Know what you are looking at
Most people when looking for a computer have no idea what to look for. This is especially true when it comes to the processor. Buyers see that a computer has a Pentium processor and they think "Great"! The fact is the Pentium has been around along time and is now considered a low end chip even by Intel.
The latest lineup form Intel is the "i" series (i3, i5, and i7) 4th generation. Obviously the i7 is king but did I really need it? It is a quad core processor that is great for gaming and everything else. The i5 is what I had before (1st generation) and the 4th generation of the same chip is what I deemed necessary for my work. Even though it is only a dual core chip it is faster that any quad core from AMD. Speaking of AMD, the A6, A8, and A10 processors are all quad core but somewhat slower than the i5. In fact the A10 is about equal to the i3. Not bad but not quite up to snuff for me.
So knowing what I wanted, it was just a matter of getting a bargain. I love bargains! I searched for a laptop with a 15.6" screen (I want nothing smaller) and would consider a 17.3" although it is heavier and bulkier. I find 15.6" to be perfect for my use. I also wanted a 500GB hard drive and a minimum of 4GB RAM. I can easily add more myself. In fact I had RAM in my old laptop to move over.
After 2 hours of searching I found what I wanted at Office Depot. It was an Acer (my last laptop was an Acer and I liked it). It had everything I required including an Intel i5 4th generation processor. In addition it had touch screen. It was the only laptop I found $600.00 or less with a touch screen. What was the cost of this computer? $450.00! Now that is a bargain. Also, it was in stock at the store. There was no need to wait days for a delivery by buying online. Three hours after my laptop crashed I was setting up my new one.