Help needed with buying a laptop

Vicky Khan

Novice Member
Hi all, hope you are keeping well

I need a new laptop and am baffled with so much yo choose from and would welcome suggestions

What is your budget?

What size laptop do you want?
14"

Do you have resolution requirements?
not really, but would like the best value for money

Do you prefer a matte or glossy (reflective) screen? anti glare would be great if in budget


What will you be using the laptop for?
Browsing, multiple tasking, streaming, need to have good storage, Word Processing, a little bit video Editing,

How long does the battery need to last? as long as possible as will need to use whilst on train journeys

Does it need to be portable?
yes please

Do you require Blu-Ray player or need the ability to play older disc media?
NO

Do you require HDMI output? Yes, please

Do you have a preferred brand?
No, but I'd like something solid and reliable, built well but light, family member suggested lenovo, but I'm open

Are there brands you would prefer to avoid?no

Would you be happy with a refurbished laptop? Yes, but only grade 1 or A

Any other details you feel necessary... good webcam necessary, good speakers and microphone, , WiFi, 16RAM, 512SSD, keyboard back-lit, I'm more inclined towards i7 8th Gen or better or will i5 generation 11 will be a better choice?

Budget £600

Can I get everything in a laptop in my budget?

Thanks very much in advance
 

next010

Distinguished Member
Something like this HP could do the job and is under budget (spec on HP site), but the battery might be the weak point, depends on what your doing with it, review of similar HP model places battery life around 6hrs for general web browsing.

I'd consider getting a USB power bank to go with the laptop or have a look at other laptops.
 

Vicky Khan

Novice Member
Thanks for your reply guys. The HP one seems to be out of now

The Huawei one is AMD Ryzen, are these better than the Intel Core ones? I know nothing about then and wanted to stick to intel cores

I have had a look around and don't think I will be able to get the specs I want for £600, so it might be better to look into i5 .

Are the I5 10th generations better than I7 8th Gen or might it be worth for me to increase my budget a little and get i7 instead?

My head is spinning from all the searching. I want to use the new laptop for the next 4/5 years and want something reliable and solid and good value for my money.
 

Carbon 60

Active Member
Hi Vicky,

Hope you are keeping well too.

In order to find the best laptop for you please say what video editing software you are using (the version too) and what type of editing you are doing. What sort of multi-tasking are you doing and does that require any specific software?
 
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oneman

Well-known Member
AMD made a big leap with Zen 3 and Zen 4 CPU and leapfrogged Intel so 3500 and more so the 4500 are great CPU, quick and low energy usage. The 3500 is getting a bit long in the tooth but still more than capable and it means there are some good bargains to pick up.

Intel wise, i5 1035 is the lowest intel CPU I would look for.

Video editing wise, as long as its HD and not 4K, simple cut and paste of a couple of streams, adding a few titles, etc then it shouldn't be a problem with any of CPU I've listed. Main thing is plenty of RAM which you have requested and SSD.
 

Vicky Khan

Novice Member
Hi Vicky,

Hope you are keeping well too.

In order to find the best laptop for you please say what video editing software you are using (the version too) and what type of editing you are doing. What sort of multi-tasking are you doing and does that require any specific software?

I'm only doing light video editing as a hobby as and when I get time, which isn't really much to be honest and am using Adobe Premiere Elements 2019 which isnt the fastest either.
 

Carbon 60

Active Member
Hi Vicky,

Thanks for your post. Adobe Premiere Elements 2019 doesn't require a high spec laptop for up to Full HD (FHD) editing. If you were doing 4k then an i7 would be required but for FHD an i5 will be just fine.

Got a great video editing laptop for you at the top of your budget, MSI Prestige 14Evo A11M-418UK £600 from Laptops Direct with 2 year warranty. This flagship model is end of life so currently on offer at a much reduced price.

There's a high efficiency 11th gen Intel Core i5-1135G7 CPU with integrated Iris Xe G7 graphics, 16GB (latest and extremely fast) LPDDR4x 4267MHz RAM, 512GB Samsung NVMe M.2 SSD, FHD 1920x1080 IPS 60Hz screen, long life 52Whr battery, latest Wi-Fi 6 (802.11ax), backlit keyboard.

There's no HDMI slot but you can easily buy a universal USB-C/Thunderbolt 4 to HDMI adapter. Here's a good one from Amazon for £10: Amazon product.

By the way 11th gen i5 is way better than 8th gen i7, technology changes rapidly and bear in mind it won't only be the 8th gen CPU that'll be old & slow, all the other major components will be older and slower too.

For info MSI UK spec page: MSI Prestige 14 Evo– The Essence Of Elite.
 

Vicky Khan

Novice Member
Ok, im still nowhere decided what laptop I want, and haven't narrowed it down either, as dont know much about laptops.

If I was to go for AMD will I notice any difference? I will be video calling a lot with a the laptop and need the camera md microphone to he decent
 

Vicky Khan

Novice Member
A lot of people have recommended Lenovo to me, but then when I have looked on their website the prices are enormous plus it takes at least 6 weeks for delivery.

