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post #1 of 17 (permalink) Old 12-05-2005, 03:06 PM Thread Starter
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New Laptop, Opinions Welcome!

So, I was gonna wait for Boxing day, but I just couldn't. One came on sale with features somewhat close to what I was actually looking for. I went out on Saturday and picked it up (I'm on it right now at school using the wireless network).

I figure they have a 14 day return policy on computers, so if I decide I don't like it THAT much in the next 2 weeks, I can return it for a full refund, cross my fingers and wait for boxing day HOPING I can get something a bit closer to what I was looking for for not much more $$$.

What I was looking for: 17" screen, 64 bit or Centrino processor, 1GB of RAM, 7200RPM HDD.

The Computer I ended up buying: Compaq R4225 - AMD 64 3500+, 100GB HDD, 1GB RAM, 15.4" Brightview WXGA.

Anyways, it was on sale $300 off for $1299.99 CDN @ Futureshop (AKA Best Buy for those Americans out there)

Anyone have any honest opinions? Did I make a good/poor choice? So far, I find the 4200RPM HDD a bit ummmm, slow :(



WebID: 10067701
Mfr. Part Number: EC383UA#ABL
Processor Type AMD Athlon 64 Processor
Screen Size 15.4"
RAM (Preloaded / Maximum) 1024MB (1GB) DDR/ 2048MB (2GB)
Hard Drive 100GB 4200RPM
Optical Drives See The Features Section
Graphics ATI Radeon Xpress 200M IGP, 128MB DDR
Average Battery Life Info Not Available
Product Weight 3.56 kg
Audio Type Altec Lansing
Battery Type 8-Cell Lithium-Ion Battery
Cache Info Not Available
Fax/Modem 56K V.90
I/O Ports See The Features Section
Included In Box Instructions, AC Adapter
Network Card Integrated 10/100BASE-T Ethernet LAN
Other Software See The Features Section
PC Card Slots 1 x Expresscard/54, 1 x Type II Card Bus
Pointing Device Touchpad
Preloaded Operating System Windows XP Home Edition + Service Pack 2
Processor Speed 2.2GHz
Product Dimensions 36.20(W) x 4.57(H) x 28.40(D) cm
Removable Storage 6-In-1 Memory Card Reader, USB
Screen Type See The Features Section
Speakers Altec Lansing
System Bus Up To 2000MHz
Warranty 1 Year Parts & Labour

FEATURES:

I/O Ports: 4 x USB, 1 x VGA,1 x RJ-11 Modem, 1 x TV-Out, 1 x Expansion Port 2 Connector, 1 x IEEE 194 FireWire

Optical Drives: DVD+/- R/RW and CD-RW Combo Drive With Double Layer Support

Screen Type: 15.4" WXGA High-definition Brightview Widescreen

Included Software: Symantec Norton Internet Security (60 days), Adobe Acrobat Reader, Multimedia Software, MS Works, MS Money, MSN Encarta Plus


http://www.futureshop.ca/catalog/pro...gon=&langid=EN




Rob 2002 Chrysler Intrepid R/T (modded), 2015 Nissan Leaf S
March 2008 Car of the Month! 2007 Carlisle "Class" trophy! 2006 IM Best of Show!

Last edited by Avenger; 12-05-2005 at 03:13 PM.
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post #2 of 17 (permalink) Old 12-05-2005, 03:37 PM
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I sell a similiar unit every chance I get at Best Buy. IMO the Compaq's with the AMD chips are the best bang for the buck that we have in the store.
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post #3 of 17 (permalink) Old 12-05-2005, 11:49 PM
 
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Umm, doesn't Best Buy charge you a 15% restocking fee when returning notebook computers? And if so, how then would you get a full refund?
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post #4 of 17 (permalink) Old 12-06-2005, 12:01 AM
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you got duped. A compaq 64 bit laptop have fun with your fans burning out

my number one laptop buying rule:
no laptops with a desktop CPU in them reason: fans will never shut off
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post #5 of 17 (permalink) Old 12-06-2005, 09:28 AM
 
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That looks like a great system for a great price. The only downside is the shitty graphics set. There are much better ones out there for laptops. But then I doubt you bought it as a gaming monster anyways.

A co-worker of mine bought a similar Compaq with the AMD64 chip in it. He runs it practically 24x7 as it is his only pc. Haven't heard of any heat or noise issues about it at all.
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post #6 of 17 (permalink) Old 12-06-2005, 09:59 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by smc1377
Umm, doesn't Best Buy charge you a 15% restocking fee when returning notebook computers? And if so, how then would you get a full refund?
Return policies in Canada are different from that of the US, no restocking fees here.

The fans don't run the whole time and honestly, this is the coolest laptop I've ever used. Doesn't get warm even after hours of use. I played with Sami's Toshiba Celeron, and my lap got so warm after 20 mins that I had to take it off.

I was playing Halo on it yesterday with the graphics cranked, ran somewhat choppy. Cut the resolution to 800x600 and it runs much better. It has an ATI X200 graphics set (has been compared to a 9550), what do you recommend as a much better graphics card?




