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Macbook or Dell inspiron

by png168 / August 14, 2007 1:08 PM PDT

im a college student and basically, i narrowed doen my choices to these two notebooks. which one should i get?

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Well if you select Inspiron you
by orlbuckeye / August 14, 2007 8:32 PM PDT

won't have it before school starts.

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Inspiron ...
by Kees Bakker / August 14, 2007 8:54 PM PDT

isn't so much a model, but a whole line. Here in Holland they vary from the 1521 (for 718 euro = about 1000 USD) to the XPS M2010 for 3549 euro. All including tax, without transport and not counting promotions. So it's still very broad, not really narrowed down.

The Dells come with Vista, the Macbooks with OS X. That makes for different applications, and that might be something to factor in. It even could be that the college prescribes applications that only run in XP or Vista, not on a Mac (the other way around is rather unlikely). Better be sure about that before deciding.

Hope this helps.


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what about the programs incompatablity
by png168 / August 15, 2007 1:18 AM PDT
In reply to: Inspiron ...

since im gonna be in college...will i not be able to use some programs that i might need when im in college?

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by puff5655 / August 15, 2007 4:10 AM PDT

You probably will have some compatibility issues with the Macbook. Our college has all PCs, except for in one computer lab.

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does macbook have wi-fi
by png168 / August 16, 2007 4:54 AM PDT
In reply to: maybe

or do i need to buy it seperately

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Re: macbook.
by Kees Bakker / August 16, 2007 6:00 AM PDT

A rather surprising question, ain't it?

After all, for a better decision you need to know what you buy. And the full specs of the Macbook were just a few clicks away for me at
I'll leave it to you to find out about the Wi-Fi now.

This lets me wondering what made you decide to choose between Dell and Apple if apparently it weren't the properties of both alternatives. Just a random choice from the pack?


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I can walk you through the whole way... or most of it LOL
by tleMega / August 16, 2007 8:37 AM PDT
In reply to: Re: macbook.

As both a Windows and a Mac user, I can provide my insight.

The MacBook has great tech specs for a laptop of its price; most Dell laptops (not the XPS line) are very poor in performance when bought at the base price compared to the MacBook.

If you really need to use Windows, the new Leopard system will have an upgraded program called Boot Camp. It's available for current Macs now, but only in beta version. Boot Camp allows installation of Windows on a Mac. There are other choices to run Windows on a Mac, but those choices let you run Windows apps and etc. under the Mac OS. Parallels runs the Windows OS under the Mac OS, but in a window that uses a partition of the Boot Camp program (supposing you have both). Other stuff wroks similarily.

I would recommend getting the MacBook, and upgrading its hard drive and memory for best performance. With educational discounts for college students, Apple can save you lots of money on the laptop AND the upgrades you put in it. Dell laptops tend to be much more expensive for the same specs as a base model of the MacBook or other Apple laptops.

If you need more info, post back, and I'll try to give you more info on what you may need.
Hope this helped.

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by png168 / August 16, 2007 12:09 PM PDT

ya...i think my decision was just more random than choice. i looked at the sony vaio cr and a lot of hp's like the dv6000, but i just narrowed it down to the dell and macbook.
thanks for all the help about the wi-fi and the windows/macbook comparison

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macbook reply
by png168 / August 17, 2007 8:19 AM PDT

thanks that helps a lot. what specs do you think i should get if i got macbook?

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by jwally063 / August 17, 2007 10:07 AM PDT

I have a Dell Inspiron, its the worst I have ever had. The New York State Attorney Generals office has over 500+ complaints. Call them (New York State Attorney Generals office) and ask for yourself. my is only a year old,and never moves from the location but my screen went black,keys pop off,etc etc.I will never buy a Dell again

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reply to Mackbook or Dell Insperion
by noriver57 / August 17, 2007 10:15 AM PDT

Since you are going to be using this at the collage you will be attending, before you purchase anything, find out what the will provide technical help for. At SUNY/Oswego, both the PC and the Mac are sold at the bookstore and the IT department will support them because you must install their networking protocols. The mack we purchased had everything preinstalled.

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Before discounts:
by fbbbb / August 17, 2007 9:16 PM PDT

Macbook: Black, 2.16Ghz
2Gb, iWork, iLife, Applecare.
This gets you a pre-Santa Rosa machine with a 2.16Ghz processor and GMA950 graphics. Display is 13.3", 1280 x 800. Lid-mounted webcam is VGA. Warranty is carry-in to an Apple Store or pickup, 3 years.

Dell Inspiron 1420: colours, 2Ghz
2Gb, MS Office Home & Student + Photoshop / Premiere elements, Dell Onecare Premium
This gets you a Santa Rosa machine with a 2Ghz processor and a Geforce 8400M discrete graphics. Display is 14", 1440 x 900. Lid-mounted webcam is 2 megapixels. Warranty is 3-year onsite with 3-year accidental damage insurance, Lojack protection and 3-year antivirus updates.


