Need a new pooter - any advice?

My just 2 yrs old HP15 laptop is crapping out so I think a new machine is in order. The battery went bad, wont hold a charge and after an update (which might not be the cause) I am getting a display that freezes or flickers from black to white and sometimes just fills the screen with a zillion hyphen like hash marks.

This behaviour is also accompanied by a message 'Application has been blocked from accessing graphics hardware'. I did a full virus scan - no problems reported. I'm at my wits end to locate the problem so will probably have to go find myself a good priced one at Walmart which is where I got this HP15.

Until these problems surfaced about two weeks ago I was delighted with the machines performance. I can only afford $600 max - preferably less - so anyone got any recommendations?
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Comments

  • We generally specify for our customers a minimum spec of 4-core CPU, either 8th-gen i5 or above, or Ryzen 5, 8GB RAM, 256GB SSD. I can't imagine you'll get too many discrete GPU options at that price point. Find machines with that spec in your price range, and compare some reviews to see what compromises each machine makes. Watch out for poor cooling solutions that mean the CPU throttles, or bad screens. Bad speakers and bad touchpads are usually not a deal breaker, as external mouse and headphones fix that. Bad webcams and keyboards might be an issue to you, depending on your needs.
  • https://www.amazon.co.uk/Fujitsu-Lifebook-E458-15-6-Inch-Laptop/dp/B07FVYQ3K8/ref=sr_1_10?dchild=1&keywords=fujitsu+lifebook&qid=1593462882&sr=8-10

    That's a little bit more than $600 and maybe uk only..I dunno.

    Reason I suggest it. I already have a extremely heavily used 10 year old Fujitsu lifebook. It was made in Germany(back then). It's been bullet proof and never failed. I think it's only ever crashed twice. It's outclassed for many years..but it's been military grade in my opinion. Compared to Dell and the Acer I had preivously(only lasted a few years each), my Fujitsu has been bullet proff. My next laptop will certainly be another Fujitsu.
    On those afternoons in utopia..
    Thanked by 1mik3d3nch
  • Would you prefer a laptop or tower? Laptops are very powerful these days
    We must perform a quirkafleeg
  • zx1 wrote: »
    Would you prefer a laptop or tower? Laptops are very powerful these days

    You're telling me! They're so powerful these days that if you actually sit with them on your lap for longer than 10 minutes you need to the emergency room to be treated for 3rd degree burns :))
    You can't expect me to have lunch with a man who's favourite part of the chicken is the right wing!
  • And your balls fried to the point you can't have kids! :))
    We must perform a quirkafleeg
  • edited June 29
    Especially if it's a Samsung, everything they make these days explodes or catches fire eventually, if you beat one off after using a Samsung laptop on your lap, you'd end up dropping a portion of fully cooked scrambled egg out the end of your todger, and maybe a side of fried tomatoes to go with it. After all you'd have already cooked your sausage :))
    Post edited by dm_boozefreek on
    You can't expect me to have lunch with a man who's favourite part of the chicken is the right wing!
  • I was going to have bacon and eggs tomorrow but won't bother! :))
    We must perform a quirkafleeg
  • Crispy bacon is what happens when a woman uses the laptop ;)
    You can't expect me to have lunch with a man who's favourite part of the chicken is the right wing!
  • Before you go out and spend money on a new computer, perhaps you should try running a complete system restore and reset it back to how it was when it was new? Just to see if the hardware is defective or if those problems are caused by the software/OS somehow.
    Website: Tardis Remakes / Mostly remakes of Arcade and ZX Spectrum games.
    My games for the Spectrum: Dingo, The Speccies, The Speccies 2, Vallation, SQIJ.
    Twitter: Sokurah
    Thanked by 1mik3d3nch
  • Ælita wrote: »
    https://www.amazon.co.uk/Fujitsu-Lifebook-E458-15-6-Inch-Laptop/dp/B07FVYQ3K8/ref=sr_1_10?dchild=1&keywords=fujitsu+lifebook&qid=1593462882&sr=8-10

    That's a little bit more than $600 and maybe uk only..I dunno.

    Reason I suggest it. I already have a extremely heavily used 10 year old Fujitsu lifebook. It was made in Germany(back then). It's been bullet proof and never failed. I think it's only ever crashed twice. It's outclassed for many years..but it's been military grade in my opinion. Compared to Dell and the Acer I had preivously(only lasted a few years each), my Fujitsu has been bullet proff. My next laptop will certainly be another Fujitsu.
    My tuppence would be that Windows 10 Pro is likely overkill, and an i5-7200U processor is a bit pants (being duel core).

    Mind you, I'm stuck with an expensive Dell XPS 15 piece of crap that throttles at the drop of a hat, due to the power regulators overheating. Was a lovely spec on paper, but anytime you try and utilise the power it downclocks and undervolts everything to keep the regulators from melting.

