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nevets88

Windows laptop - what do you think of this for general usage?

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$450 - i3, 4gb ram expandable to 8, 500mb hard drive, don't need optical drive, 1 usb 3.0 port, touchscreen

Use: For parents - light photo and video editing, web browsing, e-mail, light document editing, light video streaming to big flat panel. I'll reinstall the OS to get rid of all the cruft after I get it. They're currently using a desktop that's 7+ years old running XP. It's going to be a huge improvement.

Main concerns are value and longevity.

http://www.bestbuy.com/site/Lenovo+-+IdeaPad+S400+Touch+14%26%2334%3B+Touch-Screen+Laptop+-+4GB+Memory+-+500GB+Hard+Drive+-+Silver/1549041.p?id=1219054922034&skuId;=1549041#tab=overview

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4GB of memory isn't much for windows 8.  a 5400RPM hard disk drive is pretty slow, compared to the preferred SSD.  4 cell lion battery probably isn't going to give you much in the way of battery life.

My mother in law bought an idea pad a while back.  It was a piece of junk, it broke multiple times in the 1 year that they had it.  After one year, they finally put it in a drawer and purchased a MAC.  They have not had ANY problems since.  Now, I will tell you, that I make my living supporting Microsoft products, spend all day staring at a windows 8 laptop, and know the product suite better than most IT professionals.

For the casual computer user, aka what you are describing your parents as.  The Mac book pro or mac book air, is the way to go.  A macintosh can't do everything that a PC can, but what it does do, it does simply enough that most people can pick it up and hit the ground running.

Windows 8 is a good operating system, but honestly, it has alot of quirks that makes me prefer Windows 7 most of the time.  Having a touch screen does help navigate it, but it is not without its faults.

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I have an ideapad s300 and it's perfect for web browsing.  I don't do any gaming or anything that requires a lot of memory.  I'd highly recommend it to you if you can get it for the right price.  $450 is a bit much for this computer...I got mine for $300 on a cyber Monday deal.

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I use a MBP as a primary mobile computer and an entry level MacBook would be awesome for my parents, but it's beyond their budget and I would personally chip in if they really needed a Mac, but I bought the Lenovo because I think it's good enough. It's twice as much for an entry level Mac and even though a Mac can do everything a PC can because it can bootcamp Windows, on principal, I just can't justify paying twice as much. Every Windows machine I've bought them has lasted a long time. Their current machine is a cheap bottom of the line crap Dell and it's still going after 7 years.

I have my own reasons as I want to work with Windows 8 on a laptop with a touchscreen. I've been playing around with it for a couple of days and it's not bad given the price and I get to work with all the possibilities a touchscreen offers. Actually, some tasks are easier for my parents using the touchscreen. It runs much cooler than my MacBook and startup and shutdown times are much improved over Windows 7. Probably 20 seconds to boot. Amazing for Windows.

It's not without its deficiencies though - most budget laptops cannot match the trackpad of Apple machines and this Lenovo is one of them. But my parents will be using a mouse anyway. I'm the one who prefers a trackpad and I can deal with it.

If anyone is looking for a budget Windows laptop with a touchscreen and upgradable to 8GB of memory, I'd recommend this one. I can't speak to longevity as I just got it, so no opinions there.

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