Computer Nerds - Lend me your ears (eyes)

#1
I am currently about to buy a computer laptop which has a

1.73ghz Intel Centrino Duo Processor.
120 GB Hard Drive
1024 MB of RAM

What the fcuk does all that mean? In particular the duo bit. I'm buying it online so the online help i get is talking alot of computer speak. Between me and a mate we have made some sense. However not much.

Does the Duo bit mean its twice an Intel Centrino? (3.46ghz)

What the hell is a processor?

Am i getting a good deal if it has all that bollocks for £660???

Cheers for any help!
 
#2
1.73ghz Intel Centrino Duo Processor. Good, latest technology. Should be Windows Vista compatable
120 GB Hard Drive Nice large drive
1024 MB of RAM Nice large RAM, should make it Windows Vista compatable and good for gaming

What the fcuk does all that mean? In particular the duo bit. I'm buying it online so the online help i get is talking alot of computer speak. Between me and a mate we have made some sense. However not much.
Easiest way to explain is this. The Hard Drive can be compaired to a liberary, so this one is big, bigger means more books (data). The RAM is Random Accessed Memory(?), or its working memory. This means that the bigger it is the faster it will work as it has to refer back to the 'liberary' less.

Does the Duo bit mean its twice an Intel Centrino? (3.46ghz) No, the Dou bit means that it is a 'new technology' and basically there are two processors side by side that are linked, so you can be doing work with one and doing something like a virus sweep or some other work with the other. For gamers this is also good.
It means it is TWO Intel Centrino's. the one you mentioned is a single core and fast, but not as good as the Dou when worked hard.


What the hell is a processor? A processor is the brain. The higher the ghz the faster it works at.


Now someone who knows more will come along and tell me/us I'm talking pish. And I know my spellink is pish, thats dyslexia for you, I know the word is wrong, but where? I havent a fekkin qlue!
 

Biped

LE
Book Reviewer
#4
Just to add: Hard drives should be considered in terms of 'subconcious' slow memories that can be called up to your fast concious memory in small chunks for on-the-fly thinking using your processor 'brain'.

You cannot have all your subconscious memories (huge amounts of them) in your consciousness at any one time because you can't think about them all at the same time.

Hence the parallels in memory available: Subconscious Hard Drive memory = large numbers of gigs averaging at 100 gig drives, and conscious RAM memory generally between .5 to 4 gigs these days.

Howzat for nerdy?
 
#5
That was how my brother (IT Nerd) explained it to me (average dumb squaddie/stab).
 
#6
Biped said:
Just to add: Hard drives should be considered in terms of 'subconcious' slow memories that can be called up to your fast concious memory in small chunks for on-the-fly thinking using your processor 'brain'.

You cannot have all your subconscious memories (huge amounts of them) in your consciousness at any one time because you can't think about them all at the same time.

Hence the parallels in memory available: Subconscious Hard Drive memory = large numbers of gigs averaging at 100 gig drives, and conscious RAM memory generally between .5 to 4 gigs these days.

Howzat for nerdy?
See, i was following you then until the last couple of lines. Then you went all french on me.
 

Biped

LE
Book Reviewer
#7
Carlos_Hathcock_II said:
That was how my brother (IT Nerd) explained it to me (average dumb squaddie/stab).
I have been both, but would much prefer to be a dumb squaddie shooting guns than fat speccy tw@t at a keyboard treating 2nd life as if it were real.

Edited to add:

Hard drive size 120gb - subconcious for storing images, music and wotnot for viewing when you want to.

RAM - 1gb for opening the photos and printing them, or playing music.

Nes pas?
 
#8
Biped said:
Carlos_Hathcock_II said:
That was how my brother (IT Nerd) explained it to me (average dumb squaddie/stab).
I have been both, but would much prefer to be a dumb squaddie shooting guns than fat speccy tw@t at a keyboard treating 2nd life as if it were real.

Edited to add:

Hard drive size 120gb - subconcious for storing images, music and wotnot for viewing when you want to.

