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#1
Okay, background info.
I currently have a computer in my room (really crap), and it takes up loads of space.
So im looking to get a laptop to both improve performance, save space and have something to take on holiday and on my travels.
I will be using it for recording and internet browsing mainly, and probably some gaming along the way (mainly race games like f1 challenge).

I have absolutely zero knowledge on anything to do with computers apart from the day to day things, i was looking to spend about £500, if this is realistic.
I was thinking a Mac?
Iv never used them before, but now see them being recommended widely for recording use.
Thanks very much.
#2
Quote by Guitar-God-Elf
Okay, background info.
I currently have a computer in my room (really crap), and it takes up loads of space.
So im looking to get a laptop to both improve performance, save space and have something to take on holiday and on my travels.
I will be using it for recording and internet browsing mainly, and probably some gaming along the way (mainly race games like f1 challenge).

I have absolutely zero knowledge on anything to do with computers apart from the day to day things, i was looking to spend about £500, if this is realistic.
I was thinking a Mac?
Iv never used them before, but now see them being recommended widely for recording use.
Thanks very much.

Nope... Mac and gaming don't work together... if you want games, get a PC.
I have a Mac, but i don't even remember the last time I played a computer game...
#3
If you haven't used a mac before i'd advise you not to get one, they aren't worth the investment if you don't know how to get the most of it.
Plus £500 will not buy you a macbook.

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#4
Quote by Chrisiphone
Plus £500 will not buy you a macbook.


it probably would get a second-hand (but still good) one though, although if you're wanting to be playing games, get a PC. And if you want games on a Mac, you won't want a MacBook, I have the November 2007 model with the (slightly) better Intel X3100 chip and its terrible for 3D graphics, it'll play Half-Life 2 under Boot Camp OK, but nothing newer than that really and you wouldn't get this model (3,1) for £500, maybe the previous revision (2,1), but probably the one before that (1,1) with the Core Duo (not the Core 2).

Or you could bag yourself a bargain if you feel up to replacing the screen on this clicky
You're using UG classic, congratulations.
You should be using UG classic.




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Last edited by jgbsmith at Nov 9, 2008,
#5
Thanks for all the replies guys,
Iv decided, I'll sacrifice the gaming for a good laptop.
We've got a desktop downstairs anyway for gaming so its all good
And by the way, il be buying this with Christmas money, added to money iv been saving, so sadly cant bag a bargain on ebay at the moment.
#6
Quote by Guitar-God-Elf
Thanks for all the replies guys,
Iv decided, I'll sacrifice the gaming for a good laptop.
We've got a desktop downstairs anyway for gaming so its all good
And by the way, il be buying this with Christmas money, added to money iv been saving, so sadly cant bag a bargain on ebay at the moment.


There's always more on Ebay. I'd seriously reccomend buying one with a broken screen though, they're so much cheaper and while its not a simple replacement, there are excellent step-by-step intstructions here and a new screen costs a fair bit less than you save, but don't attempt that unless you have a steady hand, several hours to spare and a light, clear, empty workspace and some tools. Just don't force anything (or lose anything) and its not too difficult, just a bit time-consuming.

edit: actually screw that, MacBook display assemblies are bloody expensive, I've only done it with older iBooks, which have displays that go for £20 on ebay.
You're using UG classic, congratulations.
You should be using UG classic.




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Last edited by jgbsmith at Nov 9, 2008,
#8
Quote by Guitar-God-Elf
alright^

Besides i have zero tools, and zero workspace so it'd be an impossibility
Could somebody maybe recommend some specs to look out for in terms of essentials?


it really depends what you want it for. As long as you steer clear of anything running a Celeron, you should be OK.

Edit: and if its got Vista, you need 2GB RAM and a Core 2 Duo to get anywhere.
You're using UG classic, congratulations.
You should be using UG classic.




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#9
I recommend a MacBook Pro above all else. It is superior in design and nothing matches it. And you can do gaming, music, etc on it with no problem.

But since that's out of your budget, I'll just list these specs to look for:

Core 2 Duo 2.13GHz and above
2GB of DDR2/3 RAM or more, at least 677MHz
nVidia 8600M/8800/9600/9800M GT
Vista Home Premium

...modes and scales are still useless.


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#10
i was looking at a Macbook, its £200 out of budget but if something really is worth it, and will last longer i suppose i could stretch to £700.

Also does anybody know any good sites to look at, alot of the ones im on seem overpriced

And thanks for the specs^^
Il be browsing for a while now
#11
Quote by Guitar-God-Elf
i was looking at a Macbook, its £200 out of budget but if something really is worth it, and will last longer i suppose i could stretch to £700.

