Computers for Law School 2011

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kalvano
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Re: Computers for Law School 2011

Postby kalvano » Sat Mar 17, 2012 12:34 am

I've had no HDD failures with my Lenovo, but I have to say I'm not pleased with it. I'm pleased with the fact that it's the next best thing to a Toughbook, but I'll be dumping it as soon as I'm out of school. It's just not a very good laptop.

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Kess
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Re: Computers for Law School 2011

Postby Kess » Mon Mar 19, 2012 5:42 pm

Hey, ya'll, I'm looking for suggestions. I'm starting law school this summer and I need to buy a laptop within the next 2 months. What are some suggestions?

- I am windows user
- Budget is $1000, preferably less than $800
- Not a gamer
- Want a relatively sturdy laptop but nothing crazy heavy as I'm a small person who wants to avoid having a bookbag that's a quarter of her weight.

Thanks everyone!

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kalvano
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Re: Computers for Law School 2011

Postby kalvano » Mon Mar 19, 2012 6:14 pm

Kess wrote:Hey, ya'll, I'm looking for suggestions. I'm starting law school this summer and I need to buy a laptop within the next 2 months. What are some suggestions?

- I am windows user
- Budget is $1000, preferably less than $800
- Not a gamer
- Want a relatively sturdy laptop but nothing crazy heavy as I'm a small person who wants to avoid having a bookbag that's a quarter of her weight.

Thanks everyone!



Look to the new crop of Ultrabooks coming out this spring and summer. I believe Toshiba makes a pretty good one for around $700.

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breadbucket
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Re: Computers for Law School 2011

Postby breadbucket » Mon Mar 19, 2012 6:31 pm

Ultrabooks are very nice IMO but they are very new, and they do use SSD's which are also fairly new. So reliability may be questionable, but If I were any of you guys I would get an ASUS U-series laptop; Mac styling at a fraction of the cost and best bang for your buck spec wise

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beachbum
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Re: Computers for Law School 2011

Postby beachbum » Mon Mar 19, 2012 8:52 pm

Just got the replacement hard drive from Lenovo. Was happy to see that the new one has more space than the old one (128 GB --> 250 GB), although they gave me the 32 bit version of Windows 7 (as opposed to the 64 bit which I previously had installed). Whatever, just happy to have a functional computer again. Hopefully this one takes me through graduation.

Edit: Wait, looks like the hard drive is bigger because it isn't solid state. The computer is also noticeably slower. But hopefully it works now, even if that extra money spent for the SSD just essentially went up in smoke. Will not be purchasing a Lenovo the next time I need a new laptop.
Last edited by beachbum on Mon Mar 19, 2012 11:04 pm, edited 1 time in total.

jediknight2424
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Re: Computers for Law School 2011

Postby jediknight2424 » Mon Mar 19, 2012 9:02 pm

beachbum wrote:Just got the replacement hard drive from Lenovo. Was happy to see that the new one has more space than the old one (128 GB --> 250 GB), although they gave me the 32 bit version of Windows 7 (as opposed to the 64 bit which I previously had installed). Whatever, just happy to have a functional computer again. Hopefully this one takes me through graduation.


Ive heard great things about the thinkpad keyboard. Any lenovo users wanna comment?

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beach_terror
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Re: Computers for Law School 2011

Postby beach_terror » Mon Mar 19, 2012 9:06 pm

jediknight2424 wrote:
beachbum wrote:Just got the replacement hard drive from Lenovo. Was happy to see that the new one has more space than the old one (128 GB --> 250 GB), although they gave me the 32 bit version of Windows 7 (as opposed to the 64 bit which I previously had installed). Whatever, just happy to have a functional computer again. Hopefully this one takes me through graduation.


Ive heard great things about the thinkpad keyboard. Any lenovo users wanna comment?

The Edge is a chiclet keyboard and the T series aren't. Depends on what you're looking for. Both have nipple navigation, which is the shit.

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kalvano
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Re: Computers for Law School 2011

Postby kalvano » Mon Mar 19, 2012 11:19 pm

breadbucket wrote:Ultrabooks are very nice IMO but they are very new, and they do use SSD's which are also fairly new. So reliability may be questionable, but If I were any of you guys I would get an ASUS U-series laptop; Mac styling at a fraction of the cost and best bang for your buck spec wise


It's basically a MacBook Air with Windows. Nothing about an Ultrabook is "new" in any meaningful sense.

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anjmissy
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Re: Computers for Law School 2011

Postby anjmissy » Wed Mar 21, 2012 12:53 am

i think i'll be getting the lenovo u300s, seems like a nice ultrabook..comes in grey and orange..will it look bad if i have an orange laptop for law school?