A laptop that's significantly better for $150 less that comes with better productivity software and completely superior support. I know which I'd pick.

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by Crikey68 / August 17, 2007 9:45 PM PDT
In reply to: Before discounts:

Hint: He's recommending the dell.

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by tleMega / August 18, 2007 7:40 AM PDT
In reply to: Before discounts:

First of all, nobody would want to buy the black MacBook unless they really hate the white one. It's more expensive for the color.

Second, college students can get great discounts through the Apple Education Store. If you put 2GB of RAM, a 200GB HD, and iWork '08 into a new 2.16Ghz White MacBook, you pay only $1745.00 with AppleCare.

That's a better deal than the Inspiron. And hello? Who wants to wait for a month for a Dell? I wouldn't. Plus, Mac OS X is much easier to run and if needed, can run Windows as well, so why buy a Dell? You can buy MS Office for Mac and have those apps, or just run Parallels and/or Boot Camp.

Who cares much about the webcam? I don't know anyone who actually needs one, and neither do I.

(Though I do have questions on my webcam myself: )

Over the long run, the Mac will prove better in the end. Leopard comes out soon, and it will be great. I'd wait until then to purchase a new Mac.

Vista contains many bugs too, and Microsoft doesn't offer much help if you run into one.

Productivity software depends on the person, so I can't help you there. Support? Dell has horrible customer support. Didn't anyone hear about how Dell was charging people $6000 for $1500 machines? Some of my associates use only Dells, and they complain about the support.

At least when I go to my Apple Store, the guys help me with everything I need there.

Choose you pick, and hopefully you get what you need.

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As I said, before discounts.
by fbbbb / August 18, 2007 8:32 AM PDT
In reply to: What?!

As a student, you'll qualify for additional coupons and discounts from both parties.

The key difference between the machines isn't just in specifics like the webcam. The Dell is a better machine. Period. It is also better supported. Period. The services you're contracting to are clearly superior to all but the blindest of the fanboys, and the same goes for the laptop itself.

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Either way, I've seen the support from both of them
by tleMega / August 18, 2007 1:21 PM PDT

I've been an Apple customer for a while and their support is great when you know what you're doing.

Dell has horrible service according to the people I know. They don't help at all.

I have a 7-year-old Mac and it runs better than the not-as-old PCs that I have. Macs tend not to have hardware failure unless you do something to it. Dells are not superior in hardware. I know from experience. Software freezes up all the time, no matter what apps you use.

I went to a Dell store recently and I test-drove the machines. They were horrible. It doesn't matter what services you subscirbe to; it matters on if the company pulls through. Dell obviously cannot support their demands and customers if they takes more than a month to ship a simple laptop. It's their fault that they don't have all the components and neccessities to do so.

And if you're calling me a fanboy, you are surely mistaken. I use Windows more often than I get to use OS X. Everyone knows what Windows is, and most people use it. I use both; one for work, one for everything else and the good stuff.

If anything, HP would be a bette choice than Dell. I've used HP computers for more than a decade, and I know that they will perform to all my needs, work and entertainment. As far as I know, they offer more support options than Dell, and are better too.

Dell is a main competitor in the PC market more because of cheap prices and not neccessarily quality. HP's and Compaqs are better built, and so are Macs. I've used many types of machines, and I'd recommend Toshiba and Gateway over Dell anyday because they work better.

You're probably the fanboy, because you seem to be 100% Dell and nothing else. Of course, I'm only assuming this, but you probably have owned or used other PCs. I have used many things myself, and Dells are very inferior to the top-of-the-line PCs that I have come to know.

You like Dell, I like everything else because I think it's better. I recommend Apple or HP because I know that they don't quit on you when you need them. They do their jobs perfectly. You recommend Dell because of your experience with them or so.

It's really up to the buyer on what to pick. Best of Windows products vs. the best of everything else. Macs can run anything if you use Parallels or Boot Camp, and hardware is great.

You decide. Opinion really matters.

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The classic case of a fanboy is
by fbbbb / August 18, 2007 8:55 PM PDT

Writing long tracts with unqualified opinions.

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PC vs Mac Notebook
by dhalker / August 19, 2007 3:06 AM PDT

I would find out what level of local support there is from the college IT guys for the PC or MAC. Especially, if you get Vista with the PC. Also, find out what the professor's use in posting assignments and the programs required. Many prefer the MS-Office.

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It depends on the profession and courses
by tleMega / August 19, 2007 10:06 AM PDT
In reply to: PC vs Mac Notebook

Macs would be better for graphics-related or more entertainment oriented courses. Windows machines would be better for productivity, which is why Windows is in so much use today.

Fanboy... most people are fans one way or the other. I use both Windows and Macs, so how can I be a fanboy? I have used computers long enough to know quite a bit about them. I share the info with others incase they need to know something. What's your deal?

Like I said, it depends what you need your laptop to do. Vista is not exactly the best OS, but there isn't one that is perfect. Mac OS has issues too.

Whatever you like best is what you should pick.

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