ToysAreUs
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I want something I can use and read during lectures, especially when the lecturer is going too fast I can go back to the previous slide or read some alternative notes.

My old laptop just died on me it was like family ...

Budget: anything under 500 I don't mind spending a bit more.
Battery : Huge
Speed: FAST
Storage: SSD must!
Processor: something decent don't know too much about laptops
RAM: 8 gigs and above.

I don't want it for gaming but I want it to last and still be fast in many years to come.

Every laptop I have ever owned (I've owned dell Inspiron 15 an Acer and a Samsung old model new at the time) has died on me ...

1. Internal resistant built up and battery lasted from 11(before) to 2 (after)
2. Laptop went slow...
3. Laptop broke for an unknown reason

I don't want this to happen again, I treat my laptops like family...

Any recommendations?
Last edited by ToysAreUs; 1 month ago
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lancpe2002
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I know it is rather a clice but I have used by MackBook Air for years and I have never had a problem with it: you can find a decent second had one with your budget and although it is 'minimalistic', it has everything you need I guess.
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ToysAreUs
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(Original post by lancpe2002)
I know it is rather a clice but I have used by MackBook Air for years and I have never had a problem with it: you can find a decent second had one with your budget and although it is 'minimalistic', it has everything you need I guess.
Thanks for the recommendation but The students have told me that I am better off with windows. The software is meant to be easier to use on them. Haven't questioned it but many people said the same.
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kurro
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(Original post by ToysAreUs)
Thanks for the recommendation but The students have told me that I am better off with windows. The software is meant to be easier to use on them. Haven't questioned it but many people said the same.
Macbooks are pretty easy to use, same as windows don't worry about that. They are just overpriced imo.

Well, you already have an idea for specs, it's just the processor left. i5 should suffice.
Something like this:
https://www.currys.co.uk/gbuk/comput...95338-pdt.html
If you want more portability then your going to have to pay more than £800 with good specs.
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ToysAreUs
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(Original post by kurro)
Macbooks are pretty easy to use, same as windows don't worry about that. They are just overpriced imo.

Well, you already have an idea for specs, it's just the processor left. i5 should suffice.
Something like this:
https://www.currys.co.uk/gbuk/comput...95338-pdt.html
If you want more portability then your going to have to pay more than £800 with good specs.
seems exactly like what I am after, If anyone has any other laptops I would realllllly appreciate a link to them. Obviously no bad rumoured ones since theres a high chance I may make the purchase.
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Acsel
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(Original post by ToysAreUs)
Budget: anything under 500 I don't mind spending a bit more.
Battery : Huge
Speed: FAST
Storage: SSD must!
Processor: something decent don't know too much about laptops
RAM: 8 gigs and above.
Personally I'd recommend this Dell Inspiron 14 inch. Inspirons are all round solid devices, but this model in particular is a bit stand out right now. In terms of how it meets your requirements:

  • Battery: It's nothing special, but it's in line with other laptops at this price point. Battery capacity matters, but in all honesty the hardware you have and what you do with it matters far more.
  • Speed: This is subjective, but an M.2 SSD, a 10th gen i5 and 8GB of RAM won't be slow by any stretch.
  • Storage: It has an M.2 SSD, so you're covered there. 256GB is about the limit you'll get at this price point, but is also a good middle ground
  • Processor: This is one of the big benefits of this laptop. The 10th gen i5 10210U processor iterates on the already excellent i5 8250U and i5 8265U, improving performance, reducing power draw and adding new features. You could get an older, chunkier laptop with a bigger battery and it'd be far worse, simply due to how power efficient modern components are. If you're not doing anything intensive, your battery life will be fine. The performance overhead also means the laptop will last well into the future and can cope with more demanding workloads you throw at it.
  • RAM: Has 8GB in a 4+4 config, so if you desperately needed more you could upgrade to 12GB (but this is probably unnecessaary).

