I'm sorry sir, but you have to be prepared for the worst...

My trusty IBM T20 went through a mid-life crisis a couple of years ago, went into a one-month coma about 6 months ago and is now on the verge of a heart attack.

I’m finally, seriously looking for a new laptop now.

My main requirements are a dual core processor, 2Gb RAM, 17” widescreen and a NVIDIA graphics controller. Disk space, graphics memory, processor speed, and so on don’t matter too much, but I’d like at least 80Gb, 256Mb and 2GHz respectively.

Searching google found a few contenders:

SONY’s been getting bad press lately with exploding batteries, and they (and other manufacturers that use SONY batteries) now have delivery issues and increasing prices due to decrease in sales. Dell, in my view, is a sell-lots-at-low-margin type company. I’m not sure how this affects product quality, and while I’ve never had problems with Dell hardware, I’ve heard stories of people who have. But then, I’ve heard stories about other companies too (SONY and Apple come immediately to mind).

Clevo’s the unknown, although I’ve heard Alienware sell average quality at high prices and work on the brand as a differentiator.

My current preference is for the Dell XPS M1710 based solely on its looks:

m1710-1.jpg m1710-2.jpg m1710-3.jpg m1710-4.jpg

So for around AU$4,570 (AU$2,375 salary sacrificed), I get:

  • Intel(R) Core(TM)2 Duo 2GHz
  • 17” UltraSharp(TM) widescreen (1920 x 1200)
  • 512Mb NVIDIA(R) GeForce(R) 7900 GTX
  • 100Gb 7200RPM Hard Drive

So what’s you’re ideal laptop?

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