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A Newbie is Looking for a New Laptop

Old 02-20-19, 09:09 AM
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A Newbie is Looking for a New Laptop

So, I'm reaching the point where I have little to no choice, but to get a new computer. My parents gave me a 2009 MacBook Pro for college a decade ago and it has served me incredibly well. Unfortunately, things online are changing in a way where I can't log into everything and now I can no longer do online banking. (Hell, I can't even watch Hulu on my current computer anymore or get a new iPod).

My current MacBook still works quite well. Indeed a lot of the applications on it no longer exist in future generations of Mac. It's still quite useful for movie editing and many other things. So, I'm faced with a conundrum of sorts: do I bite the bullet and shell out for a super-expensive computer that will be obsolete in, what?, 5 years, or just buy one of those relatively inexpensive computers you see at Walmart or Office Depot with the lifespan of a mayfly?

I really need a laptop where I can get full access to the internet, isn't a complete virus-magnet, and won't crash on me every little whipstitch. I'd prefer to have one with an optical drive disc (though that might be unlikely), a 2 TB solid state drive and an operating system that isn't a convoluted mess.

Putting aside the money issue:

1. Are post-Steve Jobs Macs worth it?

2. What's the best PC? Or more specifically, what is the PC that is most like a Mac?

I just need something that's going to last me more than 5 years and doesn't need to be repaired every time I turn around.
Thank you all for any help you can offer.

Last edited by PatD; 02-20-19 at 10:12 AM.
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Old 02-20-19, 09:12 AM
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Re: A Newbie is Looking for a New Laptop

What troubles are you having logging into sites on your current macbook? Do you have MacOS up to date?

I'm still using a 5/6 year old Macbook Pro. Works great for everything I need provided I do all the updates that come out.
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Old 02-20-19, 09:43 AM
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Re: A Newbie is Looking for a New Laptop

Originally Posted by Noonan View Post
What troubles are you having logging into sites on your current macbook? Do you have MacOS up to date?

I'm still using a 5/6 year old Macbook Pro. Works great for everything I need provided I do all the updates that come out.
The biggest bugger is not being able to log on to my bank to do online banking. Firefox and Safari won't let me on. A friend recommended Google Chrome, but even that won't work on my OS (OSX 10.6.8 Snow Leopard). My computer is a decade old. It still runs like a nuclear-powered top, but the internet just isn't as friendly to it anymore.
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Old 02-20-19, 09:53 AM
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Re: A Newbie is Looking for a New Laptop

Try upgrading the OS via the app store. Mojave may help.
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Old 02-20-19, 02:51 PM
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Re: A Newbie is Looking for a New Laptop

For a basic PC, I'd say anything with 8gb, ssd, 1080p screen and a previous gen or later core i3 or higher would last you for a long time to come. All about that build quality anymore.
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Old 02-20-19, 03:32 PM
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Re: A Newbie is Looking for a New Laptop

Originally Posted by RichC2 View Post
For a basic PC, I'd say anything with 8gb, ssd, 1080p screen and a previous gen or later core i3 or higher would last you for a long time to come. All about that build quality anymore.
8gb for memory? Also, what do you mean by "build quality"? Thanks.

Last edited by PatD; 02-20-19 at 03:38 PM.
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Old 02-20-19, 06:14 PM
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Re: A Newbie is Looking for a New Laptop

Yeah, 8gb of ram/memory. Most can get by with less but I find 8 to be safest. Some laptops have crappy hinges, flimsy screens, easily dented cases and annoying keyboard flex -- but most of those have been better relegated to budget models. Still, it's something to watch out for.
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Old 02-20-19, 09:40 PM
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Re: A Newbie is Looking for a New Laptop

The best thing of all might be to wipe the drive of your current Mac, get an SSD, install it in the system, and start over by installing the latest version of Majave as suggested.

There doesn't seem to be an obvious hardware problem that you describe, just 10 years of software gunking up the system. Try doing the complete reinstall before giving up and spending upward of $800 to $1000 for a good build-quality laptop. Even more for a Macbook.

