Best Law School Laptop for the Money

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vlsorbust
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Re: Best Law School Laptop for the Money

Postby vlsorbust » Fri May 21, 2010 11:16 pm

HBK wrote:I've seen some good prices on open-box and refurbished laptops. Any advice or horror stories?

Let's keep it in the $500-$800 range guys. Thanks!

You don't have to go open-box or refurb to be in that range. You can get really nice new ones for that range you mentioned. Better to invest some $ for something you're going to use all day, every day.

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dextermorgan
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Re: Best Law School Laptop for the Money

Postby dextermorgan » Fri May 21, 2010 11:24 pm

burvowski wrote:I'm looking for answers at how it would help in law school specifically, maybe tips from people who use it in ls (and how they use it)

Read one of the most epic advice threads in TLS history and pay close attention to the use of OneNote.
http://www.top-law-schools.com/forums/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=36635&start=25

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A'nold
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Re: Best Law School Laptop for the Money

Postby A'nold » Fri May 21, 2010 11:24 pm

Maybe I can spice this thread up by just being here......oh wait that already happened. 8)

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dvd
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Re: Best Law School Laptop for the Money

Postby dvd » Sat May 22, 2010 1:07 am

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Last edited by dvd on Thu Jul 01, 2010 10:19 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Matthies
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Re: Best Law School Laptop for the Money

Postby Matthies » Sat May 22, 2010 1:36 pm

dvd wrote:The new required Minnesota laptop. $1400, but it has 4 GB of RAM.

IBM/Lenovo ThinkPad T410
2.53 Ghz Intel i5-540M processor, 4 GB of Ram, 250 GB hard drive, DVD recordable 8x Max Dual layer optical drive, 802.11n internal wireless card, 14.1" WXGA+ monitor (1440 x 900) w/LED backlight, 13" x 9" x 1.5" weighing approximately 6 pounds
Pre-configured with: Windows 7 Professional, Microsoft Office 2010, Symantec Antivirus 10, other basic software to help you in your Law School career.


Nice system! Post some pics!

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dvd
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Re: Best Law School Laptop for the Money

Postby dvd » Sat May 22, 2010 2:27 pm

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Last edited by dvd on Thu Jul 01, 2010 10:19 pm, edited 1 time in total.

burvowski
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Re: Best Law School Laptop for the Money

Postby burvowski » Sat May 22, 2010 3:04 pm

My undergrad required everyone to get a Mac. They don't actually enforce it, though. And anyone who didn't get one did fine academically. It was just a ploy to drive computer sales at the university, taking advantage of the eagerness of freshman to be as competitive as everyone else. The letter even said something like "While you are not absolutely required to get a Mac laptop, some 99% of incoming students do, so it is strongly advised that you do so as well. Luckily, our on-site university apple store sells Macs at discounted rates." :lol: :lol: god i wish I had kept that letter for laughs years later

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Matthies
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Re: Best Law School Laptop for the Money

Postby Matthies » Sat May 22, 2010 5:48 pm

dvd wrote:
Matthies wrote:
dvd wrote:The new required Minnesota laptop. $1400, but it has 4 GB of RAM.

IBM/Lenovo ThinkPad T410
2.53 Ghz Intel i5-540M processor, 4 GB of Ram, 250 GB hard drive, DVD recordable 8x Max Dual layer optical drive, 802.11n internal wireless card, 14.1" WXGA+ monitor (1440 x 900) w/LED backlight, 13" x 9" x 1.5" weighing approximately 6 pounds
Pre-configured with: Windows 7 Professional, Microsoft Office 2010, Symantec Antivirus 10, other basic software to help you in your Law School career.


Nice system! Post some pics!


I don't get it until August - they just told us the specs.


Well find out if you can get a diffrent laptop, becuase while thats a good one now, by aug it won't likley be at the same price. My school also had a 'required" laptop which was over priced and underpowered, I e-mailed tech support and they said if you buy any Dell (which was the suggested computer) they would support and I could use it. Got a much more decked outlaptop than the "school" one for like $100 more.

Also for everone else, unless this has changed, you can add up to $3500 to your law school laons for a laptop purchase.