RAM - 1gb for opening the photos and printing them, or playing music.

Nes pas?
Now we're talking. The bloke was going on about game play and stuff when i initially looked in the shops. But i dont play many and wouldn't as they all want 2.0 ghz not (1.73) (Check me out) but i do want somewhere to dump my music and photos
 
#9
Sorry to add a bit of confusion, but wouldnt want you to get ripped off. The basic defenitions above I have no quiblle with, afterall basic is what you asked for :D
HOWEVER!!! Centrino Duo is NOT the most current version. Centrino Core 2 Duo is.
In simple terms think of Centrino Duo as version one of the Dual Processor, and Core 2 Duo as version 2.
Your £660 is great if its really a Core2 duo, but not so good if it really is just Centrino Duo.
Its difficult to tell what your is becasue having gone direct to the intel site (the horses mouth) they havent made a 1.73 Centrino duo or core duo (a 1.83 is available in both ranges) What does worry me is that a 1.73 is available in the Pentium M range which is technology before the Duo.

Have a look at the link below, 2 identical, latops in the same range, the one on the left is similar spec to what you have said and is Centrino Duo for £586.33, while the one on the right is more memory (the best thing to have) and the Core 2 Duo for only £40 more at £703.83

http://www.novatech.co.uk/novatech/nbrange.html?ORD

Happy to help in any way if you want to PM specifics.

As a PS though, for music and pics, the cheaper model is just fine.

and for the geeks who want to check

here are the intel links to processor numbers
Centrino Core 2 duo - http://www.intel.com/products/processor_number/chart/core2duo.htm
Centrino Duo - http://www.intel.com/products/processor_number/chart/coreduo.htm
Pentium M - http://www.intel.com/products/processor_number/chart/celeron_m.htm
 
#10
As a general laptop buying guide, you need to try and ask yourself several questions.
(1) How much am I prepared to pay?
(2) What will I use it for?
(3) How portable do you want it?
After answering that you can then try and get the best system for you, compromising in some areas and perhaps treating yourself in others.

Breaking it down into key areas, a laptop consists of:

(a) Screen size and type - Depends on your answer to (3). For a desktop replacement, bigger is better, if you compromise in some areas perhaps get a bigger screen and stay within budget.
(b) RAM - Perhaps the MOST important part of the system, you will see more difference when upgrading this than any other part. 1024 is good, 2048 is better especially if you are going to be running Vista
(c) Processor - OK, controversial here. We all like shiny fast kit, but to put it simply the ONLY thing you need a fast processor for is games and possibly Video Editing/3D graphics rendering. If all you want to do is Email, surf, play music, mess with pics, you can save hundreds of pounds here. Core 2 Due reigns supreme at the moment, but core duo and even Pentium M are good enough for the basic stuff
(d) Hard drive. Still small on laptops compared to a desktop. Not worth spending money on a larger one unless its faster. To be honest a faster 80G one would be better than a slower 120GB one. If you need more storage, you can get an external 300gb one to plug into your laptop for £70
(e) Graphics card - very complicated area, however you said you do not want to play games, so any modern graphics will do you. Save hundreds here to.
(f) Sound system - Can get exopensive ones, but on a laptop, not usually worth it, on bioard sound is the norm.
(g) DVD drive, cheap as chips now days, should have a DVD writer as standard

Hope this helps a little

*edited to add (3) and change Screen Size caveat accordingly
 
#11
Just to reinforce IT_Geek's point about RAM-Buy the largest amount you can afford. Programs use RAM to run so the more you've got, the less of a strain it is when you're browsing arrse, looking at porn, downloading torrents illegally and trying to convince some young slapper on msn to get her growler out on cam all at the same time.

I've just got a new laptop (a macbook) with 2gb of RAM and it is silly fast but I'll never use it to its full potential doing what I do with my computers-dvd, music, pics, internet browsing and occasionally running VMware.

