Buying a new Laptop (what to buy?)

Discussion in 'Computer Games and General Discussion' started by Elrinth, Jun 9, 2010.

Jun 9, 2010
  1. Elrinth
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    Member Elrinth :Master beyond your imagination:

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    Currently, I've got my eyes on the Sony Vaio Z series. Mainly because of the Quad SSD disk included which would increase my working efficiency.
    I've heard the screen isn't too great. The computer is supposedly sounding alot when using really intense applications. So I'm not really sure about the Vaio Z yet.
    I might buy a Mac book Pro and install Win7 on it.

    Apps I'll be using (not at the same time):
    Microsoft Visual Studio 2010 for web&game development
    Photoshop CS 5 (not really sure about this, but maybe)
    MySQL
    IIS or Apache, haven't decided yet, but probably IIS so I can run ASP.NET properly.
    Heroes of Newerth (a game which should run on the computer)
    Renoise with a bunch of VSTis
    Firefox with firebug and other webdevelopment plugins.
    Google Chrome
    Miranda (always running)
    Skype (always running in combination with Miranda)
    XMPlay (always running, not necessarily playing music)
    Some video players like VLC for maybe viewing a film clip every now and then


    Well, what do you guys think?
     
  2. Berthenk

    Member Berthenk Epitome of Awesomeness

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    Why buy a Mac if you're going to install 7 on it...?
     
  3. Slyakin

    Member Slyakin See ya suckers

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    Don't get a Mac. They might be all shiny and stuff, but I can say that, with all those apps and stuff you're gonna use in the future, there are probably gonna be a few that won't be compatible. Also, Boot Camp, from what I've heard, makes your Mac run slowly.

    Get a fast processor based computer. Maybe even get a desktop, if you need all those apps. I should know, because I do some heavy video editing and crap.
     
  4. scrtmstr

    Member scrtmstr GBAtemp Advanced Fan

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    At least get a really powerfull laptop, or just a good ordinary dekstop.
    And don't get a mac, you'll be better off with a pc.
     
  5. Urza

    Member Urza hi

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    Neither of those things are true at all.

    On the actual question, none of the applications you listed (PS excluded) are particularly processor or disk intensive. Thus, spending money on four SSDs seems completely unnecessary. Why you're looking at higher end laptops such as the Vaio Z I'm not quite sure.
     
  6. Elrinth
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    Member Elrinth :Master beyond your imagination:

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    Because it's in the price class where I've got money to spend. I can't take it out as salary, I need to buy electronical gear with it. I already have a perfectly sufficient desktop at home. I'd like to be able to bring the computer anywhere and still compile and code visual studio programs or perhaps create songs in renoise.


    I was thinking a Mac Book Pro because I've done some iPhone dev on my brother's Mac Book Mini, and it'd be really nice to code with a computer of my own. But this is totally just an extra feature for me.

    If anyone else knows of a better laptop, please tell! [​IMG]
     
  7. monkat

    Banned monkat I'd like to see you TRY to ban me. (Should I try?.

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    I heard the IBM Thinkpad 700c was pretty awesome
     
  8. I2aven's_Sag

    Member I2aven's_Sag GBATemp Otaku

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  9. Urza

    Member Urza hi

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    Performance of the GT 330M (15/17" MBP GPU, also the Vaio Z's) is about on par with the 4670, and definitely outperforms the 4570.

    Also, the two machines you listed are about half the price of those he mentioned in the OP (and of course if he lives in Sweden he can't order from Newegg).
     
  10. kmihalj

    Newcomer kmihalj Advanced Member

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    Buy Mac Pro ....

    you will get "both worlds" in all they glory .... Win & Mac OS X

    ..... boot Camp does not slow down windows ..... it is just pack of drivers for mac hardware ... and not all from Apple (just touchpad + keyboard is from apple, all other drivers are from factory which produce hardware (Nvidia GPU, Intel mainboard, ....etc.)

    Runing Windows 7 on Mac is way better than running Mac OS X on Hackintosh .... and all apps you listed exist (or there is alternative) on Mac (except for Visual Studio and IIS) .... also you can run Windows in Vmware or Parallels when you don't use games .... and with dual boot you get Win 7 which ran same as on any other PC-Laptop with eqivalent hardware...
     
  11. Originality

    Member Originality Chibi-neko

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    You could go for the Acer Aspire 5942 or 8942 (the difference being 15" or 18"). Both come with i3, i5 and i7 varieties and Radeon HD5 series GPUs. They're generally around £800-1200. I won't make suggestions or comments beyond that though (since I don't want to start a PC vs Mac debate).
     
