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Re: Any laptop recommendations
Old 01-19-2006, 04:07 PM   #21
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Re: Any laptop recommendations

I vote nay on HP/Compaq...

I'd recommend a headset with earphones/mic for the dictation app.

Have never used dictation app, but used to have fun with the text sythesizer reading porn...
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Re: Any laptop recommendations
Old 01-19-2006, 04:34 PM   #22
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Re: Any laptop recommendations

Another vote against HP. Today just had my 3rd laptop hard drive crash in a month. (My users have about 15 laptops.) I liked these nc6000's for a while, but they're croaking on me way too soon and too often. This one is 2-3 years old, but the others were less than a year old.
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Re: Any laptop recommendations
Old 01-19-2006, 05:01 PM   #23
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Re: Any laptop recommendations

When I worked for IBM, I had a Thinkpad T30. The hard drive went out after 2 years of working on it 5 days a week.
Other than that, I had no problems with it.

My personal laptop, HP with widescreen had the power supply die within 10 months. Fortunately replaced by warantee. With the widescreen, it's a bit heavier than the smaller laptops. I had a LOT of IE problems, but it's not HP related I have some Yahoo software loaded that interferes with IE at times.

I should have bought my IBM laptop when I left, I really liked it. Maybe someday I'll get an updated version, only they're more expensive than the other brands. I'll go back to a smaller screen next time, more portable. I haul my laptop all over the house. Love that wireless connection.
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Re: Any laptop recommendations
Old 01-19-2006, 10:47 PM   #24
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Re: Any laptop recommendations

I worked next to the desktop group for about 10 years.* My unofficial poll rated the Toshiba laptops as best, followed by IBM.* All the rest, HP, Compaq, Dell, Gateway, and various one of a kinds were cursed continuously.* Of course that was a couple of years ago. If you look closely at most of the laptops, they are made by various little known Korean companies and those companies change even across the models of one brand name.* *
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Re: Any laptop recommendations
Old 01-20-2006, 08:21 AM   #25
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Re: Any laptop recommendations

I'll have her look at all your suggestions. I do like the look of the Sony. The Thinkpads-do they have a touch pad or that funny little eraser head? I want a touchpad.

BTW, I do use a quality headset plugged into the computer if I do digital dictation. The problem is that the machine is a bit slow so the words take too long to hit the screen. Makes it very confusing to use the software. It works fine on a desktop machine.
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Re: Any laptop recommendations
Old 01-20-2006, 02:23 PM   #26
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Re: Any laptop recommendations

Desktop might be faster (hey! You need a faster computer!) and the microphone input might be higher quality. Laptops tend to be electronically 'noisier' than desktops on average.

Ask the maker of your speech recognition software if they believe the soundblaster audigy pcmcia card would provide an improved speech input to their s/w vs the internal microphone in. Might be cleaner and therefore potentially faster.
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Re: Any laptop recommendations
Old 01-20-2006, 03:04 PM   #27
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Re: Any laptop recommendations

Quote:
Originally Posted by Martha
I'll have her look at all your suggestions.* I do like the look of the Sony. The Thinkpads-do they have a touch pad or that funny little eraser head?* I want a touchpad.

BTW, I do use a quality headset plugged into the computer if I do digital dictation.* The problem is that the machine is a bit slow so the words take too long to hit the screen.* Makes it very confusing to use the software.* It works fine on a desktop machine.
The Thinkpads come with both, and you can turn off one or the other if you have a preference.

As for dictation, have you ever considered simply using a digital recorder, and then transfer the file to your computer when finished? That way, you get your words "on the record" without having to pause, and then let the machine do the transcription. If you need to go back to check the accuracy of the transcription, you can always listen to the recording while reviewing the text.
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Re: Any laptop recommendations
Old 01-20-2006, 03:14 PM   #28
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Re: Any laptop recommendations

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jay_Gatsby
T
As for dictation, have you ever considered simply using a digital recorder, and then transfer the file to your computer when finished? That way, you get your words "on the record" without having to pause, and then let the machine do the transcription. If you need to go back to check the accuracy of the transcription, you can always listen to the recording while reviewing the text.
I have done both. Frankly, it is not that big of an issue because I mostly have my secretary transcribe. If I am gone though, it is nice to be able to use the voice recognition software.
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Re: Any laptop recommendations
Old 01-20-2006, 04:52 PM   #29
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Re: Any laptop recommendations

I have a Dell now and haven't had any problems with it although i've had a few problems with them in the past; i'm not sure they're top tier in quality but they're pretty good.

