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Thread: The $499 laptop

  1. #1
    Editor and Site Administrator Convergent's Avatar
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    The $499 laptop

    For anyone looking, CompUSA has a great buy on a Toshiba laptop this week for $499. My daughter has been saving up for one to start her first year of college, so we jumped on this. The only thing is, that when it was all said and done the laptop actually was over $1000. Reason is we added more memory for $75, MS Office Student for $150, and a 3 year service/damage plan for $220, then sales tax (and on the $300 rebate to get to $499 from $799), and we are over $1000. All of that stuff would still get added to a $1000 laptop to put it over $1500, but its kind of depressing. She had saved $1000, thought she'd get out with half of it left, and ended up spending it all. But, it is a nice machine that should serve her well for her college years.
    Mike - Been Converged?

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    frys electronics has a laptop for around that price as well. its worth checking out...

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    Editor and Site Administrator Convergent's Avatar
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    Crap.... http://shop4.outpost.com/product/4470906

    They have it for $599. I would have rather done that than deal with CompUSA and the rebates. It's only $100 more, but the sales tax was $66 so that cuts it to $34 difference for me. Thanks a lot, Marc... now I don't feel as good about the deal.
    Mike - Been Converged?

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    MEG
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    Jeez Mike, that's Computer Shopping 101. You took a $500 laptop and spent over $1,000 on it? Remind me not to ask for your help when I buy my next car!

    "no, $30,000 is too cheap, let me give you $32,000 and can you throw in some dealer options?, because I don't think your making enough money off me"


    I think there is a bridge for sale in the i730 forum if your interested...

    Mark

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    Fisher of Men mwfielder's Avatar
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    Don't sweat it Mike---you do what you gotta do. Personally, that's why I usually like Gateway or Dell. You customize what you want , you know the price, and you know who's servicing your pc. And they stay fairly competetive in price. And with a laptop, you do want some kind of protection plan; although I don't know if I would go 3 years on an entry level laptop. Your 3 yr plan ends up being almost half the price.
    Jeremiah 29:11

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    Editor and Site Administrator Convergent's Avatar
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    Seriously, I knew going in that I'd have to be MS Office and a maintenance plan. I don't think its wise to have a college kid with a laptop, and know accident/maintenance coverage. The extra memory was required to make the $499 laptop viable. By the way, it's a nice machine... beautiful display. I little larger and heavier than my T series Thinkpad, but it cost 1/4 the price, and will basically perform similarly.
    Mike - Been Converged?

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    Fisher of Men mwfielder's Avatar
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    Originally posted by Convergent
    Seriously, I knew going in that I'd have to be MS Office and a maintenance plan. I don't think its wise to have a college kid with a laptop, and know accident/maintenance coverage. The extra memory was required to make the $499 laptop viable. By the way, it's a nice machine... beautiful display. I little larger and heavier than my T series Thinkpad, but it cost 1/4 the price, and will basically perform similarly.
    BTW, Mike, where did she end up choosing for college?
    Jeremiah 29:11

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    Editor and Site Administrator Convergent's Avatar
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    mwfielder, it isn't exactly like that. The laptop is $800 before rebates, and the $800 laptop is what's covered by the maintenance agreement. I gives you one battery replacement in the 3 years, and that would be over $100 by itself.... and any repair would cost more than the laptop. I weighed it out and decided it was the best way. Worse case scenario, she drops it and breaks it in year 3, and we get a gift card for $800 towards a new one.
    Mike - Been Converged?

  9. #9
    Editor and Site Administrator Convergent's Avatar
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    Originally posted by mwfielder
    BTW, Mike, where did she end up choosing for college?
    She wanted to go to Messiah in PA, but she had scholarships at a couple of others. In the end she has decided to attend the local community college, which is excellent, since she is unclear on a major at this point. This will give her a good inexpensive way to find her way before the last 2 years.
    Mike - Been Converged?

