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View Full Version : What to look for in buying a new laptop??



stu161204
22-06-2018, 05:05 PM
I currently got an Acer Aspire V3-571G laptop that I have been using since August 2012.

As my laptop battery has died and the dvd rom has given upÖ, itís time to look for another laptop.

As it has been a while since I looked for a laptop what sort of things should I look for in buying a new laptop? And what should I avoid??

gary67
22-06-2018, 05:40 PM
An SSD as well as a mechanical hard drive 8Gb RAM and anything else you would like really.

Oh and a full keyboard with number pad and a 17" screen.

Nomad
22-06-2018, 05:43 PM
I currently got an Acer Aspire V3-571G laptop that I have been using since August 2012.

As my laptop battery has died and the dvd rom has given up…, it’s time to look for another laptop.

As it has been a while since I looked for a laptop what sort of things should I look for in buying a new laptop? And what should I avoid??


What will you be using it for and is it your primary computer or do you a desktop PC for that?

When I use a laptop I am like many out there, just surfing the web etc etc. So for me I just got a ex lease Thinkpad, swapped in a SSD and 16GB RAM (8GB was prob enough but I went the max so I can use it longer). For a laptop, I would pick something more reliable like the pro range. HP Pro Book etc .. Lenovo Thinkpads. There is also size to think about. After having this Thinkpad T series, I kinda wishes I got the X. I did have 2 prior X before but thought I get something a bit larger, but I still prerfer something just portable even if it was just running around here at home and spending time in the warm lounge in the evenings :)

To me
(a) quality model of laptop (new or used).
(b) your preferable size?
(c) SSD and 8GB at least. I would not consider a normal HDD.
(d) speed wise that it fits your usage.
(e) any preferable for a better quality display, are you editing graphics?

mzee
22-06-2018, 07:57 PM
A lot of the 'budget' notebooks have soldered in eMMc flash drives, soldered in RAM, and battery. They perform well for the price, so long as you stick to the original OS. Drivers for other systems are non existent. They are ideal for school kids, and people on the move, being light, having no moving parts, shock resistant, and having no fan remain dust free.

MikeLowrance
23-06-2018, 12:39 AM
Take look about good cooling system. My laptop permanently overheat due of bad coolers.

wainuitech
23-06-2018, 06:53 PM
Lots of the reasonable laptops (read not cheap budget rubbish) come with SSD's these days and more and more are SSD M.2 (it looks more like a stick of standard Desktop Memory than a HDD). MANY also dont have Optical ( DVD/CD ) drives.

So if you need one then either get a USB External or select a Laptop that does.

kenj
24-06-2018, 05:58 PM
I just upgraded my 5+ year old Laptop. Just got another HP as I have never had a problem with them. On Wednesday I bought a https://www.noelleeming.co.nz/shop/computers-tablets/laptops/laptop/hp-15-cx0031tx-15-6-pavilion-power-laptop/prod163363.html I only paid $2159 as it was on special.

So far I am really pleased with it. Had to buy a Transcend external DVD writer at $79.99 as an extra. It handles 4K video editing pretty good, processes video about twice as quick as my old one.

Ken :banana:clap

piroska
24-06-2018, 08:05 PM
As my laptop battery has died and the dvd rom has given upÖ, itís time to look for another laptop.


Really? 2 really easy things to swap out on a laptop, I wouldn't ditch one just for that.

Screen, motherboard, GPU etc yes....

dugimodo
24-06-2018, 09:50 PM
I agree with Piroska, the specs on that laptop look pretty good so I'd just fix it. A new battery and DVD drive is probably < $100 all up.
If you want it to feel faster install an SSD. Even if you pay some one do do all 3 things for you it's still cheaper than a decent new laptop.

That's assuming of course that the laptop is in reasonable condition otherwise.
Another option is ditch the DVD drive or buy an external one and use a caddy to install a second hard drive in its place.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RbypTsakf5I

Nomad
24-06-2018, 11:17 PM
Many or most laptops these days don't have optical drives. I have a second hand laptop can't remember the last time I used the dvd drive.

allblack
25-06-2018, 08:57 AM
I've been looking at YT video's on the new Huawei Matebook X Pro, and by all accounts this thing kicks arse.

I'd never imagine buying a waaa-way, but if one turned up at NL on 60 months interest-free, well ....

1101
25-06-2018, 10:53 AM
I've been looking at YT video's on the new Huawei Matebook X Pro, and by all accounts this thing kicks arse.