Harddrives are getting dirt-cheap and there is nothing to stop you buying external portable hard drives. 120gb ones that fit in your pocket are now costing less than £80.
 
#12
the_matelot said:
...
Harddrives are getting dirt-cheap and there is nothing to stop you buying external portable hard drives. 120gb ones that fit in your pocket are now costing less than £80.
Agreed. I've just got one of these which I'm using as a backup for all those really important files, pictures and *cough films that it would be very inconvenient to have to replace.

PB
 
#13
C_H_II should get a job training Computer World salespersons. That way even they might understand what they're talking about.

I'd just quibble a little about IT_Geek's recommendations. With regard to screen size, remember that we're talking about laptops, rather than desktops. If you're using a laptop as a laptop, rather than as a portable desktop, then you'll probably want to maximise battery life. If so, consider a smaller screen - you could get an hour or more additional battery life and save a lot on the weight into the bargain. If you're looking at photos, reading e-mails and doing word processing, 14" is plenty big enough.

If you're surfing, then 15" or 15.4" is needed as a minimum in order to see the full screen.

Gaming and CAD draughting would justify a 17" screen.

For DVDs, a 14" screen would be fine if it's just you who's watching them, but if there's a group of you, then you'll need something bigger as the screens only work if you're directly in front of them (but then you'll probably want some amplified speakers as well, as there isn't much volume on a laptop).
 
#14
Oh, and a thought about hard drives... Big isn't necessarily better. It'll take a long time for an anti-virus program to scan lots of big files on a large hard drive (as miss puttees has learned, having downloaded tons of music onto hers). It's better to drop off music, photos etc onto DVDs on a regular basis to keep your laptop fairly empty. If you're well disciplined in this respect, then a smaller hard drive will show benefits.
 
#15
Carlos_Hathcock_II said:
Now someone who knows more will come along and tell me/us I'm talking pish. And I know my spellink is pish, thats dyslexia for you, I know the word is wrong, but where? I havent a fekkin qlue!
Carlos. Have you heard of Mozilla Firefox - www.mozilla.com/en/]click here[/url]? It does a similar job to Microsoft's Internet Explorer and is used to brose the internet - including websites like this one. It has a spellchecker built in, so when you are typing it underlines misspelt words in red. It is free and therefore an absolute gift for dyslexics!
 
#16
Sorry, Putteesinmyhand is quite correct about screen size.

Under my general recommendations for laptops
(3) how portable do you want it

I was using my own scenario where i use mine as a desktop replacement
 
#17
My screensize is 13.3' and it is perfectly fine for internet browsing.
 
#18
A word of warning about PC World selling techniques. I have often listened in horror, as some of these "Hand Picked Technical Experts", coax the customer into buying what really amounts to an expensive plastic case full of sub-standard components. Then there are the add-ons they insist are necessary. I once saw them atempt to rip off and old guy buying his his grandaughter a laptop for Uni, by attempting to sell him a wireless router and PCMCIA card. IT ALREADY HAD A WIRELESS NETWORK ADAPTER INSTALLED!! and the chances of her installing her own wireless network in the halls of residence were not good.

As a minimum I would reccommend the Intel Core 2 processor, a fast 80-120 GB Hard Disk, and at least 1024 MB of RAM (Expandable to 2048 MB if possible) Beware of anything else. The market is flooded with cut price machines at the moment, and try and get a top end Vista package as the home version is quite frankly ballacks!

If you do go to PC World, DO get the aftercare package. I got this machine from there and the aftercare costs me 9 quid a month. It has been overhauled twice by the manufacturer, and runs like a dream! and it saves me getting my screwdrivers out for big jobs!!
 
#19
the_matelot said:
My screensize is 13.3' and it is perfectly fine for internet browsing.
That's MASSIVE! But how do you manage to carry a 4m long laptop around?
 
#20
putteesinmyhands said:
the_matelot said:
My screensize is 13.3' and it is perfectly fine for internet browsing.
That's MASSIVE! But how do you manage to carry a 4m long laptop around?
I'm nails.
 

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