New Laptop

I need a new laptop for general purposes (not gaming or pron) and that my eldest can use when they go to Secondary School later this year (if they open). I'd like to keep the cost under a grand. I'm presuming most experts use this site - so, any recommendations gratefully received. Thanking you kindly.

not gaming or pron)


and that my eldest can use when they go to Secondary School later this year


Some serious re-thinking is needed right there.

an 11 year old does not need a £1000 laptop or even close  - if no gaming one for few hundred quid will be perfectly adequate.

A slightly higher end one is worth it for video conferencing imo

It isn't just for him - it's so he can use it for homework etc as well as me. I've no desire to spend that amount - that's just an absolute ceiling before someone recommends a Cray Supercomputer.

I was wondering about the Honor Magicbook

Limit to how much the Chinese government would want to spy on homework I expect

Will they be carrying it round? Will they have constant internet? 

Banaman - it's primarily for home use only but I suspect it will get taken to school as well as necessary. I'm only worried about it  being suitable for use in these locations.

I have a Dell sent by work. It is really chuffing loud - the fan kicks in if you start using zoom. I much preferred the old HP. This is my technical analysis

a kid will drop and smash it.  Get a teams-compliant Chromebook


OH works in IT and always suggests Dell to people as you can spec up exactly what you want on their website

you also don't need to spend anywhere near a grand


Lenovo are superb, and I recommend anything they make. The most obvious models I would recommend are the Thinkpad and the Carbon X1. The Thinkpad is their 'general purpose business laptop' and the Carbon X1 is their slimline, more portable (and thus slightly more expensive) version.

Rather like buying a car, you pay a premium for this year's model, so I usually try to buy a one year old refurbished model. If you google for "Thinkpad refurbished" or "Carbon X1 refurbished" you can find lots of options. I wouldn't recommend buying anything more than two years old, though: I think one year is the sweet spot.


Thanks for the suggestions. Pancakes is also right - will all these pass the 'cool' test.

Generally speaking you want something with an Intel i5/AMD Ryzen 5 processor and at least 8GB RAM - if you opt for less than this you'll notice significant slow down within a year. You can easily pick these sort of machines up for sub 1k.

I'd recommend either of the below, which we tend to get in for our firm:

  • Lenovo ThinkPad E14 Gen 2
  • Dell Latitude 5410

Both of these come to around the £800 mark, leaving a bit of change left over if you wanted to get a monitor/docking station if you don't already have.

buying a refurbished laptop means someone will have jizzed on it and fried the keyboard.

Thinkpads are excellent in my experience and I also think they look quite cool. You can also save money by running Linux and using all free software.

Also, the linux photoshop equivalent is called ‘gimp’ so he has a good joke in the pocket for day 1 at school.

If you know what school they are going to, ask what they use for delivering lessons. If they use Google Classroom, you just need a chromebook, which are cheap as chips, and look underpowered next to Windows laptops, but that is because all processing gets done in the cloud.

Get a MacBook Air. The new M1 chip models are amazing for battery life and performance. See if you can get the educational discount.

If you NEED windows, get a Dell XPS 13, Thinkpad Carbon X1, Thinkpad T14s (in that order).

The above list (MacBook at the top, down to T14s also applies in order of best to worst coolness factor).