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Laptop suggestions?

thomas

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I'd like to pick the brains of our computer-savvy members: I have just realised that I might have to shop for a new laptop. For the past five years, I have been using a refurbished Dell XPS 13 that has served me well. I had to change the battery twice and replace parts here and there, but it was a trusted and solid workhorse used daily and for most of the day.

A few weeks ago, the battery started to swell, and it's reached the point where I can no longer use the touchpad. I'm contemplating whether to invest in another battery and a new set of Torx T5 screws and keep the patient alive or to acquire something brand-new that doesn't break the bank.

My specs: 16GB RAM (for the Adobe programs) and - at least - a 13" screen.

Any recommendations or personal experiences with brands?
 

Petaris

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I got a Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Extreme late last year, its a 16" 16:10 display. It has a great keyboard, dedicated graphics (nvidia), 16 GB RAM (up to 64 GB), and a 1 TB SSD. There are only two things that I don't like about it, the matte finish shows fingerprints and the charging is not USB-C on this model. Oh, and there is room for a second NVME drive as well. It preforms well. Just a heads up though, any new Windows laptop you get will almost certainly have Windows 11 so keep that in mind.

My criteria for choosing (not in order of importance):
- Not too heavy
- 16:10 display of at least 1920x1200 (2560x1600 on mine)
- Ability to upgrade RAM (it has slots, not soldered in)
- Ability to upgrade storage (not soldered on)
- Discrete graphics card (not integrated intel/amd graphics)
- Decent battery life
- At least a core i7 or AMD equivalent (this model can have an i9 as an expensive upgrade option)
- USB-C charging (unfortunately not available in this model)
- A nice keyboard with a good feel to it and all of the necessary keys. I have an HP from work that lacks several keys that I use for work! ThinkPads, proper ones, have always had good keyboards.
- A decent touchpad (Its pretty good, though I wish they had either skipped the push button on the trackpad or skewed it so that the right click area was smaller instead of splitting it down the middle. By this I mean when you push down on the trackpad, not the tap/multi-touch stuff. I may be explaining this poorly.)

Overall I really like it, though it was not cheap. (Far cheaper than a MacBook Pro though!!!!)
 
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thomas

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Thank you!

I have ordered a new battery for my XPS 13, which will arrive tomorrow. If it works, it will buy me some more time. I have looked at the ThinkPad X1 Extreme (quite impressive), but I cannot justify the outlay; plus, as you said, it does not come with a USB-C port. At work, my wife uses a Thinkpad 480s, which is also well-specced but in its i7 iteration beyond my financial comfort zone.

It's raining tomorrow, a good day for tinkering while I consider my options. :)
 

Petaris

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Thank you!

I have ordered a new battery for my XPS 13, which will arrive tomorrow. If it works, it will buy me some more time. I have looked at the ThinkPad X1 Extreme (quite impressive), but I cannot justify the outlay; plus, as you said, it does not come with a USB-C port. At work, my wife uses a Thinkpad 480s, which is also well-specced but in its i7 iteration beyond my financial comfort zone.

It's raining tomorrow, a good day for tinkering while I consider my options. :)
Just to clairfy, it did not come with USB-C charging, it has two USB-C Thunderbolt 4 ports and two USB-A v3.2 ports.

Maybe look at the X1 Nano or the X1 carbon with an i5? Those are both very thin and light models as well and I believe both have USB-C charging too. I think the only reason the X1 Extreme does not is that the nvidia graphics card and the i9 option would draw too much power for the current spec (during laptop design) of USB-C PD to support.
 
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The laptop I'm considering buying is the EPSON Endeavor NL1000E.
EPSON Endeavor NL1000E

Epson is a major precision machinery manufacturer in Japan.
Product quality is very good.

About Japanese PC
NEC and Fujitsu PCs have good quality and support, but they are for general home use.
Price is high.
Panasonic is an enterprise PC designed to be used in factories and construction sites. It is not sold at many home appliance stores.
As for the dynabook, a company is changed in "SHARP" from "TOSHIBA".
The reputation such as quality or the service is bad.

What I suggest to friends.
It is a used PC for business.
As I replace it currently in WINDOWS11 from WINDOWS10 and am time, A used PC for the business is sold in a net .

As there is a demerit when I buy a used PC for the business, I warn you.
In the case of a notebook PC, battery may deteriorate.
It may not be possible to transfer from WINDOWS 10 to WINDOWS 11.

I recommended a used mini PC for business use to my friend.
It was cheap by enlargement of the memory and the exchange of the hard disk and became high-performance.
 

