Needin' a school laptop

28 replies [Last post]
JBmiddy23
JBmiddy23's picture
Offline
Joined: 05/20/2007
Posts: 19

Hey guys, been a while since I've posted on the forums, great to be back.

Anyway, I'm looking for a laptop for school next fall and I've got loads of questions. I use my computer everyday and do lots of multi-tasking and gaming (ie. COD, WOW, HL2 etc.) My budget is about $1300 for a laptop. I'd really like to strictly go no more than +/- $100.

What I'm looking for in a laptop:
- 15"-16.4" screen
- 4GB DDR3 RAM (will not take DDR2)
- >250GB Hard Drive @ 7200RPM
- Backlit Keyboard
- Wireless N
- Windows 7

Couple of the things I seem to keep running into:

- Windows 7 Premium vs. Professional

I'm still confused as to the differences between the 2 and google doesn't help

- Nvidia 310M vs. 330M graphics

I currently have a Radeon 3850 on my desktop and that works great for me, I'd really like something that can handle games similar to the stature as my current card.

I'm looking into mostly Sony and Toshiba Laptops but if you can make an educated and convincing argument to persuade me I will respectfully listen.

Thanks again guys

Raidmax Smilodon :: Sapphire 3850 512MB :: :: Samsung 250GB :: :: 4x1GB g-skill DDR2-800 :: SAMSUNG Writemaster w/ lightscribe ::

crimson117
Offline
Joined: 02/15/2010
Posts: 68

the alienware mx15 $1199
i understand this a gaming laptop but it does fit your required spec.
it has 3gb of ddr3 1066mhz ram for an extra $50 you can get 4gb of ddr3 1066mhz ram.
15.6" screen 1600x900
Intel® Core™ i3-330M 2.13GHz (3M cache)
250GB SATAII 7,200RPM (add $25 for a 320gb)
backlit keyboard
win7

x-blade silver | ocz stealthxstream 700w | asus m4n72-e | amd phenom ii x4 955 | blue orb ii | 4gb ddr2 800mhz | hd 5770 | 250gb hdd | 500gb hdd | logitech x-240 | Razer Lycosa | ocz equilizer | razer goliathus mouse mat | Philips 230C1 | Windows 7 ultimate 64 bit

JBmiddy23
JBmiddy23's picture
Offline
Joined: 05/20/2007
Posts: 19

well the m15x is a little too thick for me. I guess I didn't really include that but it's like 2.5" thick (shut) and plus at $1200 it doesn't include enough for me and I feel like I'm really paying for a name more than anything else.

Tiv
Tiv's picture
Offline
Joined: 08/12/2009
Posts: 3584

Nice amount of money for a laptop. I would look at the i3 laptops. Get Windows 7 Pro.

I sleep fine at night knowing we are banning people who deserve it.  Tivon
Don't test my skills, I was trained by myself! Check out my Gaming Videos!

crimson117
Offline
Joined: 02/15/2010
Posts: 68

i think your asking to much. you do know that the thinner you go the less performance

JBmiddy23
JBmiddy23's picture
Offline
Joined: 05/20/2007
Posts: 19

I know I'm not asking too much because I see laptops with what I want. The problem is choosing the best laptop for me. I think I'd rather go with an i5 over an i3. Looking at upgradable Toshiba Satellite A500 and Sony F series notebooks and can't choose between the 2 and also looking for other opinions.

http://www.toshibadirect.com/td/b2c/laptop-model.jsp?family=Satellite&model=A500&lid=A500

and

http://www.sonystyle.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/CategoryDisplay?catalogId=10551&storeId=10151&langId=-1&categoryId=8198552921644691999

(respectively)

nilzxx
nilzxx's picture
Offline
Joined: 02/12/2007
Posts: 160

Nice budget!

Check this one out. Definitely a high end laptop:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16834114796

--complete specs-- Intel Quad Q6700 | Tt TMG i2 | 4GB Crucial Balistix Tracer PC6400 | 1TB Seagate Barracuda | 500GB Seagate Barracuda | XFX GeForce 9800GTX | Asus P5N-D | XION 600W PSU | DVD-RW 16x | DVD 16x | SABRENT TV Tuner | Saitek Cyborg Mouse 3200dpi | Cyba Snipa LED Mousepad | Logitech G15 Gaming keyboard | Aspire Blue X-Dreamer Case | VisionQuest 2ms 22" 19:10 LCD screen (1680x1050) | Logitech Z-5500 Surround Sound

JBmiddy23
JBmiddy23's picture
Offline
Joined: 05/20/2007
Posts: 19

great lappy nil! Only problem is i'm looking for more portability :/ so 18.4" is a little big for me :( Lovin' the specs though

Tiv
Tiv's picture
Offline
Joined: 08/12/2009
Posts: 3584

How big is too big? You want power, but from what I know of laptops power comes with size. Sounds like what you need is a Netbook, but most of them lack power.

