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Old 09-17-2007, 08:45 PM   #1
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My laptop's fiery suicide

It began with the fan dying.

I didn't really notice it immediately because the fan on this laptop was almost completely silent. (Unlike the one on the old Sony which was like some kind of WWII machinery). But I became suspicious when the computer began to literally burn the palms of my hands. It was unbelievable. Then it began to smell like burning rubber. I'm not joking.

This was followed by it dying. At which point the Toshiba people informed me that the fan was dead, the motherboard is fried, and the power source thing was apparently also no longer with us. And that it would cost me some $600 to fix all this, as my warranty had expired. Clearly completely unreasonable, nevermind the 7-10 day wait.

So I had to pony up for a new one, but I'm so not a happy camper. Nevermind that I even used an external fan pad because I always found this particular laptop to be hot.
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Old 09-17-2007, 10:15 PM   #2
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R.I.P.

I can't afford a laptop though I think I'd really like to have one, someday. I'm just afraid of it having a short lifespan, unlike my desktop computers :knockwood:
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Old 09-18-2007, 09:48 AM   #3
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Um, that blows!!!

My laptop also crashed (bought brand spanking new, top of the line, in mid January). I figured out what was wrong (outer RAM module was bad, probably all along, but that module was not being utilized until I installed Vista), they send a pre-paid box, and I received it fixed less than 48 hrs after I sent it. HP w00t.

I used to be really gung-ho about Toshibas, but the more I read about them, the more I'm reading about 1) fan problems and 2) soldering issues on the mother board (namely the touchpad and/or the AC adapter connection).
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Old 09-18-2007, 12:20 PM   #4
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that badly sucks!

I'm doubting wether or not to buy a laptop.. it might be useful on uni, but they're pretty expensive and I don't have much money at the moment.... are they worth it?
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Old 09-18-2007, 01:53 PM   #5
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That's the third Toshiba I've had and never had a problem before. On the other hand, my best friend here at law school had no less than THREE HP laptops die on him. The Dells are also crapping out constantly. I'm honestly starting to believe there is no real difference between the brands. They're all not meant to last that long. Oh well, 2 more years for this new one I got and then the firm will just buy me a new one!
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Old 09-18-2007, 02:24 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally posted by anitram
I'm honestly starting to believe there is no real difference between the brands. They're all not meant to last that long.
That's how I feel as well. The brand doesn't really matter, unless they have the upper edge on configuring the hardware so that it's more efficient (better air flow, maximum efficiency of the fans and heat sink, etc). I've taken apart HPs, IMBs, Acers, Dells, Compaqs, Sonys, Toshibas.....they are all made from the same pool of lower-end hardware. I do believe that Apple holds the edge as far as graphics and hardware compatibility (also a con b/c it's so fucking proprietary!). Beyond that, the computers people are purchasing for home and school use are really luck of the draw. Considering the ratio of Macs to PCs that we use here, I can't say that the Mac hardware spontaneously conks out any less than the PC and I can't think of one brand that's generally worse than any other. Certain brands are notorious for specific hardware or wiring failures, but beyond that, no one really has enough edge to say "our brand is more durable and longer lasting."
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Old 09-18-2007, 04:19 PM   #7
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I can say this: All laptops, regardless of brand, are equally infuriating to work on - and by 'work on', I mean hardcore, open-it-up-and-do-stuff-with-the-stuff-inside 'work on'. They are built so compactly, that it is a BITCH to work on the inside of them. Any of them. Most of the time you have to dismantle the LCD in order to get the back ends of the top casing off to see the system board and all the stuff hooked to it. The cables and plugs that connect the LCD to the board, the keyboard to the board, the touchpad to the board, etc etc, are all fingernail thin. All of the cables/wires/jacks inside a laptop are INSANELY easy to break or rip. And if you do, you can't just go to CompUSA and buy a 'LCD-to-Motherboard connecter for Gateway Notebook YGR600-2 Series'. You'd end up paying a ridiculous amount of money for it online or you'd end up taking it to some laptop specialty repair place where they could order the part for you, put it in, and charge you.

Working on the inside of a laptop is a nightmare compared to working on the inside of a desktop.
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Old 09-18-2007, 04:40 PM   #8
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since the topic of Anitram's laptop frying came up...are those fan pads a good idea to get? I've been wondering since I have a laptop now.
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Old 09-18-2007, 05:43 PM   #9
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Yes, they are not a bad idea. Most electronics are not really intended to last more than 2 years or so, but for laptop models that might already run hot, they can really help. They're also good for people who actually use a laptop on the lab. I sold my old cooling pad and now have a much smaller laptop and don't have a new pad yet. My laptop is usually hot to the touch and is unbearably hot on my lap after 20 minutes or so. Also, some laptops (not sure how many current models) actually had fans and air vents on the bottom! I eventually stopped using mine b/c I usually keep the back of my laptop propped up and my old laptop only had 2 USB ports (and the devices I use do not run through a USB hub).
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Old 09-18-2007, 07:21 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally posted by Liesje
Yes, they are not a bad idea. Most electronics are not really intended to last more than 2 years or so, but for laptop models that might already run hot, they can really help.
I had one of these, a pretty good model (3-fan) and as you can tell, it did little to save my computer. But like yours, it was way too hot to keep on the lap, so it was a necessity as much as me hoping that it would prolong the laptop's life.
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Old 09-18-2007, 08:03 PM   #11
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It depends on what creates the heat. If the internal fan is defective, that's pretty bad any way you look at it. If the heat sink is bad that's bad!!! If the computer in general just runs warm, but there's not anything malfunctioning, that's not so bad, and the cooling pad will help by circulating the air on the bottom. The first two are hardware flaws that often go unnoticed until it's too late and the cooling pad is not going to make up for that. The third is more common and the cooling pad will help in a more general sense. The hard drives in the HPs I've used are what run hot, so the cooling pad works nicely. One of the fans on my model sat right below the hard drive and another below the optical drive. I had the computer shut down at a certain temperature, but the cooling pad made it so that never happened. Using and burning CDs and DVDs also increases temp. I rarely use ROM media so that hasn't been an issue for me, but it suppose it would help for someone who does.
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Old 09-19-2007, 10:32 AM   #12
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This thread has just convinced me to buy a cooling pad for the new comp (bought the HP last night).
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Old 09-19-2007, 03:27 PM   #13
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thanks for the info I believe I've seen the Targus brand cooling pad when I was browsing online, don't know if I saw any other brands. I never even knew these cooling pads existed before about a month ago
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