Most reliable Dell laptop???

Discussion in 'Dell' started by Capt Nemo, Jul 6, 2005.

  1. Capt Nemo

    Capt Nemo Guest

    Need to buy my daughter a laptop for college. She is going to college about
    1500 miles away. I would like a dependable and reliable laptop for her since
    I won't be close enough to help her with it.
    Looking at the inspiron 6000, 600m 700m and the 9300. Basically need 512
    ram. nice screen, XP Pro, wireless, any of the m processors would be fine,
    descent battery life. Need it for research papers, internet, music etc.
    Probably would take the plus warranty out for her. Are any of these models
    more dependable than the other?

    Any suggestions would be welcome.
    Thanks
     
    Capt Nemo, Jul 6, 2005
    #1
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  2. Capt Nemo

    Notan Guest

    If you can, try purchasing through the Small Business Division. This will
    afford you the opportunity of adding Gold Tech Support. It'll cost a bit
    more than other warranties, but it'll get her US based support, as opposed
    to outsourced support. Response time, for actual repairs, should she need
    them, also tends to be a bit faster.

    If you can't purchase through the Small Business Division, find out if
    Gold Tech Support is available to you, through whatever division you
    purchase from.

    Good Luck, and Congratulations to your daughter!

    Notan
     
    Notan, Jul 6, 2005
    #2
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  3. Capt Nemo

    Kevin Guest

    The 6000 would be a great little notebook. Go for the 15.4 inch widescreen.
    If she wants to go first cabin, shell out the bucks for the 9300. I love
    mine. Yes it is heavy, about 8 pounds, but that 17" widescreen is awesome!
    This would make a killer multimedia notebook and you can customize it to the
    hilt. Look for coupon offers on the following sites:

    www.slickdeals.net
    www.techbargains.com
    www.couponmountain.com

    You can find some offers for as much as $750 off Inspiron notebooks priced
    at $1599 or above. My 9300 came in at $1599 and I paid $942 for it, with
    free shipping and six months with no interest on a Dell Preferred Account.

    Good luck to you and congratulations to your daughter. It sounds like she
    has a pretty cool father.
     
    Kevin, Jul 6, 2005
    #3
  4. Capt Nemo

    Buzz Guest

    Notan,

    Do you get a commission on the Dell Gold support or something? You're
    always preaching about how great Dell Gold support is, To bad the
    regular support stinks.
     
    Buzz, Jul 6, 2005
    #4
  5. Capt Nemo

    Tom Scales Guest

    Personally I wouldn't go for the 9300. I love mine, but wouldn't want to be
    a student walking around with it.

    Tom
     
    Tom Scales, Jul 6, 2005
    #5
  6. Capt Nemo

    Notan Guest

    Yeah, Buzz. "To" bad.

    Notan
     
    Notan, Jul 6, 2005
    #6
  7. I used a Latitude D610 for the last few months of college (my previous
    laptop, an IBM T21, died in Feb); I'm very satisfied with the D610 --
    it's a good balance of weight and power. My younger brother picked up
    the Inspiron 600m (basically the cousin of the D610); he is happy with
    it as well (his uses are less computationally intensive, but honestly
    the performance difference is minimal). I wouldn't recommend any laptop
    over 6lbs. if you plan to carry it with you frequently. I would
    recommend picking up at least a 3 year warranty on parts (and perhaps
    whatever the total care package is called if the person is accident
    prone). Any modern laptop ought to be capable of the uses you
    mentioned, so I'd focus on size, build quality, & battery life when you
    compare machines. The IBM T-Series is excellent; if the T43 was out in
    Feb., I'd probably have gone that route. Thinkpads tend to be more
    expensive then their equivalent Dell counterparts, but IBM (well Lenovo
    now) offers some amazing student discounts.

    If the intended use is only what's mentioned ("research papers,
    Internet, music etc.") or if your daughter is also bringing a desktop,
    then I'd also highly consider the 700m. It's size is perfect to bring
    to class everyday for notes, etc. Also keep in mind some majors are
    much more conducive to notes on laptops than others, and a tablet may be
    a better option in some cases (eg. a tablet would have been nice for my
    circuits & data networks classes).
     
    Nicholas Andrade, Jul 6, 2005
    #7
  8. Capt Nemo

    BigJim Guest

    got my kid a 600m and he likes it, it is very light has all the necessary
    stuff the kids use today.
    The onboard wireless, he says is the best feature.
    I did get the 3 year in-house warranty so it can be serviced anywhere in the
    country.
     
    BigJim, Jul 6, 2005
    #8
  9. Capt Nemo

    MSCHAEF.COM Guest

    They're all relatively recent machines, so I think the jury is still out
    on long term dependability.

    I have a Dell D400 (from work) and an Inspiron 6000 (personal, bought a
    week or so ago). Several of my co-workers have D600's. Based on this, here
    are my two cents:

    - The Latitude machines have sturdier cases than the I6000, particularly
    surrounding the display, where the Latitudes use metal. I don't think
    the I6000's frame will be a problem, but I'm more confident in the
    Latitudes. (That said, I've had failures in 'sturdy-looking' IBM's and
    Apple iBooks, so visual/tactile sturdiness might not count for much.)

    - The 15.4" Widescreen display is very, very nice, but you pay a
    substantial price in portabilty. If your daughter is going to cart
    this thing around a lot, she might want a smaller machine like the
    m600 or D610.

