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Windows 7: Advice on choosing new laptop

09 Apr 2014   #1
gbu

Windows 7 Ultimate x64 SP1
 
 
Advice on choosing new laptop

My dad has an old Acer running XP 1Gb Ram slow CPU and now support has come to an end hes looking to buy a new one hes seen a couple but i just thought id ask if theres any preference.

Now we are in the UK so not sure if that helps or hinders the choices if you going to suggest places to buy.

Now few of things to know first, dads mainly a web browser, checking emails, downloads occasional films and songs and sometimes burns them to disc, does a little bit of MS word mainly just notes nothing fancy, pays utility bills online etc

Now 450 is the upper limit he wants to spend.

These are the 2 hes seen so far:-
Currys | TVs, Washing Machines, Cookers, Cameras, Laptops

The spec of the more expensive one looks better to me RAM HDD CPU but that's running Windows 8 and the other has 8.1 so im guessing ones an older model if only Win8 is installed.
Can the one running 8 be updated to 8.1(cant see any reason why it cant but just checking)


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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09 Apr 2014   #2
ignatzatsonic

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 SP1, Home Premium, 64-bit
 
 

Offhand, I wouldn't think he needs an i5 processor for his modest needs, but it's certainly fine if he wants to spend that much.

Do you know for a fact that he is going to be comfortable with Windows 8 or 8.1, rather than 7? Is he a mouse guy or does he want to use a touchscreen?

Is Curry's your only possible source?

Look around Curry's for brands like Asus or Toshiba--something other than Acer.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
09 Apr 2014   #3
gbu

Windows 7 Ultimate x64 SP1
 
 

Well he's constantly on the phone to me asking how to do stuff on XP lol
Im on Windows 7 so not sure how much help ill b to him when the questions come flying through on how to do this that and the other.
But i thought all new laptops would have 8 installed rather then 7 but 7 would be handy cos i know my way around that(well enough to help my Dad anyway)
Hes always had a laptop and never used touchscreen and i know one of those is touchscreen but im not sure if u have to use that or u can use just the laptop mouse/pad thing which im guessing it has also?

Currys arent the only source but there quite a main shop u can go to rather then buying online.

Acer not that good a make then or just Asus and Toshiba better?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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09 Apr 2014   #4
ignatzatsonic

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 SP1, Home Premium, 64-bit
 
 

I wouldn't restrict myself to Acer. You can have bad luck with any of them, but my general opinion is that Acer is average at best and that their customer support if you need it is below average.

Are you unwilling to buy online?

Post links to sources other than Curry's UNLESS you MUST buy from Curry's.

He's liable to be annoyed by 8 or 8.1 if he's a mouse guy. It's more useful for touchscreen people. Maybe highly annoyed. You can get a free or very cheap downloadable app that will make 8 or 8.1 resemble 7 if you can't get 7.

He can use a mouse, but he's not going to find much in the locations he's used to on XP.

But 7 will likely be hard to find. So get 8.1 rather than 8 if possible, and plan on having to download or buy the cheap add-on that will make it look more familiar to him and you.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
09 Apr 2014   #5
dolittle

windows 7
 
 

For his needs I would go with I3. Acer makes good laptops but do some research and look at reviews of other brands.
I have had good luck with HP but not recommending them. If you can get one with W7 that would be better.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
09 Apr 2014   #6
ignatzatsonic

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 SP1, Home Premium, 64-bit
 
 

I just scanned Curry's list of laptops near 400, to 450 pounds max.

Avoiding Acer, HP, Sony, I came up with these 2 possibilities. One is Intel i3 (2.4 GHz) ; one is Intel i5 (1.8 GHz):

Buy LENOVO G500 15.6" Laptop | Free Delivery | Currys


Buy ASUS X550CA-XX249H 15.6" Laptop | Free Delivery | Currys

The i3 2.4 has 8 GB of RAM; the i5 1.8 has only 4 GB of RAM;

Both have a 15.6 inch screen;

Here's the Passmark benchmarks for those 2 CPUs:

i5-3337u: 3253; this is the Asus; 360 pounds; normally 430

i3-3110M: 3076; this is the Lenovo; 400 pounds;

Not enough of a difference to worry about.

Look at the product details on Curry's and see if one or the other has something you really need.

All else being equal, I'd probably choose the Asus i5; it's 40 pounds cheaper, slightly stronger CPU. Having only 4 GB of RAM isn't likely to be an issue given your dad's requirements.

Other than that, I'd pound Google to see what bad news I might be able to dig up on either one of them.

Looks like both have Win 8, not 8.1.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
10 Apr 2014   #7
gbu

Windows 7 Ultimate x64 SP1
 
 

Been looking at your ASUS link that does seem like a good deal and should suit my dads needs, at the moment hes only got 1Gb RAM so upgrading to 4GB should see a big improvement.
Cant think what CPU he has but i know its nowhere near this one its 5-7 years old i think ACER.

Just want to clear something up, when you talk about the mouse im guessing your referring to the mouse pad on the laptop rather then a wired desktop mouse like i have on my desktop PC?

This ASUS one you linked to isnt touchscreen is it so he will only use the mousepad is that correct?

That ASUS has Win8 installed so would he have to update via windows update to 8.1?

Also whats this app to make it look like Win7 that sounds interesting?
*EDIT*
Had a quick search and found this changing the WIn8 theme to Win7
http://download.cnet.com/Classic-She...-75553853.html
My System SpecsSystem Spec
10 Apr 2014   #8
ignatzatsonic

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 SP1, Home Premium, 64-bit
 
 

see comments in bold:

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by gbu View Post

Just want to clear something up, when you talk about the mouse im guessing your referring to the mouse pad on the laptop rather then a wired desktop mouse like i have on my desktop PC?

I meant mouse in the ordinary sense of the word. Wired or wireless. Desktop or laptop. I don't know if that Asus has a built-in mouse, but I'd assume you can attach an ordinary wired mouse through a port if desired. Check the specs yourself.

This ASUS one you linked to isnt touchscreen is it so he will only use the mousepad is that correct?

I don't use laptops or touchscreens. If the Asus does not state touchscreen, I'd assume it's mouse only.


That ASUS has Win8 installed so would he have to update via windows update to 8.1?

I use 7 and am not sure how the upgrade from 8 to 8.1 is done, but I'll bet there is a tutorial either on this forum or the sister Windows 8 forum that explains the procedure.

Also whats this app to make it look like Win7 that sounds interesting?
*EDIT*
Had a quick search and found this changing the WIn8 theme to Win7
Classic Shell - Free download and software reviews - CNET Download.com

Yeah, Classic Shell is one of the apps I was referring to. There is another one I can't think of right now.

BUT: I'm not sure I would download it from Cnet as they have a bad habit of including other stuff in their downloads that you probably wouldn't want. I'd try to see if I can find another source--maybe filehippo or majorgeeks or maybe even from the developer directly.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
10 Apr 2014   #9
ignatzatsonic

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 SP1, Home Premium, 64-bit
 
 

Look here for reviews of the add-ons:

Best Windows 8 Start Menu - Page 2 | Maximum PC

Here's a direct link to Classic Shell; it is free:

Classic Shell - Start menu and other Windows enhancements

Here's a link to Start8, which is supposed to be quite good; it's $5:

Start8 Start menu for Windows 8. Bring the Windows 8 Start menu back.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
10 Apr 2014   #10
gbu

Windows 7 Ultimate x64 SP1
 
 

Ah thats great thanks for that makes me feel a little better now if i can help navigate over the phone if its a shell/theme im used to lol
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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