What laptop do you have?

Unfortunately, it's time for me to get another laptop. My trusty Thinkpad T60 which I got in mid '06 got a small crack in the screen (my son probably stepped on it or was it me, I don't know). This is definitely one of the most durable machines I ever had.

I'm curious to see what kind of laptop Quantnet members currently use. I would like to stay with the Thinkpad line but the newer versions seem to have lower resolution, wide screen which gears toward multimedia users.

So what would you suggest to have as my next laptop?
 
Yes, I want workhorse laptop, not eye candy. I do lot of web development on my laptop so a high reso screen is necessary. The current resolution is 1400x1050. The new crop of 1280x800 laptops won't cut it.

Good keyboard is a must, lightweight is required.

I feel I have everything i need in my T60 but I would welcome more power, longer battery life, more memory.

Is there any 2010 version of T60? I have looked at T400, T500 but don't feel they target the same kind of business users like the old Thinkpad line did.
 

alain

Older and Wiser
macbook pro 17'' - Great resolution 1900x1200, the battery lasts forever and it's only 6.6 lbs - light for a 17''
 

atreides

Graduate Student
I heard you the first time, Alain and I don't even want to think about what this will cost :)

You will be paying a premium if you consider Mac. Those things are delicate, nice and shiny out of the box and will not bode well, if you will have it thrown around a lot.

I had an IBM T61 workhorse back in the day, You could literally throw that thing in a pail of water or out the second floor window and it would still survive. (the later happened to me), but am now sporting a 13' unibody..
 
You definitely don't need to preach to the Thinkpad crowd here. Alain used to be TP fanboy until he converted recently ;)
I had from T23, T42, till T60. So I definitely would expect nothing less from my next laptop but it's hard to find a mix of durability and mobility these days.
I have a young kid so anything delicate would be a disaster waiting to happen.

And what model you are using now?
 
I do not get engineers buying MacBooks... they were not meant for that kind of work, I know MATLAB, R, and probably some other apps run on OS X , you can dual boot Win 7 but who wants that, I do not know if you can boot Ubuntu.

I've been looking at 14" and 15" models only as I am trying to find the right balance between portability, durability, and screen resolution, so here we go.

The current incarnation of t-series T410 and T510 models, unfortunately, both have few inherent problems, such as motherboard on T510 emits high-frequency noise which is annoying when you work in quiet room.

Here is the forum of owners:
T400 / T500 and newer T series ThinkPad Laptops - Lenovo Community

I am looking at Dell business class E-series E6410 (14" 1440x900) or E6510 (15" 1920x1080), they do not seem to have inherent problems, they are in the same price range as T-series but have 3-year standard warranty. You can choose between integrated or nvidia graphics, both of which run well with Ubuntu.

HP's business line of EliteBooks are nice but have lower screen resolution than Dell E-series and Lenovo T-Series.
 
As I heard, Sony VAIO is another considerable high-quality choice as well as Mac and Thinkpad. I had been used Thinkpad T61p for 2 years and now I'm using Macbook pro 13'. I also used Dell, HP and Toshiba for a few months. Dell and HP were definitely garbage at that time.
 
Sony computer technical support is the worst in the industry.

Dell and HP business line and Dell's newly acquired gaming Alienware line are quite good.
 
Yes, support is another important issue. Apple and Thinkpad support are top of the line. Apple users swear by their Genius Bar and I swear by dozen of times I used Thinkpad support.
I use (let call it abuse) my Thinkpad heavily the past 4+ years. Thinkpad used to come with 3 years warranty (not sure what the deal these days). I have my laptop serviced numerous times for worn out parts (LCD, motherboard, fans, etc) so it's definitely quite a ride.

And when you get used to this level of service, there is no way you will go back to Dell customer service.

By the way, I have my own Thinkpad certified dealer who provide me with stock parts when my warranty expired.

Here is the list of a few modules he quoted me recently. The guy runs a business out of Long Island, NY

Here are the specs and prices of a few ThinkPads that I have available.

The X series are considered ultraportables. The T series are the successors to your T60.

