The Ideal Law School Laptop

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dextermorgan
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Re: The Ideal Law School Laptop

Postby dextermorgan » Wed May 13, 2009 11:29 pm

superflush wrote:
bigben wrote:
superflush wrote:I would try to go with a reputable brand. I don't know if that one is.


Ideally, I think it's better to rely on product-specific reviews rather than discriminating by brand. Reputable brands often make crappy products, while innovative new companies continually come up with better ones. This is especially true when you get into more technical and obscure products, where offerings by well-known brands, if any even exist, are likely to be among the worst options on the market.

Relying on reviews might involve giving 100% credence to an expert who conducts thorough reviews and is indisputably qualified and correct on the topic, for example if you had to buy a power supply you would look no further than this guy: http://www.hardwaresecrets.com/article/410
Aggregated user reviews can also be useful, and newegg is the best example of that, since they have a large base of highly proficient users reviewing their products.


Okay, fair enough. I'm not trying to dispute you. I just know that I had an enclosure that I got once from either NewEgg or TigerDirect that was the cheapest and it failed (I'm also had other cheap stuff from NewEgg fail). I actually have 2 drives in enclosures that I got from NewEgg, from a cheap brand. So far they've been good, but they get kinda hotter than I'd like. I may eventually upgrade to Acomdata enclosures (I think you can get em at NewEgg for $30) if I don't find something to put em in.

I really must know how a external enclosure fails. I have a cheapo 2.5 enclosure I got from newegg back in the day. It is literally nothing more than a box with a connector. It works great.

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superflush
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Re: The Ideal Law School Laptop

Postby superflush » Wed May 13, 2009 11:41 pm

dextermorgan wrote:I really must know how a external enclosure fails. I have a cheapo 2.5 enclosure I got from newegg back in the day. It is literally nothing more than a box with a connector. It works great.


It stops being recognized by any computer, or it falls apart.

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dextermorgan
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Re: The Ideal Law School Laptop

Postby dextermorgan » Wed May 13, 2009 11:48 pm

superflush wrote:
dextermorgan wrote:I really must know how a external enclosure fails. I have a cheapo 2.5 enclosure I got from newegg back in the day. It is literally nothing more than a box with a connector. It works great.


It stops being recognized by any computer, or it falls apart.

Ah. Yeah, I haven't had problems with mine but it's not too complicated. I doubt I will get another enclosure when pre-made externals are the same price. I really like those docking stations that are coming out (well the idea of it anyway).

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angiej
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Re: The Ideal Law School Laptop

Postby angiej » Thu May 14, 2009 8:10 am

bigben wrote:
superflush wrote:
angiej wrote:Can anyone recommend a good portable hard drive or do they all pretty much do the same thing?


Portable as in to carry around frequently? A good portable one is a hard drive that is really small, and can be bus-powered by the notebooks usb (rather than have its own power cable). I've been using Acomdata. The small Lacie drives also look pretty nice.


Yeah. And if you don't need it to be really small, you can just get an enclosure and turn one of your old internal hard drives into an external hard drive like this: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.a ... 6817145132


It doesn't need to be ultra portable, just something that I can use to backup my computer and flash drives and then stick in a drawer until the next backup.

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just a girl
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Re: The Ideal Law School Laptop

Postby just a girl » Thu May 14, 2009 12:06 pm

Does anyone think the promotion from last fall, where you get a free ipod touch with the purchase of a mac will happen again this year? I'm a summer starter, and while I want a new laptop in time for classes, I'm willing to hold out a few weeks if it means I get a free new ipod.

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djshack
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Re: The Ideal Law School Laptop

Postby djshack » Thu May 14, 2009 12:29 pm

dextermorgan wrote:
Sobriquet wrote:Couple of quick questions (still deciding between Lenovo or Mac):
- What is the point of getting Windows Vista Basic v Premium v Business? I know law schools recommend Business, but I haven't figured out why. I am planning on upgrading to Windows 7 when it comes out so I don't want to buy Business if I can avoid it...is there a compelling reason not to get Basic for the first ~6 months of law school?
- How many students use OpenNote for note-taking? I think I could handle taking notes using Word 08 for Mac (there is a decent notebook feature), but I don't want to be at a disadvantage comparing notes with other people. Along the same lines, I've heard that iWork is really cool - but if I'm buying Office 08 for Mac, is there a point in getting iWork?

