Laptops forum

General discussion

Dell vs. Gateway quality

by straca / June 9, 2005 4:17 AM PDT

I am deciding between Dell Inspiron 9300 and Gateway M680XL. Both have good reviews and 4.5* / Hot Pick by Laptop Magazine (Dell - http://laptopmag.com/Review/Dell-Inspiron-9300.htm; Gateway - http://laptopmag.com/Review/Gateway-M680X.htm). I have read glowing review about the M680, but still cannot decide which one to get.

Feature wise they are very comparable with Pentium M750, 17? WSXGA against XGA in Dell), 60GB 7200 RPM HD, 1 GB memory (2x512), 128 ATI (X700 against X300 in Dell), 8x CD/DVD burner with DL, 802.11 b/g against a/b/g in Dell). The Dell is almost $500 less with the coupon ($1,974 against $1,480), but Gateway, from what I read will come close to Dell?s price, but one has to call in.

I really like the keyboard set up on the M680, the screen also seems nicer, but cannot comment as I have not seen one in person (I did see the 9300 and it is OK).

I have owned neither Dell nor Gateway before (had Toshiba and loved it), so this would be a first for either.

My biggest concern is Gateway quality (or perception of) and the company fiscal problems plus they always seem to finish at the bottom of repair frequency and customer service (thanks haven for Sony).

I greatly appreciate any and all recommendation / suggestions / opinions.

Straca

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More on Gateway M680 vs Dell 9300
by straca / June 29, 2005 10:37 PM PDT

For anybody interested in the Gateway M680, I found the following review http://www.designingcyberspace.com/m680/. Seems like a great laptop. Just going to wait for the nVidia Go 6800 (current graphic card is ATI Radeon X700 128MB) and get one. Happy
From what I have read Gateway seems to have lot of small, almost nickel and dime issues and they seemed to be very helpful in resolving these issues, going as far as replacing a laptop because of a scratch or faulty USD port. Amazing.
Any users out there with great / average / ugly Gateway stories? And especially related to M680?

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gateway
by jetnow1 / January 7, 2006 2:24 AM PST

got a gateway notebook early sept 2005. Had a problem
installing a program which forced me to reformat hard
drive. Gateway provided bad copy of win xp, also
could not get drivers for audio, network or modem.
10 calls to Gateway, over 200 in phone bills, and
yesterday (Jan. 6th, 2006) to get a restore disc I
was told would take 5 business days. Never but a
Gateway.

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Dell vs Gateway
by ZueJay / June 30, 2005 10:41 PM PDT

I can't speak to specific versions of Dell and Gateway laptops, but I have owned both at some point.

I ran into a lot of little problems with my Dell. If they can't solve the problem via phone, they'll have you ship it in to them at no cost to you (under warranty). Most of the reps were foriegn so they were hard to understand - I mailed my laptop in at least twice, and it should have been more frequently but I just couldn't be without it very often. They obviously weren't debilitating problems more along the lines of minor overheating or a skitsy drive. I got frustrated with the frquency of the little issues so I decided to try a Gateway.

My Gateway has been pretty decent. Some pixels have died out on the screen (not so much as you'd notice during most work). There is an issue with overheating. I left my laptop on (in standby mode) all day once; when I came home, I couldn't touch the bottom of it.

Overheating of laptops, as far as I can tell, is an problem that develops in the long run for most laptops.

Both laptops were good in that they did what they were supposed to -- function as a portable computer.

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Ditto, ditto
by LUNETUNES / July 1, 2005 4:53 PM PDT
In reply to: Dell vs Gateway

I have had both Dell and Gateway...last year I bought my first Dell PC...and if I do need any support...it is outsourced to other countries with very rough English. Making all help very difficult and time consuming. I had a Gateway PC prior, and just bought a Gateway laptop/notebook. I do know that the support in in the USA...which hopefully will mean easier communication if I need help.

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GATEWAY
by angryfirelord / July 1, 2005 11:04 AM PDT

Gateway. Gateway. Gateway. Gateway. Gateway.

DELL SUCKS!!!

http://www.ihatedell.net

This is also from personal experience with dell.

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Gateway it is!
by straca / July 5, 2005 11:36 PM PDT

I will just wait for the nVidia Go 6800 graphic processor to replace the ATI Radeon X700 (according to the Gateway reps it should be available within 10 days) and take the plunge.

I think the M680 is a great PC for what you pay. I love the full-size keyboard with 10-key (this should be on every 17 inch notebook). But the screen is the best feature. Very bright, great white/black contrast. I found one in local BestBuy and the screen (WXGA) was just great. And that is not even the one I want (WSXGA).

Can hardly wait. Happy

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I agree
by LUNETUNES / July 6, 2005 1:23 PM PDT
In reply to: Gateway it is!

I agree with the full size keyboard...I would be lost without the keyboard.
What is the difference between the two screens? WXGA and WSXGA.

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Resolution
by straca / July 6, 2005 9:17 PM PDT
In reply to: I agree

It is the screen resolution.
WXGA TFT Active Matrix has 1440 x 900 max. resolution. WSXGA has 1680 x 1050 max. resolution and it is also Ultrabright.
I have not seen the WSXGA (WXGA is very nice, similar to HP BrightView), but from what I have read it rivals the best screens on the market (Fujitsu, Sony). Happy

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Getting the price down
by techbeauty / July 12, 2005 8:12 PM PDT

I'm interested in purchasing the M680XL too, but how did you manage to talk the price down?

