Your Questions About Affordable Laptops For Students

Jenny asks…

Best affordable yet reliable laptop for a new grad student?

I’m about to start a Ph.D. program, and I’d like to invest in a good laptop that will carry me through the 4 years. I’m not looking to spend an arm and a leg, but I do want a reliable and durable laptop that operates fast and has a good bit of memory. It also needs to be compatible with various programs, such as SAS. Any suggestions? A friend of mine encouraged me to think about purchasing a Mac, but I don’t know the first thing about Macs so I thought I ought to get some other opinions before making any decisions. Thanks a bunch for your advice!! =)

answers:

I’ve been a network administrator for 12 years. Typically, my rule of thumb is that laptops will only remain viably powerful for 3 years. There are exceptions if you purchase an above average laptop. Now, you’re going to think that I’m crazy for a second, but stay with me. The only laptop I ever had and was satisfied with for more than 3 years was an Alienware. Their reputation for being overpriced is nonsense. Their laptops start at $1,100. The default $1,100 laptop should last you for four years. Http://www.alienware.com Do not get any custom upgrades except the following (at your discretion):

Additional warrantee
Wireless mouse
Bag or carrying case

DO get as much extra RAM memory as you can afford. I recommend 4GB minimum. 8GB would be better for your laptop’s longevity.

Another bit of advice for buying a laptop that you want to last for a long time: you can’t concern yourself with size and weight. The smaller, slimmer, lighter laptops will never make it 4 years.

Lastly, I would like to point out some other ways to save you money on your laptop:

1) Don’t buy Microsoft Office. Download http://www.openoffice.org for free. It’s compatible with all versions of Microsoft Word, Excel, and Power Point (just be sure to use SAVE AS instead of “save” so that you can choose the Microsoft formats).

2) Don’t spend money on anti-virus. The free ones are just as good as the paid ones. Don’t believe me? Look at the independent test results for yourself: http://www.av-comparatives.org/

AVG Free Edition: http://free.grisoft.com
Avast 4 Home: http://www.avast.com/eng/avast_4_home.html
Avira Antivir Personal: http://www.free-av.com/en/download/1/avira_antivir_personal__free_antivirus.html

3) Even better than detecting viruses and spyware is avoiding it alltogether. I recommend installing Site Advisor. This free product will pop-up a red balloon if you go to any web sites that have malware. It will also put green, yellow, and red icons next to your Google and Yahoo search results. Http://www.siteadvisor.com/

4) Use Mozy Home Free Edition for free online backups. Here is a YouTube video that I made about how to use Mozy: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RmhAoPCmOdY

5) Find more free software that I recommend here: http://sites.google.com/site/tobiasrichards/free-software-for-window

Ken asks…

What are some good laptops for a student?

Hey! I’m going to 8th grade this september, and I really want a new laptop. My old lenovo is really big and laggy- i got it when i was 9 or 10, and my parents said I could get a new one for a birthday present. Believe me, I’m really not that spoiled. Hence the LENOVO laptop. They just really want to make sure I have everything I need for success in school. And YES I can use it in middle school. For notes, research and stuff. Plus, someone’s always using the family desktop. :P
It needs to be affordable, but good for web browsing, multimedia projects, and data storage. And, it needs to have good battery life.
I’m neither mac nor pc. I have an iPhone and iPod, but the computers in my house are PC’s.
Mac is really expensive. And the only thing I can probably get is the iPad. But I want more options. Please and thank you.
BTW, affordable =600 and below.

answers:

Http://www.amazon.com/Acer-Aspire-TimelineX-AS1830T-3927-11-6-Inch/dp/B003N3GGO0/ref=sr_1_16?ie=UTF8&s=electronics&qid=1279775165&sr=8-16

this is the best one for the money and your needs. I guarantee it

Donna asks…

Good, durable notebook/laptop at affordable price?

Basically I need a new laptop because I’m going to be starting college next year. I don’t know much about laptops and what would be the best for a student, but all I know is I will be using it a lot both for work and entertainment. I need something that is great quality and durable but very reasonably priced. Note, however that I won’t be buying something just because it’s cheap. This needs to be a good investment. Anyhoo, if all you experienced laptop users out there could give me advice and suggestions that would be nice. Thank you.

answers:

Many of the large computer stores sell refurbished computer at a good price check that out.

Daniel asks…

What is the BEST desktop model that is currently available for a student? (good Quality and affordable)?

Hi everyone.

So I just about had it with my CRAPPY HP laptop. It freezes, heats up, has battery issues and I actually don’t use it to transport around because it’s rather heavy and so I think my next computer purchase will be a good old Desk top. However, the cost is of concern for me but I still need a good quality and affordable computer. Can someone please give me any recommendations for current models? Thanks a bunch!

answers:

These are much better systems than HP and Dell. They don’t have all of the crapware on them.

Http://www.newegg.com/Product/ProductList.aspx?Submit=ENE&IsNodeId=1&Description=ibuypower&bop=And&Order=PRICE&PageSize=20

More choices

http://www.newegg.com/Product/ProductList.aspx?Submit=ENE&IsNodeId=1&Description=cyberpowerpc&bop=And&Order=PRICE&PageSize=20

Have fun

John asks…

What is a good computer program to compose and play music for an alto saxophone?

I play the alto saxophone and I am hoping for something that doesn’t take much memory (I’m on a laptop) and something affordable for a high school student.

answers:

Download Finale Notepad. It’s free and will suit your needs.

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