Thanks in advance!!

Vista Business has a lot of networking and other features which make life easier for you and IT. If your school only "recommends" Business and doesn't require it then you should be fine until 7 ships (which should be by Christmas according to Microsoft).

iWork works MUCH better than office 08 on the Mac. Office 08 is buggy and unstable (fully patched/updated). I wouldn't bother wasting several hundred on Office for Mac when iWork is ~$70 with the student discount (unless your school provides office for free which is likely). I use OmniOutliner for note taking (in UG, but it's common among law students too) and would definitely recommend it over any word processor.


Vista Home Premium should be fine (don't get basic... it doesn't have the new "aero" visual style and effects). I would recommend getting the 64 bit verison though if it's offered (Lenovo didn't offer Home Premium 64), in case you want to upgrade above 2-3 GB of RAM.

I'm going to use OneNote (just switched from Mac to PC), but I do need to mess around with it a bit to get it how I like it.

As for Office 2008 for Mac, well, it was downright awful when it was new (crashed literally every few minutes). After the five or so updates to it (ridiculous), I finally felt it was a decent program. Faster than 2004 on Mac, but still can't compete with Office 2007 on Windows.

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matty
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Re: The Ideal Law School Laptop

Postby matty » Thu May 14, 2009 12:54 pm

just a girl wrote:Does anyone think the promotion from last fall, where you get a free ipod touch with the purchase of a mac will happen again this year? I'm a summer starter, and while I want a new laptop in time for classes, I'm willing to hold out a few weeks if it means I get a free new ipod.

Last year it started in early June and ran through mid-September, so I'd wait until June to buy (I'm sure they're doing it again). It will probably be the same as last year, i.e. $100 computer discount, printer rebate, and ipod rebate (iirc last year it was $200 so you could only get the 8 GB Nano for free. The 8 GB touch still cost $99. I think you will be able to get the 8 GB touch free this year, but I could be wrong)

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misteranthro
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Re: The Ideal Law School Laptop

Postby misteranthro » Thu May 14, 2009 5:51 pm

Does anyone know where I can find a comparison of dual-battery laptops? I am looking for a PC laptop with around an 8 hour battery life ~ $2000. So far, the Lenovo Thinkpads seem to be the closest thing I can find to that price range. I am also looking for something that has a 128G solid state hard drive as an optional upgrade. Any help would be much appreciated!

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enygma
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Re: The Ideal Law School Laptop

Postby enygma » Thu May 14, 2009 6:28 pm

misteranthro wrote:Does anyone know where I can find a comparison of dual-battery laptops? I am looking for a PC laptop with around an 8 hour battery life ~ $2000. So far, the Lenovo Thinkpads seem to be the closest thing I can find to that price range. I am also looking for something that has a 128G solid state hard drive as an optional upgrade. Any help would be much appreciated!


i would consider getting an after-market SSD. I've been looking at them myself and it looks like the ocz vertex is the best bang for the buck and generally a lot cheaper than getting it added on from the factory.

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GhostDynasty
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Re: The Ideal Law School Laptop

Postby GhostDynasty » Thu May 14, 2009 6:38 pm


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misteranthro
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Re: The Ideal Law School Laptop

Postby misteranthro » Thu May 14, 2009 6:48 pm

enygma wrote:
misteranthro wrote:Does anyone know where I can find a comparison of dual-battery laptops? I am looking for a PC laptop with around an 8 hour battery life ~ $2000. So far, the Lenovo Thinkpads seem to be the closest thing I can find to that price range. I am also looking for something that has a 128G solid state hard drive as an optional upgrade. Any help would be much appreciated!


i would consider getting an after-market SSD. I've been looking at them myself and it looks like the ocz vertex is the best bang for the buck and generally a lot cheaper than getting it added on from the factory.


Thanks for the tip. That could work, but I am a bit concerned about tech-defaulting the warranty by adding something aftermarket. I plan on the bumper to bumper for three years if I can get it. Unfortunately, I am not super-savvy with laptop hardware installation either. It seems a bit more difficult than desktop.