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    Fisher of Men mwfielder's Avatar
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    Originally posted by Convergent
    mwfielder, it isn't exactly like that. The laptop is $800 before rebates, and the $800 laptop is what's covered by the maintenance agreement. I gives you one battery replacement in the 3 years, and that would be over $100 by itself.... and any repair would cost more than the laptop. I weighed it out and decided it was the best way. Worse case scenario, she drops it and breaks it in year 3, and we get a gift card for $800 towards a new one.
    I see. That makes sense. A battery replacement is very nice! I do agree, gotta have a protection plan with a mobile piece of equipment like laptops, pdaphones, etc...
    Jeremiah 29:11

  11. #11
    Fisher of Men mwfielder's Avatar
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    Originally posted by Convergent
    She wanted to go to Messiah in PA, but she had scholarships at a couple of others. In the end she has decided to attend the local community college, which is excellent, since she is unclear on a major at this point. This will give her a good inexpensive way to find her way before the last 2 years.
    One of my best friends' son goes to Messiah. He really likes it. I can put you in touch if she wants to persue it for the future. The community college route is great (and much cheaper) if you aren't locked in on a school. There are some really good CCs in the DC area, like Montgomery College. Most all their credits transfer to just about any school.

    Good times for you, my friend. This is your first in college, yes?
    Jeremiah 29:11

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    Editor and Site Administrator Convergent's Avatar
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    We didn't move to DC. We are still in the Albany area at this point, and will be for some time to come. We started a Youth Sports Photography business that my wife and I are working on which will keep us here for many years. The CC here is Hudson Valley Community College, and it is a great school... has sports and all too. This is our oldest of four, and first going into college. I did the community college route to start, and finished up many years later at RIT. I believe she will want to do all 4 in a row, and HVCC is very easy to transfer out of. My guess is she will eventually end up at Messiah. Her little sister is liking Liberty so far. But, she is heavy into sports and they have a strong sports program there.
    Mike - Been Converged?

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    Mysterious Penguin sloppychachi's Avatar
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    Mike - if I may suggest, Dealcatcher.com often posts ridiculous Dell deals that are sometimes 50% off. I suggest everyone check out the following sites on a daily basis:

    slickdeals.net
    spoofee.com
    dealcatcher.com
    penguinswillruletheworld.com
    Here..maybe... do you smell something fishy?

  14. #14
    Fisher of Men mwfielder's Avatar
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    I am a founding member of the last one. Not much traffic, but when they get broadband at the south pole, watch out!
    Jeremiah 29:11

  15. #15
    Editor and Site Administrator Convergent's Avatar
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    Well, after getting that great deal for my daughter, I just bought a used IBM Thinkpad on Ebay today. Kind of a spur of the moment thing. Even with the employee price, what I need was going to cost almost $2K with tax. I got a 1 year old one for $1100, with what's remaining on the 3 year warranty left. Comes with 2GB of RAM, 80GB disk, and the higher end graphics... 1400x1050 I think it is. I needed one for our photography business to do event work, and I have used nothing but Thinkpads since they were first available. Hopefully it will work out to be OK.
    Mike - Been Converged?

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    Billy Bo Bob Brain BrerLapn's Avatar
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    Just an FYI for Convergent or anyone who's reading the thread later, you can save on Microsoft Office by downloading OpenOffice (www.openoffice.org). All the same applications as Office, for free. I have v. 1.1.3. It will save files into a native Microsoft format and I've never had any trouble with formatting problems. Also, it has a built-in metadata deleter, so that the person you send your file to can't look at your changes or know how old it is or such things. I haven't needed Word in a long time.
    ---------------
    The same thing we do every night, Pinky...

  17. #17
    Editor and Site Administrator Convergent's Avatar
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    Thanks... I may give that a try on this laptop. I bought the home edition of Office for my daughter... she needs to be learning the real thing for future job skills.
    Mike - Been Converged?

  18. #18
    Mysterious Penguin sloppychachi's Avatar
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    Originally posted by mwfielder
    I am a founding member of the last one. Not much traffic, but when they get broadband at the south pole, watch out!
    We appreciate all of your service to the penguin world.

    Thanks Doc!
    Here..maybe... do you smell something fishy?

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