My then-new AMD-powered HP went through my entire deployment (starting in 2004) and is still going. At least half the company went over with HP's and they were well-supported from a warranty aspect, too. It was under $1000, IIRC. I'm not going to replacing it unil something catastrophic happens, but I will definitely go with a widescreen model the next time I buy a new one. Really makes for better DVD viewing, which I did a lot of.
I would also look for something that has some kind of high-def inputs (if they are making laptops like that now). I traveled recently and the TV where I went was old-school enough that I still could not hook my PS3 up to it with all the adapters I had.