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Best time to buy a laptop?

dirtybobby Avatar
6y, 5m agoPosted 6 years, 5 months ago
hey people, i need a bit of help buying a laptop..

the missus is fed up at being stuck on the PC in the corner every time she wants to play The Sims 3, so i said i'd look into getting a decent laptop that she could play it on from the comfort of the sofa..

is there a "best" time of year to buy laptops? for instance, apple always do great deals in the summer as the new school term approaches.. do any other vendors do this? i only ask, because i'd feel like a bit of a lemon if i went out and bought a laptop tomorrow only to find a "student" sale starts up in a couple of weeks!

i'm not a PC gamer at all, so am not really up to speed with what all the cool kids are using these days.. can someone recommend a laptop that is ok for gaming? the sims isn't particularly hardcore, so we defo don't need some daft SLI rig or whatev's.. i guess our criteria are as follows:

dedicated graphics
minimum 16" screen
not too bulky
HDMI output
around £600

any suggestions? so far, a dell inspiron 1764 seems pretty good, with core i3, ati 4330 gfx, 17.3" screen, 4GB RAM, etc. for £549 delivered.. are they as good as they sound, or is there anything i should be aware of with dell?

thanks :)
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dirtybobby Avatar
6y, 5m agoPosted 6 years, 5 months ago
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#1
Dells are fine.

The Sims 3 is an absolute beach to get working though... It crashes frequently etc on my gfs new laptop. It could be the crappy, buggy game conflicting with the laptop or simply the game is knackered anyway.

Check the gfx card is compatible, but those specs will run it lovely. The gf's laptop is only a C2D, whereas the i3 is quad core and sexy and runs it perfectly (when the damn game actually works).
#2
about lunchtime :thumbsup:
#3
With Dell, there's no specific time of year that's best, but in the days running up to the product refresh are often very fruitful, with around a third being stripped off the price of the clearence stock. Product refresh cycles are usually done every X months by most companies, give or take a couple, and it's worth giving them some attention, since it shouldn't take more than five minutes to find a list of successive models and work out the pattern from that, and the savings can amount to hundreds.

Generally speaking though, I think right now might be a good time to buy. Like, literally, right now. There's a fair chance that the Tories are going to raise VAT to 20% in today's budget, which'll add a good £10-£15 to any respectable laptop.
#4
Sorry just missed out, Yesterday was the best day :( you could wait until the january sales
#5
DragonChris
Dells are fine.

The Sims 3 is an absolute beach to get working though... It crashes frequently etc on my gfs new laptop. It could be the crappy, buggy game conflicting with the laptop or simply the game is knackered anyway.

yeah, it's a nightmare innit.. i bought the collector's edition for the gf as soon as it came out, and it's so buggy it's a joke.. for a while, hers used to slow to a crawl after about 5 minutes, every single time she played it, to the point where it would just freeze altogether.. EA support/forums were typically useless.. fortunately, the problem seemed to go away by itself..

DragonChris
Check the gfx card is compatible, but those specs will run it lovely. The gf's laptop is only a C2D, whereas the i3 is quad core and sexy and runs it perfectly (when the damn game actually works).


well, the ATi 4330 that's in the dell isn't specifically mentioned in the sims 3 official system requirements, but i'm guessing it will be ok.. then again, knowing how buggy the sims 3 is, i'm worried that going with something not "officially" supported could just be setting myself up for trouble..
#6
jon1000jon
Sorry just missed out, Yesterday was the best day :(


really? why?

dxx
Generally speaking though, I think right now might be a good time to buy. Like, literally, right now. There's a fair chance that the Tories are going to raise VAT to 20% in today's budget, which'll add a good £10-£15 to any respectable laptop.


good point.. if they do announce a rise, will it literally kick in from the moment it's announced, though??

edit: phew, rise doesn't happen until january 2011..
#7
'bout tree fiddy!
#8
dirtybobby
really? why?


Don't listen to him, tomorrow is the best day. Although never buy a laptop on a Thursday, far more aggravation than it's worth.
banned#9
Dells are fine if you don't mind the 1 in 4 chance it will need repair in the first year
1 Like #10
I found lots of offers on laptops last year just before the students went back after the summer holidays.

All the big suppliers like Staples, PC World, Curries, etc had 'Back to school' offers. So it might be worth waiting a month or two.
banned#11
When I am looking for a laptop deal, I look at the prices on what i want for some weeks, prices deals vary all the time, you have to get a sense of what the prices are so you can spot the deal, or when its not a deal

I watched netbook prices for about 3 months till a deal came along, really it depends on how quick you want to spend the money
#12
Any time of the year. The trick is not to look at prices after purchase as inevitably its a sale item retailing at 10% of RRP!!
#13
Distance Runner
I found lots of offers on laptops last year just before the students went back after the summer holidays.

All the big suppliers like Staples, PC World, Curries, etc had 'Back to school' offers. So it might be worth waiting a month or two.


Thanks for the tip.
#14
dcx_badass
Also 16"+ and not bulky, rofl.


i said not too bulky.. i.e. i don't want one of those ridiculous alienware/rock/etc. "desktop replacement" gaming rigs, which are 2" thick, weigh as much as a bag of cement, and run hotter than the inside of a mcdonald's apple pie..

thanks for all the tips so far, guys & gals :thumbsup: i'm currently thinking a dell inspiron 17xx or studio 17 is the way to go (with dedicated gfx, natch).. they're around £549 delivered, which is pretty reasonable..
#15
Don't buy Dell, 2 of my riends bought Dell, and both went faulty within 1 year.

1. Failure to boot up, sent it back, worked for a bit, then broke again, took it apart and found a loose connection. now a few months later the battery has stopped holding charge.

2. Has needed new battery, new charger, new hinges and new monitor mount, all within 2 years.

Broken hinges, battery and charger issues are extremely common issues with Dell laptops, which is why i will never buy one or recommend them to anyone. If you want a laptop, go for Toshiba or Sony, they may be a little more expensive, but will last a hell of a lot longer.

My Toshiba is 7 years old now, and still going as strong as the day i bought it, not a problem.
#16
peodude
Don't buy Dell, 2 of my riends bought Dell, and both went faulty within 1 year.

i have to say, a lot of people (IRL, as well as other fora i have posted this on) have recommended dell from personal experience, so perhaps your friends were just unlucky? also, as long as they break within a year, at least they'll be covered by warranty!

in fact, i've been looking at some dells on ebay which claim to be "grade A3" refurbished and come from dell outlet with a 3 year on-site warranty! these are sellers with 100% positive feedback (or near enough) with ratings in the 10s of thousands, so they seem legit.. 3yr warranty would certainly be piece of mind for concerns such as those voiced above..

peodude
My Toshiba is 7 years old now, and still going as strong as the day i bought it, not a problem.


certainly wouldn't disagree with this, we use toshiba at work and they are very resilient machines.. when i worked for an IT reseller we used to recommend toshibas to anyone seeking longevity, they are great machines.. probably too business focussed for my needs, though!

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