Beastly Laptop 

Beastly Laptop

Dude, I'm getting a Dell! (I think.)

We're planning on buying a computer for college, and given all the options, I think the best option is the Dell Inspiron 5150. I looked at a lot of computers... from Alienware(which makes the BEST computers in the world, but also the most expensive) to Dell (which makes a lot of really cheap computers with obsolete parts, but also offers a lot of amazing systems with great prices--something they can afford to do since they're the largest computer sales company in the world, last I heard). In any case, building your own computer is usually the best bet (PriceWatch is great for getting parts) as long as you know what brands and parts to buy, and know how to put it all together (I'm lucky enough to have a friend who does... I just know what parts are the best, not how they work). However, since I'm going to college, it'll be nice to have a laptop (something I've never owned). I was initially turned off from the idea because they're so much less powerful than desktops, and usually more expensive (for comparable parts) because of voltage, space, weight and heating variables you have to take into account. I found that I could make a top-of-the-line AMD desktop for around $1,600, while most laptops were weak and cost only a few hundred less... until I found the 5150. For around $1,700 (customized) I can get a Pentium 4 3.06 Ghz laptop with an ATi Radeon Mobility 9000 (64 MB) video card, 512 MB RAM, 40 Gig hard drive, XP Professional, a 3 or 4 year warranty, and other nice goodies. My current desktop has a Pentium 3 1.8 Ghz processor, 256 MB RAM, and a GeForce 3 (64 MB) video card... which means this laptop should be amazingly better. I still have some doubts about laptops (flatscreen monitor quality... underclocking issues due to heat... battery life... etc) but I hope we get it so I can take advantage of Tufts' wireless internet access and the portability of the laptop (I think I'm going to buy a locking file cabinet or chest for my room to store it in when I'm not there... every college says "We don't have stealing issues" but people are only human, and Ebay is the new pawn shop of the world).

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