  • 3 little words have stood me in good stead for quite a number of years...

    "Never buy Dell".
    I wanna tell you a story 'bout a woman I know...
  • Thanks to those who tried to help me - especially Aelita and Sokurah - no need for any further replies as I'm about to go out and purchase a new machine from whatever Walmart has on its shelves and seems like a good deal.

    You know I haven't got the knowledge needed to make sense of advice regarding machine specs, I just assume that whatevers on offer is probably adequate anyway since I'm hardly a power user, my machines are primarly used for word processing and light web browsing, mainly four websites, two Speccy, my own message base and Amazon Prime for videos and Audible for audio books and thats it.

    Yes, Rich, my wife got a Dell at the same time as I got my HP15, her machine has been a constant pain in the ass, mainly weird slow downs so now thanks to Pobbit I have a clue as to why. All previous Dells have been slow but reliable nothing to justify their cost.

    Well later on I'll let you all know what purchasing mistake I made!
  • 3 little words have stood me in good stead for quite a number of years...

    "Never buy Dell".

    I'll second that. Shoddy. I'd vote for a tower, as laptops tend to give you neck aches, along with burnt **** and are harder to repair. If the screen goes, you're buggered on a laptop, if the wifi breaks (some have the wifi wires are in the lid and shoddy ones tend to break from all the opening / closing.), you're buggered. etc etc.

    But its all down to personal choice. A laptop is convenient and a tiny bit more social-able as you can sit with your wife while you read our wittering rather than be in the PC room (if you have one) on your own. :)
    Might be worth a visit to luny.co.uk.
  • 3 little words have stood me in good stead for quite a number of years...

    "Never buy Dell".

    Wrong statement. It should read "Never buy cheap".

    Most "work" brands (HP, Lenovo, Dell, Fujitsu) have a "cheap" line of products and a "professional" one. I've even seen Toshiba (yes, Toshiba!) laptops that seemed cheaper than chinese unbranded ones.

    I've had both HP and Dell laptops that managed to resist job mistreatment (fall, hits, fast temperature changes, no ventilation) for years... but they were the "professional" ones, not the "consumer ones".

    I'd avoid Compaq (cheap HP brand), Acer (it's like betting... most of them are unreliable, a few ones are indestructible) and unbranded clones. OTOH, I'll favour brands that you're sure that will honor their warranties (it would be better if it's a local service).

    Also, avoid eMMC laptops... keep in mind that they offer small storage and, in case of failure, you won't be able to detach the HDD and read it in another computer.
    I was there, too
    An' you know what they said?
    Well, some of it was true!
  • I dunno I’ve got a Dell mini tower, and it does exactly what I want it to. It’s not the greatest PC in the world, but it’s decent. I’ll be honest I didn’t really want another Dell PC after all the hassle my last one gave me, so I understand the avoid Dell statement.

    But I suppose the advantage in my situation is Mrs. Boozy has had a Dell account since the late 90’s so a good amount of perks and customer loyalty discounts does mean my mini tower was a lot more high end than the one I had before it. In fact it cost more than twice the amount the one I had before it, and that was after discounts and wotnot. Also when I ordered it I made sure that I opted out of all the bloatware, and other unwanted shite that comes with a ready built PC.

    There were still a few bits of useless tat on there, but it didn’t come loaded with a bunch of Columns clones in a “Games” folder, or programs with names like Professional Microphone Tester, or Microsoft Pencil Sharpener.
    You can't expect me to have lunch with a man who's favourite part of the chicken is the right wing!
  • Zup wrote: »
    3 little words have stood me in good stead for quite a number of years...

    "Never buy Dell".

    Wrong statement. It should read "Never buy cheap".

    Agreed. The sub 250 laptops generally start off *just* about okay but within a few weeks they'll be running like crap. They are not worth the money. Save up and get something from about 500.
  • edited June 30
    I'll put this out there as well.

    Some refurbished laptops can be excellent value for money - you can get very decent specs for low amount, with a years guarantee too. Personally (and I've no affiliation with this company whatsoever) I have purchased two laptops for my teenage kids from this place and both my nephews (late teens, early twenties) have too (https://www.mycheaplaptop.co.uk/product-category/all-laptops/). My youngest and one of the nephews have an HP Elitebook 745 which is a very capable laptop that can be grabbed for about £330.

    In fact I can't recommend that place enough.
    Post edited by Vampyre on
  • I got an HP14 Ryzen 3. 4GB/128GB SDRAM for $299 (241.57pounds)
    Just realized it doesnt have a CD drive but no biggie I hardly ever used mine before.
  • CDs in laptops are long gone.
  • Pobbit wrote: »
    CDs in laptops are long gone.

