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Buying advice, please - laptops & eBook readers

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Euphonium

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« on: (13:00:40/12-31-10) »
OK, somewhat to my surprise I have some spare money for luxuries, as long as I can spend it before 10:00 on January 3rd, so I'm looking for some advice from all you knowledge folks.

I have a budget of about $750-800, and I am looking for a portable computer and/or an ebook reader.

Given the time limits, it really needs to be something I can buy over the counter, as I leave the US on the  evening of Jan 3rd, and won't be back for months.

In a laptop, I am looking to replace a Dell Inspiron 1000 (2.2GHz Celeron, 512Mb, 120Gb HDD).   In order of importance, I want:
1. Screen resolution of 1280x800 or better
2. Battery life - 4 hours+ light usage, 2.5 hours movie playback
3. HDD space - I'd be reluctant to get less than 500Gb
4. CPU speed
5. Graphics.   I don't like Intel Integrated on principle, but since the newest games I own are Quake 4 and F.E.A.R. I don't really need anything too fancy

In an ebook reader, I want:
1. Long batter life
2. Easy to add my existing DRM-free ebooks in a wide variety of formats
3. Decent PDF handling for sourcebooks
4. lots of storage space, whether internal or memory card

I'm near Frederick, MD at the moment, but don'tknow the local stores very well, so if there's a better place to go locally than Best Buy, I'm open to suggestions.

Oh, and I guess a final option would be to buy a new mobo/cpu/ram/gfx as components and rebuild my desktop PC when I get home, instead.

I await your advice eagerly....
>>>>[I used to be against the idea of Mind-Control Lasers, but now they're here I can't imagine how I ever lived without them]<<<<
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Grendel

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« Reply #1 on: (15:13:08/01-06-11) »
My first question in these things is always "what are you going to use it for?" If you're mostly using it to write at home, you need a lot less power and hard drive and "screen estate" than if you're going to LAN parties with it. Why are you concerned about having less than .5TB on it? I assume you plan on putting movies on it? Truthfully, if so, I would get a smaller internal HDD and then get a much bigger external with the same money.

Getting an e-book reader is a similar proposition. What kind of reading do you want to do?
Truthfully, I would not buy a small (less than 9") e-book reader for game books. My reader for gaming is the 10.2" iRex DR 1000s, and it's even slightly smaller than I would really want (a true 9" x 11"). It's also a little slow rendering pages (though not bad), so there is a wait time in pulling stuff up. But it has the advantage of also being a Wacom pennabled surface. However, the DR isn't being made anymore, so to get one you would need to search eBay or the like.

The only large reader that I know of at the moment is the Kindle DX, and it has limitations that I would find unacceptable. Primarily, that I can't write on it.

Nomad Zophiel

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« Reply #2 on: (18:00:46/01-06-11) »
If you want to read game books on an ebook reader I can only recommend the Kindle DX. The screen size is large enough that you can read a whole page at a time. It looks a little small but I've found it quite useful.

Kontact

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« Reply #3 on: (16:39:22/01-25-11) »
If you're lucky enough to find one, (they've sold out on pre-sale,) there's nothing better on the market as far as a portable device/e-ink reader than the [http://www.notionink.com/techspecs.php]Adam[/url] from Notion Ink.

It's the first device to use the Pixel Qi display technology that allows a single screen to work as a multi-touch color display and an e-ink display for huge battery life.