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bk1
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Re: Computers for Law School 2011

Postby bk1 » Wed Mar 21, 2012 2:19 am

anjmissy wrote:i think i'll be getting the lenovo u300s, seems like a nice ultrabook..comes in grey and orange..will it look bad if i have an orange laptop for law school?


No it will not.

albanach
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Re: Computers for Law School 2011

Postby albanach » Fri Mar 23, 2012 8:47 am

beach_terror wrote:The Edge is a chiclet keyboard and the T series aren't. Depends on what you're looking for. Both have nipple navigation, which is the shit.


The T-series keyboard is without doubt the best laptop keyboard I have experienced, and I've used a lot of laptops. I'd highly recommend it.

sangr
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Re: Computers for Law School 2011

Postby sangr » Fri Mar 23, 2012 9:17 am

sup dudes,

ive been doing research but i lack so much basic knowledge about comps that its hard to know whats what.

can anyone recommend a laptop that

1. is RELIABLE (doesnt shut down, break, etc.)

2. Plays starcraft 2 (it can be on low settings)

i dont need a big screen.

the weight or size doesnt bother me too much (unless its one of those HUGE gaming laptops)

thanks all

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zeth006
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Re: Computers for Law School 2011

Postby zeth006 » Fri Mar 23, 2012 5:34 pm

kalvano wrote:I've had no HDD failures with my Lenovo, but I have to say I'm not pleased with it. I'm pleased with the fact that it's the next best thing to a Toughbook, but I'll be dumping it as soon as I'm out of school. It's just not a very good laptop.



Care to elaborate why? Which Lenovo is it? Curious.


Still remember the epic Mac vs PC debate we had about a year back. :lol:

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zeth006
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Re: Computers for Law School 2011

Postby zeth006 » Fri Mar 23, 2012 5:36 pm

sangr wrote:sup dudes,

ive been doing research but i lack so much basic knowledge about comps that its hard to know whats what.

can anyone recommend a laptop that

1. is RELIABLE (doesnt shut down, break, etc.)

2. Plays starcraft 2 (it can be on low settings)

i dont need a big screen.

the weight or size doesnt bother me too much (unless its one of those HUGE gaming laptops)

thanks all



http://forum.notebookreview.com/what-no ... uld-i-buy/

Go there. Create a thread from here:

http://forum.notebookreview.com/what-no ... sting.html

You'll get a lot of suggestions there. If this were 2010, I would've recommended the Envy 14 which I play SC2 on at lowest settings.

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zeth006
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Re: Computers for Law School 2011

Postby zeth006 » Fri Mar 23, 2012 5:38 pm

kalvano wrote:
breadbucket wrote:Ultrabooks are very nice IMO but they are very new, and they do use SSD's which are also fairly new. So reliability may be questionable, but If I were any of you guys I would get an ASUS U-series laptop; Mac styling at a fraction of the cost and best bang for your buck spec wise


It's basically a MacBook Air with Windows. Nothing about an Ultrabook is "new" in any meaningful sense.


Yeah, I'd say a better word is just "different" from the mainstream notebook market. If portability isn't an issue and you need a basic machine for typing docs, web-surfing, and watching movies, a $400 notebook will work just fine. Dad's rocking a 17" $399 machine for streaming TV shows onto the big-screen. But he rarely moves it around.


But if portability IS an issue, the ultrabook is worth considering.

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kalvano
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Re: Computers for Law School 2011

Postby kalvano » Fri Mar 23, 2012 6:06 pm

zeth006 wrote:
kalvano wrote:I've had no HDD failures with my Lenovo, but I have to say I'm not pleased with it. I'm pleased with the fact that it's the next best thing to a Toughbook, but I'll be dumping it as soon as I'm out of school. It's just not a very good laptop.



Care to elaborate why? Which Lenovo is it? Curious.


Still remember the epic Mac vs PC debate we had about a year back. :lol:


Edge 14".

The trackpad is terrible, and it's very slow. I stripped off all the Lenovo bloatware and that helped some, but overall it's just not speedy. I don't know if it's just me or if it's shoddy components that don't utilize the processor / memory adequately. Plus, the Wi-Fi antenna on it is crappy.

My wife's Asus U-series is far superior, if not as durable.

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zeth006
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Re: Computers for Law School 2011

Postby zeth006 » Fri Mar 23, 2012 7:26 pm

kalvano wrote:
zeth006 wrote:
kalvano wrote:I've had no HDD failures with my Lenovo, but I have to say I'm not pleased with it. I'm pleased with the fact that it's the next best thing to a Toughbook, but I'll be dumping it as soon as I'm out of school. It's just not a very good laptop.