Uncle Frank

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I have never gotten used to the keyboard on a laptop and won't use one. Since I never leave home , I like an all-in-one system. It takes up way less room on my desk without a tower. My HP is about 5 years old now and never had any problems. I hate the thought of using Windows 11 , so holding out for my present computer to die. Looking for a replacement for when it does , it looks like what I want will be around $2000 (27000Yen). I figure a new PC will probably outlast me , so I don't mind spending the money.
 

nice gaijin

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I used to be a dedicated PC fan, building my own desktops and eventually using Toshiba, Dell, and HP laptops... I jumped ship to Apple laptops years ago after going through a design program as the only PC user. In the 90's and early 00's I used to hear horror stories from friends who worked on (fixing, not using) Macs, but they were still gaining market share. I chalked it up to people preferring simplicity over technical superiority. Then I had some monumentally terrible experiences with Dell support, and I started shopping around. When my last travel laptop (a thick 11" workhorse I'd maxed the specs on) started showing its teeth and physically degrading, I finally caved and got a refurbished 11" Macbook Air.

It was a revelation; so thin and portable, and even the power brick was small and thoughtfully designed. By then, Apple had switched to a *nix backend, and their attention to user experience was apparent. The touchpad responsiveness, the smoothness of the interface, the intuitiveness and simplicity... No registry to mess with, no annoyed searches for the right drivers, no phantom files gumming things up. No tweaking, no antivirus, practically no maintenance needed at all. PCs may be cheaper with comparable hardware, but Windows is a garbage OS that has rested on its laurels for decades without true innovation. Apple may be lambasted for keeping such strict control over its compatible hardware and licensing, and rightly so, but every time I have to use a PC I find myself muttering "what" to myself, "they still haven't figured this out? What year is it?"

Ironically, I haven't bought wholly into Apple's ecosystem, and still use an Android phone.
 

johnnyG

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As a longtime apple user, I haven't said anything here. My wife, who is pretty computer-smart, always a windows user, needed a new machine, and after my own browsing at models, urged her to get a dell XPS 15", with an i7. I even gave her part of the money for it, wanting her to get a good, better quality machine. It must have been a lemon, truly the machine from hell, sent back for service several times (after her own efforts to deal with it), they replaced the mother board (twice?) among other things. Eventually passed it to one kid, even more computer savvy, who also had it in for service and then gave up on it. Since they're still reviewed well and selling, it must have been a lemon.

But this was part of the reason that she switched to apple.
 

mdchachi

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For people that have to use Microsoft Office Suite, switching to Apple is easier said than done. I used a Macbook exclusively at one workplace a few years ago but it didn't lead to any epiphany that led me to go all in on Apple in my personal life.

I need to think about my next PC. Microsoft tells me they won't support the OS (Windows 8) after January. My wife has the exact same PC but she upgraded to Windows 10 when it came out and was free. As usual, I will wait until last minute to worry about it. Maybe something to think about around Black Friday sales timing. I use my work laptop (Lenovo Thinkpad) 95% of the time anyway.
 

thomas

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What about MS-DOS laptop?

Our first family laptop (we all shared it) in the mid-90s came with MS-DOS and Windows 3.11. I can still hear the sound when the dial-up modem connected to the internet. Glorious days. :)

Thanks for all the suggestions! With its new battery, my XPS-13 is humming again just fine.
 

nice gaijin

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Our first family laptop (we all shared it) in the mid-90s came with MS-DOS and Windows 3.11. I can still hear the sound when the dial-up modem connected to the internet. Glorious days. :)

Thanks for all the suggestions! With its new battery, my XPS-13 is humming again just fine.
We got... I think it was a Tandy, for Christmas in 1991. We used to play puzzle games on it. It was all downhill from there.

Seriously though, next time you see a lithium battery swell, do NOT charge it and dispose of it immediately (preferably at a proper electronics recycling facility). They can and will explode. I'm glad you got your workhorse back up and running (did you send it out or DIY?).
 

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OldPC.jpg My first computer use was 1971 in the Navy. The beast gave off heat like a furnace. If it crashed , you restarted it by flicking the toggle switches at the top and than ran a coded paper strip and prayed it would come back up. I imagine an old hand held calculator had more memory. On slow winter nights , we often took turns sleeping behind it , like our own electric heater. C-64.jpg My first home computer was a C-64 setup.
 

Flyingace

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I'd like to pick the brains of our computer-savvy members: I have just realised that I might have to shop for a new laptop. For the past five years, I have been using a refurbished Dell XPS 13 that has served me well. I had to change the battery twice and replace parts here and there, but it was a trusted and solid workhorse used daily and for most of the day.

A few weeks ago, the battery started to swell, and it's reached the point where I can no longer use the touchpad. I'm contemplating whether to invest in another battery and a new set of Torx T5 screws and keep the patient alive or to acquire something brand-new that doesn't break the bank.

My specs: 16GB RAM (for the Adobe programs) and - at least - a 13" screen.

Any recommendations or personal experiences with brands?
Stay away from sexy looking laptops, look for a workhorse as you have now. I have an HP Spectre, which needed to be shipped back to HP and reworked after a year. I hear that Toshiba laptops can also have issues.
If I was looking for a new laptop I would go to Consumer Reports. I do not know how reliable the reviews are from PC magazine and others in the IT business . . .
If it's just a question of replacing a battery, and your present laptop motherboard can handle more RAM, just replace the battery with one of good quality. Throw a few more Gbs of RAM inside, and enjoy yourself.
Good luck.
 
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