by Willem Baas
I bought a Dell Latitude D520 about 4 years ago, and it has served me very well since.
I decided on the Latitude series after seeing my father’s experience with the Inspiron series and speaking with Dell employees about the differences between the lines.
The Latitude is the more reliable and proven of the two lines, with the Inspiron line having a more experimental feel (i.e.- hardware features that are brand new technology and are not proven). If you are a business person, DEFINITELY get the Latitude line; it may be more pricey but it is totally worth it.
I bought the D520 at the time because it just happened to be a great deal, and had more than enough computing power for my purposes (mostly web browsing, e-mail, and extensive use of Microsoft Office). This laptop has a 1.66 GHz Intel Centrino Duo, with 1 GB RAM on 1DIMM; and it has a 60 GB hard drive. The best things about this laptop are that it is constructed VERY well. It is almost like it was designed for a klutz to use it. I have dropped it a number of times and the casing stays strong.
It actually is a feature that Latitude laptops are designed to take shock better. The thing I like least about this laptop is that it lacks a little mouse button in the middle of the keyboard. I personally really liked this feature on previous computers, and this D520 does not have it. I do understand that newer Latitudes do have this feature.
The D520’s speed when new was terrific. Of course back then it was pretty close to top of the line; now it is not, but is still plenty adequate.
I also do a good job of keeping it protected from viruses, spyware, adware, etc. The keyboard is as expected of a laptop keyboard, the mouse touch pad is still working well with no problems, the speakers could be a little bit louder for my taste but also perform as expected from laptop speakers.
Overall, I would certainly recommend this laptop, but more importantly I would recommend Dell. Their customer service is excellent; their warranty is top notch. I have been very pleased with Dell and my entire family has Dell computers.