I would stick to well established (in NZ) Notebook brands that have goods spare parts support (ie parts actually in NZ) & local service agents in all the major NZ cites
User replaceable batt is nice , but thats never an option on the slimline models

stu161204
27-06-2018, 06:02 PM
An SSD as well as a mechanical hard drive 8Gb RAM and anything else you would like really.

Oh and a full keyboard with number pad and a 17" screen.

Why get a laptop with 8gb ram??


Lots of the reasonable laptops (read not cheap budget rubbish) come with SSD's these days and more and more are SSD M.2 (it looks more like a stick of standard Desktop Memory than a HDD). MANY also dont have Optical ( DVD/CD ) drives.

So if you need one then either get a USB External or select a Laptop that does.

Are HP / Acer reasonable laptops makers?

A few people have said to me about getting a laptop with a SSD, but all the laptops I have seen that have a SSD in them, the SSD size has been quite small, the biggest SSD I have seen is 250GB.

This laptop I currently have has 750GB, so I cant see in getting a laptop that has a smaller hard drive.

stu161204
27-06-2018, 06:08 PM
Really? 2 really easy things to swap out on a laptop, I wouldn't ditch one just for that.

Screen, motherboard, GPU etc yes....

I have been thought 3 laptop battery's over the last few years and the last two battery's I have bought for the laptop have not worked very well or have given up very quickly (with in a month or so after buying it).

And I have not been able to find any replacement dvd drives for this laptop.

stu161204
27-06-2018, 06:12 PM
Some of the laptops I have looked at have had shared graphics.

Is it better to get a laptop with shared graphics or its own graphics card?

I will be using the laptop for editing photos, graphics, video editing, watching videos, moves etc...

gary67
27-06-2018, 08:01 PM
Why get a laptop with 8gb ram??





A few people have said to me about getting a laptop with a SSD, but all the laptops I have seen that have a SSD in them, the SSD size has been quite small, the biggest SSD I have seen is 250GB.

This laptop I currently have has 750GB, so I cant see in getting a laptop that has a smaller hard drive.

Why not 8Gb it will run much better than with just 4Gb.

Most laptops with a SSD also have a bigger mechanical drive for storage the SSD is just for Windows and programs

Nomad
27-06-2018, 09:00 PM
I do photo editing with Adobe software but not video editing.

Basically if you go with a normal HDD your speed performance will suffer. You are much better off with a SSD inside and a larger HDD inside also or use a USB3.0 HDD external.

For your usage you may be better off with 16GB RAM and an i7 if you can stretch that far.

I only do still photograph editing. I have 16GB on my PC and generally use around 6GB. I use the builtin video card and to me it's fine.

Remember we are talking about a laptop computer here. If you have those high demands you might be better off with a desktop PC. Or you're really looking at gaming spec'ed laptop (expensive). Many people edit video including 4k video with just a MacBook Pro.

In the photography or videography world it is SSD, nothing else. If you need space, then use external HDD like USB3.0 or Thunderbolt with a external RAID system.

https://www.apple.com/nz/shop/product/HKWY2X/A/promise-pegasus3-r4-12tb-4-by-3tb-raid-storage?afid=p238%7CsQqjmqEVH-dc_mtid_18707vxu38484_pcrid_146937183337_&cid=aos-nz-kwgo-pla-btb-product-HKWY2X/A

Nomad
27-06-2018, 09:19 PM
Some laptops may have a M.2 NVMe something like a long skinny Ram stick. PCI Express SSD. Then it might have a 2.5" slot for your normal HDD or SSD.

But again you may find many or most laptops new now, no longer have DVD drive. You can get them external via USB.

I'm a Thinkpad fan but here is an example where you get that M.2 NVMe SSD drive and then a normal 2.5" HDD or SSD bay. No DVD however.
https://youtu.be/puJewEKS_1Y?t=10m3s

wainuitech
27-06-2018, 09:45 PM
Why get a laptop with 8gb ram??



Are HP / Acer reasonable laptops makers?

A few people have said to me about getting a laptop with a SSD, but all the laptops I have seen that have a SSD in them, the SSD size has been quite small, the biggest SSD I have seen is 250GB.

This laptop I currently have has 750GB, so I cant see in getting a laptop that has a smaller hard drive. Most the laptop manufactures usually do two versions (for the lack of a better description) the Cheap budget general consumer and business /gaming.

The Business / Gaming machines are always going to be more expensive. Out of all the HP's that I have through the workshop, I cant remember the a last time ANY of them were the higher quality business machines.

