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Inspiron 6400 vs Toshiba Satellite : plz help me make a choice

john wesley
Ranch Hand

Joined: Feb 14, 2005
Posts: 47
HI everyone,
I am planning to buy a mid range laptop and can�t make a choice between DELL inspiron 6400 and Toshiba Satellite A100. I am in a fix, please help.
I intent to use it as a desktop replacement, so battery life is not a issue, however, heat and fan noise is something I hate.
does any one of you has inspiron 6400?, have you worked on it for 3hr or more ? do it heat like the pervious inspirons (8100 was a frying pan) ?


Pros for DELL: cheap, gives me SXGA screen (1680 x 1050)
Cons for DELL: reviews tell it has the same old dell over heating and noisy fan problem.

Pros for Toshiba: reviews tell its sturdy, no heat or fan noise problem.
Cons for Toshiba: for the same price I get a lower screen resolution (1280 x 800)



DELL inspiron 6400
price: $937

Intel� Core� Duo T2050 (1.60GHz, 2MB L2 Cache, 533MHz FSB)
Genuine Windows� XP Professional
15.4 inch UltraSharp� Wide Screen SXGA+ Display with TrueLife�
1GB Shared Dual Channel DDR2 SDRAM at 533MHz, 2 Dimm
120GB 5400rpm SATA Hard Drive
8X CD/DVD Burner (DVD+/-RW) with double-layer DVD+R write capability
128MB ATI MOBILITY� RADEON� X1300 HyperMemory�
Dell Wireless 1390 802.11b/g Mini Card (54Mbps)
Dell Wireless 355 Bluetooth Internal (2.0 + Enhanced Data Rate)
53 WHr 6-cell Lithium Ion Primary Battery


Toshiba Satellite A100/A105
price: $971

Intel� Core� Duo Processor T2050 (1.60GHz, 2MB L2 Cache, 533MHz FSB)
Genuine Windows� XP Professional
1GB PC4200 DDR2 533MHz SDRAM (512MBx2)
15.4" Diagonal Widescreen XGA TruBrite� display (1280x800)
nVIDIA� GeForce� Go 7300 with 128MB DDR discrete graphics memory
60GB HDD (5400rpm, Serial-ATA)
DVD SuperMulti drive (+/-R Double Layer)
Intel� PRO/Wireless LAN 3945ABG (802.11a/b/g)
Bluetooth� (v.2.0) + EDR
6-cell Li-Ion Battery

thanks.


"Let the one among you who has never sinned throw the first stone.." -A Hero
David O'Meara
Rancher

Joined: Mar 06, 2001
Posts: 13459

They are almost identical, excluding the screen and harddrive. The Dell screen is larger and the drive is twice the size. I have an Inspiron 9300 and I am not sure if it has the same heat and fan noise you mention, but in my opinion the fan is not an issue, but the base ceratinly does get hot if you try putting it on your lap. Again, I do this rarely so not much of an issue.
Jeroen T Wenting
Ranch Hand

Joined: Apr 21, 2006
Posts: 1847
I'd rather have anything but Dell, but that's policy more than the equipment itself.
Have you taken into account the very high shipping fees Dell imposes on you (I think it's something like $100 for a laptop)? Could make that Dell more expensive overall than picking up a Toshiba from a shop near you.

Also, personally I can't work with those ultra high resolutions. My eyes aren't the best even with glasses and reading from them tires me very quickly.


42
john wesley
Ranch Hand

Joined: Feb 14, 2005
Posts: 47
Dave thanks for the info, 9300 and 6400 have similar type of design ...does it feel sturdy ?

Jeroen, right now DELL is offering free shipping and their is a sale going on the Toshiba website too ...thats why I am in a hurry to buy and I like to work on higher resolution since it leaves more space for the code editors.

Anyways, Thanks very much.
[ November 18, 2006: Message edited by: john wesley ]
David O'Meara
Rancher

Joined: Mar 06, 2001
Posts: 13459

Keeping in mind that it is a large number of years since I owned a Toshiba and cannot compare.

Is it sturdy? Not at all. But then I am careful not to bend or twist it, and it has traveled to and from work with me every day for the last year without incident. It is in a backpack and not a laptop bag.