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dextermorgan
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Re: Best Law School Laptop for the Money

Postby dextermorgan » Sat May 22, 2010 11:36 pm

Matthies wrote:
dvd wrote:
Matthies wrote:
dvd wrote:The new required Minnesota laptop. $1400, but it has 4 GB of RAM.

IBM/Lenovo ThinkPad T410
2.53 Ghz Intel i5-540M processor, 4 GB of Ram, 250 GB hard drive, DVD recordable 8x Max Dual layer optical drive, 802.11n internal wireless card, 14.1" WXGA+ monitor (1440 x 900) w/LED backlight, 13" x 9" x 1.5" weighing approximately 6 pounds
Pre-configured with: Windows 7 Professional, Microsoft Office 2010, Symantec Antivirus 10, other basic software to help you in your Law School career.


Nice system! Post some pics!


I don't get it until August - they just told us the specs.


Well find out if you can get a diffrent laptop, becuase while thats a good one now, by aug it won't likley be at the same price. My school also had a 'required" laptop which was over priced and underpowered, I e-mailed tech support and they said if you buy any Dell (which was the suggested computer) they would support and I could use it. Got a much more decked outlaptop than the "school" one for like $100 more.

Also for everone else, unless this has changed, you can add up to $3500 to your law school laons for a laptop purchase.

No, Minnesota requires all incoming 1Ls to have the same laptop. It's a damn good reason not to go to Minnesota IMO.

burvowski
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Re: Best Law School Laptop for the Money

Postby burvowski » Sun May 23, 2010 12:04 am

I just looked at Minnesota's website. Wow, what a scam

Note: If you are entering the Law School as a first-year student, DO NOT purchase a laptop of your own in advance, as it is mandatory that you purchase the laptop that has been pre-configured for our law students and our curriculum.

...

The laptop is pre-configured with the hard drive storage, processing power, memory, wireless capabilities and software programs needed for the many courses, activities, presentations and research tools at the Law School.

...
If you already have a laptop, you will still need to purchase the Law School's designated laptop prior to beginning your first year at the Law School.


OMG guys, the laptops come with the hard drive storage necessary to succeed in law school!!! That's so generous of them!

I'm sorry, but if you buy into that, then I pity you. They're just exploiting incoming 1L's to drive their computer sales

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kalvano
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Re: Best Law School Laptop for the Money

Postby kalvano » Sun May 23, 2010 12:29 am

I would tell them to piss off.

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Chupavida
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Re: Best Law School Laptop for the Money

Postby Chupavida » Sun May 23, 2010 1:33 am

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Last edited by Chupavida on Tue Jul 19, 2011 10:21 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Matthies
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Re: Best Law School Laptop for the Money

Postby Matthies » Sun May 23, 2010 11:11 am

burvowski wrote:I just looked at Minnesota's website. Wow, what a scam

Note: If you are entering the Law School as a first-year student, DO NOT purchase a laptop of your own in advance, as it is mandatory that you purchase the laptop that has been pre-configured for our law students and our curriculum.

...

The laptop is pre-configured with the hard drive storage, processing power, memory, wireless capabilities and software programs needed for the many courses, activities, presentations and research tools at the Law School.

...
If you already have a laptop, you will still need to purchase the Law School's designated laptop prior to beginning your first year at the Law School.


wow that sucks, I don't want people who likley know less about computers than me making decsions on what computer I need

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ahk!
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Re: Best Law School Laptop for the Money

Postby ahk! » Sun May 23, 2010 4:04 pm

Matthies wrote:
dvd wrote:
Matthies wrote:
dvd wrote:The new required Minnesota laptop. $1400, but it has 4 GB of RAM.

IBM/Lenovo ThinkPad T410
2.53 Ghz Intel i5-540M processor, 4 GB of Ram, 250 GB hard drive, DVD recordable 8x Max Dual layer optical drive, 802.11n internal wireless card, 14.1" WXGA+ monitor (1440 x 900) w/LED backlight, 13" x 9" x 1.5" weighing approximately 6 pounds
Pre-configured with: Windows 7 Professional, Microsoft Office 2010, Symantec Antivirus 10, other basic software to help you in your Law School career.


