dell, or buy my own?

By gamingguy27 · 32 replies
Aug 3, 2006
  1. Hello, Im looking at laptops (i have a £700 budget) and i want one with a really good battery life and a wireless card.

    So I thought the Dell Inspiron 6400 with the additional battery would be good.

    Any reccomendations? I don care if its bulky, or heavy, and I can make my own but dell seem fairly reasonable.

    Its just going to be a pc for surfing and watching films, and possibly games but thats not really the point of it.

    Any help would be appriciated.

  2. IBN

    IBN TS Guru Posts: 487

    Dont go Dell. Never. Do you want to buy a Pc or Laptop. It wasn't clear from your post.

    If your deciding whether to buy a PC or Laptop go for a PC, and build it yourself. Its cheaper and you can repair/upgrade easily. If you run into prolems on your Laptop or want to upgrade; it will be a nightmare. I have a friend who bought a Laptop and his screen is broken. Now to repair it is going to cost serious money.

    The only time I personally think its worth buying a Laptop is if you require your PC on the move, and even then I would buy something cheap.

    Paying £700 for a Laptop just for basic tasks is a waste. You can find cheap Laptops for £400 in the UK and that will do the same tasks that a £700 one can do.

    If you were to build your own you can have a TFT aswell and play the latest games on it for the price you'll pay for the Laptop.

    Let us know what your thinking

    Dell aren't fairly reasonable btw.
  3. Rage_3K_Moiz

    Rage_3K_Moiz Sith Lord Posts: 5,443   +38

    Dell laptops are supposed to be very good so I don't see any problems there. And the Inspiron 6400 looks good for it's price.
  4. iss

    iss TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 1,994

    Dell laptops are better than most.
  5. Ididmyc600

    Ididmyc600 TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 1,415

    I think IBM meant dont go Dell for PC's , and why pay 700 quid for a Laptop if you dont need anything fancy,

    Dell PC's, I'm informed , are abysmally built and the tech support is crap, I look after an elderley gent who bought a Dell PC and can't get dell to understand him when he has a problem.

    I agree with the idea of buying your own built to spec and have done so for many people , as for a cheap laptop I use a Dell C600 and it cost me £82 quid plus £20 P+P via Ebay, and no it's not stolen, the buyer had a large feedback rating.


    pS I just saw the end of the post and realise he was slagging Dell, oh well each to their own.
  6. Tedster

    Tedster Techspot old timer..... Posts: 6,002   +15

    I have a toshiba laptop and I have been very pleased with it.
  7. KingCody

    KingCody TS Evangelist Posts: 992   +8

    i would rank dell as one the best when it comes to OEM PCs/laptops

    I still use my 7 year old inspiron 8000 and it still works like a charm :) (although these days something that old is only good for web surfing, word processing, etc). back in the day when it was still under warranty they replaced my mobo when the battery wouldn't charge, replaced my HDD when it failed. so they were very good about backing up their products. then again that was a few years ago, so I can't say how they are now since tech support has been outsourced :rolleyes:

    I would always recommend building your own PC, but if you want to buy an OEM boxed PC or laptop then i would say that dell is a good buy.

    cheers :wave:
  8. gamingguy27

    gamingguy27 TS Enthusiast Topic Starter Posts: 168



    Sorry if it was'nt clear by my post, I have a desktop and would like to either buy a laptop or build one.

    I'm experienced in building pcs and I know how to build laptops, but I dont think its really worth doing when I can buy a Dell and repair it when it breaks.

    So, from what you guys have said a Dell laptop would'nt be that bad? I have three friends with Dell laptops and they have been problem free for over 2 years.

    Also, I was looking at the components you can upgrade to, and is the dual core Intel cpu worth it? or shall i stick to single core?


    PS: cheers for the help people
  9. Rage_3K_Moiz

    Rage_3K_Moiz Sith Lord Posts: 5,443   +38

    Dual-core is mainly for multitasking and as far as I can see, the Inspiron 6400 comes with dual core CPUs only. The only difference is in the frequencies of the processor u can choose. The £619 option is the best since it comes iwith 1GB of RAM and a 120GB hard disk drive. That is if u select no support package. If u select the 2-year basic support package though, it will cost a bit more.
  10. IBN

    IBN TS Guru Posts: 487

    My argument is that you can get more bang from your buck, if you were to spend the same amount of money on buildoing your own PC.

    From what you've posted it seems like the Laptop will just be used for basic tasks and will be at home.

    In that case I think it would be a watse of money in my opinion, when there are much cheaper Laptops available.
  11. gamingguy27

    gamingguy27 TS Enthusiast Topic Starter Posts: 168

    Hello, I think I am going to buy the 6400 and as you said Rage I can get rid of the support package and get some upgrades.

    What im thinking of at the mo is:

    1.60GHZ Intel CoreDuo
    1024MB DDR2 RAM
    60GB HDD
    2 x 9 cell batterys
    Trubright screen
    No support

    = £698.24

    What do we think?