Now unfortunately it's a little above your budget. At around £540 after student discount you do need to spend a little extra. But at this spec point, that's normal. You're going to struggle to find a decent laptop (8th gen i5 or higher, 8GB RAM, 256GB SSD, 1080p display, etc.) at much under £500. The device mentioned above by Kurro is also perfect, but as you can see sits at that £500 budget. You won't find anything comparable at say £300.

IMO, spending the extra £40 gets you a ton of value, mostly out of the processor being more power efficient. All round though, the Dell is a solid laptop; you get a decent 1080p display, a small and portable 14 inch, 1.5Kg device, Dell's decent build quality and one of the newest processors on the market. The device is about as new as it gets, which gives you the best longevity. However, how long it'll last will ultimately be down to you. Whatever laptop you end up getting, do some research into taking care of it. That's going to mean not installing tons of bloat, generally doing a little bit of housekeeping on it from time to time and so on.

Obligatory recommendation: Ensure you're also buying an external hard drive that can be used to create backups of your important files.
Last edited by Acsel; 1 month ago
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kurro
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(Original post by acsel)
personally i'd recommend this dell inspiron 14 inch. Inspirons are all round solid devices, but this model in particular is a bit stand out right now. In terms of how it meets your requirements:

  • battery: It's nothing special, but it's in line with other laptops at this price point. Battery capacity matters, but in all honesty the hardware you have and what you do with it matters far more.
  • speed: This is subjective, but an m.2 ssd, a 10th gen i5 and 8gb of ram won't be slow by any stretch.
  • storage: It has an m.2 ssd, so you're covered there. 256gb is about the limit you'll get at this price point, but is also a good middle ground
  • processor: This is one of the big benefits of this laptop. The 10th gen i5 10210u processor iterates on the already excellent i5 8250u and i5 8265u, improving performance, reducing power draw and adding new features. You could get an older, chunkier laptop with a bigger battery and it'd be far worse, simply due to how power efficient modern components are. If you're not doing anything intensive, your battery life will be fine. The performance overhead also means the laptop will last well into the future and can cope with more demanding workloads you throw at it.
  • ram: Has 8gb in a 4+4 config, so if you desperately needed more you could upgrade to 12gb (but this is probably unnecessaary).

now unfortunately it's a little above your budget. At around £540 after student discount you do need to spend a little extra. But at this spec point, that's normal. You're going to struggle to find a decent laptop (8th gen i5 or higher, 8gb ram, 256gb ssd, 1080p display, etc.) at much under £500. The device mentioned above by kurro is also perfect, but as you can see sits at that £500 budget. You won't find anything comparable at say £300.

Imo, spending the extra £40 gets you a ton of value, mostly out of the processor being more power efficient. All round though, the dell is a solid laptop; you get a decent 1080p display, a small and portable 14 inch, 1.5kg device, dell's decent build quality and one of the newest processors on the market. The device is about as new as it gets, which gives you the best longevity. However, how long it'll last will ultimately be down to you. Whatever laptop you end up getting, do some research into taking care of it. That's going to mean not installing tons of bloat, generally doing a little bit of housekeeping on it from time to time and so on.

Obligatory recommendation: Ensure you're also buying an external hard drive that can be used to create backups of your important files.
your back?!?!
ayyyy
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Acsel
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(Original post by kurro)
your back?!?!
ayyyy
Sadly not in my previous capacity. I've made a point of dropping in on TSR every now and then because I still get a load of messages from people asking for advice. If I'm here and happen to see a thread that could do with answering (or I just fancy wasting 5 minutes on TSR) then I'll drop a reply in. But for the most part I'm more active on Reddit because the community is more beneficial to me
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Dunnig Kruger
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ToysAreUs, what exactly is wrong with your old laptop?

Would you be happy if you could get it working again for free? Or for less than £50?

Is it , for example:
beeping when you try to power it on and then doing nothing?
Grtting past the initial powering splash screen but failing to load Windows?
Is the screen smashed, as in it doesn't display anything properly?
Or are a load of keys not working on the keyboard?
Is it saying "no boot device found" and when you check the Bios it's indicating that no hard drive is fitted?
Is the battery not holding any charge, but it works OK with the power adapter plugged in?
Does it load up Windows, but your web browser doesn't work right?
Some other issue?
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ToysAreUs
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#10
(Original post by Dunnig Kruger)
ToysAreUs, what exactly is wrong with your old laptop?

