Computer Swapping?
December 26, 2009 6:37 PM   Subscribe

Swapping my laptop for a desktop and monitor instead of selling? My plans have changed, and my laptop and furniture are not working together well and causing me pain.

Now that my career plans have changed, I find I have little reason to keep my Sony VAIO AW-series laptop, purchased earlier this year, for its intended purpose, and the laptop, while fitting well with my college's furniture and my old wheelchair, is causing me neck strain and back pain at home. Considering I'll be home at least till September, and then perhaps at another school, I wonder if there's any way to get my hands on a desktop and adjustable monitor without having to sell (and then likely buy) on eBay. Any tips, hive?
posted by StrikeTheViol to Computers & Internet (5 answers total)
Is there any reason you can't just get a display and hook it up to your laptop? If that laptop is working alright otherwise, that's what I would do, at least for now. I did that for an old laptop of mine when its screen died.
posted by amethysts at 6:40 PM on December 26, 2009 [1 favorite]

How about a laptop workstation that allows you to set up your laptop ergonomically with external keyboard etc and use like a desktop? This for example
posted by koahiatamadl at 6:43 PM on December 26, 2009

Seconding koahiatamadl. I have a docking station just like that at work and really like it. It would be much cheaper (not to mention easier) for you to buy one of those and keep your current laptop than to buy a whole new desktop and set up a whole new computer. It really is the best of both worlds - having the ergonomic comfort of a desktop keyboard and mouse and still have the portability of a laptop.
posted by NoraCharles at 6:53 PM on December 26, 2009

You don't even need a docking station. If you're on a budget, all you need is a plate stand for your laptop, and an external keyboard. It's worked for me for years.
posted by embrangled at 10:49 PM on December 26, 2009

I have a laptop stand that holds it open with the screen at a decent height. Then added a usb keyboard and mouse and it's very close to a desktop setup. It was relatively cheap and means the whole setup is still portable, which in turn means an ergonomically set up work station goes with me when I travel.

Turns out that with this desk (which has a keyboard tray) I couldn't quite get the screen at the right height so I plugged my old desktop monitor straight into my laptop. No docking station needed, there's a monitor jack at the side and it just works (I have vista which seems to deal with this situation very well). Looks like there's a VGA output on the side of the Viao AW so you should be able to do the same. Now may laptop is indistinguishable from a desktop setup except when you look at what it's all plugged into The monitor is less portable but more comfortable than the stand.

Peripherals are cheap. Even just adding a ten dollar external keyboard can make a big difference and monitors can be got second hand or new in a variety of places. Then you can ditch them or take them when you go back to school, much better than buying a whole new computer.
posted by shelleycat at 11:51 PM on December 27, 2009

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