  12. IBN

    IBN TS Guru Posts: 487

    Whats included in the support package? Is it some kind of guarantee? If so, then I suggest you dont skimp on it. Its always a good idea to go for a guarantee when buying expensive Laptops.
  13. KingCody

    KingCody TS Evangelist Posts: 992   +8

    looks good to me :)

    if you are experienced in building and repairing then I see no reason for you to spend any extra money on a "support package". It should still come with a warranty to cover any defective parts. i would think that the warranty would simply supply you with a new replacement part and no installation/repair service (so you would just have to swap it yourself)

    cheers :wave:
  14. gamingguy27

    gamingguy27 TS Enthusiast Topic Starter Posts: 168

    Dell it is then

    Cheers for the help people, i'll be ordering the Dell soon and i'll tell you guys what I think when I get it.

    Also if anyone wants me to perform any benchmarks on it feel free to ask.

  15. joked u 2

    joked u 2 TS Rookie Posts: 128

    you looking for a desktop replacement laptop?? i don't know the currency exchange to dollars(i'm over here in th u.s. {i no i'v heard a lot of the bloody american jokes}) but i would expect it to be about $1000 to $1200 USD. other wise it looks like a good deal. i ahve heard that toshebia is better, and i dont suggest building your own that can get tedious and there is no warrentry.
  16. IBN

    IBN TS Guru Posts: 487

    If you build your own, each individual component is under waranty. Some components have a liftime warranty and others have like a 5 year warranty. Like this each component has a warranty. At the same time it works out cheaper and you save money too.
  17. IBN

    IBN TS Guru Posts: 487

    Check out what a laptop repair guy has to say about extended warranties HERE.
  18. joked u 2

    joked u 2 TS Rookie Posts: 128

    ya but ya gotta troubleshoot and tear it all apart if you build your own when you could just take it in and say FIX IT.
  19. Tedster

    Tedster Techspot old timer..... Posts: 6,002   +15

    Extended warranties generally are a waste of money in most cases. With laptops they only make sense if you travel a lot. Of course the warranty is only good if it has a drop clause meaning your computer is covered if you physically drop it.
    There are cases where people benefit from EW, but in general EW is a lot like insurance- it's a lose-lose situation. Either you lose your money (through a premium or charge) or you take a loss in the form of damage (which needs to be repaired or replaced).

    with laptops, its far better to buy a reliable brand (do your homework - read consumer reports and various PC forums) than to buy an EW.

    Waiting for 2 months to get service on your computer in my opinion is totally unacceptable. Replacing a CD rom in a laptop should be very easy. I wouldn't have taken it to a repair shop.
  20. IBN

    IBN TS Guru Posts: 487

    I agree entirely. I dont like insurance either. The very reason why insurance is offered is that there is a chance of an incident not happening. The premium is set according to the likelyhood and cost of repair of that incident happening.

    If for example ilness "x" had a one in one hundred chance of happening, and the medical care to cure that illness costs $100. Then you charge every 100 people $1 to be insured against ilness "x". Now when that one in the hundred is struck by that disease he/she is covered.

    The more the likelyhood of an incdent occuring the higher the premium. If something is certain to happen then insurance will not be offered because it is simply not profitable! Theres alot more to this, life insurance etc. Which again I dont like either.

    If you read up on insurance then its amazing what a stupid industry it really is. Anyway this isnt the place to discuss at the moment. What I suggest is that the only time i think its worth going for an EW is at the time of purchase only and not on a premium/installment basis.

    True, but someone like me wouldnt have the techncal expertise to do that. Laptops seem to be more difficult than PC problems. But yeah if its not that difficult to learn then I'd do that.
  21. Samstoned

    Samstoned TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,018

    they'er buying a dell anyway yuck

    just bought a hp amd 64 bit 1.8 ghz 17inch 80gb drive 512 memory
    to the door 929.00 usd xp media center oem ya I know but i got a spare xp pro licinse
  22. gamingguy27

    gamingguy27 TS Enthusiast Topic Starter Posts: 168

    Inpiron 6400 Question

    Hello again,

    I'm about to buy the laptop and well i'm slightly confused, the additional battery dell offer ships separatley. Does this mean the additional battery isn't acctually present in the laptop? if so does this mean I have to keep swaping batterys?

  23. KingCody

    KingCody TS Evangelist Posts: 992   +8

    i don't know about your specific model, but most laptops only have 1 battery slot (especially the thinner ones). so if it has 1 battery slot then yes, you will have to swap them. you can swap them with the PC on as long as it's plugged in.

  24. GeekieNick101

    GeekieNick101 TS Rookie Posts: 373

    I wouldnt buy a dell if I were you, if you know how to build your own do it.

    I have 2 dells ones a desktop ones a laptop and i will ahve to say the desktop is a nightmare the laptop is sorta ok not the best it freezing some and i have porblems with the wireless card
  25. AMDIsTheBest010

    AMDIsTheBest010 TS Rookie Posts: 398

    Go Gateway, they make the best notebooks that money can buy in my opinion. Plus they dont outsource support like Dell and HP. Trust me, try and call dell for suppport, and the word you'll be saying the most is: "what!".


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