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dextermorgan
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Re: The Ideal Law School Laptop

Postby dextermorgan » Thu May 14, 2009 7:34 pm

just a girl wrote:Does anyone think the promotion from last fall, where you get a free ipod touch with the purchase of a mac will happen again this year? I'm a summer starter, and while I want a new laptop in time for classes, I'm willing to hold out a few weeks if it means I get a free new ipod.

Yes, it will happen. It has happened every summer for the past few years and been a huge success.

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tome
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Re: The Ideal Law School Laptop

Postby tome » Fri May 15, 2009 1:00 am

The new Acer Timeline series is getting some good reviews. They are a fair bit lighter than the T400, but still manage an 8hr battery life. But then again, they are only coming out today, so ho knows how they will really perform and what the end price will be.

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BeastCoastHype
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Re: The Ideal Law School Laptop

Postby BeastCoastHype » Fri May 15, 2009 1:27 am

crystalhawkeye wrote:
geoffree wrote:
crystalhawkeye wrote:Don't want to sound like those Mac vs. PC commercials, but I'll probably end up getting the former.


Can't stand those commercials. I'm going with a macbook for LS, but these commercials almost make me have second thoughts.

Hahaha, yeah no kidding. Those did make me think I'd be buying the more pretentious brand, but hey, they are a lot better.


At least those Mac ads are funny sometimes. I hate the commercials where the mom takes her kid to Best Buy to get a computer and the kid just *happens* to think that the Macs really aren't that cool and picks some crappy gigantic screen HP with loads of useless features like a remote control. Also, the "I'm a PC" commercials really suck. I think those ads are almost bad enough to get people to sell their Microsoft stock.

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superflush
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Re: The Ideal Law School Laptop

Postby superflush » Fri May 15, 2009 1:46 am

dextermorgan wrote:
just a girl wrote:Does anyone think the promotion from last fall, where you get a free ipod touch with the purchase of a mac will happen again this year? I'm a summer starter, and while I want a new laptop in time for classes, I'm willing to hold out a few weeks if it means I get a free new ipod.

Yes, it will happen. It has happened every summer for the past few years and been a huge success.


+1. Its been going on since I was in high school. So it should happen.

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dextermorgan
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Re: The Ideal Law School Laptop

Postby dextermorgan » Fri May 15, 2009 9:53 am

BeastCoastHype wrote:
crystalhawkeye wrote:
geoffree wrote:
crystalhawkeye wrote:Don't want to sound like those Mac vs. PC commercials, but I'll probably end up getting the former.


Can't stand those commercials. I'm going with a macbook for LS, but these commercials almost make me have second thoughts.

Hahaha, yeah no kidding. Those did make me think I'd be buying the more pretentious brand, but hey, they are a lot better.


At least those Mac ads are funny sometimes. I hate the commercials where the mom takes her kid to Best Buy to get a computer and the kid just *happens* to think that the Macs really aren't that cool and picks some crappy gigantic screen HP with loads of useless features like a remote control. Also, the "I'm a PC" commercials really suck. I think those ads are almost bad enough to get people to sell their Microsoft stock.

This is the truth. I love Apples response add though: --LinkRemoved--.

Oh and to be fair Macs came with remotes for a long while.

Bankhead
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Re: The Ideal Law School Laptop

Postby Bankhead » Fri May 15, 2009 11:42 am

Have we reached a consensus, PC wise?

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coolkatz321
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Re: The Ideal Law School Laptop

Postby coolkatz321 » Fri May 15, 2009 11:43 am

nitsudrx wrote:Have we reached a consensus, PC wise?


Get the T400, and see my link previously for a really good deal on one. It's the best laptop out there, by far.

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Rsrcht
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Re: The Ideal Law School Laptop

Postby Rsrcht » Fri May 15, 2009 12:53 pm

nitsudrx wrote:Have we reached a consensus, PC wise?

No. I'm loving my new 13" ASUS laptop.

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thesealocust
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Re: The Ideal Law School Laptop

Postby thesealocust » Fri May 15, 2009 1:03 pm

Edit: n/m
Last edited by thesealocust on Sun Aug 02, 2009 11:34 am, edited 1 time in total.

