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raymac46

CBC "Marketplace" recently had a segment on tech hardware that was broken and could not be repaired. As part of that show, they had some independent computer techs try to fix various broken appliances. Aside from dealing with glitchy tablets and inoperable smartphones they had a couple of laptop owners come in. They had ten year old laptops that either wouldn't hold a charge or had problems with USB connections. These were Windows machines.

It seems inconceivable to me that you'd have  ten year old laptop and not have to replace a battery. USB issues could be broken ports or maybe obsolete drivers I guess. But seriously, wouldn't a 10 year old laptop be worth replacing?

My oldest laptop is 11 years old but I upgraded it and installed Linux - and it is pretty much a writeoff. My oldest useful laptop is from 2014 and it's also been upgraded and runs Linux. Desktops are a better bet if you want to go more than a decade.

I can see you might have a complaint if a one year old smartphone is giving you problems but I would say that anyone still trying to use a 10 year old Windows laptop should feel they got their money's worth. I wonder why CBC couldn't find some bad laptops that were a bit newer.

 

Edited by raymac46
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V.T. Eric Layton
37 minutes ago, raymac46 said:

wouldn't a 10 year old desktop be worth replacing?

 

Oh, I don't know. I've had some pretty ancient lappies in the past. I guess it depends on what you want to do with them. For me, installing Slack and just accessing the Internet is all that's required of those old work horses. If you want to do fancy gaming or graphics and such, well... go buy a new laptop. ;)

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zlim

My husband surfs and reads and write emails daily on a cheap laptop that will be 10 years old in August. He is happy with it. I got a replacement battery from a chain  that has a store close by in 2017 and I had the keyboard replaced because one key broke when he grabbed the laptop to keep it from falling.

My cheap laptop will be 8 years old in August. I fire it up daily. I'd miss it if I didn't have it. I've no desire to install linux on either. I also don't plan on replacing these units with anything running Windows 10. I prefer my 10" android tablet when I stream things. The only thing I miss in android is printing. I still haven't figured out what I'm doing wrong because I'm unable to print. Eventually I'll figure it out.

 

I also did my 2 month image of both laptops, as well as our aging desktops on 10 January 2021.

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securitybreach
12 minutes ago, V.T. Eric Layton said:

 If you want to do fancy gaming or graphics and such, well... go buy a new laptop. ;)

 

Nah, then you would build a desktop or  buy a prebuilt one. Gaming on a laptop is a joke in itself. They aren't really powerful enough (even the "Gaming" laptops) and cannot be upgraded past adding some ram.

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raymac46
Quote

For me, installing Slack and just accessing the Internet is all that's required of those old work horses.

Again it might depend on the laptop. A commercial grade Thinkpad or Dell is a vastly different proposition than a cheap HP or Lenovo. My daughter had a 2012 HP and it got a broken hinge and I replaced the screen once. The cheap lappies tend to be slow out of the box and full of bloatware. I recently upgraded my SIL's commercial grade HP and its a good performer at 9 years of age.

We've been lucky I guess because our smartphones have worked well and only one tablet I had broke down. That was a 2012 1st gen Google Nexus.

Lappies are more susceptable to heat degradation too. I had a Dell that only worked 4 years and then the video chip desoldered itself from the motherboard.

BTW I corrected my original post. I meant a 10 year old laptop running Windows would likely be worth a replacement. Better screen, faster processor, NVME drive.

Edited by raymac46
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raymac46

I would also point out that we have rather geeky posters here - not someone who would bring in for repair a 10 year old laptop that needs a new battery. Those people who are not that techy probably need to replace hardware more often - or stick to desktop systems.

Marketplace had some smartphones that went south after eight months and that is a problem. However I don't see a creaky 10 year old laptop as an example of planned obsolescence. Not for a Windows user at any rate.

For the record this posts comes from an 8 year old Thinkpad that runs Debian like a champion.

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Bookmem
55 minutes ago, raymac46 said:

Again it might depend on the laptop. A commercial grade Thinkpad or Dell is a vastly different proposition than a cheap HP or Lenovo. My daughter had a 2012 HP and it got a broken hinge and I replaced the screen once. The cheap lappies tend to be slow out of the box and full of bloatware. I recently upgraded my SIL's commercial grade HP and its a good performer at 9 years of age.

We've been lucky I guess because our smartphones have worked well and only one tablet I had broke down. That was a 2012 1st gen Google Nexus.

Lappies are more susceptable to heat degradation too. I had a Dell that only worked 4 years and then the video chip desoldered itself from the motherboard.

BTW I corrected my original post. I meant a 10 year old laptop running Windows would likely be worth a replacement. Better screen, faster processor, NVME drive.

I don't think that the brand of laptop makes a big difference.  They all make both cheap and highend models.  That's why I'd rather buy a used business class laptop as opposed to a brand new entry level one in the same price range.

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V.T. Eric Layton
1 hour ago, securitybreach said:

then you would build a desktop

 

Yes, my method since forever. I've never bought a brand new computer of any  type.

