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Looking for reliable college laptop

By andoyan
Jul 26, 2010
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  1. Hello All,
    My son is to began collage this year so I am looking for a reliable laptop for him that would last the him while he is in collage, any and all help would be greatly appreciated, thank you.
    Jon
  2. raybay

    raybay TS Evangelist Posts: 10,716   +6

    A great deal of the issue has to do with budget... Don't buy cheap. Get one with a long warranty... like Lenovo with a four or five year warranty... but they don't make good college machines because they are not the best for music and games.

    Still, our clients who have kids at college using computers with long warranties have by far the best luck.

    Those limited to ONLY one year warranty, are more likely to cause major problems down the road.

    Every manufacturer has sold some awful machines. Every manufacturer has a few that have been disasters.

    The best idea we have seen is to buy a good used Lenovo if reliability is the key.

    But you won't improve your relationship with your student, unless you allow them to pick it out.... Have they decide what must be included, and plan it out. Require that they do the research. Let them have full ownership of the decision, and in dealing with the reliability issued.
  3. skipro_98

    skipro_98 TS Rookie Posts: 36

    From personal experience here's my advice. I have two daughters five years apart in age. When daughter number one went to college I bought her the cheapest laptop I could find which in those days was about $1000.00. Four years and three laptops later she graduated. Daughter number two goes to college. I bought her a high end Dell for $1800.00. Five years later she graduated and she is still using the Dell. If I had to do it again I would get a Lenovo. Dell has had issues recently. I am slowly replacing all my Dell machines with Lenovos and have had no problems with either pcs or laptops. Good Luck!
  4. EXCellR8

    EXCellR8 The Conservative Posts: 2,278

    you could get a decent toshiba satellite for under $1000. they are great general purpose laptops.
  5. raybay

    raybay TS Evangelist Posts: 10,716   +6

    With a way too high failure rate, and when they fail under warranty, it can take four to six weeks to get them back... Your experience may vary, but the reports on repairs are not good, any longer.
  6. example1013

    example1013 TS Enthusiast Posts: 280

    There are people who will probably brand me as evil for this, but I'd recommend a mac. Their support is excellent. I had a support guy actually take the time to e-mail me back and make sure I got my problem solved over $4 worth of iTunes songs. I've also never had to pay for any type of support on an issue.

    Never had a real problem with hardware--one computer had a hard drive failure. They replaced the hard drive.

    I've never actually seen one die. My aunt had a computer that was probably 10 years old, never needed a replacement part.

    Just don't drop it, because Apple doesn't give accident protection.
  7. Leeky

    Leeky TS Evangelist Posts: 4,378   +98

    I think your going to find pretty much every person has differing views towards manufacturers. I much prefer Dell to anything else, as I've never had a problem with them and always got very good deals. If it was my child, I'd be building her a Dell online and getting it shipped.

    Just make sure you get a multi year warranty, and if you have the option, include accident damage as well.

    Set yourself a budget before you do anything. Extra's like Microsoft Office, a USB mouse and a printer need to be budgeted for too. Once you know how much you can spend you can then look for suitable models.

    Have a look in your local newsagents/local shop and see if any of the laptop/pc magazines are doing monthly laptop reviews. These will help you in your search also. You can of course ask here, as many members will be able to tell you what they are like for warranty issues, but ultimately most of it goes down to personal preference.

    Another very serious consideration is the degree/college course being studied. A law course wouldn't require a massive specification laptop as its mainly office task based, but if its 3D/graphics design, or music related, you'll need a higher specification laptop, and dependant on course, it might even be wise to consider a Macbook/macbook pro.


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