Would you be happy if you could get it working again for free? Or for less than £50?

Is it , for example:
beeping when you try to power it on and then doing nothing?
Grtting past the initial powering splash screen but failing to load Windows?
Is the screen smashed, as in it doesn't display anything properly?
Or are a load of keys not working on the keyboard?
Is it saying "no boot device found" and when you check the Bios it's indicating that no hard drive is fitted?
Is the battery not holding any charge, but it works OK with the power adapter plugged in?
Does it load up Windows, but your web browser doesn't work right?
Some other issue?
Sorry for the late reply, my previous laptop had a problem every time I started it up.

It said "Alert! The AC power adapter wattage and type cannot be determined. The battery may not charge. The system will adjust the performance to match the power available. "

It didn't charge and I could only use it once it was plugged in + I haven't used it due to it being so slow.

I replaced the battery and there was no change.
Every time I started the laptop surfing the web and doing basic things was impossible, it was unusable, disgustingly slow.
The specs were 500gb SSD crucial
8 gigs ram
I7 processor
and radeon graphics all the other **** u expect.
The display was so big I couldn't fit it in any of my bags(which isn't a good thing but yeah).

I sent it to repair at some local shops and they said there was nothing they could do.
I am still looking for laptops by the way and would appreciate more recommendations.
Last edited by ToysAreUs; 3 weeks ago
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ToysAreUs
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#11
(Original post by Acsel)
Personally I'd recommend this Dell Inspiron 14 inch. Inspirons are all round solid devices, but this model in particular is a bit stand out right now. In terms of how it meets your requirements:

  • Battery: It's nothing special, but it's in line with other laptops at this price point. Battery capacity matters, but in all honesty the hardware you have and what you do with it matters far more.
  • Speed: This is subjective, but an M.2 SSD, a 10th gen i5 and 8GB of RAM won't be slow by any stretch.
  • Storage: It has an M.2 SSD, so you're covered there. 256GB is about the limit you'll get at this price point, but is also a good middle ground
  • Processor: This is one of the big benefits of this laptop. The 10th gen i5 10210U processor iterates on the already excellent i5 8250U and i5 8265U, improving performance, reducing power draw and adding new features. You could get an older, chunkier laptop with a bigger battery and it'd be far worse, simply due to how power efficient modern components are. If you're not doing anything intensive, your battery life will be fine. The performance overhead also means the laptop will last well into the future and can cope with more demanding workloads you throw at it.
  • RAM: Has 8GB in a 4+4 config, so if you desperately needed more you could upgrade to 12GB (but this is probably unnecessaary).

Now unfortunately it's a little above your budget. At around £540 after student discount you do need to spend a little extra. But at this spec point, that's normal. You're going to struggle to find a decent laptop (8th gen i5 or higher, 8GB RAM, 256GB SSD, 1080p display, etc.) at much under £500. The device mentioned above by Kurro is also perfect, but as you can see sits at that £500 budget. You won't find anything comparable at say £300.

IMO, spending the extra £40 gets you a ton of value, mostly out of the processor being more power efficient. All round though, the Dell is a solid laptop; you get a decent 1080p display, a small and portable 14 inch, 1.5Kg device, Dell's decent build quality and one of the newest processors on the market. The device is about as new as it gets, which gives you the best longevity. However, how long it'll last will ultimately be down to you. Whatever laptop you end up getting, do some research into taking care of it. That's going to mean not installing tons of bloat, generally doing a little bit of housekeeping on it from time to time and so on.

Obligatory recommendation: Ensure you're also buying an external hard drive that can be used to create backups of your important files.
Looks good, with laptops im not too sure what processors are good / bad.
What clockspeeds are good?
My uncles laptop is for work and its speed is decent at 2.4 and 2.6 ghz.
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Dunnig Kruger
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#12
(Original post by ToysAreUs)
Sorry for the late reply, my previous laptop had a problem every time I started it up.