I have looked at refurbished laptops as wel, but then there is no warranty on bettery so I am not sure how long will the charge hold.

The specs and price on MSI laptop mentioned above is fine, but is not a brand i had heard of when I started laptop searching. And when searching the net it's coming up as a laptop for gaming?
 
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Carbon 60

Active Member
Hi Vicky,

You've admitted that the specs baffle you, so when people recommend this or that to you, you have no idea whether they know what they're talking about or not. I could take you through the specs and the manufacturers of the various components item by item and it would take ages and be very boring for you even if I were to try to write something entertaining.

I've been helping people online wanting to buy a laptop for over 11 years now and my success rate is high. You can read through my previous posts and see how many people I've helped out with one thing or another, not only buying laptops.

The MSI laptop I picked (after a 2 hour search) probably will be okay for you. MSI predominantly produce quality gaming laptops, but this Prestige model isn't one of them, it's a mid-range lightweight business laptop with a long-life battery intended for multi-tasking on the move. The Intel i5-1135G7 is also an excellent choice for video editing at resolutions up to 1080p. Also it doesn't look anything like a gaming laptop.

The lack of an HDMI port is a negative, but as I wrote in my previous post, you can easily get a dongle. Also the onboard speakers aren't great, but no lightweight 14 inch laptop will have good sound due to space and weight restrictions. Buy some wireless headphones. Most laptop cams aren't great either, they'll be 720p and that's it and the mic will just be average as well.

It's the quality of the major components and build quality that are the main features of this laptop, and there's the 2 year warranty as well. Reliability is usually down to the user not the manufacturer.

Every laptop is a compromise of one sort or another becuse they are built to a price point. You have to balance the advantages against the disadvantages. I can keep looking for you if you like, there's a good chance another similar laptop will become available soon, but this will have its compromises too.
 
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oneman

Well-known Member
A lot of people have recommended Lenovo to me, but then when I have looked on their website the prices are enormous plus it takes at least 6 weeks for delivery.

I have looked at refurbished laptops as wel, but then there is no warranty on bettery so I am not sure how long will the charge hold.

The specs and price on MSI laptop mentioned above is fine, but is not a brand i had heard of when I started laptop searching. And when searching the net it's coming up as a laptop for gaming?
Lenovo are expensive because they are primarily in the business market so more focus on build quality then lots of flashy specs. The are also supply issues so anything built to order will have longer lead times.

MSI have been round for decades, generally considered middle of road with a balance for value vs specs vs build quality.
 

Vicky Khan

Novice Member
Hi Vicky,

You've admitted that the specs baffle you, so when people recommend this or that to you, you have no idea whether they know what they're talking about or not. I could take you through the specs and the manufacturers of the various components item by item and it would take ages and be very boring for you even if I were to try to write something entertaining.

I've been helping people online wanting to buy a laptop for over 11 years now and my success rate is high. You can read through my previous posts and see how many people I've helped out with one thing or another, not only buying laptops.

The MSI laptop I picked (after a 2 hour search) probably will be okay for you. MSI predominantly produce quality gaming laptops, but this Prestige model isn't one of them, it's a mid-range lightweight business laptop with a long-life battery intended for multi-tasking on the move. The Intel i5-1135G7 is also an excellent choice for video editing at resolutions up to 1080p. Also it doesn't look anything like a gaming laptop.

The lack of an HDMI port is a negative, but as I wrote in my previous post, you can easily get a dongle. Also the onboard speakers aren't great, but no lightweight 14 inch laptop will have good sound due to space and weight restrictions. Buy some wireless headphones. Most laptop cams aren't great either, they'll be 720p and that's it and the mic will just be average as well.

It's the quality of the major components and build quality that are the main features of this laptop, and there's the 2 year warranty as well. Reliability is usually down to the user not the manufacturer.

Every laptop is a compromise of one sort or another becuse they are built to a price point. You have to balance the advantages against the disadvantages. I can keep looking for you if you like, there's a good chance another similar laptop will become available soon, but this will have its compromises too.

Hi Carbon

You are right with what you have said and I have no doubts in your knowledge about techy stuff and trust that you would recommend or suggest a good laptop based on my requirement and budget.

I was on this forums last year as needed advice on buying a telly and it helped me greatly in making a decision so here I am back this time for a laptop.

I have litlle knowlege, am on a budget, want the best thing out there, am a little bit brand conscious. Pease bear with me if you feel like pulling your hair due to my silly comments.

So I have seen this laptop on Dell outlet, and is advertised as New unused, and they have an offer and I can get 12 percent off, hopefully i will have made up my mind as this offer expires on 31st Jan.


Please are you able to share your thoughts on this laptop? I haven't disregarded the MSI laptop above but want to see if there's anything else that fits the bill

P.S i really appreciate you guys taking time out of your busy lives to share your knowledge and help people like myself.
 

oneman

Well-known Member
Hi Carbon

You are right with what you have said and I have no doubts in your knowledge about techy stuff and trust that you would recommend or suggest a good laptop based on my requirement and budget.

