MacBook Pro or go home. I used both Dell and HP laptops for years before I got my first MacBook. The Dell was a nightmare and the HP was marginally better. I purchased my latest MacBook pro in April of 2010 and I still have AppleCare remaining. I spent close to $3k and I don't regret it one bit. I love this computer. The build quality trumps anything else on the market and almost 3 years later, mine is going strong. Not to mention if I ever experience any issues, I can take it straight to the Apple store for help in any major mall near me. Can't beat that. The anodized aluminum unibody design is incredible.
Edit: I forgot to mention, I paid $3k for my MBP in 2010 and the going price for my model is still $1200 or so. No other computer manufacturer can match that.
What it comes down to for me is very simple. I use this device almost every single day of my life. Why wouldn't I want it to be the best available?
Past: 1999 Techno Violet Metallic M3
Present: 2012 135i DCT Dinan S2
Last edited by tock172; 11-13-2012 at 10:49 PM.