It said "Alert! The AC power adapter wattage and type cannot be determined. The battery may not charge. The system will adjust the performance to match the power available. "

It didn't charge and I could only use it once it was plugged in + I haven't used it due to it being so slow.

I replaced the battery and there was no change.
Every time I started the laptop surfing the web and doing basic things was impossible, it was unusable, disgustingly slow.
The specs were 500gb SSD crucial
8 gigs ram
I7 processor
and radeon graphics all the other **** u expect.
The display was so big I couldn't fit it in any of my bags(which isn't a good thing but yeah).

I sent it to repair at some local shops and they said there was nothing they could do.
I am still looking for laptops by the way and would appreciate more recommendations.
Have you tried an alternative power supply? One that is fully compatible with your laptop.

If you have and the charging fault remains then motherboard's a goner, which will almost certainly make your laptop BER (Beyond economical repair).

There's a chance that the fault is with the laptop charger. It's well worth checking, just to make sure, as chargers are like £15.

For the slow response times, a full software rebuild would bring it fully up to speed. That costs £nothing. Just a bit of your time. For surfing the web your laptop should be blistering quick - assuming you have a half decent internet connection.

If you are looking at a new laptop, you could buy one without a hard drive. Simply transfer your old hard drive to the new one. Same thing applies to the RAM.
I'd be checking what spec of hard drive and RAM the old laptop had and then I'd be looking for a compatible laptop for them.
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Acsel
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(Original post by ToysAreUs)
Looks good, with laptops im not too sure what processors are good / bad.
What clockspeeds are good?
My uncles laptop is for work and its speed is decent at 2.4 and 2.6 ghz.
So processors are about more than just clock speed. But as a general rule, you don't need a powerful laptop for web browsing, writing/reading notes, etc.

As a quick rundown, laptop processors are basically divided into 2 categories. They're either low power, typically designated by a U at the end of the processor name, or they're high power, designated by a H and or HQ at the end of the processor name. An example of each would be the i5 8250U and the i5 8400H. The processor category basically defines clockspeeds; lower power processors will have lower clock speeds because the number of cycles per second (the clock speed) is directly related to how much power you're pushing through the processor. The low 1.6GHz clock speed of the laptop I linked may concern you if your uncle's laptop has a base speed of 2.4GHz. But realistically you don't need super high clock speeds for basic tasks. The lower clock speed will be perfectly sufficient for everyday tasks without compromising battery life. And when you need more power, it can turbo up to 4.2GHz briefly. All in all, clock speeds matter more during high intensity workloads.

The only other real defining factor when it comes to performance is core count and hyperthreading. Broadly speaking, the number of cores and threads defines how many instructions the CPU can run concurrently. This is largely irrelevant when buying a new laptop nowadays though. Starting with their 8th gen CPUs, Intel began offering low power quad cores. Previously, all the low power U chips were dual cores and only the higher power chips offered quad core variants. Comparing the i5 8250U to the previous gen i5 7200U, doubling the cores increased performance by some 40%. Each new generation also brings improved power efficiency.

This fundamentally loops back to why I said an 8th gen or higher i5 is ideal. The improved efficiency means you get excellent performance without compromising on battery life. It's widely accepted that nobody should be buying a laptop with a pre 8th gen processor nowadays and it's also why Apple is a laughing stock for selling their premium MacBook Pro with an outdated dual core processor. And to loop this all back to the Dell I recommended before (which notably is currently on sale), it has a 10th gen i5 U processor. This means you get the excellent performance of a quad core chip, coupled with the power efficiency of a modern design. Older quad core chips cannot compete in terms of performance while also upholding the power efficiency, while older low power chips will be similarly power efficient but can't compete on performance. Effectively an 8th gen or higher i5 offers you the best of both worlds.
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ToysAreUs
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(Original post by Acsel)
So processors are about more than just clock speed. But as a general rule, you don't need a powerful laptop for web browsing, writing/reading notes, etc.

