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When to buy a laptop for a student. (1 Viewer)

Steve Babbs

Well-known member
My daughter presently uses a Chromebook, which is fine for her needs but when she - hopefully - starts university she has been told she will need a laptop for the course she wants to do. The question is do I buy one now as it's Black Friday or wait for ten months for when the course starts? I know there is still a trend towards more power for your money with time but it is a lot less marked than it was and computers do do seem to go up in price rather than just down as they get older.

Any advice?
 

Ted Y.

Forum member
Supporter
Canada
Verify with the University if only some brands/models are accepted in the University network for students.
Depending of the study profile, what are the technical requirements for the laptop, if any, as published by the University?
 

dantheman

Bah humbug
You also don't need to go new - eg LaptopsDirect has good reviews as a seller, a fair warranty and you can compare the specs of course for what you want. (Other online retailers exist). Laptop prices are going up as part of the microprocessor problems I believe.

As others say, you probably don't need the latest specs - for anything but running complicated simulations etc. Don't know what the budget is, but a decent older laptop of a good brand would be better than a new cheapest laptop I believe.

I've been told Lenovo is a good brand.

(EDIT: I've just recently bought second hand Lenovo from CEX)
 
Last edited:

Ted Y.

Forum member
Supporter
Canada
What your daughter knows/thinks about this purchase? No need to answer here, of course.

If no restrictions or requirements from University, I would buy this

1669227683757.png
 

Steve Babbs

Well-known member
She certainly won't need cutting edge. We are looking at the budget end of the spectrum but it would still be nice to get the best value. We're talking about around £450 ish.

Waiting until she goes is no issue but the question is will £450 by a better computer now or in ten months.

Ted V your link takes me to a site with a lot of computers but Dell is one of the brands, along with Lenovo, that are often recommended.
 

Kits

Picture Picker
I’d wait. All sorts of updates and improvements can be made in the next ten months.
 

Ted Y.

Forum member
Supporter
Canada
It is the model:
1669228107737.png

For less weight, same model in 14": here

It is a single model on each page. But each model is configuarable, therefore a lot of options are displayed. You can ignore this options if you want.

If hardware updates/improvements will be available in the next 12 months, the price will go up accordingly. Surely you can wait, but not because upgrades will be available.
Again, I would consult the University web site to know if any requirements are in place. Here it can be a mistake not do to this verification.
Maybe the university sells laptops for students (at student price)?
 

Sc0tty

Well-known member
United Kingdom
I would question the need for a laptop rather than a chromebook. Unless specialised software is needed for the course then a chromebook should be fine. Also bear in mind students can get student discount which is worth thinking about. Apple, Dell and probably others do it.
 

Ted Y.

Forum member
Supporter
Canada
The student must use a PC compatible with the software required/used and supported by the University (network, antivirus, maybe VPN, text editor and more).
It is more like BYOD in a company that home working.

Example: If connecting to the University network needs support and the TI team does not support the Chromebook OS, better do not use a Chromebook.
Same for Linux, Apple OS or Windows.

Hence the need to ask the University.
 

Andrew Whitehouse

Professor of Listening
Staff member
Supporter
Scotland
I've spent most of my adult life studying and working in various UK universities and I've never heard of anyone having to check that their laptop is compatible with the university. Maybe this is a North American thing and perhaps it happens in certain situations in the UK, but if the laptop is mainly for them doing their own work on, I don't think there are likely to be any compatibility issues. I've happily used a laptop at work today in classes and meetings. I've never checked with the university that this laptop has any sort of compatibility. I don't think it's an issue at all for general use.
 

Steve Babbs

Well-known member
I would question the need for a laptop rather than a chromebook. Unless specialised software is needed for the course then a chromebook should be fine. Also bear in mind students can get student discount which is worth thinking about. Apple, Dell and probably others do it.
It is because of software. I have to admit I've not heard of student discount on hardware rather than software. I will look into that.
 

Ted Y.

Forum member
Supporter
Canada
The question is do I buy one now as it's Black Friday or wait for ten months for when the course starts?
I would buy now, if the prices are seriously low and if no loan is needed for this purchase. The student to be will also have the occasion to accomodate with the new OS. This is for me, I cannot speak for your interests.
 

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