Bankhead
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Re: The Ideal Law School Laptop

Postby Bankhead » Fri May 15, 2009 1:18 pm

T400. Good enough for me. I hate "shopping around" for this kind of stuff.

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djshack
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Re: The Ideal Law School Laptop

Postby djshack » Fri May 15, 2009 1:44 pm

nitsudrx wrote:T400. Good enough for me. I hate "shopping around" for this kind of stuff.


Another T400 vote here. I simply say "helllllll no" to netbooks (until I'm rich enough to have a MORE portable portable computer--I refuse to have one as my main laptop for notetaking and paper-writing). And no more Mac.

Bankhead
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Re: The Ideal Law School Laptop

Postby Bankhead » Fri May 15, 2009 1:48 pm

djshack wrote:
nitsudrx wrote:T400. Good enough for me. I hate "shopping around" for this kind of stuff.


Another T400 vote here. I simply say "helllllll no" to netbooks (until I'm rich enough to have a MORE portable portable computer--I refuse to have one as my main laptop for notetaking and paper-writing). And no more Mac.


Do you think the basic package is ok? Or should I do some upgrading?

nontradintexas
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Re: The Ideal Law School Laptop

Postby nontradintexas » Fri May 15, 2009 2:14 pm

I think I want a 15" screen...any substantial difference between T400 and T500? I know weight is higher, but is it really substantial enough to make a difference? I've never used a laptop for school (as I'm old and we used <gasp> pen and paper when I was in undergrad) but I can't imagine a pound or two making a huge difference in my life when I'm already carrying 20 pounds of books.

bonesinger
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Re: The Ideal Law School Laptop

Postby bonesinger » Fri May 15, 2009 2:29 pm

http://forums.slickdeals.net/showthread ... &t=1326451


CPU: seriously, just get something with a decent processor (Intel T6xxx and up, I have a P8600, AMD I am outa the loop, don't really know much)
Memory/Ram: 2GB-4GB (don't pay extra for 3,4GB) - Windows XP/Vista 32-bit cannot utilize more than 3GB of ram, if you get 64-bit u can BUT some software may not work on it. (I got 4GB since it was free)
HDD: w/e floats your boat( 200+ should be min though) (try for 7200 rpm drives = faster drive = things just load faster) (I got 320GB 7200)
Gfx Card: if you want gaming (oh i hope we have time for that :lol: ) get something powerful, but be warned it eats your battery. http://www.notebookcheck.net/Mobile-Gra ... 844.0.html for different cards (I have a Nvidia graphics card in mine)
Screen: beware of the type of screen you get, the different types will have different resolutions (i got an LED one, saves battery but screen res only goes up to 1280x900 or something) If you want a large resolution like HD quality or up, its a premium price for those screens.
DVD-RW: standard, if u can get Blu-ray, BEWARE: they sometimes give u a read only blu-ray drive, not a RW drive.

Just monitor these sites for laptops: http://www.fatwallet.com, http://www.slickdeals.net, http://www.techbargains.com for good deals, people will post it there, Its your choice to jump on a good deal. BTW: YOU WILL ALWAYS FEEL YOU GET SCREWED AFTER BUYING A LAPTOP/DESKTOP, BETTER DEALS ALWAYS COME ALONG. ALWAYS. So just settle for the best deal at the time and be happy with it.

Recommendations: Those of you who do the following: surf web, chat, webcam, ms word/excel, web games, - you will probably be fine with a 5-600 dollar laptop (make sure it has 2GB+ ram)

Power Users: I doubt I will have to even recommend something, theyll know it already, but I got this:

I paid 750 for my laptop from lenovo (model Y530) using their IBM shareholders program. (deal is dead now) (i am a power user, I will use/abuse the laptops specs for my work)

Lenovo Y530
Intel P8600
4GB Ram
320GB HDD 7200 RPM
15.4" LED screen
Nvidia 103M 256MB Graphics Card
Webcam w/Face Recognition + Veriface (scans face and uses ur pic as a password to log into laptop)
Bluetooth
DVD-RW/DL

Total: 750 shipped/tax

EDIT: http://www.slickdeals.net/permadeal/207 ... -616--More

see I got screwed, 100 bux cheaper, haha

I would jump on that dell deal I just posted, those laptops are pretty sick, they can handle alot of stuff




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