As a quick rundown, laptop processors are basically divided into 2 categories. They're either low power, typically designated by a U at the end of the processor name, or they're high power, designated by a H and or HQ at the end of the processor name. An example of each would be the i5 8250U and the i5 8400H. The processor category basically defines clockspeeds; lower power processors will have lower clock speeds because the number of cycles per second (the clock speed) is directly related to how much power you're pushing through the processor. The low 1.6GHz clock speed of the laptop I linked may concern you if your uncle's laptop has a base speed of 2.4GHz. But realistically you don't need super high clock speeds for basic tasks. The lower clock speed will be perfectly sufficient for everyday tasks without compromising battery life. And when you need more power, it can turbo up to 4.2GHz briefly. All in all, clock speeds matter more during high intensity workloads.

The only other real defining factor when it comes to performance is core count and hyperthreading. Broadly speaking, the number of cores and threads defines how many instructions the CPU can run concurrently. This is largely irrelevant when buying a new laptop nowadays though. Starting with their 8th gen CPUs, Intel began offering low power quad cores. Previously, all the low power U chips were dual cores and only the higher power chips offered quad core variants. Comparing the i5 8250U to the previous gen i5 7200U, doubling the cores increased performance by some 40%. Each new generation also brings improved power efficiency.

This fundamentally loops back to why I said an 8th gen or higher i5 is ideal. The improved efficiency means you get excellent performance without compromising on battery life. It's widely accepted that nobody should be buying a laptop with a pre 8th gen processor nowadays and it's also why Apple is a laughing stock for selling their premium MacBook Pro with an outdated dual core processor. And to loop this all back to the Dell I recommended before (which notably is currently on sale), it has a 10th gen i5 U processor. This means you get the excellent performance of a quad core chip, coupled with the power efficiency of a modern design. Older quad core chips cannot compete in terms of performance while also upholding the power efficiency, while older low power chips will be similarly power efficient but can't compete on performance. Effectively an 8th gen or higher i5 offers you the best of both worlds.
Wow Acsel thanks for the detail, I am glad I read all of that.
I am now highly considering getting the dell
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ToysAreUs
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(Original post by Dunnig Kruger)
Have you tried an alternative power supply? One that is fully compatible with your laptop.

If you have and the charging fault remains then motherboard's a goner, which will almost certainly make your laptop BER (Beyond economical repair).

There's a chance that the fault is with the laptop charger. It's well worth checking, just to make sure, as chargers are like £15.

For the slow response times, a full software rebuild would bring it fully up to speed. That costs £nothing. Just a bit of your time. For surfing the web your laptop should be blistering quick - assuming you have a half decent internet connection.

If you are looking at a new laptop, you could buy one without a hard drive. Simply transfer your old hard drive to the new one. Same thing applies to the RAM.
I'd be checking what spec of hard drive and RAM the old laptop had and then I'd be looking for a compatible laptop for them.
Sorry forgot to mention the first thing I tried was getting a new power lead and there was no change whatsoever.
I also tried different sockets around my house and at different locations.

After my laptop broke my parents said it was my fault, reason being I opened up the laptop and upgraded the HDD with a SSD (And because of this they thought I messed up something else in the process even though it wasn't a hard task and I made sure I was extra careful).

This issue happened around 6 months after I opened my laptop yet they continue to blame me! oh well parents are never wrong ...XD

I would like to secretly open up the laptop and exchange the storage over but if they found out... it would be the end of me.

So instead I'm going to use the SSD in my old laptop on a computer build next year or whenever I save up enough money for it.
Last edited by ToysAreUs; 3 weeks ago
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Dunnig Kruger
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Your parents are 100% wrong about you having anything to do with your motherboard failing to charge your battery.

You can show them this thread if you like. Or ask them to pm me.

The failure was most likely caused by the manufacturer using cheap capacitors on the motherboard. These have deteriorated and are preventing the charge from your power supply being used to charge your battery.

