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Should I buy a new laptop?
Old 09-15-2022, 08:50 AM   #1
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Should I buy a new laptop?

Mine is a 2015 Lenovo X1 Carbon. It's been signaling "low memory" for months (there's no way to expand RAM), forcing me to close programs in order to browse. Now it won't resolve any browser, although it does connect to the Internet.

I need a laptop, but computer prices are so high right now due to shortages, etc.

What to do?
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Old 09-15-2022, 09:01 AM   #2
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I bought a new one last week at Walmart and it was by far the most inexpensive (<$400) laptop I have ever bought. (A 15.6" HP, Intel processor loaded w/Windows 11 and a "claimed" 12 hour batter life) Now, in full disclosure, I don't need a super high end machine (gaming and the like), just one for personal use... Surfing the net, spreadsheets, utube, etc... Works great for me...

I've already had 3 or 4 Web browsing sessions open along with a couple of spreadsheets and watching a utube video all at once without any problems... So seems to have plenty of RAM and processing power... Oh, and it boots up twice as fast as my older machine. YMMV
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Old 09-15-2022, 09:12 AM   #3
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I like to stroll through the computer section at BJs. It's not huge, but easier to compare prcessors. https://www.bjs.com/products/laptops.jsp

I also like Staples, for browsing the aisles.

But I prefer business models as they have less crap. With a consumer model you can de-crapify it with an app.

I haven't been looking, but on that page the prices don't look so high.
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Old 09-15-2022, 09:32 AM   #4
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Have you looked into ChromeOS Flex, it's free and can boot from a flash drive to see if it works for you.

https://cloud.google.com/blog/produc...o-pcs-and-macs
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Old 09-15-2022, 09:54 AM   #5
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Looks like your model is on the certified list for Chrome OS Flex but they may now be charging a monthly fee for it but you get a free trial.

Screenshot 2022-09-15 7.47.42 AM.png
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Old 09-15-2022, 10:26 AM   #6
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Yes you need a new something, 7 years is end of life. I find a Chromebook is nice for a 2nd gadget, but would not forgo a laptop or pc as primary.
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Old 09-15-2022, 10:32 AM   #7
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How much is too much? I've been looking at laptops for my grandson and finding nice machines for around $600. I've been looking at machines that have a 512GB SSD and at least 8GB of RAM.
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Old 09-15-2022, 10:44 AM   #8
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Well, I recently did a BTD moment--upgraded to new Apple MacBook Air with the M2 chip and upgraded to 1 TB storage, so hopefully I will never have any memory or storage problems.
Ordered online and it will be delivered in 1-2 weeks.
Can't wait.
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Old 09-15-2022, 10:45 AM   #9
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Yes you need a new something, 7 years is end of life.
+1

I agree that you need a new laptop. Yes, inflation is the pits but denying yourself a needed laptop probably won't help. If necessary maybe you can figure out some other expenses you can cut.

I usually get my laptops on Amazon, but that's mostly because I can read about and evaluate each at my leisure, take plenty of time to check each feature that I care about, and so on. I don't really look for lowest possible price when it comes to laptops.
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Old 09-15-2022, 10:48 AM   #10
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Cheapskate here. Bought a new basic HP laptop with decent specs at Staples for $330. Still available at that price.

https://www.staples.com/hp-15-dw3363...oduct_24504670

These things have a short life. For web browsing and Word/Excel tasks, it's fine.
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Old 09-15-2022, 10:50 AM   #11
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How much memory does it have?

My newest (DEC 2021) has 16GB, and it doesn't take long before that is filled and I'm using swap space (I keep way too many windows/tabs open).

But this model has an SSD, and I don't even notice that it is using swap space.

I'm running Linux (Xubuntu, the xfce version which is a more 'lightweight' version), which is probably much mroe efficient with memory use.

You might consider replacing the HDD with an SSD? And/or load a lightweight version of Linux, which usually runs much smoother on an older machine than Windows.

