Laptop for a tour

#1
I'm heading out to a sandy place soon and am thinking of buying a laptop to take with me. I'm looking at smaller ones with 11.6 inch screens as my current laptop is a 15 inch model and a bit too heavy to lug around, along with a crappy battery life.

I'm considering two models at the moment:
TOSHIBA Satellite T110-107 or Dell Inspiron 11z

TOSHIBA Satellite T110-107 - £349.99
Only has a single core processor, but comes with 3GB of memory and an inbuilt card reader for my camera (XD card). Also has a nifty sleep and charge USB port.
It's a refurbished model from Dixons, which I believe generally means it's been bought by someone then returned and therefore cannot be sold as new. I'm aware there could be a risk involved.


Dell inspiron 11z - £379
Dual core processor, but only 2GB of memory. Card reader not compatible with my memory card. No VGA port either.
This would be brand new and I'm familiar with the Dell brand. I've read some negative reviews due to the touchpad which the initial batch came with, but I understand Dell have reverted to to the traditional touchpad after much slating.

Any suggestions as to which model to go for, or alternatives to consider would be gratefully received.
 
#2
Would you not be better taking your current one and getting a new one on your return?

msr
 
#3
Would I be right in thinking that for an infanteer on Herrick there would be zero point in taking a laptop? I'm imagining a lack of power points and wifi networks in the fobs.....
 
#4
the Toshiba is great BUT the keyboard lettering is very dull and does not stand out in poor lighting, now this is a very minor niggle but if you are in poor lighting as I often am it gets on your tits as you cant see the letters
 
#5
msr said:
Would you not be better taking your current one and getting a new one on your return?

msr
Well yes, but I'm trying to cut down on stuff I'm taking and my current laptop is the size of a house and weighs about as much...

EX_STAB said:
Would I be right in thinking that for an infanteer on Herrick there would be zero point in taking a laptop? I'm imagining a lack of power points and wifi networks in the fobs.....
Well I'm not deploying in an infantry role (at least not initally!), so I'll take my chances. Plenty of guys out there at fobs with laptops/dvd players/personal video players, etc so there must be power somewhere?
 
#6
tropper66 said:
the Toshiba is great BUT the keyboard lettering is very dull and does not stand out in poor lighting, now this is a very minor niggle but if you are in poor lighting as I often am it gets on your tits as you cant see the letters
Good thing I can touch type. Don't imagine I'll be writing a novel whilst I'm out there, so not too fussed.
 
#7
So, MSR, any recommendations for me if I'm set on getting a new laptop? You're usually pretty up to speed on the computer side of life?
 
#8
EX_STAB said:
Would I be right in thinking that for an infanteer on Herrick there would be zero point in taking a laptop? I'm imagining a lack of power points and wifi networks in the fobs.....
Tell me again about your fantastic knowledge of the Army?


I won't hold my breath.
 
#9
EX_STAB said:
Would I be right in thinking that for an infanteer on Herrick there would be zero point in taking a laptop? I'm imagining a lack of power points and wifi networks in the fobs.....
No you wouldn't be right
Most FOBs have some kind of power points and Nowzad had an internet connection (there may be other FOBs with internet connections as well)
 
#11
stacker1 said:
EX_STAB said:
Would I be right in thinking that for an infanteer on Herrick there would be zero point in taking a laptop? I'm imagining a lack of power points and wifi networks in the fobs.....
No you wouldn't be right
Most FOBs have some kind of power points and Nowzad had an internet connection (there may be other FOBs with internet connections as well)
I told you he was a know-all cunt.

msr is the man in the know. I got mine free when I went to PC World and they offered me a pink lappy and a dingle dongle, and insurance.

I'd trash it, but it's pink, and it smells nice.
 
#12
You haven't said what you want it for. However, if you only want it for internet browsing and the odd Office application, I'd suggest one of these. They're quite small and extremely light, making them perfect for use on the move. I'v seen them on sale for about £120, making it a no-risk purchase for an op tour. Absolutely no muscle whatsoever though, so ultimately it depends what you want it for.
 
