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need to get a cheapish laptop for new job

(15 Posts)
basildonbond Mon 01-Nov-10 14:57:54

I'm just about to start a part-time admin job and have been told to get myself a work laptop and phone

not sure of the budget, but it's not going to be lavish wink

any recommendations for something that's pretty basic but reliable? would need to update a website, and use word and excel on it and that's probably about it

I have an imac at home - would love to have a macbook but somehow don't think the budget will stretch to that!

WildistheWind Mon 01-Nov-10 16:44:57

Dell have got good deals on Laptops- I use one for work and works a treat.


NetworkGuy Mon 01-Nov-10 20:08:04

With a better clue to the budget, might be easier to recommend... do you want to have SMS facility on your phone (yes, possible on landlines for a while now, both send and receive) and answerphone etc...

Lots of choices in the market for laptops, from 200 to 500 pounds, so what's your (their) idea of basic and lavish ? If it's a non-profit organisation, then bottom line will be even more important...

basildonbond Tue 02-Nov-10 14:32:39

budget is £400 pounds - was just going to get basic PAYG mobile so most of the budget will be for laptop

NetworkGuy Thu 04-Nov-10 11:01:49

On the PAYG front, I'd recommend getting something from Asda (Living) as they have quite a range of low(ish) cost mobiles (10 to 50+ pounds, depending on what one wants).

Asda SIM is available free when you get a 5 quid voucher (so you can get a new number each time you top-up, and see if you get a memorable number, at which time you can ditch the original SIM).

Regarding laptops, and a budget of 350 to 375 pounds, you may find a Lenovo (IBM) fits the bill, or a low-end Toshiba.

If you do visit Asda Living, check whether they have any Compaq laptops on the shelves (I bought a Win 7 15.6" model for 247 in February - gave it to my sister though as her need was greater), and more recently when I saw two models but one was unpriced, I asked at the checkout and the guy went into the store room, bringing out 3, including a Lenovo with 4GB RAM at just under 300 quid - would have bought it on the spot if I had had the cash spare!.

There's a Compaq Presario CQ62-220SA - Celeron 2.2 GHz - 15.6″ - 2 GB Ram - 250 GB HDD listed on Google's shopping search, at prices from around 340 - see this link for one seller or this link for the Google search. Beware of really low prices with no rating as some firms appear to be fly-by-nights which may take the money...

You might check the Acer Aspire on this link or check here for other laptops with XP or Windows 7 and a screen of at least 14" (which should get you a full size keyboard, with luck).

Sorry if I have put forward too many options, and I am going on my preference for screen size over portability as the extra space can make a real difference to using a laptop, in my view, as can a decent keyboard rather than cramped (I plug in a full size USB kbd so I don't worry about different laptop kbd layouts).

NetworkGuy Thu 04-Nov-10 11:36:41

Oh, nearly forgot - Comet and Argos ] may also have suitable items to look at... Laptop, 329 (reduced from 349) search for item 508/3235 (NB the / is optional!)

NetworkGuy Thu 04-Nov-10 11:58:57

I should add the Compaq seem to have higher spec DVD drive (handling +R and -R discs) but some of the other laptops have more USB ports so it may be swings and roundabouts...

NetworkGuy Fri 05-Nov-10 06:51:30

Ebuyer link has a Compaq for sale at 369 (which I know will pressure your budget for PAYG, but a cheap Nokia for basic calls/text might be available for around 5 to 15 quid (+10 quid top-up))

Compaq Presario CQ56-111SA
320 GB HD
3.5 hours battery life (some give 2.5h)
Win 7 Home Premium
Laptop bag (normally 9.99)
5 GB online backup
(you could store the documents you work on)

basildonbond Mon 15-Nov-10 23:46:49

ok - they've upped the budget a bit .... to £500/£550 ish

I've been recommended HP or Samsung

I'm going all goggle-eyed and indecisive ...

which one to choose???


NetworkGuy Tue 16-Nov-10 00:25:59

HP bought Compaq a while ago, so I suggest you include Compaq when looking.

As you have extra cash then again look for machines with 4 GB of RAM...

Also means you can go for a slightly better mobile - perhaps on Three with Skype (which you can use free, so could be a useful way to stay in touch with the office if they have a PC with speakers and microphone and can use Skype too - only need to top up once every 3 months I think so could use up the credit for normal calls if there is no Skype facility at the office).

Good luck with choosing...

TechLovingDad Tue 16-Nov-10 00:29:10

Network guy covers all bases. But to confuse you, here's my experience.

Toshiba - excellent but not much for your money.

Lenovo (IBM) - same.

Dell & Acer - Good build quality and prices.

Compaq - Used to be awful laptops, now HP so not bad. Bit dear though.

Comet / Argos good prices.

PC World avoid at ANY cost.

TechLovingDad Tue 16-Nov-10 00:29:35

Or, are Orange still doing the deals where you pay for a decent phone and get a free laptop and broadband dongle?

NetworkGuy Tue 16-Nov-10 03:48:41

Re phone + laptop...

The bulk of contracts online seem to need 24 months x 30 pounds (min) so exceed 500 pounds (and sometimes the phone by itself would cost 15 or 20 pounds, ie far from being 'smart phone' category), and after VAT change cost will increase, I suspect.

NetworkGuy Tue 16-Nov-10 19:37:06

[[ lications/single-issues.jsp?productId=500213784 ]] Vizio supplies online editions of various magazines. Might be worth 3 quid (I believe you can download as well as view online) to get the issue looking at 24 notebooks from 250 quid.

NetworkGuy Wed 17-Nov-10 08:13:46

Silly MN web form handling

Try this link instead !!

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