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Possible Notebook Purchase

Admiral Michael

Michaelsoft Systems CEO
#1
Notebook suggestioins

Hey Guys,

I've been wanting to replace my Compaq Presario 2100 laptop for a bit and would like to do so while I can still get XP as an OS as I despise Vista.

I was looking at a Dell Inspiron 6400 as I want something thats not too big which is why I'm not looking at the 9400 series or the XPS (The XPS is also alot more money).

This is what I was looking at getting:
Inspiron 6400 Dual Core

CPU: Intel® Core™ 2 Duo processor T5600 (2MB Cache/1.83GHz/667MHz FSB)
Operating System: Genuine Windows® XP Professional
LCD Panel: 15.4 inch UltraSharp™ Wide Screen WXGA+ Display with TrueLife™
Memory: 1GB Shared Single Channel DDR2 SDRAM at 533MHZ, 1 DIMM
Video Card: 256MB ATI MOBILITY™ RADEON® X1400 HyperMemory™
Hard Drive: Free 160GB Hard Drive 5400 RPM - $100 Value
Network: Integrated 10/100 Network Card and Modem
Wireless: Intel PRO/Wireless 3945 Internal Wireless
Optical Drive: 8X CD/DVD Burner (DVD+/-RW) with double-layer DVD+R write capability
Sound: Integrated Audio
Batteries: 85 WHr 9-cell Lithium Ion Primary Battery
Warrenty: 1 Year Return to Depot Service and Technical Support


Sub-total: $1,369.00
Shipping: $0.00
GST: $82.14
PST: $109.52
HST: $0.00
Total Price: $1,560.66

Just wanted some ideas, suggestions and maybe someone has some coupon codes or something. Also this will be put on my credit card so I'd like to keep the cost down as much as possible.

Thanks,
Mike

PS: And please don't suggest a Mac as I have considered it but decided not to jump into an Apple with a laptop, I may consider a Mac Mini to try it out first.
 
Last edited:

Admiral Michael

Michaelsoft Systems CEO
#2
Just want to add a few questions:

I wanted the bluetooth module but they don't offer it with XP. I used the chat tool to ask about it and I was told it wasn't compatible with XP only Vista but they do offer the same module with the XPS XP laptop. It also looks like there is a driver on the dell site for the Wireless 355 Bluetooth Module for Windows XP. Any ideas? If I call to order can they provide it?

Also how is it for finding drivers? I noticed something about service tag, is this something I can enter/be detected that will only show drivers relating to my laptop config?

And how is Dell for support, I don't call for software support, it would mostly be for any hardware issues.

Thanks,
Mike
 

madmatt

Bow Down to the King
Political User
#3
I personally like the 640m over the 6400. I own a XPS M1210 and have nothing but good things to say about it.

I would recommend looking into the Intel C2D T7000 series. I have the T7200.

I would also recommend going with a 6-cell battery for use during travel. You can use the 9-cell otherwise.

You can enter the Service Tag here to download drivers. I've always download the drivers direct from (e.g.) Intel and ATI though (and I've never had issues); that way you are getting the latest and greatest.

Dell Home Support is terrible.
 

Admiral Michael

Michaelsoft Systems CEO
#6
So here's a final summary:

Components
PROCESSOR Intel® Core™ 2 Duo processor T7200 (4MB Cache/2.00GHz/667MHz FSB)
OPERATING SYSTEM Genuine Windows® XP Professional
LCD DISPLAY 15.4 inch UltraSharp™ Wide Screen WXGA+ Display with TrueLife™
MEMORY 1GB Shared Single Channel DDR2 SDRAM at 533MHZ, 1 DIMM
HARD DRIVE Free 160GB Hard Drive 5400 RPM - $100 Value
OPTICAL DRIVE 8X CD/DVD Burner (DVD+/-RW) with double-layer DVD+R write capability
GRAPHICS CARD 256MB ATI MOBILITY™ RADEON® X1400 HyperMemory™
BATTERY OPTIONS 53 WHr 6-cell Lithium Ion Primary Battery

Essentials
PRODUCTIVITY SOFTWARE Microsoft® Works 8. DOES NOT INCLUDE MS WORD
WIRELESS NETWORK CARD Intel PRO/Wireless 3945 Internal Wireless
SOUND OPTION Integrated Audio edit

Protection
WARRANTY 1 Year Return to Depot Service and Technical Support

ALSO INCLUDED WITH YOUR SYSTEM
Network Card and Modem Integrated 10/100 Network Card and Modem

I upgraded the CPU and downgraded the battery to the standard 6 cell. The only thing is I wish I could get the bluetooth module but the online chat said it's not compatible with XP and is only offered on the Vista version. I did find the same model card on the XP version of the XPS which is odd, further inquiry with the online chat said that they had to change the card to make it vista compatible.

I'm not sure what to do with this.
 

madmatt

Bow Down to the King
Political User
#7
That looks better. Good call on the wireless network card (the notebook is Centrino Certified).

Unless you do a lot of traveling then I agree with downgrading the battery.

Do you really need Bluetooth? I find Bluetooth annoying and it serves no purpose for me. I ordered my XPS without it.

Buy it and post pictures when you receive it!
 