#13
wg100 said:
tropper66 said:
the Toshiba is great BUT the keyboard lettering is very dull and does not stand out in poor lighting, now this is a very minor niggle but if you are in poor lighting as I often am it gets on your tits as you cant see the letters
Good thing I can touch type. Don't imagine I'll be writing a novel whilst I'm out there, so not too fussed.
I carry a Tosh NB10 around with me and that is its only fault, small, light and only weighs a kilo, but I can remember when mobile phones weighd more than that
 
#14
skintboymike said:
You haven't said what you want it for. However, if you only want it for internet browsing and the odd Office application, I'd suggest one of these. They're quite small and extremely light, making them perfect for use on the move. I'v seen them on sale for about £120, making it a no-risk purchase for an op tour. Absolutely no muscle whatsoever though, so ultimately it depends what you want it for.
If it survives the tour then I'd probably give it to the missus to use, so it'll have Office on it and some image editing program.
Out there it'll be used for internet browsing when able and for watching videos/DVDs (I know the two laptops I've mentioned have no Optical drive, but I will have access to a USB DVD drive) and for listening to music. Maybe the odd game too, like C&C, so nothing too graphics intensive.
I have considered the EeePC netbooks, but the screen size is just that little bit too small for me. I reckon it'd start to annoy me after a while. My thinking was the 11.6 inch screens give a happy medium between portability and screen size.
 
#15
Given the bashing / dust it is likely to take, I would use your current one and flog it at EOT.

How much other kit are you planning on taking?

msr
 
#16
msr said:
Given the bashing / dust it is likely to take, I would use your current one and flog it at EOT.

How much other kit are you planning on taking?

msr
Well I get issued some UOR kit in a great big fcuk off Peli case which I'll have to lug out there, so going to travel light this time. I made the mistake of taking too much with me last time around. In terms of personal kit, I was thinking Laptop, Hard drive, Ipod.
My main thought behind getting a new laptop was to get one which was smaller (half to two thirds size and half the weight!) than my current one and had a decent battery life. Even new, my current laptop could last maybe 1.5-2 hours. From what I've seen review-wise, the two I mentioned would last somewhat longer.

Imagine I don't currently have a laptop. What would you recommend? I'm not itching to spend my money, but want to weigh up all the options.
 
#17
The_Snail said:
stacker1 said:
EX_STAB said:
Would I be right in thinking that for an infanteer on Herrick there would be zero point in taking a laptop? I'm imagining a lack of power points and wifi networks in the fobs.....
No you wouldn't be right
Most FOBs have some kind of power points and Nowzad had an internet connection (there may be other FOBs with internet connections as well)
I told you he was a know-all cunt.

msr is the man in the know. I got mine free when I went to PC World and they offered me a pink lappy and a dingle dongle, and insurance.

I'd trash it, but it's pink, and it smells nice.
oooh i love new computer smell!
the only constructive thing i can add to this is to try and get one where you can see the scren at multiple angles, otherwise it gets damn annoying when trying to watch movies with other people.
 
#18
wg100 said:
My main thought behind getting a new laptop was to get one which was smaller (half to two thirds size and half the weight!) than my current one and had a decent battery life. Even new, my current laptop could last maybe 1.5-2 hours. From what I've seen review-wise, the two I mentioned would last somewhat longer.

wg100 said:
Imagine I don't currently have a laptop. What would you recommend? I'm not itching to spend my money, but want to weigh up all the options.
Lost me there....
 
#19
msr said:
wg100 said:
My main thought behind getting a new laptop was to get one which was smaller (half to two thirds size and half the weight!) than my current one and had a decent battery life. Even new, my current laptop could last maybe 1.5-2 hours. From what I've seen review-wise, the two I mentioned would last somewhat longer.

wg100 said:
Imagine I don't currently have a laptop. What would you recommend? I'm not itching to spend my money, but want to weigh up all the options.
Lost me there....
Well... you've so far been recommending to take the laptop I'm currently typing this on with me on tour. I want to get some advice as to options other than taking this laptop with me. So therefore forget about the fact I already own a laptop.
Imagine I don't own one, but am considering buying one for a tour.
What would you recommend?
 
#20
WG, what are you likely to do with your new machine.

If your requirements are likely to be quite lightweight, a bit of surfing, email and the odd video then I would consider a Netbook.

Just bought the mrs a Samsung N150 and a memory upgrade, pretty good and with a 7-9 hour battery life even better. Word of warning though, you need to think about lightweight software and accept there is a performance hit but if it suits your usage profile then definitely one to consider for their extreme low weight and long battery life

If you want something with a bit more horsepower then I would reccomend again, something from Samsung. I have a Samsung Q45 which has been all over the place, lightweight, rugged, brilliant screen (especially as it isnt glossy and therefore of some use in bright light) and long battery life.

I don't think they make the Q45 anymore now but the next one along will be I am sure, just as good

Might be an idea to get a spare batter and power supply as well, perhaps a solar charger if you think power may be an issue
 
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