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17" Laptop for University

Ojustabo

Established Member
Hi all

My son is off to Uni in a couple of months and for his main Christmas and 18th birthday presents I promised him a Laptop. I want to get it sooner than later so that he gets used to it and everything works etc.

He currently spends most his life on his 360 or his desktop. Most of his gaming is on his 360 but he does play some on his PC.

I cant work out whether I need to spend around £500, £750 or £1000, obviously the less spent the better, however I'd rather spend more and it cope than save a bit and it go like a dog.

He doesn't expect to have his games maxed out, on the other hand he wont want to run them minimized either.

Most PC games he plays are via steam and checking his account, a list of games he's played in the last few months are

World Of Warcraft (hasn't played for a while but does go back to it every 6 months or so)
Portal 2
Counterstrike
Shogun
Bioshock
Halflife2

He says he's happy with how his current desktop handles his games and most of that is now few years old now.

But that said, I want his laptop to still be able to play games in 3 years time.

His current PC spec is

Intel Core 2 Duo E6600 LGA775 Conroe 2.40Ghz
Gigabyte GA_P35_DS4 Motherboard
GeIL 4GB (2x2GB) PC6400C5 800MHz Black Dragon DDR2
Nvidia GTX 550
Win 7 64 pro

He isn't interested in windows 8

And apart from gaming, he needs to do the usual student stuff, word, excel, web etc

The more I look the more confused I get.

He MUST have a 17" screen though, he'll hate anything smaller

I realise this is a bit of a how long is a piece of string question but do appreciate the time given in helping me.

Many thanks

Joe
 

bluevortex

Established Member
I am looking for a laptop and have all but made up my mind on an Acer aspire v3-5710g from Comet for £549 http://www.comet.co.uk/p/Laptops/buy-ACER-ASPIRE-V3-5710G-Laptop/789429 okay it's not 17" but personally I don't see a major difference plus the 15.6" might be more flexible to take into uni/lectures? It's seems a very decent spec for the money and in the flesh is very sleek. It's the latest i5, 8gb ram and dedicated graphics card would play all the games you short list. There is also an i7 version for £699 if you want out and out performance

Cheers

Blue
 

Ojustabo

Established Member
I was tempted, but then took a look at the Del outlet store and got a refurbished 17" I7 Alienware for £940 delivered (he really wants the 17")

Has a 2 GB GDDR5 NVIDIA GeForce GTX 580M which should run anything he decides to throw at :)

Thanks for your time/advice

Much appreciated
 

atki81

Established Member
The dell outlet store is great and has some good bargains, but the only thing I would say is get the extended warranty with accidental cover and on-site repair. I have a 2 and a half yr old Dell 1564 and the fan just went and the part is just stupidly priced, however it was easy to fit. I'd recommend the accidental cover just because of uni and carrying it around, you might be able to add this on your home insurance however the turn around time on repair/replacement won't be anywhere near as quick!!!!!
 

Ojustabo

Established Member
Thanks for that, will have to have a think

Have Direct Line Home Plus which I partly paid extra for as it does cover both my sons and daughters stuff while they're at uni and has accidental cover.

But like you say, could take a good while to sort out if something does happen.

Think the insurance through dell was over £200 though. I'll have to weigh up the risk v the cost :)
 

atki81

Established Member
Thanks for that, will have to have a think

Have Direct Line Home Plus which I partly paid extra for as it does cover both my sons and daughters stuff while they're at uni and has accidental cover.

But like you say, could take a good while to sort out if something does happen.

Think the insurance through dell was over £200 though. I'll have to weigh up the risk v the cost :)

The main thing I would take into consideration is something to backup their work onto whether it be a USB HDD or cloud based backup, and what if they have a dissertation due in asap and need their laptop!!
 

Ojustabo

Established Member
Thanks, good point

Looking at the pricing, the insurance is simply too much.

£55 a year accidental damage making £165 for 3 years plus the extended warranty of £265 making total of £430, almost half the cost of the laptop.

As he's covered under my house insurance, if he needed it urgently, it would be cheaper for us if he had a problem to send him one of our laptops and he use that while his is being fixed or the insurance claim goes through. OK he'll have to go without his gaming while its done, but wont affect his work.
 

bluevortex

Established Member
Yeah I must admit the Dell outlet is very tempting indeed. I'm still looking at this option on a daily basis too. For your son a decent pen drive is a must. I recently got a 32gb Sandisk pen drive from my employer, it's come in extremely handy for me a p/t student for transferring files between locations, backing up etc...

Blue
 

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