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Need laptop advice for my mom... is ASUS any good?

BasarBasar IstanbulRegistered User regular
edited March 2009 in Help / Advice Forum
My mother's birthday is coming in a few weeks and after all she has done for me in the past 25 years, I want to buy her a laptop. She has a 5 year old desktop computer with heat problems, and the usb ports on the motherboard have malfunctioned (aka broke). Anyways, since she travels during the summer nowadays, she was telling me that she'll probably buy herself a laptop once she has the money and I want to surprise her on the b-day.

I researched a little and see that ASUS has some pretty decent laptops for the $$$. I would like to spend $1,200-$1,300 tops, and was wondering if you all recommend ASUS? I always thought of them as a mobo company but we all know that has changed in the last few years. Probably because my own laptop is an IBM Thinkpad at 5 years and I have an HP at work (which I absolutely hate.)

Here are the specs of what I am looking at:

- Intel Core 2 Duo processor at a decent speed... not very up-to-date on these, recommendations?

- 2 or 3GBs of memory, expandable to 4GB in the future... She has a full XP Pro license, so the OS on the unit doesn't matter. Will XP Pro be able to recognize 4GB of ram? RAM is cheap these days, so I may load more on it from Crucial if I can get XP Pro recognize it all...

- More than 200 GBs of harddisk space.. is 7200rpm still rare in laptops? I am guessing since the scaling of SSD, companies don't care much about 7200rpm anymore?

- DVD/CD burner..

- 14 or 15" screen... I think it is impractical for laptops to have more than that... defeats the purpose? Anything smaller would be hard for old people to read.

- A builtin webcam


So, any help? Thanks :)

i live in a country with a batshit crazy president and no, english is not my first language

Basar on

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    blakfeldblakfeld Registered User regular
    edited March 2009
    In my expirence, I've seen them ship and needing to be restored pretty quick out of the box, but for the HW? Id definitely recommend it. That or a sony.

    blakfeld on
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    ViolentChemistryViolentChemistry __BANNED USERS regular
    edited March 2009
    Unless your mom is big into gaming or has to run multiple virtual-machines for work or something you should prioritize battery-life over raw horsepower.

    ViolentChemistry on
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    CorvusCorvus . VancouverRegistered User regular
    edited March 2009
    I bought an ASUS F3SA1 as a replacement for my ancient desktop in Nov 2007 and it has been rock-solid. I have had zero issues with either the hardware or Vista, which came installed.

    However, the battery life is not great (which has been characteristic of ASUS apparently), but as I mostly use it plugged in, this is not a major issue, and the model I have has a, at the time, fairly highpowered video card for a laptop which probably increases power consumption.

    My laptop came with built in webcam, fingerprint reader (never initialized this), 2 GB ram, CD/DVD burner combo drive, etc. However, that model is out of date now, so you can probably get something nicer, for less money than I paid. 15.4 Widescreen is pretty standard, which is what mine is. If you go up to a higher screen size, you end up with more weight, more power consumption and less battery life. If you go smaller, you probably have to sacrifice power.

    Go over to http://forum.notebookreview.com/ and check things out, make use of their "what laptop should I buy" forum and visit the ASUS brand forum. That place was a god send when I was researching my laptop purchase.

    Corvus on
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    ThylacineThylacine Registered User regular
    edited March 2009
    I have an Asus EEE pc that I picked up about a month ago for $330. I love it! Of course I can't play new games on it, but I can play older ones just fine. I got this Asus rather than the Acer my friend got, and mine is a lot better.

    Thylacine on
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    saltinesssaltiness Registered User regular
    edited March 2009
    What will she use it for?

    saltiness on
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    Captain VashCaptain Vash Registered User regular
    edited March 2009
    Thylacine wrote: »
    I have an Asus EEE pc that I picked up about a month ago for $330. I love it! Of course I can't play new games on it, but I can play older ones just fine. I got this Asus rather than the Acer my friend got, and mine is a lot better.
    Thanks for the useful quantitative information!