With Windows 10, 8GB of Memory is its "sweet Spot" anything less and you will notice the difference. Any more and unless you are actually using it for higher powered programs / requirements its a waste of money.

SSD's -- Depends on the manufactures, again the cheap rubbish consumer models you get what they give you, others like Dell, Lenovo you can customize before purchasing.

Thats why when people ask I usually suggest lenovo. Sure they aren't the cheapest, but for years they have built business class Laptops.

With lenovo you can add in what you want. An example the SSD's and Memory. Sure you are paying extra for the more storage / or Memory, but they are a far better brand.

89098910

Over the last 10 years I have only had two Lenovos (to repair) in the workshop, 1 had been dropped and the screen was broken, the other someone tripped over the power cord and busted the power socket. Sold plenty of them with no problems.

Paul.Cov
28-06-2018, 07:26 AM
Get an external optical drive - ie a DVD drive which plugs into a USB slot. They can be bought for about $30 (unless portability is a priority, in which case it might be a PITA).

1101
28-06-2018, 10:23 AM
I have been thought 3 laptop battery's over the last few years and the last two battery's I have bought for the laptop have not worked very well or have given up very quickly (with in a month or so after buying it).
.

where the batts genuine Acer or generic.
Lithium batts have a finite shelf life, It may be they were old stock and just too old (despite being unused)
Batt(genuine) and DVD will be about $150ish, so that may be better spent on a new laptop, given the age of the one you have.

With new laptops, you can get the small SSD swapped out for a larger one if you buy from the right place . 500Gb SSD's arnt expensive now.
Some laptops can take 2 HD's , its just a matter of finding one.

1101
28-06-2018, 10:57 AM
"My budget is about $1,000 or less."
from your thread in Geekzone, quite important info.
:-)

wainuitech
28-06-2018, 12:58 PM
My budget is about $1,000 or less yep important information missed out ;)


Under $1000 you will be lucky to get much with a larger SSD. 128GB generally.

If you wanted to get larger drive then something like this from Harvey norman. https://www.harveynorman.com.au/hp-15-bs625tx-15-6-inch-laptop.html

Its a compromise between what you are able to spend and the highest spec you want. Lower Price means less options.

Look at most of the laptops with 512GB + SSD, and 8+ GB memory, you are closer to $2000 + (often over).

Nomad
28-06-2018, 02:08 PM
Yeah .. with $1,000 the best you may get is what Wainui said. $1k is really your typical surfing the web kinda computer, the link above has a i7 so that's a bonus. They are consumer laptops. The one linked has no SSD. It's a 1TB HDD.

I have a desktop for photography. So my laptop is casual use. I got a ex leased second hand Lenovo and put upgraded to a SSD and 16GB.

Via Pricespy. This has a i7 with a 128GB SSD and a 1TB HDD
https://www.playtech.co.nz/acer-aspire-a515-51g-7932-notebook-15-6-core-i7-7500u-dual-core-2-7ghz-8gb-ram-128gb-ssd-1tb-hdd-no-odd-geforce-940mx-2gb-wireless-ac-bt-win10.html?fee=24&fep=11018&utm_source=PriceSpy&utm_medium=cpc&utm_campaign=PriceSpy

Pricespy but note that the cheaper ones only has a i3 CPU

https://pricespy.co.nz/category.php?m=s325370060&o=produkt_pris_inkmoms

Nomad
28-06-2018, 02:27 PM
Second hand? I was just online and I saw this - business class laptop W model range which is their largest laptop. i7, 500GB SSD, 16GB RAM.
https://www.trademe.co.nz/computers/laptops/laptops/lenovo/listing-1679584674.htm

Thee are others also. Maybe get something cheap and then up the RAM and SSD.

stu161204
28-06-2018, 06:24 PM
Some of the laptops I have been looking at have both a SSD drive and a normal HDD.

Would that cause any performance issues?

Nomad
28-06-2018, 06:31 PM
Some of the laptops I have been looking at have both a SSD drive and a normal HDD.

Would that cause any performance issues?

That would be fine. The issue would be if the laptop only had 1 drive and if you opted for a normal HDD.

Windows would be installed onto the SSD and your data files would be on the larger HDD.

If you wanna make it a bit quicker you could also store your image and video files temporarily on the SSD.

Ofthesea
28-06-2018, 11:26 PM
I don't think anyone would regret having at least some SSD even if its paired with a mechanical drive, unless you have all day to wait for boot or updates. I think 8Gb is a safe minimum based on what you say.