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Cheap, portable no-nonsense laptop

post #1 of 2
Thread Starter 
I'm going to start looking for a cheap, portable laptop for college-work. I usually do my own searching until I'm left with a couple of options and then ask the lovely OCN community but this time I'm kind of in a hurry. I will search myself of course but getting some pointers in the right direction would be very helpful.

Used for: programming, Office-stuff, emailing; web development; absolutely no gaming at all. I have a desktop for numbercrunching

Budget: hard to say, I tend to go over the budgets I set up but I was hoping to get something for less than $600, lower would be nice. If there's something insanely better that's just over 600 then please do share it as well.

Things I absolutely don't care about:
fingerprint readers; DVD-drive; sound quality; webcam; graphics performance; HDD (will most likely install a cheap SSD); glossy screen/"better colours"; docking station connector; brand; flashy lights; infrared port; OS (I'll be installing my own unbloated version of W7 regardless)

Things I do care about:
portability (15.6 inch max, 11 is too small as well, weight isn't that much of an issue but less is more); build quality (I will be taking it with me a lot so preferably something well built and sturdy); No pink, purple or white laptops please rolleyes.gif (I love brown though); Good Wifi antenna; battery life;

I'd like at least one USB3.0 port
Possibility to change RAM.
Not so much a dealbreaker but would be nice: ability to install the HDD in the DVD slot so I can have the HDD and my own SSD inside. I'm afraid this might limit the options too much so this isn't that important
I prefer a minimalistic and clean design, preferably no glossy surfaces (fingerprints).

I'll probably buy a Noppoo choc mini soon so keyboard can be complete and utter rubbish (like most are)

PS: might edit this post as I go along.

EDIT: Now noticed the sticky about formatting a "which laptop to buy"-thread. CBA to redo this post at this time though.
Edited by Bloitz - 10/1/12 at 2:40am
Black Betty
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Black Betty
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post #2 of 2
Bit over $600:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16834230533
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16834131303

Under $600:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16834215437
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16834310605

I did that wearing speed racer undies, so my apologies if it doesn't fit anything your after (I glossed fairly quickly!)
Ol' Sandy
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"Zeus"
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Elite Preview
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CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Intel Xeon E3-1230v3 Gigabyte GA-Z97X-UD5H-BK MSI Gaming GTX 980 Kingston 32GB (4x8) 
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Plextor PX-256M5S 256GB Samsung EVO 1TB Hitachi HDS721010CLA332 Hitachi HDS723020BLA642 
Hard DriveHard DriveHard DriveOptical Drive
Hitachi HDS723020BLA642 Hitachi HUA722010CLA330 WDC WD10EARS-00Z5B1 TSSTcorp CDDVDW SH-S223B 
CoolingCoolingOSMonitor
Phanteks PH-TC14PE with TY-140's Lamptron FCv5 (x2) Windows 8 Pro 64-bit Dell U2412M 
MonitorMonitorMonitorKeyboard
Dell U2412M Dell U2212HM Dell U2713HM Topre Realforce 87UB | Ducky DK9087 G2 Pro 
PowerCaseMouseMouse Pad
Corsair AX-750 Corsair Obsidian 650D Logitech G700 XTRAC Ripper XXL 
AudioAudioAudioAudio
Beyerdynamic DT-770 Pro 250ohm Schiit Bifrost DAC Schiit Asgard 2 HiVi Swan M50W 2.1 
CPUMotherboardRAMHard Drive
Intel Xeon E5-2620 Super Micro X9SRL-F-B 128GB 1333MHz LSI 9271-8i 
OSPowerCase
VMware ESXi 5.5 SeaSonic SS-400FL2 Fractal Define R3 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Intel Core i5-3437U HP EliteBook Folio 9470m  Intel HD Graphics 4000  16GB DDR3 SDRAM 
Hard DriveOS
256GB SSD Windows 10 Insider Preview 
  hide details  
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Ol' Sandy
(28 items)
 
"Zeus"
(12 items)
 
Elite Preview
(6 items)
 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Intel Xeon E3-1230v3 Gigabyte GA-Z97X-UD5H-BK MSI Gaming GTX 980 Kingston 32GB (4x8) 
Hard DriveHard DriveHard DriveHard Drive
Plextor PX-256M5S 256GB Samsung EVO 1TB Hitachi HDS721010CLA332 Hitachi HDS723020BLA642 
Hard DriveHard DriveHard DriveOptical Drive
Hitachi HDS723020BLA642 Hitachi HUA722010CLA330 WDC WD10EARS-00Z5B1 TSSTcorp CDDVDW SH-S223B 
CoolingCoolingOSMonitor
Phanteks PH-TC14PE with TY-140's Lamptron FCv5 (x2) Windows 8 Pro 64-bit Dell U2412M 
MonitorMonitorMonitorKeyboard
Dell U2412M Dell U2212HM Dell U2713HM Topre Realforce 87UB | Ducky DK9087 G2 Pro 
PowerCaseMouseMouse Pad
Corsair AX-750 Corsair Obsidian 650D Logitech G700 XTRAC Ripper XXL 
AudioAudioAudioAudio
Beyerdynamic DT-770 Pro 250ohm Schiit Bifrost DAC Schiit Asgard 2 HiVi Swan M50W 2.1 
CPUMotherboardRAMHard Drive
Intel Xeon E5-2620 Super Micro X9SRL-F-B 128GB 1333MHz LSI 9271-8i 
OSPowerCase
VMware ESXi 5.5 SeaSonic SS-400FL2 Fractal Define R3 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Intel Core i5-3437U HP EliteBook Folio 9470m  Intel HD Graphics 4000  16GB DDR3 SDRAM 
Hard DriveOS
256GB SSD Windows 10 Insider Preview 
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