Upgrading a Laptop - anything else I can do to this?

p9ul

Distinguished Member
I have a Dell Inspiron 8200 which is now 6 years old, still serves me well but I fear I've probably reached the end of the line with it.

Original spec was Pentium 4 1.8ghz with 256mb RAM & 64mb graphics. I've since upped the RAM to 756mb and only this morning I have bought a replacement 512mb DIMM to take the memory up to its maximum of 1GB.

HDD is 60gb, it was replaced about 2 years ago when the old one decided to fry itself.

I'm just wondering if it's worth doing anything else to it or is it replacement time? I'm looking at a MiniPCI card to get wireless networking (already have a USB dongle one) and have added a PCMCIA card for USB 2.0 which still onlt gives me 1.1 and 19" monitor.

For the last couple of years I've promised myself that when it came to crunch time for a replacement I'd go with a Mac, but some software I use regularly isn't available in Apple flavour (see what I did there?;) ) so I still need a PC

I'd love to go with Vista but doubt it'll be up to it. Is there anything else I can do (cheaply) or should I just bite the bullet?
 

badbob

Banned
Buy a new laptop. 1GB isn't enough for Vista, and really needs dual core. P4 are pretty slow now, a desktop CPU so lousy run times.

A new £450 laptop will trounce your current machine, 1.8ghz dual core Intel Core 2 Duo, 2GB RAM, 160GB HD.
 

CP-PC

Active Member
you could probably look into upgrading the processor if you can find some on ebay but its up to you to decide if its worth it....
what sort of things do you do on the laptop? do you need loads of power and ram?will 1GB do? vista really needs a little more than 1GB
how does the laptop hold up now speed wise? is it a little slow for what you do?
 

p9ul

Distinguished Member
Should have mentioned that its the Pentium 4-M, it drops the CPU speed when battery to conserve power...

It does slow down a bit - most use is from AutoCAD, but I usually have itunes playing music in the background while I work and the occasional torrent going... I don't use it for games as I've also got a PS3 & 2x 360's and I'd like to be able to start media sharing between them all - I'll probably get an external HDD for the space but I seem to be stuck with USB 1.1 which proves a bottleneck when it comes to updating my iPod.

I don't have a lot of other software installed either, have Office, Photoshop & Dreamweaver. Think the HDD has around 8gb free (out of 60gb) - thinking it might be worth a damn good flattening actually and complete re-install (one of the reason's I've been thinking of Vista, might as well give it a clean HDD to start with...)

Just think I'm flogging a dead horse at the minute, don't want to throw money at it if it's not gonna have an effect... could really do with a DVD writer, USB 2.0 and improved graphics performance.
 

albertz

Active Member
Just think I'm flogging a dead horse at the minute, don't want to throw money at it if it's not gonna have an effect...

To be honest i think you would be, best invest your hard earned cash in a new machine.
 

CP-PC

Active Member
To be honest i think you would be, best invest your hard earned cash in a new machine.
yeah true, you wouldnt see much of an improvement from upgrading your CPU, plus you could use newer features like usb 2.0 and a dvd burner and bigger hard drive.
 

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