Wednesday, June 05, 2024

My Next Computer Goal

I really only notice it when I travel -- and although that's infrequent, there's always a chance that it will become more frequent:

My current laptop is a refurbished Dell Chromebook runnning 8Gb of RAM on a 1.1GHz Celeron CPU. The performance ... isn't terrible.

The 11.6" screen, however, is. I'm getting older and I either need to get bifocals or a larger screen. I don't want to get bifocals. My near vision, when sitting at a desk, does fine with a 17" or 19" monitor (I've got a 17" USB travel monitor that I use with the laptop so that I can rock two screens). I only put on glasses when I need help with distance vision (driving, for example).

So I'm keeping my eye out for a good deal on a laptop that:

  • Has a 17-inch screen
  • Comes with 16Gb of RAM installed (that's what my $150 CyberGeek mini PC has)
  • Has a reasonably good CPU
  • Either comes with Linux pre-installed or won't turn into a brick if I install it
I'm very happy with my desktop outfit (the aforementioned mini PC and two Insignia 19" flat screen TVs as monitors, running Lubuntu). For traveling, I'd like to recreate that as closely as possible, but 17" screens will do.

When I travel by plane, my laptop and mouse go in my carry-on "personal item," while the travel monitor and full-size USB keyboard go in my checked baggage (or larger carry-on). I'm sure I have, or can easily find, a "personal item" bag that will accommodate a 17" laptop.

I'm keeping an eye out at Amazon, NewEgg, etc., and I always check out the machines I see at thrift stores. I want to keep the cost under $200, which is probably the biggest problem in finding what I need.

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