One thing I will say is that they do support their products. A friend lives in Costa Rica with a Dell he bought in Canada and they sent a technician 3 times down to the little carribean beach village he lives in (4 hours from San Jose and their service center) to provide in-home service.

That convinced me to get the extra warranty; something i almost never do.
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Re: Any laptop recommendations
Old 01-21-2006, 12:25 PM   #30
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Re: Any laptop recommendations

Martha,

If your laptop is less than two years old and has 1GB or more of memory it should work fine. Have your IT person reinstall the OS and the apps you use. Windows systems accumulate a lot of crap which slow the system down. If it's a slow computer, go for a new one.

See if you can borrow and try a high quality USB headset. This type moves the 'analog-to-digital' conversion outside of the notebook. They work great and will work on any PC that has a USB2 port.

--John

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Re: Any laptop recommendations
Old 01-21-2006, 01:30 PM   #31
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Re: Any laptop recommendations

Quote:
Originally Posted by dougdo
One thing I will say is that they do support their products. A friend lives in Costa Rica with a Dell he bought in Canada and they sent a technician 3 times down to the little carribean beach village he lives in (4 hours from San Jose and their service center) to provide in-home service.
At the Dell Customer-service HQ: "OK, who wants to go down to Costa Rica again to fix Doug's friend's computer? Do I hear a bid for $100? $200! $300! No, dude, we won't pay to send your longboard too. $400! Do I hear $500?"...

I wonder if Martha & Greg get the same customer service at their home in January.
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Re: Any laptop recommendations
Old 01-21-2006, 02:06 PM   #32
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Re: Any laptop recommendations

Quote:
Originally Posted by JB
Martha,

If your laptop is less than two years old and has 1GB or more of memory it should work fine. Have your IT person reinstall the OS and the apps you use. Windows systems accumulate a lot of crap which slow the system down. If it's a slow computer, go for a new one.

See if you can borrow and try a high quality USB headset. This type moves the 'analog-to-digital' conversion outside of the notebook. They work great and will work on any PC that has a USB2 port.

--John
Thanks for the thoughts, but I have a hardware problem with my computer where my screen goes black and the cost to fix is $800. Not worth the money, especially because my computer was always a bit too underpowered. I do use a USB headset.

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Re: Any laptop recommendations
Old 01-21-2006, 02:35 PM   #33
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Re: Any laptop recommendations

Another reason to try a Dell: if you don't like it, you can send it back within the first 21 days for a full refund. Try the 700m if you want a light full-featured laptop. Try the new E1705 if you want a portable desktop replacement.
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Re: Any laptop recommendations
Old 01-30-2006, 01:10 AM   #34
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Re: Any laptop recommendations

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nords
At the Dell Customer-service HQ:* "OK, who wants to go down to Costa Rica again to fix Doug's friend's computer?* Do I hear a bid for $100?* $200!* $300!* No, dude, we won't pay to send your longboard too.* $400!* Do I hear $500?"...

I wonder if Martha & Greg get the same customer service at their home in January.
It's a lovely thought....of course, they only will honor the warranty in countries where they have an existing service center. So, the scenario is more like the manager speaking to a bunch of young costa rica guys in ties sitting around their a/c office in the suburbs of San Jose and asking them to go get all sweaty--but keep their tie on--in the hot humid caribe where everyone else is wearing shorts and nothing else...
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Re: Any laptop recommendations
Old 01-30-2006, 08:50 AM   #35
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Re: Any laptop recommendations

I purchased a Compaq Z2000 at Best Buy. Sams has a similar Live Armstrong aslo by compaq. It has an 80 gig drive 1 g memory and a Turon 64 chip. It has a 14 inch widescreen and sells for $799. It seems to be one of the best buys on the market. Sams has a great return policy. I had an Averatec with their extended warranty. Burned up in 6 months. They gave me all my money back.
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Re: Any laptop recommendations
Old 01-30-2006, 07:19 PM   #36
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Re: Any laptop recommendations

Get a new Intel Core Duo Apple MacBook Pro. Pricey but oh so shiny. Waiting for mine to arrive on Feb 23rd.
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Re: Any laptop recommendations
Old 01-30-2006, 09:39 PM   #37
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Re: Any laptop recommendations

Uh oh.
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