Just tossing this out there for you too look at.
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16834115685

JBmiddy23
JBmiddy23's picture
Offline
Joined: 05/20/2007
Posts: 19

anything 17" or above is too big. anything like 14 and below is too small. I know i'm being picky but I know what I want in a laptop and I'm just looking for the best for my money and the things I'm looking for

Tiv
Tiv's picture
Offline
Joined: 08/12/2009
Posts: 3584

Then it sounds like you should go to one of your local stores and have a look at what you like and then come back and let us know so we can get the best deal.

Vortex88
Offline
Joined: 02/05/2010
Posts: 67

Here's a chart that explains the differences between Windows 7 versions:

http://www.microsoft.com/windows/windows-7/compare/default.aspx

Do you really need a backlit keyboard? And why not go with Asus? They make really nice laptops.

3dGameMan
3dGameMan's picture
Offline
Joined: 12/31/2000
Posts: 5025

For availability reasons, where do you live? The new Asus i7 G series Notebooks are nice: http://event.asus.com/notebook/G_series/

Rodney Reynolds,
Register: http://www.3dgameman.com/user/register

JBmiddy23
JBmiddy23's picture
Offline
Joined: 05/20/2007
Posts: 19

I live in the U.S.

3dGameMan
3dGameMan's picture
Offline
Joined: 12/31/2000
Posts: 5025
JBmiddy23
JBmiddy23's picture
Offline
Joined: 05/20/2007
Posts: 19

I really like the look of the G51JX-X1. My only concern is the battery life

Vortex88
Offline
Joined: 02/05/2010
Posts: 67

Well with the i7 laptops, you'll probably still get some pretty nice battery life because they're not clocked very high, but they are still very capable, especially because the i7's can automatically overclock themselves when they need to use more power.

undeadkingpr
undeadkingpr's picture
Offline
Joined: 04/21/2009
Posts: 511

Unfortunately Vortex that is not the case-i7's have absolutely terrible battery life. A large part of the blame falls on hyperthreading which just burns power at an insane right. Most i7's get 30mins-1 hour even at low clocks. You can buy an extended battery for like $70-80 which doubles the battery life but then the labtop weighs a lot more.

@University rig-Haf 922-i7 920- ASUS GENE MB- 6gb OCZ ddr3 1600-GTS 250- Acer 23'-ocz 700w psu-Altec expressionist bass speakers-LG dvd multi drive-Rosewill media reader

JBmiddy23
JBmiddy23's picture
Offline
Joined: 05/20/2007
Posts: 19

in that case I guess I'll add an intel core i5 processor into my wants. Do you think the i5 would be more energy efficient or should i look for a core 2 duo? Anyone see the specs I want in a laptop?

Vortex88
Offline
Joined: 02/05/2010
Posts: 67

Core i3 is still better than a core 2 duo and I'm guessing it would give you more battery life than an i5...or maybe not because i3's have hyper-threading?

undeadkingpr
undeadkingpr's picture
Offline
Joined: 04/21/2009
Posts: 511

i5 is ok-The comprimise between power vs. battery
Normally Like 1-2 hours on a low clocked i5. i3 can get 2-4 hours but it is only a dual core so it does not sound like what you want.
Personally in your situation I would get an i5+extended battery to have the a ton of power last (3-5) hours but it would be a bit on the heavy side (7-8 plds)

Vortex88
Offline
Joined: 02/05/2010
Posts: 67

Well something to keep in mind is that the i3 is a dual core, but it has hyper-threading technology as well. So it acts like a quad core, but it's not a true quad core.

undeadkingpr
undeadkingpr's picture
Offline
Joined: 04/21/2009
Posts: 511

Hyperthreading does not equal a quad core-that is just marketing. Hyperthreading only adds 0-40% performance at BEST-most things only marginally.

Vortex88
Offline
Joined: 02/05/2010
Posts: 67

Well then I guess it would be almost equal to a tri-core then, lol. Just keep in mind that right now most people don't even need a quad core. Most things run just fine with a dual core cpu.

undeadkingpr
undeadkingpr's picture
Offline
Joined: 04/21/2009
Posts: 511

Yes most things run fine with a dual coal but serious gaming can really take a hit with a dual core-especially low clocked ones.
No I would not count hyperthreading as an extra core-it helps you pretty much jack squat for most applications but can really help for video encoding-and PS etc. If you had an extra core then it could do everything the other cores can not just help sometimes. Plus HT generates a lot of heat while some 3 cores as cool as duals(non-HT).

crimson117
Offline
Joined: 02/15/2010
Posts: 68

in a game the difference between a dual core and a quad core is more than a few fps

Vortex88
Offline
Joined: 02/05/2010
Posts: 67

Most games don't really utilize more than 2 cores though. I'm sure they will start making some that do utilize them more in the near future though.

crimson117
Offline
Joined: 02/15/2010
Posts: 68

these days games do trust me

crimson117
Offline
Joined: 02/15/2010
Posts: 68

the days of "nothing really uses 4 cores" are over