A few weeks ago, my trusted companion, the Lenovo ThinkPad R61e suddenly started to hang. Not just when I was in Windows, but at different “occasions” :right after I switched it on; when it checks which OS to boot; while loading Windows; Windows login screen; after using Windows for 15mins; .

Sometimes it hung right after I switched it on for the first time of the day, other times I could use it for a few minutes. To sum it up, it became unusable.

So, the time had come to get a new laptop. As I planned to use it, amongst other things, to do some SharePoint administration and development (both 2007 and 2010) with virtual machines, I knew I needed to get one with quite good specs. On the other hand, I also knew that this would not be an everyday, multiple hours per day activity for me, and that I’d use the VMs only a few hours per week. Thus, spending too much money on an absolutely high-end machine was ruled out. Furthermore, I wanted to get a 14″ laptop, I didn’t see myself carrying a bigger, heavier laptop around a lot.

After a very long evaluation (consisting of lots of online research, and a few trips to the Funan centre here in Singapore to have a look at some models directly), I knew that in the end I’d get either a Lenovo, an HP, or a Dell due to their build qualities. I settled for a Dell E6410, as it allowed me to configure the laptop (nearly) perfectly for my needs:

  • i5-540 processor
  • 8GB RAM
  • 128GB SSD
  • Nvidia video card (as I still plan to play some “older” games like Football Manager 2009 or Fallout 3 occasionally)
  • 14″ screen with 1440×900 resolution
  • 9cell battery
  • backlit keyboard (I seriously love the quality of this keyboard and the lights!)

I also ordered a HDD caddy to replace the DVD drive with a second hard drive. That way, I can put my virtual machines on that second hard drive. I currently have one VM only, which naturally takes up nearly all of the remaining empty space of my SSD.

My opinion so far: this laptop is amazing! The build quality is great, working with 8GB and the SSD is extremely smooth! I installed my SharePoint 2007 VM in the past two days when I had time, and managed to still get more than 5 hours of battery life yesterday despite lots of VM activity.

2 thoughts on “New Laptop – Dell E6410”

  1. Hi Mark,
    the only “drawback” for me so far is the small SSD size, 128GB just aren’t enough. But I’m waiting for the HDD caddy at the moment, as soon as it arrives I’ll replace the DVD drive with a 2nd hard drive, then things will be much easier.
    Rene

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