Help me pick a new laptop!

Hi, I currently have an HP Compaq Presario CQ62 Laptop.

It is very heavy and the fans are very, very noisy!
It is very slow.
Advice on brands/models would be much appreciated.

Here's an idea of what I use a laptop for:
- to and from studies , around town, occasional travel.
- light but decent size screen, ie hopefully 15"
- do a lot of research, so surf a lot and have multiple webpages open at the same time
- use Facebook.
- doc writing on google drive although sometimes use Microsoft office.
- need wifi
- I don't game.

Preferably, the laptop runs on Windows, has a slot for an SD card, and has lots of USB ports, cd rom slot. It should be fast (as far as internet speeds allow).
Budget: approx. $750 max.

I am after this for a birthday shout, my birthday is Sunday so am thinking of buying myself a present.

Thanks for your advice! :)

geek_organickiwi, May 16, 7:04 pm

At that price range you'll get a pretty powerful laptop (Intel i3 or i5, maybe even dedicated graphics of some kind) but the downside is build quality and the quality of the display will usually be the weak point.

I'd personally head into one of the big electronics stores and just see what you like. Asus, Toshiba are both good brands to look for. HP have some good machines but reliability is often an issue. I'd stay away from Acer.

geek_suicidemonkey, May 16, 7:40 pm

geek_organickiwi, May 16, 9:10 pm

It'd be worth spending a little more to get a better processor than that - those Atom based Celerons are pretty slow, even for your usage.

Anyway I'd suggest refining your requirements a bit - 15" systems (especially cheap ones) are not exactly suitable for travelling with so if that is important you'll want something smaller

geek_vtecintegra, May 16, 9:16 pm

Yeah those CPUs aren't great. Toshiba have a couple of models around $700-800 with an Intel i5 and 8GB RAM. Worth looking at.

(on a side note, Harvey Norman's extended warranties are insanely expensive!)

geek_suicidemonkey, May 16, 9:19 pm

I'd suggest looking at a second hand off-lease system. These are old, but far, far higher quality than anything you'll get new:

geek_vtecintegra, May 16, 9:22 pm

geek_organickiwi, May 17, 4:06 pm

Yeah good choice, I think that's about the best you'll get new for that price.

geek_suicidemonkey, May 17, 4:24 pm

Thanks :). Good to hear,

geek_organickiwi, May 17, 6:06 pm

Try and avoid Windows 8.1 as it is a huge pain in the arse.
Windows 7 is just fine.

geek_raekerr, May 18, 11:22 am

Make Windows 8.1 more like 'old style' Windows 7 for free using

geek_r.g.nixon, May 18, 1:11 pm

or just stop living in the past.

geek_csador, May 19, 11:46 am

Or let people make their own decisions. Win8 is fine and operates exactly as Windows 7 once you look past the new UI.

geek_suicidemonkey, May 19, 11:52 am


geek_nerak, May 20, 10:31 am

Not sure if you're laughing because you really enthusiastically agree, or disagree more than anything you've ever disagreed with.

Either way, my comment is correct. Windows 8 operates exactly as Windows 7 did, just with the new Tiled UI over top which can easily be disabled to bring back the regular start menu and desktop.

Aside from that, the changes to the UI are minimal.

geek_suicidemonkey, May 20, 1:38 pm

I recommend a Macbook Pro.

geek_gibler, May 20, 4:35 pm

then why are you constantly suggesting the OP gets an Intel i5 CPU. For the usage the OP mentioned an AMD one will do just fine.

geek_honeysacat, May 20, 8:06 pm

Becayse the annoyances with Windows 8 are easily fixable whereas AMD CPUs are absolutely abysmal pieces of hardware. In my opinion, of course.

geek_suicidemonkey, May 20, 8:10 pm

Intel IGPs are also abysmal pieces of hardware, not as good as AMDs.
Why did you not warn the OP about this when you made your i5 recommendation?

geek_honeysacat, May 21, 1:36 pm

Why would I warn the OP of something that's not true (in my opinion, of course)? That's just silly.

If you believe that Intel chips are bad, then you should warn the OP. That's how internet message boards work. People offer their opinions and discuss things. Obviously you don't understand that.

geek_suicidemonkey, May 21, 1:41 pm

The best advice that should have been given CPU wise is to avoid Intel Atoms and AMD E series.
Then the focus could be put on actual important things like screen quality , build quality etc.

geek_honeysacat, May 21, 2:32 pm

And that's your opinion. I'll stick by my own.

geek_suicidemonkey, May 21, 2:45 pm

OK the OP got one with an i5 in it for way more than what they originally wanted to spend, big win for you!
I'm sure Intel are very pleased with you for pushing their product and will reward you handsomely.

geek_honeysacat, May 21, 4:18 pm

I hope so, my last cheque didn't arrive.

Btw, if you'll go back and read my first few posts, you'll see that all I recommended was an Asus or Toshiba laptop with either an i3 or i5 CPU for $700-800 (which was their budget).

I also noted the potential downfalls with build quality and display in that price range.

The rest was up to them.

geek_suicidemonkey, May 21, 4:25 pm

Because it doesn't matter. Intel graphics is fine for non gaming usage as is AMD integrated. Neither is up to gaming at all for that youll want a dGPU either way.

geek_vtecintegra, Oct 31, 3:20 pm

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