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New laptop
October 14, 2010 12:34 PM   Subscribe

I need a new laptop! I'm looking to spend under $1000.

My 7 year old Dell desktop finally died. Here is what I'm looking for: i5 or i7, 4gb ram, would like an esata port (can be shared with usb), ideally 15.6" screen, expresscard port, webcam, decent->good speakers. Another requirement is that if it's online, it has to ship right away (can't wait for it to be assembled). I bought the MSI FX600-002US which I really like but it doesn't have an expresscard port (despite Newegg specs saying it does). Other options I've been looking at: Toshiba M645-S4055 (a little over my budget, 14" screen might be too small), Lenovo Y560 0646-53U (or similar, meets my requirements but have heard about many issues with this computer), ASUS N61JV-X2 (looks good, but speakers suppose to be bad, tons of bloatware, added bonus of usb 3.0 port). I am not too much of a gamer, but I use sound, video and image programs extensively. Any input would be very appreciated.
posted by pbeans to Computers & Internet (8 answers total) 8 users marked this as a favorite
Love my new Toshiba A665-S6054. I bought it after much research. Toshibas consistently rank highly with customer satisfaction and service. 16" screen is nice. the touch pad responds to multi-touch and the harmon kardon audio makes it one of the best sounding laptops I've heard. HDMI output is nice and four USB ports. I tried several laptops before settling on the Toshiba. It is a Cadillac compared to the others I tried.
posted by wsg at 12:41 PM on October 14, 2010

I've got to put my vote in for Asus. I've got one of there Republic of Gamers model and I've never had such a solid machine!
I've had a Toshiba and was content but its build quality was iffy in some parts.
Asus, Asus, Asus. Just check their failure rate compared to other brands, generally they have some of the highest in the industry.
posted by handbanana at 1:04 PM on October 14, 2010 [1 favorite]

* ammending I meant lowest failure rate, high reliability.
posted by handbanana at 1:33 PM on October 14, 2010 [1 favorite]

My wife's been pretty happy with the HP Pavillion she bought earlier this year from Best Buy. It has a full sized keyboard, so if you're not used to a laptop keyboard with a separate keypad then it may seem strangely off-center to use at first.
posted by Burhanistan at 2:25 PM on October 14, 2010

look up the Lenovo Y550P -- or this years version of it

its a beast of a computer, i7, 4gigs of ram, etc so clearly you are not going to be getting a lot of battery power, but its a very very solid computer
posted by knockoutking at 3:53 PM on October 14, 2010

Sony Vaio fan here. I think you can find some at Amazon in your price range. Here are three that seem to meet your criteria.
posted by bearwife at 4:12 PM on October 14, 2010

We're currently trying to get a new laptop for my boss, and one thing that has come out that is actually becoming The Most Important Thing is the bloody keyboard. So I would visit stores and see if the layout for the ones that are in your filter set work for you or not. Comfort is important.
posted by Old'n'Busted at 5:33 PM on October 14, 2010

Right now on you can get a nicely spec'ed Acer for $600. It will be unavailable in 6 hours, however.
posted by Burhanistan at 4:19 PM on October 15, 2010

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