Nice system! Post some pics!


I don't get it until August - they just told us the specs.


Well find out if you can get a diffrent laptop, becuase while thats a good one now, by aug it won't likley be at the same price. My school also had a 'required" laptop which was over priced and underpowered, I e-mailed tech support and they said if you buy any Dell (which was the suggested computer) they would support and I could use it. Got a much more decked outlaptop than the "school" one for like $100 more.

Also for everone else, unless this has changed, you can add up to $3500 to your law school laons for a laptop purchase.


Is it an add-on to PLUS loans? How does one go about doing this?

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Matthies
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Re: Best Law School Laptop for the Money

Postby Matthies » Sun May 23, 2010 4:19 pm

ahk! wrote:
Matthies wrote:Is it an add-on to PLUS loans? How does one go about doing this?


I think it is, ask your schools fin aid person, I think you have to buy the computer first then give them a recipt, not sure though

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James Bond
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Re: Best Law School Laptop for the Money

Postby James Bond » Sun May 23, 2010 4:20 pm

Matthies wrote:Also for everone else, unless this has changed, you can add up to $3500 to your law school laons for a laptop purchase.


I could spend $3500 on a laptop? Oh my god...epic machine

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Mr. Matlock
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Re: Best Law School Laptop for the Money

Postby Mr. Matlock » Sun May 23, 2010 5:08 pm

Basic question:

32 vs 64 bit? Still an option even on the T410. I'm not even sure what it does. Memory????

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kalvano
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Re: Best Law School Laptop for the Money

Postby kalvano » Sun May 23, 2010 5:31 pm

Mr. Matlock wrote:Basic question:

32 vs 64 bit? Still an option even on the T410. I'm not even sure what it does. Memory????



64. More efficient. You won't notice a huge increase, but why go 32 when 64 is better?

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CaptainSnuggleBunny
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Re: Best Law School Laptop for the Money

Postby CaptainSnuggleBunny » Sun May 23, 2010 6:44 pm

So this is what I'm thinking: 17inch, 9 pound (with charger) Asus N71 with a 2 year warranty and 1 year accident protection ($899)+ refurbished, 14 inch Thinkpad T42 to bring to class ($290)

burvowski
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Re: Best Law School Laptop for the Money

Postby burvowski » Sun May 23, 2010 7:18 pm

CaptainSnuggleBunny wrote:So this is what I'm thinking: 17inch, 9 pound (with charger) Asus N71 with a 2 year warranty and 1 year accident protection ($899)+ refurbished, 14 inch Thinkpad T42 to bring to class ($290)


You could build a much more powerful PC (and easier to upgrade in the long term) than the 17 inch for much less than $899.

I built this PC in October: AMD Phenom II Quad core 2.6 ghz, 4 gig ram, ATI Radeon 1 gig video card (dx 11 ready + crossfire), 1 terabyte harddrive, very solid PSU + case...all for about $550. (if you don't need to game, then you could cut out the discreet graphics card and lower that price by $150) All individual parts are under warranty, so if the thing fails (still no issues and I haven't turned it off once since building it), I could just send in the bad part and keep the rest of the PC.

It's currently hooked up to my TV for all my media and gaming. Hulu, netflix, etc all on it. I don't even need to hook up the keyboard or mouse to it. You can use an app called Synergy to use the keyboard and mouse on another laptop to control it over the network, though I just usually use a universal remote.

Obviously, the specs on this are overkill for law school, but what I'm trying to say is if you're going the one large PC at home and one smaller more portable one for classes, your money could probably be spent a lot more efficiently and for something that would last you in the long term more than a 17 inch laptop + a 14 inch refurbished. With what you mentioned above, your budget is about $1200 or so, you could build a decent PC, and then buy a 12" or 13" ASUS ultra portable with like a 10 - 12 hour battery for about the same price as what you are thinking (probably for even less than $1200...).