    - I like the idea of the Inspiron 700m, but the problem with laptops
    in general is that the screens are far below ideal height. This
    can end up causing neck strain problems in extended use, and small
    widescreen machines like the 700m only make the problem worse.

    - In keeping with the last point, I'd much rather have a smaller machine
    with a second desktop-bound monitor than a 17" laptop. I don't think the
    17" screen buys you all that much (maybe it's useful for presentations
    in small rooms) and you really want to have a normal height display and
    keyboard for extended use, anyway.

    One more thing: failures (and configuration problems) in electronics tend
    to happen early on. I'd suggest you order the machine early and put it in
    service before your daughter goes to school, so problems can be sorted out
    before she actually needs the machine.

    -Mike
     
    MSCHAEF.COM, Jul 6, 2005
    #9
  10. Capt Nemo

    Cyndi Guest

    How are your graphics on the 6000, specifically in IE only? Can you keep it at the native resolution and have clear, crisp graphics or do you have to go down to 96 dpi and the lower resolution for that?
     
    Cyndi, Jul 6, 2005
    #10
  11. Capt Nemo

    MSCHAEF.COM Guest

    I'm just tolerating the scaling...

    I got the Media Center edition of Windows, which came preset to 120 dpi
    and large (48x48) icons. [1] Those setting work well for me, although
    you're right, the scaling in IE isn't great. For situations where bitmap
    fidelity really matters to me (almost never), I switch to Firefox. For my
    own little website, I've switched my banner text from pre-rendered bitmap
    graphics to text scaled with CSS, and it looks better than it ever has
    before.

    My take with UseHR is that it wasn't worth the hassle just to switch to
    another form of deficiency. My sincere hope is that IE 7.0 handles this
    issue better. (IE 7.0 is in progress... http://blogs.msdn.com/ie/ )

    -Mike

    1] I don't know if those settings are unique to Media center, but I think
    my Dad (who ordered a machine with Pro at the same time I ordered mine)
    had to switch from 96 to 120.
     
    MSCHAEF.COM, Jul 6, 2005
    #11
  12. Capt Nemo

    Capt Nemo Guest

    Thanks for everyones help and suggestion!
    I will statrt watching the dell specials and order one.
     
    Capt Nemo, Jul 6, 2005
    #12
  13. Capt Nemo

    me Guest

    I'm just tolerating the scaling...
    There are screen magnifying apps one can use if needed.
    These are apps designed for people who are of very bad
    vision.

    Just FYI
     
    me, Jul 7, 2005
    #13
  14. Capt Nemo

    me Guest

    - I like the idea of the Inspiron 700m, but the problem with laptops
    Agree

    That 700m is what? A 12" screen?

    If yes.... Id use an external monitor with it for
    desktop use.

    Good idea?
     
    me, Jul 7, 2005
    #14
  15. The Dell 9300 is a good choice, it has all the bells and whistles and
    has a nice 17.5 screen all for around 1300 and some change good laptop.
     
    Frank (aka) \stew\, Jul 9, 2005
    #15
  16. Capt Nemo

    S.Lewis Guest


    I'd get her either a Latitude D610 or Inspiron 600m (virtually identical
    systems), with (the recommended by experienced posters in this group) two to
    three years onsite warranty.


    Stew
     
    S.Lewis, Jul 9, 2005
    #16
  17. Capt Nemo

    Dan Guest

    The 500 and 600m's are great to fix, but don't get the 700m...theres a
    hundred different wires under the keyboard which make it a nightmare
    to repair. Pretty amazing how tiny it is, though...

    I've heard reports of the 8000 being blasted by static electricity
    simply by touching the area surrounding the touchpad. 6000's are
    pretty good...I don't see them an aweful lot, but maybe that's just
    because there's not many out there :) I don't know what dell's sales
    reports are.

    One thing's for certain...the 5100 series is popular but also badly
    prone to over-heating because of the air inlet on the _bottom_ of the
    laptop. I've gone out, replaced the fan/heatsink assembly, removed
    old thermal paste, added new thermal paste and 20 minutes later the
    customer is calling me complaining that its still shutting down.

    Dan
     
    Dan, Jul 9, 2005
    #17
  18. Capt Nemo

    RWS Guest

    Lost the orginal post so I'll tag on here.

    Go with the Latitude. We have had great luck with three of them for
    the "road warriors." One just stuffs her D410 in a backpack and she
    is on the road 40+ weeks a year. The Inspirons that we had couldn't
    take it.

    Also today Sat. 7/9 Techbargins has some discounts on Dell notebooks
    so you might take a look. http://www.techbargains.com/index.cfm

    Bob S
     
    RWS, Jul 9, 2005
    #18
  19. Capt Nemo

    MSCHAEF.COM Guest

    Go with the Latitude. We have had great luck with three of them for
    the "road warriors." One just stuffs her D410 in a backpack and she
    is on the road 40+ weeks a year. The Inspirons that we had couldn't
    take it.[/QUOTE]

    What was the typical mode of failure for the Inspirons?

    Thanks,
    Mike
     
    MSCHAEF.COM, Jul 11, 2005
    #19
  20. The budget models (1100, 1150, 5100, 5150, 5160) all have a bad
    reputation for overheating.

    The newer budget models (1000, 1200, etc.) aren't particularly well built.

    I would agree with the other posts - the Latitudes are more solidly
    built, even where there are very similar models (such as the i600m and
    D600/610, etc.).




    What was the typical mode of failure for the Inspirons?

    Thanks,
    Mike
    [/QUOTE]
     
    Edward J. Neth, Jul 11, 2005
    #20
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