Also does anybody know any good sites to look at, alot of the ones im on seem overpriced

And thanks for the specs^^
Il be browsing for a while now

The new regular MacBooks are pretty good, too, but it won't have a 9600 on it so you can't do any gaming like the Pro has.

Because Apple just released the brand new models of MacBooks and MacBook Pros, they've lowered the price of the old one to $900. But I recommend the new MacBooks because they've been completely revamped and is worth the money.

...modes and scales are still useless.


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#14
Acer, or perhaps a Toshiba Sat with lots of memory?
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#15
Quote by Guitar-God-Elf
I was wondering how i know if its a new model or not?
any distinguishing features or not?

http://store.solutions-inc.co.uk/product/1290 < hows that?
I just looked to find a decent price over here on a Macbook soo.

That's the old one.

This is the new one:
http://www.apple.com/macbook/

...modes and scales are still useless.


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#17

...modes and scales are still useless.


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#18
Quote by Xiaoxi
Processor is weak.

Look for T6400 or above.


Can you think of any similar complete setups with better processor and similar price? I know a bit about computers, but not a lot.
#19
id say the cheapest way to go, is get a lower end PC, and upgrade. i bought my laptop about 6 months ago, its obsolete now, but i can upgrade it myself for under $300. extra ram and a 500gb hard drive makes several brand new computers obsolete
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#20
Quote by hard_rock101
id say the cheapest way to go, is get a lower end PC, and upgrade. i bought my laptop about 6 months ago, its obsolete now, but i can upgrade it myself for under $300. extra ram and a 500gb hard drive makes several brand new computers obsolete

Those are not what make a computer obsolete, and it's more expensive in the long run to do what you're doing.

...modes and scales are still useless.


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#21
so over here a new macbook is £949!?

Pfffft, alot of money, is an old macbook worth getting?
And iv just realised it could be february time by the time i get it, will the price have dropped on the new ones by then?
#22
Quote by Guitar-God-Elf
so over here a new macbook is £949!?

Pfffft, alot of money, is an old macbook worth getting?
And iv just realised it could be february time by the time i get it, will the price have dropped on the new ones by then?

The old MacBooks are still pretty good. They just won't have as much features as the new one.

And no, the price will not be dropping. But it's worth considering saving up. If time is an issue, go with the old one or a decent PC like a Dell XPS.

...modes and scales are still useless.


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#23
Alright^

Il consider my situation after christmas in terms of money, if a newer macbooks possible il almost certainly go for it.
I was wondering what the average lifespane of a macbook is?
And if it breaks can i get it repaired?

Thnkas for all the help
#24
Quote by Xiaoxi
Those are not what make a computer obsolete, and it's more expensive in the long run to do what you're doing.

i would only do that until i cant anymore. that is going to end up being a one time upgrade from a machine with 2gb or ram to 4, and a 150gb hard drive to a 500gb hdd. my computer can onlt hold 4 gb of ram, so i wouldnt be able to do anything ram-wise after that.

in the long run its more expensive if thats all you do, but this is just a one time thing, so ill save money initially.
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#25
Something like this. http://www.amazon.co.uk/Hewlett-Packard-HP-COMPAQ-Pavilion/dp/B001EZ5V4U/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&s=electronics&qid=1226335190&sr=1-2

Think its the updated version of mine (6820ea). Runs COD4 really well and I use it for recording too. Had a problem with the dvd drive which got replaced within a week free of charge. Apart from that it's been great.

I did quite a lot of reasearch before buying mine and for 500 quid new I couldnt find better.
Last edited by Meatball200 at Nov 10, 2008,
#26
Quote by filthandfury
Can you think of any similar complete setups with better processor and similar price? I know a bit about computers, but not a lot.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16834220222

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#28
Quote by Guitar-God-Elf
Alright^

Il consider my situation after christmas in terms of money, if a newer macbooks possible il almost certainly go for it.
I was wondering what the average lifespane of a macbook is?
And if it breaks can i get it repaired?

Thnkas for all the help

Of course, every laptop model and make have a certain rate of failure, so it's inevitable that some unlucky people will have their laptops die in an unreasonably short amount of time.

MacBooks and MBP's on average last about 3-5 years. I go to a Mac only school and there are plenty of people from 3 or 4 years ago with old MBP's who are able to run the latest software without much problems, a lot of which are intensive music production programs. Also, Macs have a good resale value, so you can sell it after a couple of years and get a fair amount of money back, unlike other computers which will drop significantly in just a few months.

Apple has its own warranty system, which you can buy. The good thing about the new MacBooks/Pros is that you can easily swap out the hard drive, the most fragile component in a computer and often the first one to break, by yourself.

...modes and scales are still useless.


