Laptop recommendations?

I may need to purchase a new laptop soon.

My requirements:

  1. should be about 14 inches or so
  2. built-in wireless N
  3. Windows Vista (or no OS, I can install Vista on it myself, but it must be able to run
    Vista well
  4. NOT a Gateway

Any recommendations?

HP’s have been pretty solid for me, Toshiba’s not so much. Lenovos (made IBM Thinkpads) have a good reputation. Sony’s have some nice AV features, but feature to feature are usually pretty overpriced vs the competition and are only rarely on sale. Compaq’s are the downmarket line from the Pavilions for HP.

I’ve been very pleased with my Acer Aspire 8930. Only had it for a little over a month, but it runs Vista, has plenty of memory/speed/graphics for gaming, but may be a little longer/heavier than you’d want to be carrying around all day. Also find the keyboard configuration somewhat awkward for WoW PVP play.

Dell’s XPS gaming laptop, special edition WoW/Horde.

Well, that’s what I would get myself if I could :wink:

TigerDirect often has very good deals on quality laptops. Acer, HP and Lenovo shouldn’t steer you wrong.

If you consider a Dell, buy a business level machine.

Related question -

Anyone thinking about just using a netbook and using cloud computing for the heavy lifting and storage?

Seems to me that if you are not interested in gaming and really just need a computer for internet access and fairly basic document/database needs that a cheap netbook and a good connection to the cloud would do you just fine. Here are some at (which is where we got my wife’s new laptop … a Toshiba … it was on sale and I couldn’t convince her that a netbook was all she really needed.)

One thing I would try to insist on, if at all possible, is that a copy of the OS be included. In my experience the so-called recovery disks you burn yourself are useless. I bought mine through a local dealer, a one-man operation and when my recovery disks proved useless, he was able to reinstall the OS (for a fee, of course). It is utterly hopeless, of course, to ask for printed documentation.

I have owned a bunch of Toshibas in my life (seven I think, boing back to my first that used DOS 3.1 in 1989), but the quality control seems to go down a bit with each one. I have heard good things about Lenovo and HP. I have not tried ACER, but their price is right.

Don’t even think of trying to install the OS yourself. Yes you could do it, but are you sure you can get all the device drivers? Anyway, save for the mini-notebooks, you cannot buy a PC without Vista these days. Well, maybe Dell will sell you one with Linux. For Vista, make sure you get at least 2 GB memory (more is better) and 100 GB disk (ditto), but I don’t think you will find one with less. And nearly all have Wireless N these days.

I’ve many decent looking machines for the order of five or six hundred.

thanks everyone

I can vouch for both Acer and Lenovo. I use the Lenovo for work and the Acer for home. Both have never given me any trouble. I’d steer clear of Sony from personal experience. I had one only a couple of weeks and the hard drive failed. Another good choice it is also capable of running Vista BTW. I used to have one. (Sold it).