I’ve always been a fan of Compaq laptops and recently just bought my third one. Compaq laptops or notebooks are usually very reliable, inexpensive, last forever and are well-designed too. Since their merger with Hewlett-Packard there are also now HP notebook options when buying a computer at a Compaq shop or online at Compaq.com, which is nice.
On my recent trip to an IT Mall in Bangkok, Thailand, I was delighted therefore to see so many Compaq and Hewlett Packard laptop models that were exactly what I was looking for and also cheap. These laptops are available in the US and Europe too, and are just as inexpensive in both places. If you’re looking for a reliable but cheap new laptop computer for 2009, check out these inexpensive Compaq and Hewlett Packard notebook models under $600 – you won’t be disappointed.
Compaq Presario CQ60Z series – Starting at only $399 for the base model, the Compaq Presario CQ60Z series has a 15.6″ diagonal widescreen display, built-in Wi-Fi, a microphone, comes with an AMD processor and Windows Vista. It comes in black (which I prefer, as black notebooks are so much easier to keep looking clean), and has several USB ports to connect all your extra stuff. The screen is just beautiful – photos look amazing on it – and the speakers, for such an inexpensive laptop, are very powerful. This is actually the Compaq computer I ended up buying and I’m certainly not sorry. I paid a total of $430 as I had extra memory installed, and cannot believe what a great computer this is for such a cheap price. I’ve only had it for a couple of weeks but it’s a wonderful machine with so much power.
Hewlett Packard G60t series – The G60 HP notebook has a 16″ high-definition screen, an Intel Pentium processor, Intel Graphics Media Accelerator, comes with Windows Vista, Wi-Fi, CD and DVD player and burner, a 5-in-1 digital media card reader (I love these things, can’t think why they didn’t invent them years ago!), and some excellent Altec Lansing speakers, which pack a pretty big punch for a cheap laptop. You can also add a microphone and a webcam for only a little extra money. The base model of the G60t starts at $530. I test drove this baby, but finally decided on the Compaq Presario, as I liked the design a little better.
Hewlett Packard dv6z series – Starting at $599 for the base model, the HP dv6z is one amazing computer. It has a 16″ wide screen display, comes with Windows Vista Premium, has a fast graphics card, built-in Wi-Fi, this one comes with a webcam and microphone, and some pretty decent MediaSmart software for all your movie, photo and music options. Another cool thing is it has an HDMI 1.3 port, so that you can connect your notebook to an HD TV – awesome if you want to use your laptop as a DVD player but want to see the movie on a larger screen. It comes in black or an off-white, so if you don’t like the usual classic black, you can choose something a bit cooler.
HP Mini 1000 Mobile Broadband series – While looking at inexpensive laptops, I can’t pass up discussing the HP Mini 1000 Mobile Broadband series computer. Mini computers are all the rage at the moment, as they’re lightweight and easy to carry. This one is no exception. It comes with Windows XP Home Edition, a built-in webcam and microphone, an Intel processor, currently has a free upgrade to 1 GB of memory, an extra 8GB of extra storage, and is less than 1 inch thick. Starting at $429.99, it’s an amazing price for a notebook that only weighs 2.2 lbs. It only comes in black, but it’s a stylish little laptop and I love that it’s so small. Make sure you realize though, it does not have a CD/DVD player, but it’s so tiny, honestly, where would you put it?
These four Compaq and Hewlett Packard notebooks are all great little machines for less than $600. Any one of them will give you a few years of computing for a small amount of money and, with the bells and whistles some of them also have, you’ll get hours of fun from them too!