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 05-17-2018, 03:58 PM
 
Location: Denver CO
21,796 posts, read 12,469,629 times
Reputation: 33546

Advertisements

I'm looking for something that is compatible with using a VPN connection for work (just on an as needed basis every now and then, this wouldn't be a daily use computer), and that my son can play games on, although he is not really a "gamer" and doesn't need anything too crazy, mostly he uses the computer to play youtube videos and do some Scratch programming and post on some forums (not CD though!)

I'd like to try stick to something in the $600ish range. I get a discount on Dell through work so I'm leaning that way but they have so many different choices! And I'd look at other brands as well.

All recommendations are very appreciated!
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 05-17-2018, 04:53 PM
 
Location: Vallejo
14,514 posts, read 16,536,277 times
Reputation: 13067
Can play some games on and $600 are semi-mutually exclusive.

If you want something inexpensive that can play newer games, something like the Dell Gaming laptop or the Dell G3 Gaming. They go on sale for $699 on occasion. They're decent. Cheap screens, bulky, good battery life (for a gaming laptop), good value for the money.

If you want to stick closer to the price range and get something that can kind of game and do lighter titles, something like the Acer Aspire 5. Build quality is typical Acer, so not fantastic but then it's $600 so you're not expecting that. It won't do well on demanding games but the new low watt CPUs are closer to the 45 watt CPUs. It's more ultrabook hardware at a cheap price and not really a gaming laptop. It'll do lighter games like Rocket League and whatnot.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 05-17-2018, 05:03 PM
 
Location: Denver CO
21,796 posts, read 12,469,629 times
Reputation: 33546
Quote:
Originally Posted by Malloric View Post
Can play some games on and $600 are semi-mutually exclusive.

If you want something inexpensive that can play newer games, something like the Dell Gaming laptop or the Dell G3 Gaming. They go on sale for $699 on occasion. They're decent. Cheap screens, bulky, good battery life (for a gaming laptop), good value for the money.

If you want to stick closer to the price range and get something that can kind of game and do lighter titles, something like the Acer Aspire 5. Build quality is typical Acer, so not fantastic but then it's $600 so you're not expecting that. It won't do well on demanding games but the new low watt CPUs are closer to the 45 watt CPUs. It's more ultrabook hardware at a cheap price and not really a gaming laptop. It'll do lighter games like Rocket League and whatnot.
Thanks! As I said, he's not a gamer exactly, he plays some Steam games online, that sort of thing. He uses his Switch mostly for the games he plays.

So I'm really looking for a general use type device - office functions for me, more general use for him.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 05-18-2018, 08:36 AM
 
Location: Cleveland, Ohio
11,825 posts, read 13,961,605 times
Reputation: 8060
Yea, that still means nothing. "Steam Gamer". That doesn't mean "plays games that don't require a good computer".
Steam has games you can play on a 10 year old PC and it has games you need the top end latest and greatest to play. I sold someone a used laptop because "my son only plays older not high end games... y'know like Minecraft". 3 months later: "Wtf! You sold me this piece of junk that can't play Overwatch?!?!"
Sigh. ANY $600 laptop will play Minecraft. And give you everything else you asked for.
But if he wants to play Fallout 4, Battlefield 5, Fortnite, PUBG.... he's going to want something a little more expensive.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 05-18-2018, 11:50 AM
 
2,360 posts, read 1,287,624 times
Reputation: 2093
You can get a microsoft surface and will do the job just fine. We use it for our work when at home, and can play some light games.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 05-18-2018, 01:06 PM
 
Location: USA
701 posts, read 993,994 times
Reputation: 651
This one is pretty decent for the price: $599.97 plus tax -

https://m.costco.com/Acer-Nitro-5-La...100382523.html

Since you mentioned a preference for Dell, splurge and throw in .2 cents more and get this similar Dell laptop - https://m.costco.com/Dell-Inspiron-1...100397512.html

Either one can handle a lot of the games on Steam as well as your officework.

Go to costco.com and search for laptops. Then sort it, priced low to high. I was surprised how many decent budget laptops there were below $600. There were laptops even cheaper than these two.

See if you can get this same Dell Inspiron I5 5000 Series Gaming Laptop through your office purchase program. I doubt you'll get the same price from your office as from Costco, but you never know. Maybe with your office discount you will. But then there's the Costco warranty to think of.

Costco has a very good 2 year warranty on electronics.

If you're a Costco member, and don't have their Visa card, get it too. You'll get another 2-year warranty on top of the standard 2 year warranty - 4-year warranty on the laptop!

