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Most Reliable and INEXPENSIVE Computer or Laptop

by athmg74 / April 13, 2006 2:15 PM PDT

Have concerns that our computer may crash, and I wanted to know what the most reliable and INEXPENSIVE desktop/laptop computers are in case we have to buy a new one. I'm looking for computers which have BOTH of these qualities.

For example, are E-Machines, which are inexpensive, worth it? Or are computers proof of "you get what you pay for?"

Please help!


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eMachines are good machines...
by nathanpsz2 / April 13, 2006 10:13 PM PDT

...I've never owned one, but I've heard that they've made leaps in quality during the past few years. They give you amazing value for money. In terms of laptops, I'd get a Dell.

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Get reviews, not opinions
by ramarc / April 13, 2006 10:21 PM PDT

Some folks hate brand D and can tell you about all their troubles. Other folks have brand D and they've had no problems out of. You'll get passionate opinions from both sides. With that said, most computer equipment now is pretty reliable.

IMHO, the safest approach for a typical consumer is to steer clear of the absolute cheapest models and find a few brands/models you can afford. Then read the CNET reviews (and Comp Shopper and PC Mag, etc) and use their advice/comments to help you weed out less desireable ones. Also, read up on the vendor's reliability and customer satisfaction. Once you've got two or three comparable PCs with good reviews to choose from, then start shopping for rebates and sales.

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Like me and HP...
by nathanpsz2 / April 13, 2006 11:32 PM PDT

...they didn't put enough thermal paste between the CPU and heatsink. That cobined with the bad airflow in the case, fried my CPU and board. Basically, I don't recommend HP to anyone; I used to have a Dell and I never had any problems with it. The CD burner broke one time, and they came out and replaced it for free.

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HP is a great buy these days
by megkag / April 15, 2006 1:55 AM PDT
In reply to: Like me and HP...

I make these purchasing decisions daily and I live and breathe IT manufacturers' quality metrics. If there's one thing I've learned is that you cannot make your decision based on one or two accounts from people who have had a bad experience. (Every single manufacturer out there has DOA laptops and quality issues / lemons). The more important thing is how they handle it. So, contrary to Nathan, here's what I know about the overall market...

From a quality perspective, the overall numbers indicate that year on year quality improvements have come most significantly from HP. There was a time when I would not have considered HP at all. However, I would argue that they now have the highest quality business laptops out there on the market today with a consistent 30%+ year on year improvement in their quality metrics. This in a world where cost-cutting has driven other manufacturers downward in this regard. I have purchased over 500 HP laptops recently and so far I have had issues with only one. The one I had a problem with was fixed by HP next day. They have also added a lot of usable functionality into their new, more sleak designs, and support for their product is excellent. They would be my recommendation.

Who to avoid? Acer. Their renowned battery life issues alone are enough to send most laptop users running for the hills. Also their service is less than average according to the vast majority. Dell. They have had numerous quality issues which has flooded their customer service centres with calls and I heard at one point that they even shut down the 800 line. Now I'm not positive how much of that was notebooks vs desktops, however, but it speaks volumes to their ability to back up their product when quality concerns arise.

IBM notebooks are a very good make as well. Their quality metrics have held at par. However, with the sale of their PC business to Lenovo Corp (a low-end IT manufacturer out of China) I would be very concerned for the future of their portable lines. In the initial deal, IBM was supposed to remain involved quite heavily for the first 5 years. I have now heard that Lenovo is cutting their ties to IBM early.

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My computer was an overstock...
by nathanpsz2 / April 15, 2006 9:11 AM PDT came with no documentation, warranty, or XP CD. When I had to reinstall Windows, the validation key on the side of the case didn't work. I talked to my friend's dad (the one who found me this POS), who's pretty high up at HP, and he said that I was SOL.

I think that the CPU fried from running in 55-60C temperatures for 6-7 months. The case had no intake fan; just an exhaust fan, and the thermal grease was all burned away.

So far, I've put the thing in a new case, reapplied the thermal paste, and put a new CPU cooler, neither of which solved the random shut-down problem. The Athlon 64, DFI board and Thermaltake power supply (the HP PSU is junk) are on the way.

In the past, before I became interested in computers, I had a Dell which worked great for 4 years, and is still used as the family computer. My dad has had his Dell laptop for 2 years, and has never had a problem with it.

I'm done buying computers; from now on I'll only build, but if I did buy, I'd buy a Dell.

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Try a Lenovo
by eddoxx / October 12, 2010 4:11 PM PDT

If you need a reliable and inexpensive laptop then you might want to try out a Lenovo. They have a wide variety of laptops to meet your needs and online prices are lower then anywhere else. They are trusted by companies and schools all over America that order them in bulk for their students & employees. If you are still looking for one, you can try this link, and find the one that suits you.

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You think he's still around?
by Coryphaeus / October 12, 2010 10:14 PM PDT
In reply to: Try a Lenovo

This is a four year old discussion.

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Locking this old post.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / October 13, 2010 11:40 PM PDT

Closed after 4+ years.

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