-ERD50
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Old 09-15-2022, 11:18 AM   #12
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I just went through this. After many months of signaling its demise, my HP computer collapsed. I bought another from the HP site where you can configure it the way you want. I called them to talk through it and they were very helpful. Only trouble is it is taking 3 weeks to get to me--I'm watching its progress daily from China, to Japan, to Korea, and now in Alaska. It has been more places than I've been in its short life! Meanwhile, I bought a very inexpensive Chromebook to tide me over and to then use as a backup.
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Old 09-15-2022, 12:03 PM   #13
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Yes you need a new something, 7 years is end of life. I find a Chromebook is nice for a 2nd gadget, but would not forgo a laptop or pc as primary.
I converted to a Chromebook several years ago. Haven't missed Windows at all. But everyone is different.....some people need a true laptop with a hard drive.
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Old 09-15-2022, 12:18 PM   #14
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If you spend a lot of enjoyable time online, buy a new one! Why deal with the drip drip frustration of a slow machine? A once in 7 year itch splurge shouldn't derail your ER.



If browsing is all you do, a chromebook may work just fine.



I've been looking to replace my 2015 notebook because it can't keep up with the latest updates of my photography software. I haven't noticed that prices are much higher than normal. I do buy higher end machines and have been eyeing the LG Gram series.
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Old 09-15-2022, 01:11 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Amethyst View Post
Mine is a 2015 Lenovo X1 Carbon. It's been signaling "low memory" for months (there's no way to expand RAM), forcing me to close programs in order to browse. Now it won't resolve any browser, although it does connect to the Internet.

I need a laptop, but computer prices are so high right now due to shortages, etc.

What to do?
Computers don't wear out. The main pressures for upgrades are applications that are increasingly big and slow and processor speeds that increase and unnecessarily create FOMO in customers.

A knowledgeable computer shop should be able to tune up your computer and remove whatever is tying up memory unnecessarily. If you are happy with the apps you are using and just want them to run like they used to, odds are this will solve the problem. If not, said shop will probably have an inventory of used laptops (with warantees) that will save you money and perform well for you.

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Yes you need a new something, 7 years is end of life. ...
The industry would like us to believe that, but it is mostly application bloat and a desire for new toys that drive hardware purchases. Occasionally mechanical issues that are deliberately uneconomic to repair will also drive a purchase. But mere age should not.
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Old 09-15-2022, 01:25 PM   #16
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Computers don't wear out.
I guess technically that's correct. The CPU doesn't just wear out. It processes until it doesn't, which is more of a burn out than a wear out. However some of the peripherals/mechanical parts do wear out. Like my old HP I just replaced. The hinges on top (display) started getting weaker and weaker over the past few months. Then they started to bind up and creak. Finally that lead to the screen separating and cracking. Plus a few of the keys weren't working all the time...Dirt, maybe... Worn out contacts, maybe...Oh, I forget, the power plug wasn't fitting tight anymore.. I had to hold it just right to make good contact. Just worn out!
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Old 09-15-2022, 01:28 PM   #17
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....

The industry would like us to believe that, but it is mostly application bloat and a desire for new toys that drive hardware purchases. Occasionally mechanical issues that are deliberately uneconomic to repair will also drive a purchase. But mere age should not.
True, but some of that application bloat is hard to avoid. If your browser issues security updates, and/or requires certain OS updates, all those updates could come with a lot of bloat.

That said, my 7 year old, not high end laptop was really running just fine when I decided to replace it. My 'back up' laptop had died (well, screen went out, not worth fixing). and when I found something that seemed to meet my needs and on sale, I went for it. I like having a back up machine, in case something goes very bad on my machine, I can keep up with anything important. I also sometimes use it for other projects (video editing, experimenting with things), that I don't want to tie up my main machine with.

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Old 09-15-2022, 01:31 PM   #18
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Ok sure technically it could be repaired, for a price, and by giving up your laptop for a few days.

Or you can go to Costco and start shopping for a $299 and up laptop, which probably comes with better-everything, in addition to better memory or whatever the current main issue is.
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Old 09-15-2022, 02:40 PM   #19
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An old car with new tires is an old car.
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Old 09-15-2022, 02:55 PM   #20
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An old car with new tires is an old car.
True enough. I put new tires on my 2007 Nissan pickup last year. It runs like a champion. No functional reasons to replace it. I can be a BTD guy when it benefits us, but cars and computers generally don't fall into that category. Computers are actually the worst, because when I am forced to upgrade it costs me two days setting up all the applications, drivers, utilities, etc. that are part of my configuration.
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