Admiral Michael

Michaelsoft Systems CEO
#8
Well I have the Intel 2200BG and the G part is awful but I do like the Intel software and I;ve read better things on the 3945 not to mention I hate the Windows wifi software. I don't really like using battery alot I always prefer to plug it in so I can skip the extended battery.

I wanted bluetooth so I can sync my treo wirelessly. But I'm not about to goto Vista just for that.
 

madmatt

Bow Down to the King
Political User
#9
I have the same wireless card with drivers only. I like the Windows software better to be honest. The wireless card is better and I seem to get better performance whether I am upstairs (where the WAP is) or downstairs or out on the deck (which is outside, obviously).
 

Admiral Michael

Michaelsoft Systems CEO
#10
Ok, ordered. :)

Now how hard is it to format and install Windows fresh and then getting the required system software and drivers?

And should I remove the media partition?
 

madmatt

Bow Down to the King
Political User
#11
I'd remove everything (reformat) and delete all partitions except the ~31MB utility partition.

I would download the chipset and network drives right from Intel and the video card drivers right from ATI.

Easy as pie.
 

Sazar

F@H - Is it in you?
Staff member
Political User
#12
Grab another memory module as soon as you can as well :)

And it's not that hard to format and put your own stuff on the notebook :)
 
#13
these days most pc retailers bundle an OS disc and a separate driver disk. I think the days when you'd get a ghost image recovery CD are gone so wiping and diy are a lot easier now.

enjoy the C2D fun, such nice chips to play with.
 

Admiral Michael

Michaelsoft Systems CEO
#14
Well my friend got a HP and my cousin got a Compaq and they both have the recovery partition, which I removed and installed fresh.

My current Compaq Presario has CDs instead. If the Dell has CDs then I will love em.

Mike
 
#15
Well my friend got a HP and my cousin got a Compaq and they both have the recovery partition, which I removed and installed fresh.

My current Compaq Presario has CDs instead. If the Dell has CDs then I will love em.

Mike

IME, you have to call Dell and raise hell...then they'll send you a driver disk and your OS disk free of charge. Just explain that a recovery partition doesn't help if your HDD fails...threaten to send the PC back...and they'll cave. I've had to do this a couple of times in the past month or so for work. They usually send the disks overnight.
 

Admiral Michael

Michaelsoft Systems CEO
#16
Well I never use em anyways. I always format and reinstall and I usually just delete the recovery partition anyways. As long as I can get the drivers from the site then I'm good.
 

Admiral Michael

Michaelsoft Systems CEO
#17
I got an email from em stating this:

Qty Part # Description
Quantité / No. de la pièce / Description
--- -------- ---------------------------------------------
1 222-4680 I6400,CORE 2 DUO T7200(2.00GHZ)
1 310-6845 BACKUP MEDIA FOR XP PRO,INSP
1 310-8617 MS VALIDATOR INFO
1 310-8624 WINDOWS XP STICKER, INSP
1 311-5777 1GB,DDR2,533MHZ,1 DIMM,I6400/E1505
1 312-0404 53 WHR,6-CELL,LION,PRIM BATT,I6400/E1505
1 313-3959 8X DVD+/-RW DRIVE,I6400/E1505
1 313-4217 INTEGRATED HD AUDIO,INSPIRON
1 320-4655 256MB ATI MOB RADEON X1400,I6400/E1505
1 320-5155 15.4 INCH TRUELIFE,WXGA+,I6400/E1505
1 412-0689 IMAGE RESTORE, INSP
1 412-0903 NIS 2006,90DAY,DIM/INSP
1 412-0911 DELL SUPPORT 3.2,DIM/INSP
1 412-0917 ADOBE ACROBAT READER V7.0,INSP
1 420-4770 WINDOWS XP PRO,SP2,ENG,INSP
1 420-5900 SONIC DIGITAL MEDIA,V7.0,INSP
1 430-0493 INTEGRATED NIC AND MODEM
1 430-1626 INTEL PRO/WRLS 3945,A/G,DC,I6400/E1505
1 463-2282 THANKS FOR PURCHASING YOUR DELL
1 466-3388 160GB HARD DRIVE,I6400/E1505
1 412-0915 MS WORKS 8.5,DAO,ENG, INS
1 920-0130 RTD,INSP,6400,SOL,INIT YR
1 920-0147 HW WRTY,INSP,6400,DELL,INIT
1 960-2780 WARRANTY SPRT,INSP,INIT YR
1 009-6800 SHIPPING FEE
1 950-9057 NO WARRANTY,YRS 2/3(1-1-1RTD)

From what I gather those are restore disks. :)
 

Sazar

F@H - Is it in you?
Staff member
Political User
#18
Allegedly :eek:

Usually Dell sends all the restore CD's to Matt so he can turn them into cookies



The cookies are IN the computer? :eek:
 
#20
I know a lot of people around here that bought those new Toshiba Satellite laptops with the Core 2 Duo.. Add about 2gigs of ram and the whole rig will cost you no more than 1200USD. They are pretty sweet, the only thing is - xp may be hard to find on them now... Just a thought

Good Luck!
(and yes, i would have been the first one to recommend a macbook pro :p )
 

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