Refurbished laptop triumphs in bargain huntHow to get the best model for £300

01 November 2007

 

A laptop

When it comes to buying a bargain laptop you could do a lot worse than a refurbished model, saysComputing Which? today.

Its researchers were given £300 to find a laptop that could handle day-to-day functions.

They shopped online, trawled the classifieds, and looked at new, second-hand and refurbished models.

The researcher who shopped online went straight to eBay where there was plenty of choice.

Software licences

On eBay, the researcher bought a Dell laptop which proved to be a good all-rounder, but proper software licences weren't provided and there was no guarantee of after-sales support.

Buying second hand from the classifieds was a slower process and took three attempts to get a second-hand Dell Latitude. It could handle everyday computing tasks, but as the machine was sold in good faith, if anything went wrong it would no longer be the seller’s problem.

Although £300 is pretty near the bottom of the range for new machines, Computing Which? managed to buy a new Lenovo laptop which was legally protected and offered after-sales support.

After-sales care

The advantage of the refurbished model – a Compaq Presario laptop from Currys - was that it offered the value for money of a used machine, together with the after-sales care of a new model. 

When the laptop developed a problem with a faulty power unit, Currys replaced it within three days at no extra cost, and it has worked perfectly since.

Computing Which? Editor Abigail Waraker said: ‘It’s not easy to find a laptop for £300, especially one that you know will perform really well. So we were very impressed with the quality of all the models.

‘However, our bargain hunt shows that with a refurbished laptop you can get value for money, with the same levels of support as a new model – the perfect combination if you’re already thinking of Christmas presents.’