Rob 2002 Chrysler Intrepid R/T (modded), 2015 Nissan Leaf S
March 2008 Car of the Month! 2007 Carlisle "Class" trophy! 2006 IM Best of Show!

Last edited by Avenger; 12-06-2005 at 10:02 AM.
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post #7 of 17 (permalink) Old 12-08-2005, 09:35 AM
 
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As far as I know it isn't possible to add or upgrade the graphics on a laptop. It's all built in to the motherboard.

There are laptop chipsets based on every available regular video card. So the best right now is probably the 7800GTX set. I'm not up on them all but you can get tons of info from Toms Hardware Guide.
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post #8 of 17 (permalink) Old 12-08-2005, 10:16 AM
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Its not a bad setup for that price, however Compaq could have done better on the two things that have been pointed out already (Graphics and HD).
Based on personal experience I'm not a big fan of Compaqs due to some bad experiences with them (i.e. LCD failing, overheating).
My 0.02 cents.
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post #9 of 17 (permalink) Old 12-08-2005, 11:52 AM
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I had a compaq very unhappy with it. Always in the shop being fixed. I now have a Toshiba labtop and very happy with it.
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post #10 of 17 (permalink) Old 12-08-2005, 12:36 PM Thread Starter
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Yeah it was pretty much between Compaq, Toshiba, and Acer.

I still have over a week to decide.

OMG, I'm sitting next to a guy in class right now who's got an HP laptop running a P4 3.2GHz, and his fan is blowing on my hand from a foot or two away, the air is much warmer at that distance than my laptop has ever put out touching it.




Last edited by Avenger; 12-08-2005 at 12:38 PM.
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post #11 of 17 (permalink) Old 12-10-2005, 08:00 PM Thread Starter
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Heh, I ended up returning the laptop. I traded it in for a Compaq 2410CA.

AMD Turion 64 1.6GHz
512MB RAM
ATI 128MB 200M
80GB HDD
14" WXGA widescreen

MUCH more compact and portable than the other one.



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post #12 of 17 (permalink) Old 12-11-2005, 01:11 PM
 
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How do you like the other laptop the smaller one ? I was looking at it yesterday and was wondering how it was overall? Have you played any games on it and if so how was it ? Also do you find the hard Drive to be fast enough? and one more question what about the wireless connection working all right for you ?

Thanks for your input

cheers
john
:icon_smil
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post #13 of 17 (permalink) Old 12-12-2005, 02:06 AM Thread Starter
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I'm loving this new laptop ALMOST or as much as the first laptop I had. The 2410 is SOOOO much more portable than the 4225. It's nearly an identical setup, but the 2410 seems designed for right handed people where as the 4225 seemed strangely designed for left handed people with the placement of the DVD drive and the connectivity slots.

The 2410 DEFINETELY heats up a lot more than the 4225 (thinner, so the heat transfers out more easily?), and battery life seems about equal (uses less power, but has a smaller battery).

I'm loving the 2410 and it was only $1000. I gotta try Halo out on it though. The 4225 did alright with Halo (full graphics, resolution set to 800x600).

What I AM considering doing is getting a 19" LCD Monitor and a keyboard to go with my awesome laser mouse, and using those at home with the laptop just folded up and being used as my CPU. This laptop BEGS to be taken along with you, it's so compact, yet the keyboard is still a good size and the screen is still large enough.




Rob 2002 Chrysler Intrepid R/T (modded), 2015 Nissan Leaf S
March 2008 Car of the Month! 2007 Carlisle "Class" trophy! 2006 IM Best of Show!
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post #14 of 17 (permalink) Old 12-13-2005, 08:56 AM
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i know someone with that laptop, and i do like the portablity of it but it is on ethe weaker side and it is a compaq, there was a hard drive issue that my friend had with it but other than that i think it is sweet and it is a good deal
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post #15 of 17 (permalink) Old 12-14-2005, 10:54 PM
 
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Yeah, I was just about to ask why you got the big 17" LCD screen. If it's for school and whatnot, you can get a nice 12 or 14(like you did) and plug in an external monitor to it IF it has descent graphics which yours kinda doesn't. I like to look for lappy's with a card that isn't internet (like intel xtreme graphics bs)

They were selling some with the 9600's and 9700's built in on the lappies on some asus ones(old stock, but still solid graphics chipsets) You should try hooking up your laptop to an external monitor... sometimes it won't even work that well. So you should see before boxing day. IMO, you should find a nice 12" or 14" laptop with a REALLY good graphics chipset. Something like a portable X600, X800, 6600 and then have a nice monitor at home or wherever you plan on plugging it in.

And FWIW I don't think you can close the clamshell while it's hooked up to an external monitor. You have to keep it open or you'll make it go to sleep :P.

I'm planning on finding a solid one for work on boxing day. I don't think I will. Usually their sales revolve around really shitty items that are dirt cheap. You will probably be able to find one of those 15" laptops that sell for 700cdn for under 500 or something random like that. If nothing good comes up on boxing day, I will probably just wait for the new intel ibook/powerbook's since you will be able to dual boot OSX/windows! That's my ultimate splurge dream. windows for work, and OSX for everything else.
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