Tech Help! Need new computer.

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  1. Last weekend I dropped my gateway laptop and now am in search of a new one. I am trying to decide between these three laptops.
    1. macbook or macbook pro
    2. toshiba satellite
    3. sony vaio

    I use my laptop for mostly browsing the web, downloading some pictures, itunes, creative zen mp3 player, word documents, and other downloads such as books, etc.

    If you have one of these types of computers please list pro's, con's, and experiences with customer service.

  2. I have a Macbook (white).

    I use Firefox for browsing the web, iPhoto/Preview for pictures, iTunes for music, Office for documents & spreadsheets, and I also have MyScribe for eBooks. iChat is a great program that you can run multiple accounts (such as Gchat, AIM) at the same time. My computer also has the built-in iSight camera so I can do video chats on either iChat or Skype.

    I have a 2.4Ghz Intel Core Duo processor with 2GB of RAM and a 120GB hard drive. It runs wonderfully and I've never had an issue with the computer crashing or running slowly. There's plenty of space - I have hundreds of high-res photos and a few movies as well. Much of the programs for Macs are freeware (without spyware attached). It's a wonderful machine and I can't say enough about how much I love my Mac.

    I haven't had to use customer service but I did purchase the 3-year service plan just in case anything were to happen.

    The only cons I can think of are that some programs are Windows compatible only. I don't use any of those however.
  3. ^ I can basically just ditto this! Except I have less memory (I think?) and I use Ne:huh:ffice for word processing; I don't have any need for MS Office because I only used Word and can save files as word docs with Ne:huh:ffice.

    Anyhow, love love love my MacBook and have no complaints!
  4. I love my macbook (white). My brother has the Macbook Pro. They both run really smooth. I did have a problem with my macbook a while back, the fan needed to be replaced, but other than that I love it! I use Safari for web browsing, iTunes for music, iChat for like said above, iChatting and such, especially with the webcam. I use microsoft word and powerpoint for my documents and stuff. I also use it for downloading and editing videos and pictures. Very useful. I recommend it. :tup:
  5. I have the macbook pro and love it. I use Safari and firefox for the internet, itunes for my music, iphoto, ichat, and microsoft word and office. I had one issue with my pro, the latch to keep it shut broke and I took it in and they at first said that since I had cosmetic damage to the case that the people who fix it would say that the latch broke from that. I explained to them that it happened over 2 years ago and the latch had just recently broken. I had a 4 year warranty and he said having that would make them less willing to fix it because of the cosmetic damage so he overrode my warranty and sent it to get fixed and he saved me a $ 1,000 bill.

    Like mentioned above the only problem is that some programs are not compatible with macs, but other than that I love the computer and want to purchase a desktop.
  6. Since I am pro-Mac in everything, I am going to recommend the Macbook.

    You cannot go wrong with using the Mac OS, and whether or not you are only using it for iTunes and internet, it's still a wonderful interface and computer. Macs are very user-friendly and hardly any problems. Definitely spend the extra $$$ for the Apple Care and that will give you 3 years of phone support as well as tech support. So if anything goes wrong with the computer within those 3 years, Apple will replace it free of charge. And if you live near an Apple store, you can frequently make appointments to visit a Genius at their free-of-charge Genius Bar. It's just getting an appointment that is challenging these days, but if you schedule it a day in advance, you should be OK (you can do this online, too).

    I prefer Safari, as I am not a big fan of Firefox, but that's me. Everything is wonderful, including iCal, iTunes, iChat, iPhoto, etc. Which all come pre-installed with the Mac OS. And you will love Leopard, too.

    Good luck on your decision.
  7. I recently bought a Macbook, and couldn't be happier. No problems so far! I have Microsoft Office on it, as well as Quicken, and I use Safari for web browsing, iTunes, iPhoto, iCal, and iChat. I also bought the Apple Care when I purchased it.
  8. Thanks for all of the responses. It looks like apple is highly recommended.

    A couple more questions about apple.
    1. I have heard that if you are on a mac and receive an email with a word attachment in it that you will not be able to open it. The salesperson at bestbuy said I would have to buy additional software for this. We didn't get into what software that was. Is it the microsoft office as mentioned above or does something like iworks open a word document?

    2. The salesperson at bestbuy said pretty much the only difference between the macbook and the macbook pro was the bigger screen size. What are the other differences? I read on one of the review sites that the macbook doesn't have firewire but I don't know that I would miss it anyway if I really don't know what it is (I'm not really techie at all).

    3. I live close to a bestbuy but the closest apple store is 1 1/2 hours away. Is it better to buy at an apple store or is it ok to buy from bestbuy?
  9. #9 Jan 25, 2009
    Last edited: Jan 25, 2009
    FYI, Dell is having some great deals on their 400 bucks.

    (have to copy and paste the link and take out the space between slick and deals, as I can't hotlink for some reason)

    Also, here's a WalFart deal om an Acer (which used to be a good brand, but I'm not sure now), and a Gateway.

    Oh, and for Apple, if you can use a PC and it meets your needs, I don't see any reason why you should spend the extra 400-600 bucks on an Apple, but hey, it's your money. :smile:
  10. ^^ I have a Dell desktop and have problems with it so I really don't want another Dell. My Gateway that I had worked great but I heard that since they were bought out 3 yrs ago their quality has gone down (according to Bestbuy associate).

    I am really just looking for something that will give me the least amount of problems. I have found that I have no patience when it comes to computer problems and talking to customer service that can't fix a problem.

    My husband though will agree - why spend that much more money when a pc will handle all I would use it for.
  11. Im not famliar with the others, but I had the 3 lb sony vaio (tr series) since I wanted the smallest laptop on the market with a good reputation for travel. It's kind of a backup now since I found an even smaller one. However, it still works well, despite dropping it twice, and haven't had any real problems. It started slowing up a bit, but after performing a clean installation (after almost 5 years) to get rid of the junk that's accumulated seemed to have clear that up. I didn't use customer service except once to ask about a software problem not related to them (they were very nice and helpful), but did use the warranty when one of the little doors broke that I slid my modem card into. It was my fault, but they fixed it within a week under warranty. I don't do anything beyond the internet, email, docs, and a few special programs (including itunes) so my recent purchase was a cheaper and lighter one that fits my needs, but if they hadn't come out with the newer umpcs, I'd probably still be using it or upgrading to a newer model vaio of the same size.
  12. I just got a Dell Vostro, and I LOVE IT!!!!:tup:
  13. What sort of issues did you have with the Dell? I use a Dell laptop for work and it's been great.
  14. I have a Dell Desktop that I keep at my parents and I use it regularly. It works perfect and have never had one problem with it, so I've never replaced it...and it's really old.
  15. 1. MS Office for Mac can open any Office (.doc, .xls, .ppt) document. Ne:huh:ffice does the same. MS Office is not that expensive, especially if you are still a student.

    2. The MacBook Pro has a different processor speed than the Macbook. For what you are using it for, the Pro is probably more than you need.

    3. I bought my Mac online at You will get the same computer whether you get it online, at the Apple Store, or at Best Buy. The nice thing about the online store is that you can customize your computer for speed, hard drive size, and peripherals. You can also order MS Office online at the same time for documents. If you are a student, you can get a student discount online or, at the Apple store, you login to your student email in front of a salesperson and they apply the discount. It's 10% off for students and educators.