X200 7459-RW6 Brand new in a sealed box $850

ThinkPad X200
Original description: Based on 7459-69U: P8400(2.26GHz), 4GB RAM, 160GB 7200rpm HD, 12.1in 1280x800 LCD, Intel 4500MHD, Intel 802.11agn wireless, WWAN upgradeable, 1Gb Ethernet, Secure chip, Camera, 6c Li-Ion, WinVista Business 32

Onsite warranty to 3/2013


X200s 7469-82U Brand new in a sealed box $1,050 WXGA+ LED backlit LCD and SSD.
ThinkPad X200s
Original description: SL9300(1.6GHz), 2GB RAM, 128GB Solid State Drive, 12.1in 1440x900 LCD, Intel 4500MHD, Intel 802.11agn wireless, Bluetooth, Modem, 1Gb Ethernet, Secure chip, Fingerprint reader, 6c Li-Ion, WinXP Pro

EZserv to 11-08-12


T410 2537-CC6 with long onsite warranty $1,100 LED backlit WXGA LCD, SSD, 4gb

ThinkPad T410
Original description: i5-540M(2.53GHz), 4GB RAM, 80GB Solid State Drive, 14.1in 1280x800 LCD, Intel 5700MHD, CDRW/DVDRW, Intel 802.11agn wireless, WWAN upgradeable, Modem, 1Gb Ethernet, UltraNav, Secure chip, Camera, 6c Li-Ion, Win7 Pro 32
Looks new and never used.

Onsite warranty to 4-25-13


T400 6475-R2U memory upgraded to 4gb $600.

ThinkPad T400 6475-R2U
Original description: T9400(2.53GHz), 2GB RAM, 160GB 7200rpm HD, 14.1in 1280x800, Intel 4500MHD, CDRW/DVDRW, Intel 802.11agn, WWAN option, Bluetooth, Modem, 1Gb Ether, UltraNav, Sec Chip, FPR Rdr, Camera, 2GB Turbo Mem, 9c, WinVista Business 32

Excellent condition.

Onsite warranty to 12-18-11
 

atreides

Graduate Student
You definitely don't need to preach to the Thinkpad crowd here. Alain used to be TP fanboy until he converted recently ;)
I had from T23, T42, till T60. So I definitely would expect nothing less from my next laptop but it's hard to find a mix of durability and mobility these days.
I have a young kid so anything delicate would be a disaster waiting to happen.

And what model you are using now?

I'm currently using a 13' Macbook pro unibody... you just can't beat the Mac user experience.

I do not get engineers buying MacBooks... they were not meant for that kind of work, I know MATLAB, R, and probably some other apps run on OS X , you can dual boot Win 7 but who wants that, I do not know if you can boot Ubuntu.
.

You can explore VirtualBox.. it is a free alternative to vmware http://www.virtualbox.org/, and it works flawlessly. I have Ubuntu on my virtual box. It's not dual boot per se. A windows variant is Wubi http://wubi-installer.org/ . Of course getting Ubuntu on the PC is trivial.
 

Lyosha

Psychic in Training
I have a $1200 gateway that I bought two labor day sales ago at best buy. It is awesome for many, many reasons. But its due for a replacement as well. I'm waiting for NVidia's brand new fermi based vid cards for laptops to start making their way into laptops.
 
T510 seems appealing to me after a quick glance at Lenovo website. I had a T42 previously, sweet time with it, it still lasted three years with abuse. I gave up after three years warranty coz of motherboard+lcd panel failure.
 

DominiConnor

Quant Headhunter
I have a Dell Precision M90, 4 years ago when I bought it, was the fastest with biggest screen there was.
Bastard thing won't die so I can justify getting something lighter, but curiously I can't buy something with more pixels or much faster CPU.

I have the good Dell support plan, not the free one which is crap.

It costs 25% of the base H/W price, but so far I've had two screens, 2 keyboards, a motherboard, a daughterboard, a hard disk, 4 power blocks, and some screws in the hinge, all replaced. The HD wasn't even broken, the diagnostics said it might die soon, so the technician sent a new one so I could image the disk across with minimal hassle, and the new one was 30% bigger.

Not only do the techs turn up next day, but if you've done the CQF, you will see all but one of the lectures use the M90.The screen was sick, so I called Dell Scotland (the only competent bit of the whole company), who said they would be round tomorrow to sort it. Alas, I said that I'd be in central London, so they turned up at 7City armed with components, took M90 away, and ripped it to bits whilst I wittereed on about C++ templates.

I wish I could recommend Dell laptops, but the rest of the firm is somewhere between incompetent and criminal. When buying my wife's laptop, they made unauthorised charges to my card, lied about delivery dates, made more unauthorised charges, and even when I opened the box of "real shit Dominic can get to fall on your head", which involved inter-alia recorded phone calls, the Dell executive office, and the people whose only job is to stop PR disasters, it took several attempts to get them to deliver working equipment.
They also rang me at 8AM on a Saturday morning to "confirm" the order, ie upsell me. I went nuclear at a whole swarm of managers over that.

Their finance department is staffed by people with the personal integrity of Catholic priests, and getting my money back was only possible because a) I write for well known tech websites, b) my wife is a partner in one of the biggest law firms in the world.

Never, ever buy a Dell.
 
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