Refurbished laptop PCs offer the best bargains

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A comparison of laptop PCs carried out by Computing Which? Magazine found that a refurbished Compaq Pressario proved to be the best option for a sub 300 machine. John Stokdyk reports.

Researchers were briefed to find a laptop with a minimum spec of a 233MHz Intel Pentium processor, 64Mb of RAM and a 1.5Gb, all for less than 300. They sourced machines from manufacturers, from online outlets, classifieds and from high street retailers.

Plenty of PCs were available on eBay, but even though a Dell laptop proved to be a good "all-rounder", the machine did not come with proper software licences, and there was no official source of after-sales support. Another Dell bought via classified ads had the same shortcomings, but took longer to acquire.

A new Lenovo laptop got over the software lice...

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06th Nov 2007 09:03

I agree with Mike
I have to agree with Mike on this one.

There is no way I would spend my £300 on a second hand unit when there are brand new models on the market for less than £300. If you follow the link to Mike's blog you will see three models as examples. I recently bought one of them and it is a great no frills machine!

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By Anonymous
07th Nov 2007 13:50

Watch spares availability with Dell
In the office where I work a couple of Dell machines required new power supply units (PSUs) as the originals, only a few years old, were adjudged to be unsafe due to cable damage arising from poor design.

Dell were unable to supply replacement PSUs because of in built obsolesence

An independent stockist eventually sourced the required PSUs - at cost of about £100 a time ! A very costly excercise. Independent retailer Aldi have more recently been stocking in limited numbers replacement PSUs - at around £25 each - but when last looked at these they couldn't be used with the Dells because of Dell's unique obsolete design.

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By Anonymous
07th Nov 2007 13:53

£300 for a rubbish spec used laptop must be a joke
64MB of RAM ?
Less than 2GB HDD ?

Such a machine should be costing £50 or less !

To put this in perspective I was recently told that £100 was over the top for a 20GB HDD, 256RAM WinME laptop.

So to pay £300 for a pile of 64MB junk must be a joke !

Better pay a little extra and get a brand new warrantied machine.

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07th Nov 2007 14:47

Which? planet are they on
Agree with previous commments, the specification, if not the whole report, must have slipped through a time warp. I bought a much better spec, new, laptop than that a year ago for under £300.

That's about the spec of the desktop we bought about 10 years ago!

Not sure how they can make generalisations about purchases through ebay or classified ads in respect of software licences & the like - what you get will vary radically between sellers.

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By cbales
15th Nov 2007 22:53

A mass of new much better spec equipment for less than £100 more
Many well known vendors are selling brand new fully guaranteed machines for less than £400, including VAT, with much better specs than that.
Our recent purchase laptop spec includes AMD Athlon duo processor, 1 Gb RAM and 120 Gb harddrive and is performing very well. The supplier was BT Shop.
So why would I want to spend £300 on a refurbished machine boasting a fraction of that?

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