 

1 hour ago, raymac46 said:

I meant a 10 year old laptop running Windows would likely be worth a replacement.

 

HA! Most definitely in that case. ;)

 

1 hour ago, raymac46 said:

I would also point out that we have rather geeky posters here...

 

True.

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securitybreach
4 hours ago, Bookmem said:

I don't think that the brand of laptop makes a big difference.  They all make both cheap and highend models.  That's why I'd rather buy a used business class laptop as opposed to a brand new entry level one in the same price range.

 

 

Yup, HP's business class laptops are very nice machines. That is all we have used at work for many years now.

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raymac46

I agree that brand is less important than grade of laptop. I was just giving examples of machines in each category. My daughter and son in law had a cheap and a commercial grade HP laptop. The cheap one broke its hinges and the screen cracked. The commercial grade one was easy to upgrade and after I installed an SSD, more RAM, and Linux became a useful school laptop for my granddaughter.

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securitybreach

I have a better setup at home but the standard machines at work aren't bad.

 

HP Elitebook 830 G6 -- 13" i7, 16gb ram with 1tb nvme

 

The technical users run higher end machines but they are much bigger

 

HP Zbook 15 G7 -- 15", i7, 32gb ram, nvidia card, 1 tb nvme

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raymac46

I suppose one can take the "glass half full" viewpoint - if the only bad laptops the CBC was able to identify were 10 years old with dead batteries then most lappies are pretty good products as sold.

That said, when I got my Lenovo Flex2 at the end of 2014, the sales guy tried to get me to buy an extended warranty (yeah, right!) He said that these laptops are designed for only a couple of years of trouble-free operation. The Lenovo has a new SSD in it and runs MX Linux now, but it's perfectly fine for Web surfing and office use. Quite snappy with the SSD.

Now if a smartphone packs it in after a few months that is a problem...

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abarbarian

Hmm strange thread.

 

I have a  CF-52 ToughBook with a Intel Core 2 Duo T7300 circa 2007 that I have upgraded to 4 GB ram and a very cheap 120 GB ssd.

 

 It can run a video in VLC along with a YouTube video running whilst I peruse a picture collection with no glitches or slow downs. Seems like a decent pc to me. 😛

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raymac46

Although there are exceptions, and I am sure there are many 10 year old Thinkpads, HP Elitebooks, and Dell Latitudes running well today, most 10 year old laptops I see around here are either netbooks or cheap notebooks that are running Windows 7. In my opinion these are not worth refurbing. Most have single core 32 bit processors as well.

Desktops always age better because:

  • They have better heat dissipation and airflow.
  • They can be upgraded more easily.
  • Better power supply and no battery issues.
  • More rugged construction.
  • Modular - if the display fails it's easier to fix.
  • You don't schlep it around in a backpack.

 

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raymac46

One more comment. A cheap laptop today probably costs 40% less than one from 10 years ago. It'll have a better processor and graphics, NVME, better battery life, better display, and way better performance. So they do have their place.

No DVD-RW but hey...

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A cheap laptop today probably costs 40% less than one from 10 years ago.

I haven't found that to be true. The soon-to-be 10 year old Acer cost $225. The  soon-to-be 8 year old Acer cost $250. The only thing close to that in price are Chromebooks.

I don't think I want a Chromebook. I can do as much on my 10" android tablet with a bluetooth keyboard attached as I could on a Chromebook, I suspect. My tablet came with Word and Excel. I do use that when I go to a meeting (pre Covid-19) so I can have reports or databases in front of me without printing copies.Now my husband and I use the tablet for our various Zoom meetings. On android, you don't have to create an account you just open the app and join a meeting.

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My Dell Inspiron cost $1000 CDN back in 2010. My Acer Vivobook cost less than $600 in 2020. I have never seen anything besides Netbooks that costs less than $300 CDN. You can get Chromebooks for around $250 CDN but they are pretty low powered units.

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securitybreach

Search ebay for "used business class laptops" and you can get a 2-3 year old laptop for under $300.  Since these are business class they have better specs, tons of accessories out there like docks, etc. Corporations have to dump the laptops every 3 years due to warranty agreements and most of them never leave the docking station. In turn, the disposal companies that everyone uses resells the laptops on ebay with "no OS" since we wiped them.

 

All of the major companies do this and you can find HP, Dell, Lenovo, etc. available. I found this out years ago because I was thinking one day, "what would I do with a pallet of laptops?". So I searched ebay and sure enough, all of the models were there. A coworker even found one seller who had boxes in the background with our asset tags on them.

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abarbarian
On 1/16/2021 at 3:20 PM, securitybreach said:

Search ebay for "used business class laptops" and you can get a 2-3 year old laptop for under $300.

 

Hmmm $300 = £221.51 today. Over here in the UK you might get a crappy ten year old business class laptop but you certainly will not get anything halfway decent.  Electrical stuff has always been loads cheaper in the USA than over here. 😎

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securitybreach

BTW, I would only buy a used business class laptop. Most of the commercial ones aren't built to the same quality and specs. 

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