U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Science and Technology > Computers
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
Reply Start New Thread
 
Old 06-16-2013, 03:38 AM
 
1,866 posts, read 2,303,205 times
Reputation: 1447

Advertisements

I recently decided to get a new laptop, the one that I have now works ok, but its two years old and i haven't treated it very well so I am afraid that it won't last me much longer. Anyways, I sort of know what I want, but I have a few questions and I am hoping someone can help me out here.

When it comes to processor speed, my laptop has an i5, is there really that much of a difference between an i3, i5 and i7? Are the AMD series processors faster than these?

Which form of memory is the best? I think mine has DDRAM, but I have seen others with DIMM, isn't that the slowest one?

What is a solid state drive..is it like a HDD?

I have a 17.3. It's nice to look at but it's too big, I am mainly going to be using it to watch Netflix, hulu and Youtube videos, Is the speed of the processor, memory and videocard really going to affect the quality of what I watch?
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 06-17-2013, 08:59 PM
 
Location: SF Bay Area
13,343 posts, read 17,782,076 times
Reputation: 19664
Quote:
Originally Posted by Blackscorpion View Post
I recently decided to get a new laptop, the one that I have now works ok, but its two years old and i haven't treated it very well so I am afraid that it won't last me much longer. Anyways, I sort of know what I want, but I have a few questions and I am hoping someone can help me out here.

When it comes to processor speed, my laptop has an i5, is there really that much of a difference between an i3, i5 and i7? Are the AMD series processors faster than these?

Which form of memory is the best? I think mine has DDRAM, but I have seen others with DIMM, isn't that the slowest one?

What is a solid state drive..is it like a HDD?

I have a 17.3. It's nice to look at but it's too big, I am mainly going to be using it to watch Netflix, hulu and Youtube videos, Is the speed of the processor, memory and videocard really going to affect the quality of what I watch?

You should google "how to buy a laptop" for some basic understanding of what to look for.

There is definitely performance differences between the Intel Core i3/i5/i7 and even among the different generations of the same CPU. There are AMD equivalents to the Intel cpus. Best thing to do is to look them up on PassMark Software - CPU Benchmark Charts

DIMM (Dual Inline Memory Module) is just a circuit board that hold memory "chips" on both sides as opposed to the SIMM (Single Inline Memory Module) in which the memory "chips" are only on one side. DDRAM is the type of RAM and you want the fastest-- DDRAM3 -- if not, then DDRAM2. In other words, a DIMM has DDRAMs mounted on it.

SSD behaves like a HDD but it uses flash memory "chips" and contains no moving parts (motor, disks, heads) as in a HDD. This means it's faster, more compact, a bit more reliable, but has a limited shelf-life.

For what you are using your laptop for, just get the fastest CPU and as much RAM as possible.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 06-17-2013, 09:22 PM
 
24,503 posts, read 35,979,772 times
Reputation: 12847
Quote:
Originally Posted by jaypee View Post
For what you are using your laptop for, just get the fastest CPU and as much RAM as possible.
For watching video... I don't feel the fastest CPU is worth the premium at all. Any modern i3 CPU can play HD content smoothly.

I'd recommend an i5. It's good in terms of bang for the buck.

My general rule is to tell people to just get twice as much RAM as they had in their last laptop. It's not a complete answer without knowing how much RAM you have now. But if you're getting by with your current configuration, twice as much RAM should last you a decent amount of time. Almost all laptops will use the same type of memory (DDR3 SODIMM).

SSDs act like hard drives but are noticeably faster. SSDs are pricey. Manufacturers will typically use smaller SSDs to keep the price down. So if you don't need a lot of storage, an SSD is a great way to go. If you need a lot of storage, go for a hard drive. You you want speed and storage space, you're going to be paying a premium.

If you're intended use is to watch videos, don't worry about video cards. All modern Intel CPUs have excellent video playback capability. On that note, for laptops, stick with Intel. The chart jaypee linked to is a great resource.

I recommend a ThinkPad. But they aren't cheap.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 06-21-2013, 07:45 AM
 
Location: London, U.K.
3,036 posts, read 3,378,303 times
Reputation: 1723
^ To expand slightly on NJ, you should go for 4gb ram minimum but it's unlikely you will need more for watching video.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 06-21-2013, 08:47 AM
 
Location: Cleveland, Ohio
11,839 posts, read 13,973,633 times
Reputation: 8078
Quote:
Originally Posted by NJBest View Post
For watching video... I don't feel the fastest CPU is worth the premium at all. Any modern i3 CPU can play HD content smoothly.

I'd recommend an i5. It's good in terms of bang for the buck.
The i7 is very nice but I agree. For most folks an i5 (even an i3) are more then good enough.

Quote:
My general rule is to tell people to just get twice as much RAM as they had in their last laptop.
Nice! I like it BUT disagree. I just helped someone buy a laptop and her old one had 512.
I tell folks 3GB MINIMUM and 4GB RECOMMENDED. Period, across the board.

