Hoping to get some input on a new laptop decision – are the ones I’m honing in on good options? What might differentiate them?
My Dell Inspiron just crapped out on me for the last time, so I’ve been exploring my options for a new notebook. After my experiences with the Dell (two keyboard replacements, one fan replacement, one a/c jack replacement, loose/wobbly screen, ridiculous noise levels, etc etc etc) I’m eager to be sure my next machine is at least somewhat durable as well as reliable. Beyond this, as a more-or-less "basic" user (MS Office products, web surfing, video watching – often simultaneously) and occasional gamer (nothing cutting edge – I was playing the original Fallout when my laptop died), I’m interested in getting something reasonably peppy that can handle multi-tasking well and has at least decent graphics and viewing angles ... ideally for less than $900.
Thanks to PC Magazine’s Service & Reliability Survey
, and Square Trade’s reliability study
, I’m zeroing in on an Asus right now. Looking at Newegg, I’ve found a few that I think look promising (A
) along with a Toshiba (C
)– but I was hoping to get a sanity check from someone more in the know than me. Do the specs on these machines look good for the prices? Is there a better place than Newegg to get a good deal on them? I think I want something with a Core i5 processor in the hopes of keeping it peppy for a long time to come; is the difference between an i3 and i5 enough to really matter? If you, the in-the-know laptop buyer, were to pick between these machines, which one would (or wouldn't) you get?
Finally, are there other brands I really should consider? I realize that Lenovo ThinkPads are often recommended for durability (and having had a ThinkPad before I wouldn’t disagree!) but it looks like Asus is more budget-friendly; I’ve also been considering the Toshiba Portege R705 (this thing is ridiculously light!) but Asus’ 2-year limited warranty and 1-year accidental damage warranty is making it difficult to pass up.
Thanks in advance for any help you can provide in getting me past this "overwhelmed by options" stage of laptop buying!