  12. George Dawes

    Member George Dawes Wanker

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    Running w7 on a mac is NOT better than running OSX on a hackintosh. Buy the right laptop and the hackintosh outperforms the macbook under OSX and under windows.

    Plus you (might) get a laptop that looks half-decent, unlike the fugly macbook. Definitely only a maybe, though, as virtually all laptops (and desktops) are ugly.

    A small amount of time configuring a hackintosh is definitely worth the performance boost you'll get compared to running apple stock hardware.
     
  13. Elrinth
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    Member Elrinth :Master beyond your imagination:

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    The HP Pavilion looks pretty decent for the low price model

    The Aces Aspire 5943 / 8943 (yeah I know u said 2 in the end, but there's a 3, and I'm guessing it's better [​IMG]) looks really really fat [​IMG]
    18.4" screen with 1920x1080, 8ms response time. 16:9 aspect ratio
    Radeon™ HD 5850 with 1024 MB
    8 gb ram (upgradable to 16)
    1 tb hdd (2x500gb)
    Found one: Acer Aspire 8943G-728G1TBn (LX.PUH02.096) for 16k euro (incl vat). It's actually still below my top price which is 20k (excl vat)


    I'm still leaning for the mac book pro or the vaio for the ssd [​IMG]
     
  14. I2aven's_Sag

    Member I2aven's_Sag GBATemp Otaku

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    Thanks for the wakeup call Urza, unfortunately I've been really sleep deprived lately, I appreciate the heads up. Since the OP was mentioning multiple SSD's he can definitely afford a superb laptop. I would definitely browse around, but I really like the small-company feel that xoticpc provides and I've heard really good things about their customer support. They're also an international-capable company.

    http://www.xoticpc.com/sager-np8690-built-...?wconfigure=yes

    As someone else said your not really using many programs that are very processor oriented, and this laptop offers several different configuration choices in that respect. Personally, depending on usage, I think it would be good to go with either an i7-720QM / Quad or an i7-620M (Dual Core w/ Hyper-threading). The i7-620M has a higher clock speed as a dual core which may help in some instances, (and I believe it's fairly power efficient). Both have turbo boost so it comes down, contextually, to which programs are more demanding and how much multi-tasking you'd be up to. The resolution on this laptop is good as well, 1600x900 standard w/ the option to upgrade to 1920x1080. I also like that you can specific a custom finish on your laptop to make it truly yours. As far as mobility goes I think it's best to stay within the 15''-15.6'' category as these laptops don't weigh all that much. Out of all the sites I've window-shopped at, xoticpc, remains one of the better sites with *plenty* of upgrade options
    Regardless, you have a choice of a 5870 or a GTX 285M, both of which are fantastic cards, if a bit on the hot side.
     
  15. Elrinth
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    Member Elrinth :Master beyond your imagination:

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    That site is nice and really let's you customize your computer. However, the price you'll reach is absurd [​IMG] Then again, it might not be.
    I came up to $2437.32 which is slightly too high. Then I didn't include an operating system either.
    BlueRay from DVD burner cost extra $150
    8 gig ram from 4 cost $230
    Intel® Core™ i7-820QM, 1.73-3.06GHz, (45nm, 8MB L3 cache) from Intel® Core™ i5-520M, 2.4-2.93GHz, (3MB L3 cache) cost $370
     
  16. I2aven's_Sag

    Member I2aven's_Sag GBATemp Otaku

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    To be honst, Elrinth, it's a bit hard to address your needs, it's easy, with XoticPC to rack of an exorbitant priced laptop, but that's not why I recommended the site. If you have a decent desktop system then there's really no reason to go out of your way on extra RAM and a blue-ray drive.

    I currently have an i7-720QM and it's quite the beast of a processor, I'm not sure whether or not you really need the 820QM. Quad Cores would help with multi-tasking, but if you're not going to be making use of the quad (which is, per say, heavy video-editing / encoding). Then you might be better off going with a higher clocked dual-core like the i5 / i7-620M (2.66-3.33). (Either the 720QM Quad or the 620M dual are similarly priced at a $130-150 upgrade.)

