you really want a nice machine look at the Dells - Lattitude's are pricey but very nice. The Inspirons are OK too ... that's what I have. The fastest you can get at a reasonable price right now in a lappy is a Core i5 2.33 -2.66 ghz. These are fast but not blazing ... not as fast as a desktop but lappies never are. I haven't looked at the 17 inchers but a 15.6 with 4 gigs, 320-500gb hd, and a i5 should run about 800-900. I think the 17inchers are a bit more but not a whole lot; maybe 100-200 more. I would also consider a core i3. They are quite a bit cheaper than the i5 and I don't think they are that much slower so they might be a good alternative too. You can buy a lappie with a i7 but the clock rates are pretty low compared to the i3 and i5 I don't think the bang for the buck is there. I haven't mentioned AMD machines and their is a good reason. I am a big AMD fanboy and all of my homebuilt machines have been AMD but they can't compete right now in the lappie market. Its owned by Intel and for good reason; performance and power consumption can't be matched by AMD so go Intel.

    If you want specific brand recommendations I would put Dell and HP at the top. I don't know much about Lenovo I've heard they are very good like the old IBMs but since I haven't used them I can't comment. I also know that 2 motherboard makers are getting into lappies via the direct market they are ASUS and MSI. I know ASUS products very well and they make some of the best stuff out there so their lappies might be good too; they are getting good reviews. I've used Acer/Gateways/Emachines and they are OK. Usually cheaper but for good reason.

    If you want to build your own machine I can give recommendations on that too. I built my latest machine about 4-5 months ago and I don't think the market has changed that much. And if you decide to scrap the broken lappie ... I'll take it for parts ... I'm always fooling around with computer stuff.



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    Re: Computer help/advice

    Here is what I put together about 4 months ago. The SSD drive is smoking fast and makes a huge difference.

    ASUS P7P55D-E Pro LGA 1156 Intel P55 SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 ATX Intel Motherboard

    Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit 1-Pack for System Builders - OEM

    Mushkin Enhanced Blackline 4GB (2 x 2GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model 996782 -Expanded this to 8gb but really can't tell the difference.

    CORSAIR CMPSU-750TX 750W ATX12V / EPS12V SLI Ready CrossFire Ready 80 PLUS Certified Active PFC Compatible with Core i7 Power ...

    XFX HD-577A-ZNFC Radeon HD 5770 (Juniper XT) 1GB 128-bit GDDR5 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready CrossFireX Support Video Card

    Intel X25-M Mainstream SSDSA2M080G2XXX 2.5" 80GB SATA II MLC Internal Solid State Drive (SSD) - OEM

    Intel Core i5-750 Lynnfield 2.66GHz LGA 1156 95W Quad-Core Processor BX80605I5750

    Seagate Barracuda 7200.12 ST31000528AS 1TB 7200 RPM SATA 3.0Gb/s 3.5" Internal Hard Drive -Bare Drive

    I use the SSD for my main apps that I use all the time and the OS. It's less than 1/2 full. I put all my pictures, music, games, etc on the 1tb drive. I have an additional 1tb drive in this PC for back-ups.

    On a scale of 0-7.9

    Processor Intel(R) Core(TM) i5 CPU 750 @ 2.67GHz 7.5
    Memory (RAM) 8.00 GB 7.7
    Graphics ATI Radeon HD 5700 Series 7.4
    Gaming graphics 4083 MB Total available graphics memory 7.4
    Primary hard disk 34GB Free (74GB Total) 7.7


    Last edited by dmclone; 08-14-2010 at 07:26 AM.

  13. #13
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    Re: Computer help/advice

    Quote Originally Posted by Clone1450 View Post
    not spend a bunch of time figuring out I could have my IT guy build it and give him $25 or something...
    These IT people get no respect at all. None JMHO


    "To run this drill, Everyone line up in a circle, pair up in rows of three, alphabetically"

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    Re: Computer help/advice

    Quote Originally Posted by mkadl View Post
    These IT people get no respect at all. None JMHO
    Well, he is a rather crappy one, but he did offer to do it for that. No disrespect here, other good IT folks can make or break a company and are a huge asset. Just not this one.



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    Re: Computer help/advice

    Dmclone, do recall what the total cost was on that build? Then I will need to get a case too which will run what, $75 for a middle of the road box? Might be able to combo the PS and the case...

    I think I am going to go desktop route instead of laptop. If anyone comes across any smoking deals let me know. Also, any advice on vid cards? Seems like that is usually the limiting factor on off the shelf boxes...



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