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#30
Quote by filthandfury
... But this has a smaller screen, less memory, and smaller hard drive than the other one :/

Maybe it'd help if I outlined what I need.

Screen - Preferably about 17"
Memory - As much as possible, I'm gonna be running Cubase with lots of plugins
Hard drive - Preferably about 200gb

17" is a bad idea for laptops. Too bulky and sacrifices battery life. You can add more memory on your own for cheap. Your primary source for storing things such as music project data should be on an external hard drive anyway.

I can suggest you options that have all your looking for, but they will be a couple of hundred out of your range.

...modes and scales are still useless.


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#31
Quote by Xiaoxi
17" is a bad idea for laptops. Too bulky and sacrifices battery life. You can add more memory on your own for cheap. Your primary source for storing things such as music project data should be on an external hard drive anyway.

I can suggest you options that have all your looking for, but they will be a couple of hundred out of your range.


How cheap is it to upgrade with some good memory?
#32
Get a refurbished one from PC world online - I know most people who know anything about computers would rather stick pins in their eyes than buy something from PC World, but the refurb ones can be up to a few hundred quid less for at worst some scratches on the plastic. My HP DV2750 cost me £525 refurb, and it's over £700 new.

EDIT: Here you go, exactly what I have, only £500! You will be seriously hard pressed to find anything with better specs for less money, and it's a good looking laptop as well, with some cool features. http://www.pcworld.co.uk/martprd/store/pcw_page.jsp?BV_SessionID=@@@@0430102115.1226337694@@@@&BV_EngineID=cccladefjfjiddfcflgceggdhhmdfhj.0&page=Product&fm=null&sm=null&tm=null&sku=659068&category_oid=-28487
Last edited by mynamewontfit at Nov 10, 2008,
#33
Quote by filthandfury
How cheap is it to upgrade with some good memory?

About 40-80 bucks USD...

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#34
I agree with Xiaoxi. Plus, for gaming, you can run Vista on a macbook without any problems.
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#35
Iv pretty much decided on the macbook through student discount.
£675.63, inc vat.
I was looking at upgrading to the 2gb ram through the options part bringing it upto £722.63.
I was wondering if 120gb hard drive is enough? or to upgrade to 160gb for £32 extra.

So at that -
# 2.1GHz Intel Core 2 Duo
# 2GB 667MHz DDR2 SDRAM - 2x1GB
# 120GB Serial ATA Drive @ 5400 rpm
# Intel GMA X3100 graphics

Good enough?
Or something blatantly obvious im missing?
#36
Quote by Guitar-God-Elf
Iv pretty much decided on the macbook through student discount.
£675.63, inc vat.
I was looking at upgrading to the 2gb ram through the options part bringing it upto £722.63.
I was wondering if 120gb hard drive is enough? or to upgrade to 160gb for £32 extra.

So at that -
# 2.1GHz Intel Core 2 Duo
# 2GB 667MHz DDR2 SDRAM - 2x1GB
# 120GB Serial ATA Drive @ 5400 rpm
# Intel GMA X3100 graphics

Good enough?
Or something blatantly obvious im missing?


Have you considered getting a refurbished laptop? The prices on them are slashed WAY down and they work just fine, but they have no warranty.
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#38
Quote by Guitar-God-Elf
Are refurbished macs a possibility? or would i have to make do with a windows system?

Why yes, yes they are.
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Last edited by black007hawk2 at Nov 10, 2008,
#39
Just check www.apple.com. They have certified refurbished deals.

But to answer your questions, if you can get a 160GB for just 32 bucks more, I would go with that. However, buy your RAM module from whatever cheap computer online store you know. You don't need to buy Apple's memory, which is a ripoff. Just make sure it's DDR2.

I just want to point out that the regular MacBooks do not have a dedicated graphic card like the Pro does, so don't expect to play today's graphic intensive games unless you're getting the MacBook Pro.

It's very easy to install Windows. The Mac will guide you through the process with Boot Camp. Just insert the Windows installation disc while running OSX and it will help you set up a partition and all that. Your computer should also come with OSX discs, which contain your laptop drivers for Windows. When you boot up into Windows, insert the disc and it will automatically install the drivers so that your Windows operating system will fully work with the physical components of your laptop.

...modes and scales are still useless.


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#40
On the uk store the refurbished deals are a bit slim, there being only 1 which is a macbook air at £899.00 :/

So going for 160gb hard drive is worth it to take the cost to £708 then?

And how hard is it too install ram? baring in mind im crap at handy work, and i live about 30 miles away from the nearest place that would do anything like that

Thanks for all the help

edit - is this the right sort of thing - Link
Last edited by Guitar-God-Elf at Nov 10, 2008,
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