Monday, 27 August 2018

Dell Latitude E6440 - first thoughts

Those of you that have seen my Youtube channel will know that I am quite fond of buying second hand laptops. Well, I hadn't bought one since 2016, but the tea incident (see my last post) gave me a reason to buy a new one. I chose a Dell Latitude E6440. I am fond of Dell Latitudes, I've owned second hand ones - a D410, an E6400, an E6510 and an E5400 - and my main laptop is actually a Dell Latitude 5000 series. I know that they're reliable and easy to maintain, which is the  main  reason that I went for one. Anyway, my first thoughts are below.

The first thing that really sprung to mind when thinking about writing this post is the keyboard. I love it. I'm actually writing this post using the laptop for that very reason. I find that it I can type very quickly on it - quicker than on my main laptop in fact. In additon, like my main laptop, this has a backlit keyboard. I have actually found the backlit keyboard on this one, even though it is at least 3 years old, to be better than the backlit keyboard on my main one. This is because there isn't as much space for dust to get between the keys, meaning that the light shines through well. How do I kjnow this, when I have only owned this laptop for three days? Because this keyboard is definitely the original keyboard, because it has some wear on it, yet there is no dust behind the keys and therefore the backlight shines through they keys very well. I think this keyboard is a pleasure to use.

The next thing I will talk about is probably specific to mine. The screen. For the last two years I have grown used to full HD 1080P screens on my laptop. This one has a 1366x768 screen. I am not knocking the laptop for this, I am just saying that I am not used to it - and I know there would have been options for better screens on this laptop if purchased from new.

Build quality. I think this is a very solid machine. There's one crack on it, and a couple  of marks on the top, but that's to be expected with a heavly used maching which this clearly is based on the fact that it has a well worn keyboard and trackpad. I really like the materials that Dell chose for this laptop, because it has a really nice feel on youyr arms and hands when they are resting on the palm rest of the computer. This means that you can type for ages and still stay comfortable. In addition, it also feels extremely sturdy. I comparison to my main laptop, it is quite a bit heavier and thicker - but that's to be expected as it is a few years older and this has an E bay (for optical drives) which my main one does not have - in addition my main one doesn't have an optical drive it all. Whilst discussing that it is important to nore that this also has an E series docking/port replicator connector on the bottom, allowing it to be connected to the docking statioin that I bought for my E5400 and E6400 back in 2015/16 0 which  hasn't seen any use for a while.

Performance is hard to comment on, considering it is a few years old and therefore it is obviously going to be a bit slower than brand new laptops. What I will  say though, is that considering it's age, it is still very quick and snappy. I have had a few slow downs here and there, but that was resolved by closing and re-opening my web browser which was clearly using a lot of memory.

Overall, I would definitely recommend this laptop if you want a nice second hand laptop that is still usable now.

Below are the specs for my system.

Be careful with your stuff - don't spill tea on your laptop

This is a little story of mine, with which I hope to ensure that nobody else has the same problem that I had.

Last Sunday, i was on my laptop as usual. I was about to go to bed, so I was saying goodnight to people on Facebook and then getting ready to hibernate my computer, which is what I normally do with my laptops. I had a cup of tea on one of my desks, which I hadn't completely finished drinking and as I went to bed, I left the cup on my desk. I thought nothing of it at the time, but the next day I would realise what a bad mistake this was.

The next morning, I woke up at half 6, ready to go to work. It turns out that I had left something at my dads, so I had to go there first before going to work. Anyway, when I got up, and was rushing about, I noticed that my laptop was covered in tea. I thought to myself "that wasn't there when I went to bed, so how did it get there?". All day I was wondering who had done it, and i  was worrying at work that it wouldn't work when I got home - especially considerin the fact that it cost my £950 to buy the laptop.

Anyway, I got home and I was too nervous to turn it on. I did eventually, and it worked, but by this point I had already spent £142 on a second hand laptop to use as a backup (infact, that is what I am writing this blog post from, because I think that the keyboard on this laptop is absolutely fantastic - more to come later (I hope to make a video on this computer at some point, if I can fit it in around my work schedule among other things).

Anyway, needless to say, I will not be leaving a half full cup on my desk again, because that is what caused this. It turned out that my mom had picked the cup up, and tipped it upside down whilst carrying it out of my room. This resulted in the laptop being soaked in tea - obviously something that isn't ideal.

Anyway, I hope that you learn from my lesson so that your laptop isn't damaged by tea, coffee, etc.

Saturday, 25 August 2018

A Level and GCSE Congrats

Last week, I recieved my A Level results - like everyone else in England and Wales. A week later, Yr11 students collected their GCSE results.

I would like to congratulate everyone who has sat any exams and recieved their results. The main thing is that you try your hardest and remember that it's your result and that you should be proud of your results - whatever it is. There's always  help if you didn't get what you want, and need to change future plans.

So, congrats all!