Originally Posted by teckstud
There is a BIG difference between showing off with a $100 pair of sneakers and a $1,800 laptop. Why not drive to school in a big ol' Lexus while your at it too!
Well first of all, it's $150.00 pair of Nike, M. Jordan, sneakers. And the big difference is not where you think it is.
When you spend over 3x the money (over the average sneakers), you got very little return of investment for your money. These expensive sneakers didn't make you run faster, jump higher or increased your foul shot percentage. They didn't last any longer, smell any better or increased your grade point average. So there's really no need to ever buy a pair of these. Unless you want to show off.
On the other hand a laptop that cost 3x (or more) than the cheapest available laptop has very real return of investment. It's faster, has more memory, bigger screen, dedicated graphic memory on a separate card, bigger HD, DVI out, HMDI out, Firewire, 801.11g or n, BlueTooth, longer battery life, comes with (and can run) full version of Vista (or OSX), the list goes on. There are real advantage to spending $1800 for a laptop instead of $500 for one. It's not showing off if you need some or all of these features. A $4000.00 Alienware laptop would be showing off.
If you need an ultralite notebook and already have a descent desktop, then $1800 is about what you would have to spend for one. Ultralites from Sony, Toshiba, Panasonics and Apple will run you from $1500.00 to $3000.00. An ultralite makes sense for many students whose backpack are already loaded with textbooks between classes. Who don't want a clunky laptop on their desk while take notes or enjoying a cup of coffee at Starbucks. Who wants to carry a laptop that will last all day without having to carry extra batteries or AC brick.
$1800 is also the average you would spend for a laptop that is going to replace your desktop. Many students live in small dorm rooms. So rather than have a desktop taking up space they opt for a laptop. They may have a 24" LCD (that they also use as a TV). Small stereo system. Along with a Bluetooth keyboard and mouse in the dorm. So their laptop must be able to drive the 24" LCD. Have Bluetooth. Be able to play DVD movies on the 24" LCD while doing something else on the laptop screen. Stream music to the stereo system and still be able to use it for homework. Handle hi res photos from digital cameras and manage 10s of gigbites of MP3 music. Be able to do your homework while it's rendering and burning a DVD home movie. Not to mention games. Lots of games.
If you think that a $500.00 laptop with a single 1.6 mhz Celeron (or equivalent) processor, sharing 512mb of ram with an intergrated graphic card, 60 gig HD, loaded with Vista Home Edition will do the job, then you never really seen or used a $500.00 laptop. $500.00 laptops are for people that don't really need a laptop. But would like to own one just in case. People (like students) that rely on laptops for their everyday affairs will pay what they have to to get a reliable laptop that meets their needs. No one wants to lose their term paper (or other imporant info) because a cheap laptop crashed while trying to do two things at once (mulitasking). No one wants their laptop freezing up after just spending an hour working on something. No one wants to carry two extra batteries around just to make it through a day of classes. No one wants a laptop whose specs would consider "Solitaire" as graphic intensive.
There are real valid reasons for paying $1800 and up for a laptop. No one should be recommending a $500.00 laptop to anyone that must rely on that laptop as their main computer. A $500.00 desktop barely makes it 2 years. So how is a $500.00 laptop, that will be used everyday, going to make it through 4 years of college? It's better and wiser to invest in a $1000.00 (and up) laptop to begin with. Rather than 2 $500.00 laptop over the course of your schooling. And if a grad student is paying you for advise and you tell them that a $500.00 laptop is all they need, you aught to be ashame of yourself for stealing their money. They can get bad advise for free.