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New Laptop needed

Discussion in 'off topic' started by fatmarley, Feb 28, 2019.

  1. fatmarley

    fatmarley Registered User

    My son needs a new laptop for School. It has to have a rear facing camera to photograph the whiteboard, a good battery, clear screen (he's visually impaired) and a touch screen of a descent size (13" to 14" should do it) and the ability to run Microsoft office. A good warranty is also important.

    I looked at some Lenovo laptops in John Lewis but they didn't have a rear facing camera. Any suggestions?
  2. garyi

    garyi leave blank

    Surface pro or surface book? Not cheap but has the camera and very will made
  3. sean99

    sean99 pfm Member

    That's a LOT of money to be carrying to and from school. If MS office is not required to run natively then perhaps a Chromebook would be a good solution? Our school district (US) uses chromebooks with google docs / classroom and it seems like a good / cost effective solution. A cloud based solution is also much safer if there's a chance the computer will be lost.

    I would definitely only consider a laptop with an SSD drive since mechanical drives are prone to fail due to shock, where SSD are unaffected.

    Also, since photo sharing between phones and laptops is so easy perhaps using the phone to take photos of the whiteboard which are then transferred / uploaded to the laptop would be a better solution.
  4. garyi

    garyi leave blank

    There is a great app by Microsoft called office lens which is worth a look
  5. mark121211

    mark121211 pfm Member

    +1. The surface pro is an excellent device. My daughter has one for her school work.
  6. Rcook

    Rcook pfm Member

    Surface/Surface Pro are big bucks. There are better, cheaper alternatives. I wouldn't recommend one for school usage though
  7. Tony L

    Tony L Administrator

    The Surface is one of the least repairable devices mankind has yet produced. Modern Apple kit is bad, though possible. This thing is impossible, 100% landfill. iFixit review. That would rule it right out for me.

    PS If I wanted a Windows PC I suspect I’d go for a business class Lenovo, they seem to have retained at least some of IBM’s legendary build and serviceability.
  8. garyi

    garyi leave blank

    I never suggested a surface laptop, different device entirely.
  9. Tony L

    Tony L Administrator

    They are still just horribly made!
  10. garyi

    garyi leave blank

    Yes the surface laptop is so far as I can see a bit of turd, like a macbook if you will.

    The trouble for the OP is the rear camera, not a terrific amount of options out there and will likely be a two in one, thing is lots of two in ones are fragile, where as the surface is not fragile its very well made.

    There is an hp pavillion of instance. I changed the HD in one for a lad in the area this past month its literally made of tin foil.
  11. Darmok

    Darmok "A Priori Teleology."

    I use an ancient HP Touchsmart TM2 Laptop / Notepad.

    The screen with camera rotates 180 degrees and folds flat as a Notepad.
    Comes with stylus for scribbling on screen ect.

    SSD hard drive with win 10.

    Can be bought on e-prey for under £100.
  12. Tony L

    Tony L Administrator

    HP kit seems to score well for serviceability - by the fact you were able to swap the HD at all makes it a good one these days!

    PS I’ve actually been reading up on this a bit lately as there will come a time when I have to replace my lovely mid-2012 unibody 13” MBP, but there just isn’t anything I actually want. I want a Mac I can service/upgrade myself, but that isn’t going to happen! As such I’ll be keeping my existing one for as long as it works...
    ian123running likes this.
  13. garyi

    garyi leave blank

    I simply cannot recommend apple lappys at the moment, price aside the keyboards are terrible, heres hoping they finally listen and revert!

    I have a HP zbook from work, and amazing bit of kit but a 'mobile work station' so not exactly laptop territory but with a 8th gen zeon, 32gigs of ram and nvmi ssd, it just flies amazing bit of kit. You can upgrade or fix literally everything in that!
  14. Cav

    Cav pfm Member

    I suppose you could buy a laptop and clip a webcam to the screen?
  15. Ryan2tawfiq

    Ryan2tawfiq Member

    I can suggest you this buyers guide.. I hope your son will be very happy.. :)
  16. SteveG

    SteveG pfm Member

    My kids both went with Surface Pro's. They've had them for a couple of years now - one has been no problem but the other developed an issue with the SSD and needed to be returned for repair. Microsoft did turn that around very quickly though.
  17. Tony L

    Tony L Administrator

    I’d personally not touch a Surface with a barge-pole. Here’s a somewhat sweary rant from someone who knows a heck of a lot about component-level laptop repair:

    I’m genuinely shocked by how bad current Apple products are from a seevice/repair perspective, but Microsoft take this idiocy and landfill-culture to a whole new level!
  18. Darth Vader

    Darth Vader From the Dark Side

  19. Yomanze

    Yomanze pfm Member

    Exactly. Problem with having a rear facing camera as a criterion is that the choice becomes massively limited. Also, a dedicated cam is going to offer way better quality.

    Me, I’m a Thinkpad man. I think the L series is a good sweet spot.
  20. garyi

    garyi leave blank

    Once more with passion, thats a 'surface laptop'.

    The reality is thin and light anything is practically un-repairable further more apple et all solder everything now so there is no point going in there in the first place. The only answer now it would seem is to stay in 2011.

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