Care to elaborate why? Which Lenovo is it? Curious.


Still remember the epic Mac vs PC debate we had about a year back. :lol:


Edge 14".

The trackpad is terrible, and it's very slow. I stripped off all the Lenovo bloatware and that helped some, but overall it's just not speedy. I don't know if it's just me or if it's shoddy components that don't utilize the processor / memory adequately. Plus, the Wi-Fi antenna on it is crappy.

My wife's Asus U-series is far superior, if not as durable.



Yeah, it really sounds like the Edge 14 at least started out being a heavily budget oriented solution. What's the processor and how much RAM does it have? As long as you're not packing it with a lot of videos and other space-consuming junk, you might want to consider tossing in an SSD. It'll make a world of a difference in performance. As long as your machine is used mostly for office stuff, a 60gb or 80gb SSD should be good enough.

The wifi might also improve if you toss in a better wifi card. Can't make any guarantees. My Envy 14 rocks a Intel 6200 card, has pretty nice range. I believe intel has this one here going for cheap:

http://www.amazon.com/6230-IEEE-802-11n ... 055&sr=8-8

And of course, there's the internal antenna replacement kit to consider:

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0030D ... r_asin_lnk


If I were personally bored and had cash to burn, I'd get this 3-antenna wifi card, add a third antenna from the kit listed above to my notebook, and see if I'll get any improvements in reception. Damn Hastings tower building has walls thick enough to withstand a mortar that my signal sometimes drops to 3 bars. Doesn't affect my download speed by much admittedly.

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0038A ... r_asin_lnk


(Not sure how to link links to words or phrases on TLS, so just posting actual links)

EDIT: Added link to antennas

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kalvano
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Re: Computers for Law School 2011

Postby kalvano » Fri Mar 23, 2012 9:17 pm

I'm not paying anything to upgrade it. I'll just buy an Ultrabook after school, or maybe an Air and strip off OSX.

bartleby
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Re: Computers for Law School 2011

Postby bartleby » Fri Mar 23, 2012 11:57 pm

not that anyone is keeping track but i returned the $350 dell. it was a real piece of shit. 1.5 battery life out of the box is unacceptable

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kalvano
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Re: Computers for Law School 2011

Postby kalvano » Sat Mar 24, 2012 12:04 am

Oh yeah, that's the other thing about my Lenovo. Battery life is almost non-existent.

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Redamon1
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Re: Computers for Law School 2011

Postby Redamon1 » Sun Apr 08, 2012 7:52 pm

I've been following this thread for a while, but things are now getting real. I need to head to the store in the next couple of weeks and buy the laptop that will follow me through law school.

I'm just curious about whether there have been recent updates in hardware, software or durability that have surfaced in the last few months.

The ideal candidate for me would be an Ultrabook (or something equivalent that is super light but not so tiny it'll kill my eyes) that is fast (SSD preferred?), durable and has good batter life. I can sacrifice on looks and size of internal hard drive to get a better price. I don't really care if it's a PC or Mac. Cheaper is better. From my research I'm down to these 3:

* Lenovo U300s seems to be getting good reviews and is on sale on their website. Seems to be around $1000 depending on the specs.

* Asus Zenbook but people complain about the trackpad a lot. $1150

* MacBook Air 11 or 13 inch - $1200 - 1300

Others I should consider? Any thoughts or updates I should be aware of? I've excluded netbooks from the list because I got the impression that they wouldn't be powerful enough for law school + everyday stuff. But I'd love to be proven wrong because they are way cheaper!

thegrayman
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Re: Computers for Law School 2011

Postby thegrayman » Sun Apr 08, 2012 8:03 pm

Redamon1 wrote:I've been following this thread for a while, but things are now getting real. I need to head to the store in the next couple of weeks and buy the laptop that will follow me through law school.

I'm just curious about whether there have been recent updates in hardware, software or durability that have surfaced in the last few months.

The ideal candidate for me would be an Ultrabook (or something equivalent that is super light but not so tiny it'll kill my eyes) that is fast (SSD preferred?), durable and has good batter life. I can sacrifice on looks and size of internal hard drive to get a better price. I don't really care if it's a PC or Mac. Cheaper is better. From my research I'm down to these 3:

* Lenovo U300s seems to be getting good reviews and is on sale on their website. Seems to be around $1000 depending on the specs.