You might find that, presto! your old Mac is still working well after the SSD upgrade, wipe, and reinstall, and will be sufficient for years to come...

The CPU might be getting a little long in the tooth, but I think if you aren't playing games, doing heavy video compression / encoding or archiving, your currnet CPU is probably fine for years to come. I'm still using a Core2Duo for light tasks, and it still works well and is 15 years old by now!
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Old 02-21-19, 05:47 AM
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Re: A Newbie is Looking for a New Laptop

I'll look into that suggestion. I don't know if my hard drive of my 2009 MacBook Pro can be replaced with a solid state drive.

Putting that aside, what kind of laptop will get me the best bang for my buck? I need something that's going to last me over 5 years, need little to no repair and isn't a complete virus-magnet.
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Old 02-21-19, 09:41 AM
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Re: A Newbie is Looking for a New Laptop

What size laptop are you looking for? 13", 14", 15", 17"?

Windows 10 is a pretty secure overall OS, regardless of what a few members here repeat time and time again. It definitely isn't a virus magnet (like Windows XP was and Windows 7 is now), and it's most very fast and easy to navigate. Worth noting, if you want a 2 TB Solid State Drive, you will need to buy it separately and install it yourself (2tb can be bought for as little as $220). There are quite a few laptops out there that have multiple hdd bays built into them, though they tend to be a little bulkier -- however you're also more likely to find an optical media drive on them.

And to answer your question, the most Macbook-ish PC on the market is the Razer Blade Stealth, but if you're going to get that you may as well just get a new Mac.

In terms of brands, I used to be a big supporter of foreign brands like MSI, Gigabyte and ASUS. However, I rarely recommend them anymore due to lackluster customer service support. I used to hate on Dell, but they've improved drastically in the last 5 - 6 years, and after getting a Dell XPS 13 at work and a 7577 at home, I have to say I'm pretty happy with them all around. I'm told the current line of HP Flagship laptops is pretty solid as well.

----------
If you want to go Cheap + Basic w/ Optical Drive: https://store.hp.com/us/en/pdp/hp-pa...onal-3bc70av-1
Just be sure you upgrade the monitor to 1920x1080 IPS. The RAM and HDD can be upgraded later (during sales), if you see fit, or now for ease of use.

Also I guess keep an eye on sites like www.slickdeals.net and www.techbargains.com, the slickdeals.net forum is horribly skewed on most deals (People trying to show off they got better deals on equal/better products, which is normally bullshit), but there's occasionally good info in there.

Last edited by RichC2; 02-21-19 at 10:29 AM.
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Old 02-21-19, 04:51 PM
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Re: A Newbie is Looking for a New Laptop

That HP is a good deal, would be fast, and build quality is good, but not exceptional, but that comes with a budget laptop. It also has an M2 NVME SSD slot. But to really speed it up, you'll want to ditch the Optane memory and upgrade to a 500GB NVME SSD as your boot drive, while using the 1tb HD as storage only. For ~$500, it is the best deal you'll get for, and as fast as other much more expensive laptops costing >$700. I just picked up a Samsung 960EVO 500 GB NVME SSD for only $76, and its speed is phenomenal-- Windows boots in 5 or 6 seconds now!
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Old 04-05-19, 03:24 PM
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Re: A Newbie is Looking for a New Laptop

Originally Posted by PatD View Post
I'll look into that suggestion. I don't know if my hard drive of my 2009 MacBook Pro can be replaced with a solid state drive...
This is a bit late, but you can definitely replace the drive in a 2009 MacBook Pro with an SSD.

I Fixit has guides on how to do it for all 2009 MacBook Pros.
https://www.ifixit.com/Device/MacBook_Pro

The 2009 MacBook Pro can only officially support OS X 10.11 El Capitan, but unofficially, you can run macOS 10.14 Mojave using Mojave Patcher. I used Mojave Patcher to upgrade a 2008 iMac.


macOS Mojave Patcher
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