I was on this forums last year as needed advice on buying a telly and it helped me greatly in making a decision so here I am back this time for a laptop.

I have litlle knowlege, am on a budget, want the best thing out there, am a little bit brand conscious. Pease bear with me if you feel like pulling your hair due to my silly comments.

So I have seen this laptop on Dell outlet, and is advertised as New unused, and they have an offer and I can get 12 percent off, hopefully i will have made up my mind as this offer expires on 31st Jan.


Please are you able to share your thoughts on this laptop? I haven't disregarded the MSI laptop above but want to see if there's anything else that fits the bill

P.S i really appreciate you guys taking time out of your busy lives to share your knowledge and help people like myself.
I have used Dell outlet before without problems.
 

Carbon 60

Active Member
Hey Vicky, we're all happy to help here and you're right to take your time making a decision. It can all be a bit too much sometimes and it can help to take a step back, hold for a while and re-evaluate your options. There's no need to hurry. :)

No need to panic over Dell's flash sale either, they have them all the time, usually 12% like this one. I see that brings the price down to £601.92 similar to the MSI.
 
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Carbon 60

Active Member
Hi Vicky,

The 2020 model new unused Dell 14 5402 in your link with the i7-1165G7 CPU seems to be a very good choice, its weakest features being the webcam and dual-array mic.

However I think this new unused Dell 14 5410 also on offer would be a better choice, and it's slightly cheaper. It's the newer 2021 model with a powerful i7-11370H CPU offering much faster all-round performance and able to handle heavier workloads than the i7-1165G7.

The RAM, SSD, integrated Iris Xe Graphics G7, screen and ports are the same as the 5402 except the 5410 has Thunderbolt 4. Its keyboard, touchpad, onboard sound and battery are slightly better. Its webcam is about the same as the 5402 too but the dual-array mic is slightly better and in sync with the video.

Which? tested the Best Buy 5410 and the battery life is excellent - 13 hours of video watching or 9 hours web browsing before the battery was exhausted. They haven't tested the 5402 unfortunately.

You could consider investing in an external Full HD 1080p webcam & mic like this Logitech C615 £26 from Amazon: Amazon product
 
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Vicky Khan

Novice Member
Hi Vicky,

The 2020 model new unused Dell 14 5402 in your link with the i7-1165G7 CPU seems to be a very good choice, its weakest features being the webcam and dual-array mic.

However I think this new unused Dell 14 5410 also on offer would be a better choice, and it's slightly cheaper. It's the newer 2021 model with a powerful i7-11370H CPU offering much faster all-round performance and able to handle heavier workloads than the i7-1165G7.

The RAM, SSD, integrated Iris Xe Graphics G7, screen and ports are the same as the 5402 except the 5410 has Thunderbolt 4. Its keyboard, touchpad, onboard sound and battery are slightly better. Its webcam is about the same as the 5402 too but the dual-array mic is slightly better and in sync with the video.

Which? tested the Best Buy 5410 and the battery life is excellent - 13 hours of video watching or 9 hours web browsing before the battery was exhausted. They haven't tested the 5402 unfortunately.

You could consider investing in an external Full HD 1080p webcam & mic like this Logitech C615 £26 from Amazon: Amazon product


Hi Carbon,

Many thanks for looking into it. Is the Dell 14 5410 better than the MSI Prestige you suggested? Or in what way is the MSI laptop better?

I have also seen this laptop Refurbished Cheap Laptops and 2-in-1 PCs: Dell Outlet | Dell UK.

Is it worth spending a little extra to get this one instead? I think this display is better on this one, not sure about other specs?
 
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Carbon 60

Active Member
Hi @Vicky Khan,

Sorry I missed your last post as I haven't visited AV Forums since my last post. All the Dell links up thread have now sold out due to the fast stock turnaround and so here is Dell's current Outlet inventory for the Inspiron 14" 5000 range, all with 12% off on yet another deal this time ending at 23.59 on 14th Feb. You could buy the certified refurb £624 5402 model for £549.12 which is the same spec as the new 5402 you linked to in Post #13.

The new MSI laptop I posted in Post #8 is still available from Laptops Direct but the price has increased from £600 to £640 so not as competitive now, with the only real gains being the faster speed RAM and the 2 year guarantee. Very probably not worth spending the extra £91 unless you prefer the look of the MSI.
 

issidan

Standard Member
I am engrossed with this thread between Vicky Khan and Carbon 60 as I too am looking to buy a laptop. I was orig advised to look at Lenovo i5 but now see there are others worth considering. Over the last week the prices have increased quite a lot.

Budget £380 to £510. The Lenovo started at £380 last Sat and is now £549. (I have an Amazon page open and just refresh it) Surely that cannot be right.

Basic average (older) user for docs, email, photos - no gaming, no graphics work.

A high RAM so as essential things don’t slow it down.

I need it to be reliable and ideally quick.

Would consider a reconditioned if it is to a good level, 1 or A

Thanks in advance.
 

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