* Asus Zenbook but people complain about the trackpad a lot. $1150

* MacBook Air 11 or 13 inch - $1200 - 1300

Others I should consider? Any thoughts or updates I should be aware of? I've excluded netbooks from the list because I got the impression that they wouldn't be powerful enough for law school + everyday stuff. But I'd love to be proven wrong because they are way cheaper!


Seems like you've done your homework. My only input would be this:

- Mac's are always legit, the majority of your class with likely have a Mac of some sort
-Lenovo's are equally legit IMO (I have a Lenovo T420). I see the major selling points of the Lenovo as:
1. the keyboard is awesome, I love it. You'll be doing more typing than you can possibly comprehend, so whatever you pick make sure you like the keyboard
2. battery life is awesome, Lenovo has optimized battery settings (some software program, you can probably get the equivalent on any computer) which are clutch if you're like me and you don't want to have to plug in during class. If you turn off the wifi and keep the brightness low, the thing will last forever. Also you can get a larger battery that will snap right in (sticks out more obviously).
3. the screen is awesome. It's a funny thing to care about, but I love that when my screen goes off (to save battery power), my computer doesn't turn into a mirror like most other computers. It saves the awkwardness of making eye contact with the person behind you via your screen :)

Netbooks are trouble for an exam. For day-to-day they are super useful, but trying to knock out an exam on one would be a pain in the ass I would imagine. The only people at my school who use netbooks swap them out for laptops during exam periods.

bartleby
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Re: Computers for Law School 2011

Postby bartleby » Sun Apr 08, 2012 8:14 pm

Redamon1 wrote:I've been following this thread for a while, but things are now getting real. I need to head to the store in the next couple of weeks and buy the laptop that will follow me through law school.

I'm just curious about whether there have been recent updates in hardware, software or durability that have surfaced in the last few months.

The ideal candidate for me would be an Ultrabook (or something equivalent that is super light but not so tiny it'll kill my eyes) that is fast (SSD preferred?), durable and has good batter life. I can sacrifice on looks and size of internal hard drive to get a better price. I don't really care if it's a PC or Mac. Cheaper is better. From my research I'm down to these 3:

* Lenovo U300s seems to be getting good reviews and is on sale on their website. Seems to be around $1000 depending on the specs.

* Asus Zenbook but people complain about the trackpad a lot. $1150

* MacBook Air 11 or 13 inch - $1200 - 1300

Others I should consider? Any thoughts or updates I should be aware of? I've excluded netbooks from the list because I got the impression that they wouldn't be powerful enough for law school + everyday stuff. But I'd love to be proven wrong because they are way cheaper!


I would kill myself if I had to use a netbook through law school. There are definitely cheaper options between a netbook and the $1000 price range. I always recommend checking out Slickdeals and their front page deals on laptops. Make sure it's like 14-15 inches max.

As for specs, unless you really care...having 8 gb ram to run One Note has been useless so far.

Re: portability - I totally feel you on wanting to go light but your books are going to be darn heavy that the extra pound may not kill you. There is nothing shameful about the wheelie backpack...kidding...but I have noted before there are a disproportionate amount of super hot girls who use the wheelie in my school.

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bk1
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Re: Computers for Law School 2011

Postby bk1 » Sun Apr 08, 2012 8:26 pm

Redamon1 wrote:Others I should consider? Any thoughts or updates I should be aware of? I've excluded netbooks from the list because I got the impression that they wouldn't be powerful enough for law school + everyday stuff. But I'd love to be proven wrong because they are way cheaper!


I like my U300s but it's expensive and the resolution sucks. The HP Folio 13 (which got good reviews) is currently $800 at B&H. (LinkRemoved)

I think resolution is another thing to consider. At 1366x768 (the resolution of the U300s and Folio 13) things get a little cramped when you try to put windows side by side. If you had a larger resolution (e.g. 1920x1200 or even 1600x900) it gets a lot more comfortable. However having shitty resolution is one of the primary ways that laptop manufacturers keep their costs down so it's not really possible to get something that is both cheap and high resolution. ASUS's Zenbooks have higher resolution but worse trackpad/keyboard compared to the U300s but the latter has crappy resolution. I personally think that the most important things are trackpad/keyboard/screen, as well as price. I'd probably sacrifice resolution for better trackpad/keyboard since those are more important for things like cranking out a 3 hour exam, but ideally I'd try to get an ultrabook with at least 1600x900 that had a good trackpad/keyboard as well.

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FantasticMrFox
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Re: Computers for Law School 2011

Postby FantasticMrFox » Sun Apr 08, 2012 8:26 pm

Macbook pro 13" isn't THAT bulky/heavy to choose Air over it, imo




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