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Thread: What's the difference between a laptop, notebook and netbook?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2011

    What's the difference between a laptop, notebook and netbook?

    I'm looking for a new laptop-like computer for school, music, graphics and I'm curious to what the difference is.Also; any good brands or recommendations on a computer?

  2. #2
    Neither darque nor pervert DarquePervert's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    A laptop and a notebook are the same thing.

    A netbook, however, is typically a smaller, lightweight unit that has a very low power draw that is designed primarily to access online apps & functionality.

    As far as recommendations, all the suggestions you'd get here would be within the framework of a vehicle installation, as that's the focus of these forums.

    You might consider two things:
    1 - Looking at websites that review hardware to get opinions and/or suggestions.
    2 - Going to a retailer and getting some hands-on time with models that interest you.
    Have you looked in the FAQ yet?
    How about the Wiki?

    Under normal circumstances, a signature would go here.

  3. #3
    Raw Wave
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    And the distinction/s can at times be blurred...

    One MAJOR difference is whether the beast has an inbuilt DVD/CD reader or burner. (In general, laptops do, netbooks don't. Notebooks?)

    & For What It's Worth - I now consider the advantage of NOT having inbuilt CD/DVD and instead having an external USB DVD burner (now typically $60-$80).
    The beast is then a bit lighter etc and probably less worried about dust and other beastial brutalities (abuse etc).
    And inbuilt DVD/CD readers/writers used to cost a fortune to replace (they were often brand or model specific, and almost always tricky work).

    But that is also convenience. If always reading or burning CDs or DVDs and having a 2-piece set-up is inconvenient, then get inbuilt. (Maybe buy an external reader/writer if that fails.)

    CD/DVD readers were once essential to load software and apps, but these days - with bootable cards (SD etc memory & USB sticks), or LAN & wireless interfaces and internet connections etc - it may not be a problem.

    I hope that helps...

    More FWIW....
    I once intended to only buy ASUS portables (reliability, warranty and esp. after-sales service).
    But last year I bought MSI for the 2 women in my life (one inherited, the other voluntarily, but both MSIs (U-100 & U-130) were purchased).

    Both have been excellent! (And anecdotally rival ASUS.)
    And they came standard with pre-partitioned hard drive - ie a C: & D:. (That Windows does NOT automatically assume partitioning amazes me. That installers put everything including user data on one drive (partition) is still beyond me!)

    The standard "base model" anything seems to now be: wireless (b,g,n &? standards); ethernet; a few USBs (3 or more); card reader (SD/MMC etc); external sound; and bluetooth.
    And of coarse VGA or DVI connector etc for an external monitor, (USB for external kyb or mouse etc and...) a convenient disabling/enabling of the onboard nav (mouse/finger pad or joystick etc).

    The rest gets down to keyboard feel, size & weight, quality, battery duration etc. (ASUS may still have the best battery life, though MSI is good too.)
    Spare batteries can be expensive, but usually by the time that have packed it in, it is time to get a new beast - they (will) probably not cost much more than a replacement battery!

    Also ensure a "standard" DC input - ie, common DC connector up to 24V etc (typically 16-21V else under 12V).

    What have I forgotten?
    What has changed?
    What can others update or disagree with? (One year is a very long time in IT! (Except for meeting release deadlines.))

  4. #4
    MySQL Error soundman98's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    on the border of northern IL/IN
    decide what your going to do with it, look at the models that meet that spec, then decide on a price your willing to pay..

    my HP is working fine, and my brother has a MSI that had a hdd crash after a couple months-- rma-ing was a fiasco-- he had to take all of his personal data off it, ship the entire laptop into MSI, who took around 4 weeks to service, and ship it back, only to have loaded it with a x86 OS instead of x64, so he had to have them ship the disc for x64...

    though, to be fair, if something happened to my laptop, i don't know if HP would be any better...(i have had it for almost a year, so i would probably just redo the hdd myself..)

    when i originally started looking at laptops, i looked at asus first, because it was a brand i trusted, but found that to get the features i wanted, would pay at least $50-100 more for the asus brand name..

    i believe the major difference between laptops, and notebooks is that notebooks are more focused for professional use-- business meetings, etc. but the terms are interchangeable..

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