Image

(I got the HD TV for only $250 too :P :P )


This guy's setup is pretty much what I'm going for. It's my summer project before I start 1L. PC hooked up in another room for office use, cables through the wall to the TV for entertainment: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TR9-vahLi1s

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Matthies
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Re: Best Law School Laptop for the Money

Postby Matthies » Sun May 23, 2010 8:39 pm

kalvano wrote:
Mr. Matlock wrote:Basic question:

32 vs 64 bit? Still an option even on the T410. I'm not even sure what it does. Memory????



64. More efficient. You won't notice a huge increase, but why go 32 when 64 is better?


64 is twice 32! So better!

Actually checkw ith your school first, see what exam software they use, then check the website to make sure they support 64, a few have not cunght on, I had to take of 64 and instalk 32 bit for the bar software to work. But 64 better than 32 cuase you can upgrad and use newer software

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CaptainSnuggleBunny
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Re: Best Law School Laptop for the Money

Postby CaptainSnuggleBunny » Sun May 23, 2010 8:57 pm

burvowski wrote:
CaptainSnuggleBunny wrote:So this is what I'm thinking: 17inch, 9 pound (with charger) Asus N71 with a 2 year warranty and 1 year accident protection ($899)+ refurbished, 14 inch Thinkpad T42 to bring to class ($290)


You could build a much more powerful PC (and easier to upgrade in the long term) than the 17 inch for much less than $899.


If I didn't already have a desktop, I'd certainly get one before getting a massive laptop. My thoughts are to use my 7 year old dell as a server/back-up and use my monitor to dual screen with the Asus. I dual screened in undergrad and it certainly made me more productive, Buying a laptop instead of upgrading the dell keeps me from having to buy an additional monitor.

Also, I considered just getting a similarly equipped 13-15 inch computer including the UL series. I prefer a full size keyboard with a number pad, and 15inches seems to be the minimum. All the 15 and 16 inch computers I looked at were around the same price ($900) or more as the N7` and didn't include the 2 year warranty. Getting the larger screen with better resolution (1600x900 vs. 1280xwhatever) seemed like a good deal. It's ready to receive a second hard drive and I've got one loaded with all sorts of media from a now deceased laptop (i currently have it installed in an external case and am using it on the dell). I'm hoping I'll also be able to swap the ram from the old laptop into the N71. The model I'm looking at has the NVIDIA discrete graphics card with auto switching to the integrated graphics for extended battery life.

My thought is by having 2 laptops, if one ever beaks down I'll have a spare, my files already on it, ready to go. But why have 2 with long warranties? Thus the cheap, refurbished thinkpad with a 90 day warranty. I was forced to lease a Thinkpad from my undergrad for junior and senior year, and was really impressed. If the one I'm sent is a dud, Overstock.com allows full refund returns in the first 30 days.

Am I convinced this is the best solution I could come up with? No.
Have I decided I've already spent too much time thinking about what computer(s) to buy? Yes.

Now, I hope my loans are disbursed promptly and the school direct deposits my refund immediately so I can go ahead and buy these.

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StrictlyLiable
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Re: Best Law School Laptop for the Money

Postby StrictlyLiable » Sun May 23, 2010 9:33 pm

I was thinking of getting a MacBook Air but it doesn't have a CD drive. How is the software for taking an exam loaded on to the computer?

burvowski
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Re: Best Law School Laptop for the Money

Postby burvowski » Sun May 23, 2010 9:40 pm

CaptainSnuggleBunny wrote:My thought is by having 2 laptops, if one ever beaks down I'll have a spare, my files already on it, ready to go. But why have 2 with long warranties? Thus the cheap, refurbished thinkpad with a 90 day warranty. I was forced to lease a Thinkpad from my undergrad for junior and senior year, and was really impressed. If the one I'm sent is a dud, Overstock.com allows full refund returns in the first 30 days.


Wouldn't it be more logical to just buy one laptop and if that ever failed, then buy another?

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James Bond
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Re: Best Law School Laptop for the Money

Postby James Bond » Sun May 23, 2010 9:43 pm

StrictlyLiable wrote:I was thinking of getting a MacBook Air but it doesn't have a CD drive. How is the software for taking an exam loaded on to the computer?


Even if it isn't loaded via disc, you probably should buy an external CD/DVD drive with a macbook air




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