Buying new laptop, looking for advice

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SallyK
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Buying new laptop, looking for advice

Post by SallyK » Wed Oct 17, 2018 3:48 pm

Hi - I currently run Mint 19 Cinnamon on a desktop I had made to order back in 2010, and it's still running fine, but I'm finding the lack of mobility to be a problem, and am looking for new laptop, with the aim of futureproofing it. I'd rather pay more for a system that will last, rather than have to pay out again in a couple of years.

I'm looking at the Entroware Aether, and thinking that I'll upgrade the memory to 16Gb (my current machine has 4Gb and doesn't struggle), but I was wondering about the chip, whether I should go for the i7 or if the i5 will be enough.

I'm not a gamer, I mostly use the browser, watch videos (and very occasionally want to edit one) and a bit of admin/paperwork. In the past I used to do more distro-hopping, and used to run distros in Virtualbox, I may want to do that again in the future.

Thank you for any help and advice you can give me.

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MintBean
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Re: Buying new laptop, looking for advice

Post by MintBean » Wed Oct 17, 2018 4:28 pm

Hard to call it really between the i5 and i7. The i5 will be fine, but the i7 will keep the machine usable longer.

Nothing wrong with the machine you're looking at but it seems a bit pricey. It's a standard Clevo chassis - generic design from China (which is okay, I have the same chassis) but for comparison look what dell is offering for £20 more-
https://deals.dell.com/en-uk/productdetail/1hpg

Same memory, slightly faster processor, nicer shell, 1TB hard disc (in addition to the SSD), Discrete graphics card in addition to the onboard, slightly faster memory, Windows.... okay you'll need to check it's Linux compatible (don't see any problems and you could ring Dell) and install Linux... but again it suggests the Entroware is overpriced.

If you decide an i5 will cut it, this is a nice little unit.
https://www.dell.com/en-uk/shop/laptops ... op/CN55502

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lsemmens
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Re: Buying new laptop, looking for advice

Post by lsemmens » Wed Oct 17, 2018 8:45 pm

It really depends upon what you want it to do. I'm not one of these "latest and greatest" types. I always ask, "what is it that you need to do that your current system can't?" Followed closely by "What do you expect a new system will achieve?" If you can answer those questions to your satisfaction, then you have your answers. I'm only now looking at replacing my Celeron Lappie with a "new" machine because I managed to break a hinge and the screen is becoming less readable. The "new" machine will be an ex govt device purchased at auction. Most likely it will have been new when Winwoes 7 was king.
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Laptop T4500 Dualcore 4Gb RAM
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sdibaja
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Re: Buying new laptop, looking for advice

Post by sdibaja » Wed Oct 17, 2018 9:26 pm

the standard Clevo chassis is not a bad thing, had a Sager/Clevo and it was great
M.2 drive is great (faster than conventional SSD), provision for second drive is also excellent.

my living-room daily driver is a HP Elitebook 820 (eBay)... it is nice, I would by another
$ inxi
CPU: Dual Core Intel Core i7-4600U (-MT MCP-)
speed/min/max: 2549/800/3300 MHz Kernel: 4.9.0-7-amd64 x86_64 Up: 1d 56m
Mem: 2825.0/7884.7 MiB (35.8%) Storage: 588.73 GiB (47.8% used) Procs: 197
Shell: bash 4.4.23 inxi: 3.0.27

these days I typically stay under $200 for laptops... no need to spend more to satisfy me.

PS: I am not a Dell fan

HaveaMint
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Re: Buying new laptop, looking for advice

Post by HaveaMint » Wed Oct 17, 2018 9:43 pm

SallyK wrote:
Wed Oct 17, 2018 3:48 pm
whether I should go for the i7 or if the i5 will be enough.
Compare for what you want.
https://www.diffen.com/difference/i5_vs_i7
https://www.cpubenchmark.net/compare/In ... 3064vs3042
"Tune for maximum Smoke and then read the Instructions".

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AndyMH
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Re: Buying new laptop, looking for advice

Post by AndyMH » Thu Oct 18, 2018 6:49 am

You might consider second hand and save a lot of money. Ex corporate Thinkpads are a popular choice for linux. Not one of my Thinkpads was bought new.
Homebrew i5-8400+GTX1080 Cinnamon 19, Thinkpad T430 i7-3632 Cinnamon 19, Thinkpad T420 Cinnamon 18.3, Thinkpad T410 Cinnamon 17.3, Thinkpad T60 19.0 Mate

SallyK
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Re: Buying new laptop, looking for advice

Post by SallyK » Thu Oct 18, 2018 4:19 pm

Thank you to everybody for your advice.