Eclipse with huge real-estate and an additional monitor is joy.
Amit Batra
Ranch Hand

Joined: Mar 04, 2006
Posts: 361
Sturdier=Dell
Pricing=Acer/HP
Sleek/Cutting edge=Toshiba
Jeroen T Wenting
Ranch Hand

Joined: Apr 21, 2006
Posts: 1847
customer support?

I've only delt with Toshiba myself, and though helpful and professional they were rather slow (not completely their fault, the parts needed were unavailable and had to wait for the factory to complete a design change, but they could have notified me of that).

I've heard horror stories about almost every company, and praise about all of them as well.

Same with products. Every company has a bad one once in a while, and even the worst overall company can come up with the occasional gem.
Varun Khanna
Ranch Hand

Joined: May 30, 2002
Posts: 1400
I have Inspiron 5160 and it's just amazing. In winter it really helps in keeping room warm. Use it for 2-3 hrs you can iron 3-4 shirts using laptop's base. That's indeed a multiple purpose laptop.

Just check this problem out in reviews etc. there is one particular forum .. notebookforums.com or something where you would get good reviews over the products.
[ November 18, 2006: Message edited by: Varun Khanna ]

- Varun
john wesley
Ranch Hand

Joined: Feb 14, 2005
Posts: 47
Originally posted by Varun Khanna:
I have Inspiron 5160 and it's just amazing. In winter it really helps in keeping room warm. Use it for 2-3 hrs you can iron 3-4 shirts using laptop's base. That's indeed a multiple purpose laptop.

Just check this problem out in reviews etc. there is one particular forum .. notebookforums.com or something where you would get good reviews over the products.

[ November 18, 2006: Message edited by: Varun Khanna ]




yeah! true, I have one of those dell irons , but the new pearl white inspiron are fresh designs .. just hoping that dell may have fixed the problem.
David O'Meara
Rancher

Joined: Mar 06, 2001
Posts: 13459

++
In winter I have been guilty of turning off my computer then slipping it into my bed to warm it up
Peter Wolfenstein
Greenhorn

Joined: Oct 23, 2006
Posts: 11
I am using Inspiron 9400 and I really like it. A friend of mine owns a 6400 which is also pretty nice and doesn't get as hot as a MacBook Pro for example. The only thing I have to criticize on [96]400 is the display. It really reflects every object in the background, but that shouldn't be a problem if you are working inside.
Raghav Sam
Ranch Hand

Joined: Apr 12, 2001
Posts: 412
I have a Dell Inspiron 6400 with 15.4 inch monitor.
I like it as it is my first buy. I too bought it in an offer. It is not that hot, but I normally dont keep it on my lap while working. Thank god, my battery was not part of the exploding series! So, no customer support issues so far.
Some downs:
1. Touch pad is rather bad, get a USB mouse.
2. The system comes with a lot of crap s/w pre-installed. And that too in a hidden partition (nearly 10GB). So make sure you have more HD space.


Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don't matter and those who matter don't mind.<br />- Dr. Seuss
Isaac Wong
Greenhorn

Joined: Nov 26, 2006
Posts: 1
I've just brought a Dell Inspiron 6400 at end of last month. Until now I've only used that on 5/6 occasions coz most of the time I am using my existing desktop.
However, with less than a month since I bought it, a problem came when I was using it 2 days ago. The monitor suddenly turns brightly white which everything on the screen can hardly be seen. I've tried changing the brightness/contrast settings but no use. I've also tried connecting an external monitor to the laptop and test but found no problem on my external one. So I gave Dell a call and explained the problem, and they said some parts might need to be replaced. More surprisingly, I found out later in other forums that the same problem has occured before on the same model with a few other users.
S Santhosh
Ranch Hand

Joined: Mar 03, 2005
Posts: 73
11 months and my motherboard(Inspirion 9300) got fried.

Dell did replace it in 2 bussiness days though.

Good luck
Bert Bates
author
Sheriff

Joined: Oct 14, 2002
Posts: 8801
    
    5
I got this flat, laptop-sized thingy for about $25. It's about 3/4" high and it has two USB powered fans. You put your laptop on top of this thing and the fans keep your laptop nice and cool. It takes up a USB port, and it sucks batteries, but it's great for the office.


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