I like Dell, Toshiba, and HP laptops. But even with these, I wouldn't start with a low end model. You truly get what you pay for. Buy as much memory as you can afford, and I would also look for a minimum 3 year warranty - parts and labor.
and check out their reviews section. Look for the user comments for each laptop. These comments are from users who have used the laptop, so they play a big role in the buying process for me.
Hope this helps
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