    As far as RAM goes, I'll leave that in your hands, but 8GB seems like quite a lot to me, since I haven't had any problems running applications on my i7-720QM / 4GB RAM. Something like 6 sounds like more of a compromise. If you're really going to be using a laptop for mobility then compromises are important because a laptop isn't a desktop, and you shouldn't try to spec it out like one. (Just my thought)

    The main reason some of the computers @ Xotic are expensive may because of the video-card. If you're going to be doing a lot of development, then you'll need a good video card, but perhaps you don't need one ~that~ good.
    Code:
    http://www.notebookcheck.net/ATI-Mobility-Radeon-HD-5650.23697.0.html

    Code:
    http://www.xoticpc.com/custom-gaming-laptops-notebooks-15416-laptops-ct-95_51_149.html
    The main page lets you see all of the laptops as you probably noticed, in the 15'' category anyway. Right now, I'm thinking that the SAGER NP2180 works well in that you can cuts some cost on the video card and still have a great card capable of playing newer games on low-medium settings.

    Ultimately, this laptop is going to be for your work & development stuff, so there really isn't a need to spend money making it an entertainment powerhouse with a BR drive as well. It's just my opinion, but you should buy something that's more specialized for work since that's what the primary purpose is. You don't want to forget that.

    Code:
    http://www.xoticpc.com/sager-np2180-built-compal-nblb2-custom-laptop-p-2776.html?wconfigure=yes
    Looks good to me,

    i7-720QM/i7-620M Upgrade > 6GB RAM / 1333 > BR 4x (no need for 6x) > 160GB SSD ~1800
    1920 x 1080 Display / 6lbs. [You don't want a behemoth 9lb laptop to carry around with you, trust me =/] ~ Comes out to around $1800 which gives you plenty of wiggle room.

    Ultimately, I'd suggest talking to one of the customer service people if you have any questions (or making a thread at their forums) From what I've seen/read, their customer service is excellent
     
  17. Originality

    Member Originality Chibi-neko

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    I may be one of the few people in the world that actually would like a behemoth 18" laptop to carry around, regardless of the price. If only such laptops had good battery life... and if only spare batteries were cheaper...

    But I agree with the above post - get a laptop for your needs and nothing more. Think about what your applications do, what they need, and what a laptop provides to satisfy that need, then look for the laptop/parts that satisfy those needs. Extras (like BR burners) needlessly rack up the costs. Besides, you can always replace those parts later if you felt like it.
     
  18. I2aven's_Sag

    Member I2aven's_Sag GBATemp Otaku

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    , but the truth is that for such an amount of money you could buy a semi-future proof desktop that would last around 3.5-4.0 years. Moore's law isn't kind to laptops at all, and very few are upgradable. That being said, having a monster desktop-replacement with an actual desktop i7-processor is outrageous. I'm not even going to touch the subject of the GTX 480M, but if dual 285M's have a battery life of about 45 minutes...well, what more can be said?
    One of the other reasons that I like XoticPC, is that they don't force you to get an 18'' notebook for display reasons, they also allow you, later of course, to purchase extra screens and external video cards to help support those screens.

    This is also one of the reasons I like XoticPC and Sager notebooks in general, from my research, they're upgradable, and you don't need to spend more than your budget. As a student, I really wish I had spent my $1500-1700 here on my laptop, instead of on a dell, which eventually transformed into an alienware m15x. When I'm in the market for a laptop again in the next few years, I'm definitely going to look at XoticPC. Truth be told, Originality, I'm really curious about the Sandy-Bridge CPU/GPU integration now that I've done a little research and that an article labeled 2011 as the year of the laptop.
     
  19. luckwii

    Member luckwii GBAtemp Fan

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    I just got my new laptop. It is a Gateway NV series. I picked it up for $650.

    Intel i5 core with 430M
    500 GB HDD
    4 GB memory
    Windows 7 pre-installed
    Intel GMA HD

    It is pretty quick. I am able to run games like Street Fighter IV PC at full speed. The graphics are integrated which isn't the best, but so far it is running a lot more than the old Intel chips did. For the price overall I think this is a good buy.
     
  20. Originality

    Member Originality Chibi-neko

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    Since it's using Core i5 and GMA HD, it should also have a good battery life (like the Acer Aspire 5740 that I'm on now, lasting 4.5 hours).

    I have a tablet laptop (HP Pavillion tx2550ea) that I got for two reasons - it's a tablet, so I can poke the screen, and because it didn't have too bad specs (at the time). The iPad is bringing about a renewed interest in tablets, but I won't get one because I think that my one is better.

    When it comes to power laptops and power efficiency, they've started including IGP and discreet GPUs to allow significantly longer battery life. It's still not great, but it's a step in the right direction. I've been hearing some rumours about research going into a new battery type that aims to fall somewhere between the absurdly long lifespan of chemical batteries (1-3 days, but non rechargable, used for long business trips) and current Li-on batteries. I've not seen any announcements yet so it's probably not going to be ready for several more years, but some people are still talking about it. It'd be nice to have a desktop replacement that can last as long as current laptops.
     

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