Go ahead and use your SSD in your next laptop if it suits you.
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Acsel
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(Original post by ToysAreUs)
Wow Acsel thanks for the detail, I am glad I read all of that.
I am now highly considering getting the dell
All round it's an excellent device. It manages to meet a lot of the criteria that make a laptop great (decent specs, lightweight, not too small but not too big, good build quality, etc.) without making any compromises. Honestly I can't think of a better laptop at a similar price.
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ToysAreUs
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https://www.box.co.uk/ASUS-X409FA-EK...aign=affiliate its either than or the dell as of now
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Acsel
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(Original post by ToysAreUs)
https://www.box.co.uk/ASUS-X409FA-EK...aign=affiliate its either than or the dell as of now
My personal preference here would be the Dell, partly because I'm familiar with their devices and can attest to their build quality. That's not to say the Asus is bad, just that I can't make a decent comparison with a device I don't have hands on experience with. I'd hate to recommend the Asus just because it's cheaper and then find out it had a bad keyboard for example.

In terms of raw differences between them:
  • Battery Size: This is the big one. The box website lists the battery on the Asus as 4-5 hours. This is crap, but also a meaningless number. I went searching for an actual battery capacity, and found the same laptop on eBuyer. The actual battery size there is listed as 42Wh. The Dell by comparison is listed as 51Wh, so around 25% larger. If the Asus 4-5 hours is accurate, that'd put the Dell at 6-7 hours, which is far more reasonable for a laptop.
  • Processor: The Dell has a 10th gen i5, whereas the Asus has an older refreshed 8th gen. Realistically they're both good chips and performance will be similar. However the more modern chip in the Dell is likely to be a bit more power efficient. Coupled with the larger battery and the Dell is going to have a quite significant advantage when it comes to battery life.
  • Weight: It's not a substantial difference but the Dell is slightly lighter (1.4Kg vs 1.6Kg). Similarly the Dell has a slightly smaller footprint, making it a marginally lighter and smaller device all round.

Whether you consider these differences worth the extra £100 is up to you. Personally I'd be more than happy paying the extra £100 to get a solid boost in battery life, a more modern processor and a device that's slightly smaller and lighter (i.e. better at being a laptop). I also strongly value that I can go try the Dell out in stores, whereas I may have trouble finding the Asus in a local store. Therefore if it were my money, I'd go try the Dell out and if I were happy with it I'd buy it online.
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ToysAreUs
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(Original post by Acsel)
My personal preference here would be the Dell, partly because I'm familiar with their devices and can attest to their build quality. That's not to say the Asus is bad, just that I can't make a decent comparison with a device I don't have hands on experience with. I'd hate to recommend the Asus just because it's cheaper and then find out it had a bad keyboard for example.

In terms of raw differences between them:
  • Battery Size: This is the big one. The box website lists the battery on the Asus as 4-5 hours. This is crap, but also a meaningless number. I went searching for an actual battery capacity, and found the same laptop on eBuyer. The actual battery size there is listed as 42Wh. The Dell by comparison is listed as 51Wh, so around 25% larger. If the Asus 4-5 hours is accurate, that'd put the Dell at 6-7 hours, which is far more reasonable for a laptop.
  • Processor: The Dell has a 10th gen i5, whereas the Asus has an older refreshed 8th gen. Realistically they're both good chips and performance will be similar. However the more modern chip in the Dell is likely to be a bit more power efficient. Coupled with the larger battery and the Dell is going to have a quite significant advantage when it comes to battery life.
  • Weight: It's not a substantial difference but the Dell is slightly lighter (1.4Kg vs 1.6Kg). Similarly the Dell has a slightly smaller footprint, making it a marginally lighter and smaller device all round.

Whether you consider these differences worth the extra £100 is up to you. Personally I'd be more than happy paying the extra £100 to get a solid boost in battery life, a more modern processor and a device that's slightly smaller and lighter (i.e. better at being a laptop). I also strongly value that I can go try the Dell out in stores, whereas I may have trouble finding the Asus in a local store. Therefore if it were my money, I'd go try the Dell out and if I were happy with it I'd buy it online.
Do you recommend me getting any extra protection? Like a case or warranty or replacement insurance whatever it called nowadays
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