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Graphics processor
by techbeauty / July 12, 2005 10:48 PM PDT
In reply to: Getting the price down

I called Gateway's sales then tech support and asked them about the possible change of the video card on the M680XL, but both reps told me they're not aware of any pending changes/upgrades. Which department did you speak to because I know the nVidia one is better so I don't wanna miss out on it, but I'm also in a hurry to make a purchase.

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Gateway 680 vs Dell...
by LUNETUNES / July 13, 2005 12:07 AM PDT
In reply to: Graphics processor

I have the Gateway 8515GZ, which is supposed to be the twin to the 680...I have been very pleased with it, the Ultrabright screen is beautiful.
I had a Gateway PC, then tried a Dell PC, and chose to buy a Gateway laptop. My Dad has a Gateway laptop...and I really liked it. My sister has a couple of Dell laptops, and they are nice too.
I personally really like the 17 in N/B, since I like the keypad availability. It is much bigger in size...if the is a factor. I know I wouldn't be happy with the smaller one...without a keypad.
Tech support for Dell is outsourced OUTSIDE the USA, and there is a significant language barrier. I called Gateway and they are in the USA, no language issues.
I did have to update the driver on my sound card though...and they got me through it painlessly.

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Directly from Gateway
by straca / July 13, 2005 2:55 AM PDT
In reply to: Graphics processor

I got the initial information from a different forum and it was verified by a Gateway Sales Rep named Zennie, who emailed me on 7.5.05 and wrote, I quote: ?The Nvidia 6800 256 mb video cards will be available on the 680?s in about 10 more days. I will not know the pricing for it until we have it for sale.? Unquote.

That?s why I am also waiting since adding 256 MB to M680 will make it a superior notebook to Dell 9300, IMHO. Happy Equal specs, superior screen and keyboard, not to mention much nicer looking.

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Gateway M680XL Review
by straca / July 13, 2005 3:22 AM PDT
In reply to: Directly from Gateway
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Re: review
by LUNETUNES / July 13, 2005 5:37 AM PDT
In reply to: Gateway M680XL Review

I have the sister machine....Sonic 8515GZ....and loved the details of the review. I have some slight differences in the configuration...Pent. M 1.73/80Gh, 1 GB....I had to update my sound driver...that was my only issue. I do wish it came with the actual install discs, and not having to create my own. Too much room for error in the production. But I too love my machine. And you gave a fantastic detailed review.
Thanks!

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You welcome ...
by straca / July 13, 2005 9:15 PM PDT
In reply to: Re: review

... but I did not write that review. The credit needs to go to the person who did. And it is not me.

But it is a great review, nonetheless. Glad you enjoyed it.

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The nVidia is available now on the M680XL
by techbeauty / July 13, 2005 8:02 PM PDT
In reply to: Directly from Gateway

I just checked Gateway's website and the nVidia 6800 is available now on the M680XL, but do you think I should take the $184 discount and settle for the original ATI Radeon X700 if I'm not much of a gamer?

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Only you can make that decision
by straca / July 13, 2005 9:17 PM PDT

It is your money after all. That said, I have always believed you buy the most computer you can afford to delay the obsolescence.

The only thing that bugs me is, that the nVidia is available on the M680XL, the most expensive model, only. SadSadSad

If you decide to go with the ATI, try customizing their M680X and compare price to specs with the XL.

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M680X vs M680XL
by techbeauty / July 13, 2005 9:44 PM PDT

I switch out my laptops approx every yr, so I was thinking that w/the nVidia card it wouldn't nearly fetch $200 more when I resell it, and I personally don't need such a good graphics card. But you're right about wanting to get the best available. I was messing around w/the customizations for both models and I came with the same specs for each except the XL had 2.13GHz and 2x512MB memory @ $1970.00 and the X model with 2.0GHz and 1x512MB memory at $1769.99. Still deciding if it's worth paying $201 more for the XL or not. Any suggestions?

Btw regarding the Gateway vs. Dell issue, I've owned 2 Gateway notebooks and a Dell desktop, and I'd say Gateway's quality and service are quite a bit better than Dell's, but you gotta pay more for those =).

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Same dilemma
by straca / July 14, 2005 12:16 AM PDT
In reply to: M680X vs M680XL

I have the same decision to make. I would like the nVidia GeForce Ge6800 256MB Graphics Card, but the price ($184.00) seems rather steep considering that Dell charges $100.00 for the same card (Dell 9300). Sad

Plus I also do not need or want 100 GB HDD or the Pentium M 770 (I just need 60 HDD and can live with the 750 processor). And I planned to buy the lowest RAM available and upgrade it myself, thus saving few $. I have waited this long for the nVidia, maybe I will wait few more weeks to see if it also will be available on their lower priced models. If not and should something better come along in the meantime (like HP zd9000) I will take my business elsewhere, Gateway be damned. It?s my money I will try to get the best deal for me, end of story. Happy

I really like the M680 but for the configuration price I get ($2,509.97) I can get Fujitsu and there would be no contest, as Fujitsu will win hands down. My budget is $1,800.00 and I am sticking with it. Happy

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GeForce 6800 in the M680X
by begrimm / July 15, 2005 2:24 PM PDT
In reply to: Same dilemma

All you have to do is ask them and they'll let you upgrade to the Nvidia card (for $184) in the M680X. They build the machines to order so just because their web configuration form doesn't list it, doesn't mean it can't be done. Asking for customization is a good thing -- maybe they'll realize that the distiction between the M680X and the XL is pointless.

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