I'd made a deliberate decision that I wanted to buy a machine that came with Linux, even though I know they can be a bit more expensive, because I want to support the companies that provide Linux machines (quite apart from the advantages of knowing that the system is designed to work with Linux).

martinch
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Re: Buying new laptop, looking for advice

Post by martinch » Sat Oct 20, 2018 4:02 pm

SallyK wrote:
Wed Oct 17, 2018 3:48 pm
I was wondering about the chip, whether I should go for the i7 or if the i5 will be enough ... I mostly use the browser, watch videos (and very occasionally want to edit one) and a bit of admin/paperwork.
Put it to you this way - my work-provided laptop is a Dell Latitude E7440, with an Intel i7-4600U in it (2.1GHz dual-core + hyper-threading, 3.3GHz turbo, 4MB cache), running WIndows 8. I run either JetBrains PHP Storm (Java!) and an Ubuntu Server VM for MySQL + Apache via Virtual Box, or MS Visual Studio 2017 Enterprise + (local) SQL Server + (local) IIS. I will always have Outlook, Skype for Business, Chrome, and Firefox open, and am generally using around 12-14GB of RAM. Other than some lag when loading a massive .NET solution (70+ sub projects - about 5GB on disk...), and some weirdness with graphics acceleration in Virtual Box, I've not had any performance issues. Both of the CPUs you're looking at are quad-core processors, with very similar specifications - I'm sure either will fly.

SallyK
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Re: Buying new laptop, looking for advice

Post by SallyK » Sat Oct 20, 2018 4:17 pm

martinch wrote:
Sat Oct 20, 2018 4:02 pm
SallyK wrote:
Wed Oct 17, 2018 3:48 pm
I was wondering about the chip, whether I should go for the i7 or if the i5 will be enough ... I mostly use the browser, watch videos (and very occasionally want to edit one) and a bit of admin/paperwork.
Put it to you this way - my work-provided laptop is a Dell Latitude E7440, with an Intel i7-4600U in it (2.1GHz dual-core + hyper-threading, 3.3GHz turbo, 4MB cache), running WIndows 8. I run either JetBrains PHP Storm (Java!) and an Ubuntu Server VM for MySQL + Apache via Virtual Box, or MS Visual Studio 2017 Enterprise + (local) SQL Server + (local) IIS. I will always have Outlook, Skype for Business, Chrome, and Firefox open, and am generally using around 12-14GB of RAM. Other than some lag when loading a massive .NET solution (70+ sub projects - about 5GB on disk...), and some weirdness with graphics acceleration in Virtual Box, I've not had any performance issues. Both of the CPUs you're looking at are quad-core processors, with very similar specifications - I'm sure either will fly.
Thank you very much, that's a useful real world example. As I said in my original post, my current desktop, built in 2010, is still coping with my personal usage at the moment, I just have had bad experiences of economising on hardware in the past, and paying out more in the long run, because it doesn't last that long before it starts to struggle.

jglen490
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Re: Buying new laptop, looking for advice

Post by jglen490 » Sat Oct 20, 2018 5:10 pm

A 2010 machine, while still possibly useful, is a bit "long in the tooth" in terms of technology as well as ordinary wear and tear. An i5 based laptop and 8 to 16GB of RAM will be very good for the usage you describe, especially a new generation i5. An i7 will also be good, but probably with a bit of an extra hit on your cash. Either is good. And while I have experience with the laptop you have described, it may be a good choice.

Used Think pads are also an excellent choice, they are well built and have really good Linux support. Your only decision, it appears, is based on economics - and that's a very good place to be :D
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Gianfole
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Re: Buying new laptop, looking for advice

Post by Gianfole » Fri Nov 02, 2018 2:25 am

Hello,

I just bought an Entroware Apollo i7, 16gb ram, 500 ssd.
I installed linux mint cinnamon of course. So far (1 month) i have to say i am very happy.
This is the first laptop that i buy which has linux os prebuilt in.
I used to work with an asus i7, 8gb ram, 128 ssd (from 2010), then decided to swirch completely to linux and when i wanted to buy a new laptop i chose Entroware.
Price is high since i am not english native. But so far i am very satisfied.

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