Quote:
I recommend a ThinkPad. But they aren't cheap.
I recommend Toshiba, Sony, Lenovo, and Dell.

One of my best friends just bought this laptop, the U510.
http://shop.lenovo.com/us/en/laptops...u-series/u510/

It is SO nice. I was pretty impressed with it. Feels very much like an Apple laptop. AND he got the cheap one for $550.
Personally I'd spend a bit more for one of the higher priced ones on that page. The $599 is on sale. That is worth $600...

Last edited by Peregrine; 06-21-2013 at 08:58 AM..
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 06-21-2013, 03:09 PM
 
Location: London, U.K.
3,036 posts, read 3,378,303 times
Reputation: 1723
Oh yes beware windows 8 OP, try it out first to see if you like it (most people do not) if not try and get a win 7 machine (or apple.)
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 06-21-2013, 10:01 PM
 
11,715 posts, read 36,346,982 times
Reputation: 7514
Quote:
Originally Posted by archineer View Post
Oh yes beware windows 8 OP, try it out first to see if you like it (most people do not) if not try and get a win 7 machine (or apple.)
Or just install a $5 program to make Win8 work fine. No need to pay the apple tax or find a Win7 machine.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 06-21-2013, 10:04 PM
 
Location: East St. Paul 651 forever (or North St. Paul) .
2,869 posts, read 2,883,388 times
Reputation: 1446
Quote:
Originally Posted by EscapeCalifornia View Post
Or just install a $5 program to make Win8 work fine. No need to pay the apple tax or find a Win7 machine.
What program? Anything you could PM me if it's not allowed here? I just had a nice laptop with 8 and I hated it so went back and got a lesser system with 7 because I did not want to go through the learning curve with it.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 06-21-2013, 10:22 PM
 
11,715 posts, read 36,346,982 times
Reputation: 7514
Quote:
Originally Posted by Govie View Post
What program? Anything you could PM me if it's not allowed here? I just had a nice laptop with 8 and I hated it so went back and got a lesser system with 7 because I did not want to go through the learning curve with it.
I install Start8 for people. You can get it at stardock.com. I leave it at the default settings except I check the box to disable the all screen corner/edge popups while in the desktop.

Also, I use the following registry edit to disable the lock screen which serves no purpose on a desktop or laptop: Go to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\Win dows and create a key called Personalization. Inside Personalization, create a REG_DWORD value named NoLockScreen and set its value to 1.

The last thing I do is associate media files with the desktop viewers instead of the metro/modern/tablet/crap viewers. Right click on a file and click open with .. choose default program. For graphics files like jpg, tif, bmp, etc, choose Windows Photo Viewer. For audio and videos like mp3, wma, wmv, m4v, etc, choose Windows Media Player. You'll have to repeat this for each file type.

Many Win8 PCs don't come with a PDF reader now because Win8 has a crappy metro/modern viewer. If you install Acrobat Reader it'll grab the association automatically.

These associations are for a pretty standard Windows installation. If you have a different media player or PDF reader, it should take the associations automatically when you install it, or at least ask for permission. If not, you can manually associate the various file types with that program instead of Microsoft or Adobe's.

The goal is to keep people in the desktop and not find themselves suddenly in a land with no taskbar, close button, back button, etc.

Another thing, when starting a Win8 PC for the first time, they'll try to get you to log on with your Microsoft ID. If you don't have one, they'll ask for your email address. I ignore this. It'll make it so you have to always enter your password to log on which is something most people don't want or need. It'll also attempt to have you use the crappy metro/modern email app which is something a summer intern slapped together in about a day. Its nearly useless. For people still using POP3 email, I install Windows Live Mail which is as close to what they really want (Outlook Express) as a modern PC is going to get.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 06-21-2013, 10:33 PM
 
Location: East St. Paul 651 forever (or North St. Paul) .
2,869 posts, read 2,883,388 times
Reputation: 1446
Wow. In-depth post. Really informative. WISH I would have had your tutelage before I brought my previous laptop back. ATM I am sort of enjoying my new ASUS K53E - a laptop and company I read good things about prior to my purchase and seems to be smooth for my purposes.

I definitely will bookmark your post though. Is the Windows 8 system going to be an issue for me in the near future? One of the articles I read said eventually 8 will be more beneficial for people who want to streamline systems and so on. I'm not really tech savvy but it would be interesting to know how an intelligent tech person like yourself sees the Windows systems evolution in the near and foreseeable future.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


Reply
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:

Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Science and Technology > Computers
Follow City-Data.com founder on our Forum or

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 05:18 AM.

© 2005-2019, Advameg, Inc. · Please obey Forum Rules · Terms of Use and Privacy Policy · Bug Bounty

City-Data.com - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35 - Top