    But luckily you can always buy an external CD/DVD drive if needed.
    Website: Tardis Remakes / Mostly remakes of Arcade and ZX Spectrum games.
    My games for the Spectrum: Dingo, The Speccies, The Speccies 2, Vallation, SQIJ.
    Twitter: Sokurah
  • Most unusually and possibly unwisely I've decided to give Windows 10 S a fair chance to prove itself! I have been going through the usual setup hassles and discovered it won't allow me to install two of my favourite programs, namely Firefox and Jarte although I have the option of quitting S but its a one way trip if I do.

    Considering all the hassles Firefox has put me through, its getting too 'feature rich' in my opinion, I preferred the original stripped down browser so I've decided to give Edge a chance to prove itself and so far its doing pretty good, it found all my favourite sites (like here god knows how) and my message base and really thats all I need for the most part.

    Microsoft didnt kill off Accessories so I can still use Wordpad and as for all the security software I used to have to look after (and pay for) they claim the whole reason for Win 10S is it takes care of all that for you - well I'm prepared to give it a go. More fool me, probably...
  • I still use an older version of Firefox, as a year or so back they said they were going to include ping backs in the code for newer versions, thus basically doing away with all their bumph about privacy. It reminds me about once a day that I need to update it.......Nope! :))

    You could give Brave a try, that's not too bad, gives you the option of regular, private, and even tor browsing, and you can search directly from the address bar using duckduckgo. I'm not sure how Brave works for add-ons, or plug in's though, I use it pretty bare bones.
    You can't expect me to have lunch with a man who's favourite part of the chicken is the right wing!
  • Windows 10S restricts you to only using Edge for a browser, and only installing UWP/Metro apps from the Microsoft app Store. Everything is dramatically locked down.
    Robin Verhagen-Guest
    SevenFFF / Threetwosevensixseven / colonel32
    NXtel NXTP ESP Update ESP Reset CSpect Plugins
  • colonel32 wrote: »
    Windows 10S restricts you to only using Edge for a browser, and only installing UWP/Metro apps from the Microsoft app Store. Everything is dramatically locked down.

    But is this necessarily a bad thing? I'm not a sophisticated user - as I believe you once pointed out to me - and as long as Edge gets me the sites I need and protects me without the need for me to manage three or four security apps, well fair enough though I don't much care for being limited to the Microsoft store, I must admit.

  • It may well prevent you from running the emulators you want, since they're probably not in the store.
  • mik3d3nch wrote: »
    well fair enough though I don't much care for being limited to the Microsoft store, I must admit.

    Give it a try, but if you decide that it's too limiting, try asking around and see if there's someone in your network that can put Windows 10 Pro on it instead.

    Website: Tardis Remakes / Mostly remakes of Arcade and ZX Spectrum games.
    My games for the Spectrum: Dingo, The Speccies, The Speccies 2, Vallation, SQIJ.
    Twitter: Sokurah
    Thanked by 1mik3d3nch
  • edited July 1
    mik3d3nch wrote: »
    But is this necessarily a bad thing?

    Not necessarily. I was just pointing out to @dm_boozefreek that you couldn't run Brave, or old versions of Firefox.

    Post edited by colonel32 on
    Robin Verhagen-Guest
    SevenFFF / Threetwosevensixseven / colonel32
    NXtel NXTP ESP Update ESP Reset CSpect Plugins
  • Mike shouldn't need to go to Pro, can freely convert to Home, but as Mike noted, it's a one-way change. The new Chromium based Edge is pretty nice anyway. Sadly I find that the browser with the most issues with websites is Firefox (still my goto), as Chromium compatibility is the most important.
  • Your not the only one Mike, wouldn't know where to start with computers these days myself. What confuses me is there are so many different processors these days. I kept up with things around the Pentium 4's and then dual-core days, but now I'm lost and couldn't tell a good performer, to poorer one. I keep a 12 year old laptop going which is the Acer Aspire 5920G. It's bit of a Trigger's Broom(ref to BBC comedy Only Fools and Horses) laptop though, with many parts I've replaced on it.
  • colonel32 wrote: »
    mik3d3nch wrote: »
    But is this necessarily a bad thing?

    Not necessarily. I was just pointing out to @dm_boozefreek that you couldn't run Brave, or old versions of Firefox.

    I was unaware Microsoft had became so restrictive, locking it down like that kind of defeats the purpose of the web to me. Might as well just buy a smartphone.

    To me it sounds terrible I’m always looking for alternatives to what MS, and especially what Google offer. MS can be nosy enough as it is, but Googles creepy data-farming is bordering on illegal these days.

    You can't expect me to have lunch with a man who's favourite part of the chicken is the right wing!
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