If you're not a Costco member, you can get a day pass.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 05-18-2018, 01:53 PM
 
Location: Denver CO
21,796 posts, read 12,469,629 times
Reputation: 33546
Thanks for all the input. I happened to see one of our IT people and chatted with him a bit. He was pretty persuasive about getting one with an SSD drive

I've also discovered that computers are kind of like buying mattresses - every store has their own slightly different version which makes it tough to directly compare apples to apples to see who has the best price.

So for instance

https://m.costco.com/Dell-Inspiron-1...100397512.html

vs

Dell Inspiron 15 5570 15.6" Laptop Computer - Silver I5570-5395SLV-P - Micro Center

More or less the same - $20 price difference isn't going to be a deciding factor. Going by comparisons, one has a better processor, the other has a better video card. Unless someone can point out a significant difference that I'm not seeing?
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 05-18-2018, 02:15 PM
 
Location: Denver CO
21,796 posts, read 12,469,629 times
Reputation: 33546
oh, and I should add that both of them are cheaper than the so-called discount we get through the preferred plan at work. I can only hope that they do get an actual good discount when they buy in large quantities for use in the office, as opposed to this program!!

fwiw, I'm leaning towards the Microcenter one, because they have a couple of open box ones in stock with full warranty, and they'd be about $80 less and that becomes enough of a price difference to be decisive, assuming that I'm not missing something and these are more or less the same with offsetting pros and cons where they differ
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 05-18-2018, 03:29 PM
 
Location: Cleveland, Ohio
11,825 posts, read 13,961,605 times
Reputation: 8060
Yea, they do that slight model difference thing to stop you from "Price Matching". So you can't go to BestBuy and say "but this one's cheaper" and they'll say "but that's the 234X, this is a 234Y!"

Get the Costco one. That GFX Card 1050 is more important then 4GB's of RAM.
That will be a LOT of newer games.

I do agree with the SSD, too. These are almost must have nowadays.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 05-18-2018, 03:57 PM
 
Location: USA
701 posts, read 993,994 times
Reputation: 651
Peregrine is right on this one (again). The man (or woman) knows his stuff.

My 2-cents:

If it was me having to choose between those two (Costco vs Microcenter), my vote would be for the gaming laptops at Costco for the following reasons:

- for your purposes (your work and your son's play), the CPU is a wash between the two, unless you want to go into the nitty gritty detailed CPU comparison.

- I have no use for the optical DVD drive on the Microcenter one. It only adds weight. I have my movies on USB sticks when I travel. But you might want to watch DVD movies on the road.

- gaming laptops are generally built better than budget laptops. Better cooling, components, etc.... But they also tend to be heavier.

- much better graphics card (4GB NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1050 vs. Intel UHD Graphics 620). This alone is worth the $80 price difference to me. I gather your son is still young. But a year goes fast. Wait till he starts whining to you about wanting a better computer for his games. Plug in the laptop to a big monitor at home to see the difference. Then again, maybe you might not want your son to get into gaming. Which would be too bad.

- 2 year (or 4 year warranty with the Visa card) at Costco vs. 1 year Dell warranty (Micro Center 15 Day Return Policy)? It's not even close.

Last year, I bought my niece a Dell XPS 13 laptop from Costco for college. I don't know what she did but 2 months later, it wasn't working right. Something wrong with the display or motherboard. She brought it to a Dell service center. They suspected a motherboard problem. But she didn't leave it there for further analysis. Gave it back to me and asked me to fix it?!

She didn't drop it, I don't think. I didn't see any indication. Who knows. Whatever. So 2 months after purchase, I returned it to Costco, saying it wasn't working right. I don't want a refund. Just exchange for the same model laptop. Well, they didn't have it in stock anymore. But they told me other Costco branches that did. And, get this, for $200 off even, because the new Dell XPS 13s had arrived, so they were trying to push the old models out fast. I rushed to the closest Costco branch, got the new "old" XPS 13, got my visa card credited for $200, and was outa there, another happy shopper! I just love buying stuff at Costco!

- Lastly, I like going to Microcenter. I just hardly buy stuff there anymore. Between Costco, Amazon and Newegg, there isn't much reason to anymore. And if I were buying an "open box" laptop, it better be at least $100 less than a new one. I mean, who knows why its there as an "open box" item?

By the way, I don't represent Costco in any way.
I just like giving honest opinions and sharing them, .... whether you like it or not.
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.

© 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