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laptops - which one to get?


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This might not be a keyboard question but as I would like to use it for audio,vst instruments and such things (planning on adding some Indigo pcmcia card later) i thought it would not be so wrong with posting it here.

I have max. 970eur to spend on a laptop and i get 2 models which cost exactly like that:

-Compaq presario 2171

-Toshiba Satellite a10-s203

Both are celeron 2.2, 256mb ram, 15" monitor,.. except toshiba has 30gb disk and compaq 20gb.

If you have any experiences with both companies or even better - those models, would you prefer one to another? If there are some other reasons (reliabilty, speed, performance, battery life,etc.) I could do with 20gb only.

any recommendations?

thanks very much,


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Toshiba. Never Compaq. Compaq may make good servers and their laptops are better than their desktops, but they're better suited to business use and not even all that reliable for that. My company is fortunately replacing their Compaqs with Dells. I have no personal experience with Toshiba, though I've seen some good reviews on them. Compaq may be a known and trusted brand name, but their power lies much more in advertising than in actual product quality. They've recently merged with the other PC-from-hell maker, HP. Best to avoid.
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My Toshiba Satellite: 1.8gig P4/ 512mb ram/ 60 gig 5400 rpm drive dvd/cdrw. Two firewire drives, 30 gig and 80 gig, both 7200rpm.


It wasn't the easiest thing to configure for audio. I relied heavily on the Tweaks & Tips provided all over the net. But eventually things came together.


Toshiba includes a castrated version of WinXP which is fine for most users, but may cause problems with audio apps. Specifically, I was unable to do some of the XPTweaks because there were things missing from the OS. Like I said, though, patience paid off. It works fine. I use the Echo Layla Laptop pcmcia card and am buying the Indigo IO for live and session use.


I've had my Toshiba since July of '02 and have had ZERO problems with it.


Good luck,


9 Moog things, 3 Roland things, 2 Hammond things and a computer with stuff on it



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I'm in the same jam. I returned a motif 8 a couple days ago :( and decided to go the laptop/softsynth route. The motif was really cool, but I need a new computer too (this one periodically explodes in a horrendous mess of blue screens and hardware farts) and don't have the money for both. I've been browsing through some flyers and found this http://www.bestbuy.com/site/olspage.jsp?id=1058188656265&skuId=5806256&type=product&cmp=%20%20 , think it would work for soft synths?? It's 1349.00 after the rebate.

What are the differences between Pentium, Pentium Mobile, and Centrino processors? Anyone have experience with Sony VAIO laptops??? What's worked well for you??


Oh, and what would sound better, a motionsound keyboard amp or a power amp mixer and a set of jbl eons, yamaha speakers, or ACME low b2's? No place near me sells motionsound so I can't listen to them myself. If I could use it for bass as well, that would be great, but not necessity.


Ack ACK ack acK ACK ACK!!
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The Pentium Mobile and Centrino processors are optimized for laptop use, where you need power-saving features because of battery life and because of heat- a laptop can't include the internal fans that a desktop can. tomshardware.com might be a good source of information on the specific differences between the two.

As for Sony VAIOs, when I used to install DSL several of my customers had those. Those were consistently difficult installs. I was impressed with those computers until I actually got my hands on one. Attractive PC, impressive list of features, the only laptop I've seen that had hardware conflicts. All those features they jammed in there didn't get along with each other. 2 or 3 years later, those issues could be cleared up. If so, that's a great laptop. If not, you might be in for some configuration headaches.

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I would also suggest searching through this forum for 'laptop'. I had to make my decision recently too and thanks to the people here I bought myself an Apple Powerbook.


I'm a PC guy overall though - games and everything else. I bought the Mac because after doing my research (and reading a few persuading quotes on Macs) - I came to the conclusion a Mac would be less of a headache with: software/hardware compatibility, software/driver issues, etc etc.


I don't believe in a PC vs Mac war. I believe it to be Superbobus, a member here who has advised that you should go with whatever platform you are most comfortable with: Windows or Mac OS X/9. I have heard of many PC users getting reliable and nice performance with their work. I cannot yet attest to my Mac's performance as I have just started making my purchases and haven't gotten the software/keyboard yet - but I stand firm in my purchase. I just didn't want to deal with troubleshooting on the PC - I've done that enough on my own.


My advice to you is consider everyones advice as long as it's practical. If someone tells you to go Mac, do a bit of research behind Mac until you come to an understanding and a conclusion. Certainly try out a Mac if you haven't - maybe try to work with some audio apps on it if the dealer/seller will allow.


You'll find people telling you to go PC and others telling you to go Mac. It can be a hard decision, it kind of was for me. I knew I could save money going PC, but I also knew what I payed for a Mac would be worth it - as hesitant as I was.


I can't really help you with your budget and recommending what fits it, sorry - others may be able to.


I guess my final bit of advice is to talk with people who use both PC and Mac. Ask for the strenths and weaknesses of both - then compare, and make your decision.


Ahh, I finally get to help someone around here.

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Well, I thought for 900 you'd never be able to get an uptodate Mac laptop. Here's what I've found.

12" iBook, completely stripped, 999,-

12" iBook, combodrive, 256 MB 40 GB - 1179,-

14" iBook, combodrive, 256 MB 40 GB - 1359,-

12" PowerBook, combodrive, 256 MB, 60 GB, USB 2.0, FireWire 800 - 1567,-

I definitely wouldn't go for the iBook right now. They're really behind, needs to be updated like hell. No USB 2.0, no FireWire 800. Heck, any PC offer is better here (though you still have to use Windows, gna).

OT: Now you can say: "See, Macs are more expensive." Yesterday I compared a 15" PowerBook Aluminium with a Dell Lattitude D800, put the same specs to the Dell, still had 20 gig less hard drive than the PB and was 400 more expensive than the PB!

I WAS one of the Mac/PC war guys, but it doesn't make sense. It's about what software you already have and what you know and like best, but also about if you're willing to learn.



Hipness is not a state of mind, it's a fact of life.

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