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Old 12-26-2017, 03:23 PM
 
Location: Canada
6,004 posts, read 4,398,646 times
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I need suggestions for an easy to use, decently priced laptop. It won't be used too often as I have a tower/monitor at home.

This is just for when I travel now and then and want a laptop instead of my Ipad. I don't like the size of the Ipad or anything else about it, other than it is easy to pack.

I want something easy to use for just regular surfing, reading my email, Skype, watch a little you tube videos, etc. I'm not a gamer, so I won't need it for that.

Suggestions please?
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Old 12-26-2017, 08:47 PM
 
Location: Vallejo
14,512 posts, read 16,536,277 times
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For flying you often want a 13-14" size, where the really good value laptops are almost all 15.6" Maybe not what you're looking for, but the Surface Book 1 is around 50% off which actually makes it a good buy in the $800-1,000 range in the premium/portable range (Lenovo Yoga 720, XPS 13, HP Spectre X13). However, if you're not going to use it much maybe you want something cheaper. Acer Swift 3 is a little cheaper, newer hardware and MX150 but if all you're doing is lighter stuff the MX150 and quadcore CPU don't matter and the battery life and great screen on the SB may be worth the extra cost. Below around $600 the 14" laptops start getting kind of crappy.

https://www.amazon.com/Dell-i5378-30...n%3A9647486011

For $450 it's not bad. Core i3, 1920x1080 screen. It's not really great either. A 15.6" laptop that's very similar for $350.
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0...pf_rd_i=565108

Problem with 15.6" laptops is they can be too large to comfortably use in cramped airline accommodations and the 13-14" laptops are usually a good bit more expensive. If you want to keep it in the $300-400 range, you might want to look at Chromebooks. Something like the Acer Chromebook R13. They won't do much more than surfing, email, Skype, YouTube but they're pretty good for that.
https://www.amazon.com/Acer-Chromebo...chromebook+r13

The other thing to look at is refurbished but basically look for the same things. Most of the cheaper ones will be 1368x768 resolution but it's not so awful on a 13" display as it is on a 15.6" screen, depending on how your close vision is. When shopping for laptops for my mom she actually preferred the lower resolution in that size as her close vision is pretty bad so she would have been using scaling at 1920x1080.

Last edited by Malloric; 12-26-2017 at 09:21 PM..
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Old 12-26-2017, 09:23 PM
 
Location: Canada
6,004 posts, read 4,398,646 times
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Thanks malloric, I'll check them out.

I had a bit of a look today after I posted this. What do you think about this one?

https://www.amazon.com/Acer-Chromebo...C+CB3-431-C5FM
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Old 12-27-2017, 12:54 PM
 
Location: Vallejo
14,512 posts, read 16,536,277 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gouligann View Post
Thanks malloric, I'll check them out.

I had a bit of a look today after I posted this. What do you think about this one?

https://www.amazon.com/Acer-Chromebo...C+CB3-431-C5FM
The notable things its missing are an SD card (only 32 gigs of storage space, about 23 gigs usable), so the lack of an SD card reader may be an issue. There's no touch screen or 2-in-1 which you may or may not miss. The R13 is a bit large and bulky to be all that great to use as a tablet anyway. Celeron N3160 vs MediaTek ARM processor in the R13, it's a bit slower in some synthetic benchmarks but probably not that noticable. ARM chips are a bit more efficient at low loads but these days it isn't a huge difference. They'll both get good battery life.

Basically it comes down to price. It's cheaper but lacks the SD card and 2-in-1. The R13 uses a USB Type C for charging/display out. That's convenient if you want to dock it to an external monitor but also more expensive as for extended use you'll need to use a dock. The 14 uses HDMI for video out which means more things to plug in but an HDMI cable is a lot cheaper than a dock is.
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Old 12-27-2017, 05:56 PM
 
Location: Canada
6,004 posts, read 4,398,646 times
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Hi Malloric, I thank you so much, but honestly, since I'm not savvy at all with computers and jargon, so sorry, you've lost me.

I just need something not fancy, VERY basic with a keyboard. Maybe one of your suggestions are? I have no idea what 2 in 1 means. Do I need that?

To help you with how basic I need, I'm running Windows 7 in a tower with a monitor. I'd like something like that... easy and not too complicated for this old bird to learn too many new fan-dangled things.
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Old 12-27-2017, 06:09 PM
 
4,542 posts, read 7,536,965 times
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I think he forgot a link... this is the R13 mentioned:

https://www.amazon.com/Acer-Chromebo...chromebook+r13


I think a Chromebook is ideal over a laptop for your intended uses and given your dislike of the ipad, that means Chrome OS (not Windows, Apples IOS or Android). Chrome is basically a glorified web browser, very limited functionality without an internet connection.... I don't know just how limited though as I've never used one. https://support.google.com/chromeboo.../3214688?hl=en has a list, make sure that would work for you.

Here's some more information on other Chromebook options if you're into reading reviews:

https://thewirecutter.com/reviews/best-chromebook/


Good luck. I'm one to leave all the tech at home when I travel for pleasure (other than my ebook)
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Old 12-27-2017, 09:41 PM
 
Location: Vallejo
14,512 posts, read 16,536,277 times
Reputation: 13066
Quote:
Originally Posted by gouligann View Post
Hi Malloric, I thank you so much, but honestly, since I'm not savvy at all with computers and jargon, so sorry, you've lost me.

I just need something not fancy, VERY basic with a keyboard. Maybe one of your suggestions are? I have no idea what 2 in 1 means. Do I need that?

To help you with how basic I need, I'm running Windows 7 in a tower with a monitor. I'd like something like that... easy and not too complicated for this old bird to learn too many new fan-dangled things.
2-in-1 just means it can be used as a tablet, usually with a 360 hinge so the screen can flip around entirely behind the keyboard. It's not necessary.

Chromebooks are simple and easy to use, but just generally laptops don't get more complicated as they get more expensive. They just get faster, better build quality, better screen, more storage. Eg, a $1,500 Pixelbook is a great Chromebook that's not anymore complicated to use than a $200 Chromebook. It's just better. The only question when comparing the two is whether or not it's worth the price, which for most people is going to be no.
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Old 12-27-2017, 09:43 PM
 
Location: Cleveland, Ohio
11,818 posts, read 13,961,605 times
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I don't think a Chromebook is the answer. It's a bit limited and the lack of Windows on it might be too much of a learning curve.
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Old 12-28-2017, 09:44 AM
 
Location: Canada
6,004 posts, read 4,398,646 times
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I did some more searching and think this one might be better suited for me. I think it has everything I want and I know it's a larger size, but that's ok, I need something that I can see/read properly. Thoughts?

https://www.amazon.com/Lenovo-ThinkP...23860_70668520
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Old 12-28-2017, 12:39 PM
 
4,256 posts, read 8,013,612 times
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Good choice. Thinkpad quality is legendary. My budget Thinkpad X120e is eight years old and still works like new.
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