    I think an asus would be fine for what it sounds like you need it for.
    A more definitive answer or even suggestions would be in the works if you told us what the usage is going to look like.

    oh, and for the record, two of my room mates bought ultraportables, one an Asus eee pc and the other an Acer one. The EEE pc bricked itself within a week. take that as you will.

    Captain Vash on
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    Cynic JesterCynic Jester Registered User regular
    edited March 2009
    saltiness wrote: »
    What will she use it for?

    This. If she's not planning on playing new games or doing video editing or some such, shelling out 1300 for a laptop is overkill, not to mention most high spec laptops having shitty battery life and weighing far more than you'd expect. I bought my mother a laptop for 600$, and the only reason I went that high is because my sister occasionally uses it for playing older games.

    Cynic Jester on
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    acidlacedpenguinacidlacedpenguin Institutionalized Safe in jail.Registered User regular
    edited March 2009
    get her a lenovo, for serious.

    they may still look like they did 15 years ago when they were IBM but at the moment they're the most stable notebook PCs on the market. A friend of mine has one with a 9 cell battery and he chose the option to replace the internal DVD with an extra 6 cell battery and when he's got all the power saving features turned on he gets close to 9 hours of battery life.

    I bought a similar model for my sister without the extra battery and I can vouch that it is a solid machine.

    acidlacedpenguin on
    GT: Acidboogie PSNid: AcidLacedPenguiN
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    ViolentChemistryViolentChemistry __BANNED USERS regular
    edited March 2009
    7 hours on battery is a good target. Generally 7 hours of actual use comes out of the ones advertised as 9 hours of battery, and when I went to the ASUS site several such machines were listed. Unless your mom wants to play Fallout 3 with all the settings maxed at 100 fps, she's not going to notice the difference in horsepower.

    ViolentChemistry on
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    bowenbowen How you doin'? Registered User regular
    edited March 2009
    VC speaks the truth. I would recommend HP because they're awesomely good laptops (so far the best in my experience) and also have the ability to plug in super batteries that last like 10+ hours themselves.

    bowen on
    not a doctor, not a lawyer, examples I use may not be fully researched so don't take out of context plz, don't @ me
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    ElinElin Registered User regular
    edited March 2009
    I have an ASUS that works beautifully, but I bought it specifically for gaming. I always have it plugged in, I have no clue what the battery life is. Before this I had a Gateway laptop that still works after 3 years. The case is cracked, there are buttons missing, but it still works.

    For traveling I would recommend something light weight that has a long battery life. I'd also go with inexpensive as hotel rooms aren't the most secure. Really, for internet/basic apps all you need is a decent processor and 1-2 gigs of RAM. You can get a Gateway/HP for about 500$ for that.

    If your Mom has small hands maybe an EEE, Wind, or Acer ultraportable may work the best for traveling. You can get one with up to a 10 inch screen which is very readable. A 6 cell battery will last for about 7 hours in one with the Atom processor. You can also get one with a solid state drive so that throwing it a carry on will be worry free. You can always include a HCSD or thumb drive with it.

    Elin on
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    EchoEcho ski-bap ba-dapModerator mod
    edited March 2009
    Thylacine wrote: »
    I got this Asus rather than the Acer my friend got, and mine is a lot better.

    With a sample size of one I am the authority on Acer laptops, and I can safely say that Acer stinks.

    Echo on
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    acidlacedpenguinacidlacedpenguin Institutionalized Safe in jail.Registered User regular
    edited March 2009
    oh yeah, forgot to mention, my friend with the lenovo is a nazi when it comes to his computers, as in he only wants the best performance, build quality, etc and he owned an asus before the lenovo, he only replaced it since the asus was stolen.

    acidlacedpenguin on
    GT: Acidboogie PSNid: AcidLacedPenguiN
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    bowenbowen How you doin'? Registered User regular
    edited March 2009
    Echo wrote: »
    Thylacine wrote: »
    I got this Asus rather than the Acer my friend got, and mine is a lot better.

    With a sample size of one I am the authority on Acer laptops, and I can safely say that Acer stinks.

    Largely, yes, they do.

    bowen on
    not a doctor, not a lawyer, examples I use may not be fully researched so don't take out of context plz, don't @ me
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