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PC Laptop for music production, light video editing (avchd) ?

Last response: in Laptops & Notebooks
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April 4, 2013 8:14:15 PM

Last year I built a custom pc (intel 2600k, 16gb vengeance ram, asus p8z68vpro, intel ssd, 2 hdd's, bells, whistles) and I think it is more than I will ever need for what I do lol. So now I'm considering selling it for a good, strong, fast, stable pc laptop. It will primarily be used for music production and a little bit of video editing (noob at the latter). I've noticed that a lot of gaming laptops have great specs, but are overpriced for the most part. I spent around $2,200 on my pc (newegg) and am hoping to get just as much back for it. As for the laptop, I'm trying to keep it around $1500, as I'll probably need to buy external drives for my sounds (roughly 1.5TB worth) along with an additional ssd drive for software booting. If anyone could recommend me a PC laptop to check out I'd be very grateful! thanks for your time
a b D Laptop
April 4, 2013 11:59:36 PM

Think I'd be looking for a core i7 with 8Gb RAM and dual Hard Drive bays plus a Gb Graphics, something like a Samsung RF711 07 or similar

Ditch one of the 500Gb drives and install Windows plus software on a Samsung 840 Series SSD. You would need a Win 7 installation disk, but at least a clean install avoids all the 'Bloatware!
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April 5, 2013 12:41:24 AM

Thanks for the reply, almost lost hope after searching for similar threads and finding no one replied to there same cries lol. Yeah, i'm definitely looking at a quad core i7 (researching the laptop cpu's at the moment, looking at the 3740QM or 3630QM). As for the RAM, i'm aiming at 16GB, if I can stretch my dollar. Nice hard drive recommendations! And yes, definitely need at least 2 drive bays (maybe 3? again...testing that dollars flexibility!), one SSD for booting and if I can get 1 TB hard drive i should be okay (do any laptop manufacturers make those?). I couldn't agree more with the fresh Windows 7 install, learned that from the last laptop I bought, lol. Any idea how much a laptop like that would cost? Just need to find someone who makes it! Thanks again for the advice!
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a b D Laptop
April 5, 2013 3:04:50 AM

You can obtain 1Tb Drives around $95, and here's an HP machine that might interest you.
http://www.shopping.hp.com/en_US/home-office/-/products...
Customise to our own spec!
It has 2 Drive bays

I recently refurbished an older version of the dv7 by adding an SSD and was delighted with the result. But then I'm fan of HP design anyway..
Just noticed the prices for some of the upgrades, much cheaper to do yourself! Especially RAM and Drives...
Edit
Link updated
2Tb Drives available, but too thick to install in a laptop! Need to look for 9.5mm max. May get 1.5 Tb
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April 5, 2013 1:29:18 PM

Thanks! My last laptop was an HP Envy Pavilion dv7 (1st generation quad core), and I had great results with it, other than it getting burning my lap with its heat! After adjusting the specs, I got it to around $1,700 on that site, which isn't bad, but I'm wondering if I could get it lower. Is there much a performance difference between the 3740QM and 3630QM processors? And as far as graphics go, is the geforce GT 635 worth the extra $75 over the Intel HD 4000 graphics? (i will be editing avchd footage).
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a b D Laptop
April 5, 2013 4:06:28 PM

megadrum said:
Thanks! My last laptop was an HP Envy Pavilion dv7 (1st generation quad core), and I had great results with it, other than it getting burning my lap with its heat! After adjusting the specs, I got it to around $1,700 on that site, which isn't bad, but I'm wondering if I could get it lower. Is there much a performance difference between the 3740QM and 3630QM processors? And as far as graphics go, is the geforce GT 635 worth the extra $75 over the Intel HD 4000 graphics? (i will be editing avchd footage).

Helpful
http://www.tomshardware.co.uk/forum/350440-28-worth-upg...
Unsure of GPUs, whichever runs coolest!



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April 5, 2013 11:24:17 PM

thanks, went ahead and hit up that thread. So now I'm wondering what the OP there was wondering, is the extra 300mhz a noticable difference, and if so, is it worth the extra price? The software I use to make music isn't 64-bit supported (yet) and mainly works off the cpu, so if this extra 300mhz is worth it I'll definitely shoot for it. If not, I'll happily put the extra cash towards something else.
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a b D Laptop
April 5, 2013 11:46:14 PM

Guess a lot depends on how you value your time, if it indeed saves 10% of the time to complete operations, equivalent to 1 hour on a 10 hour day, it wouldn't take long to pay for itself! At $30 an hour, even 5% faster achieves 2 hours on a 40 hour week, or a week-and-a-half to repay the difference... though I must confess to being a little sceptical regarding the 10% extra speed translating into 10% less time, I'd like to be able to compare two machines performing exactly the same task against the clock running each CPU..
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April 6, 2013 12:25:14 AM

10% does sound like a lot! Just not sure how accurate that is. I agree with going off some benchmark tests, but I haven't come across any as of yet that compare their time on different operations. My music software could definitely use an extra 10% boost (the more instruments you load, the more cpu required, if not enough it starts to glitch, thus killing the vibes!). I'll see if I can find some. As far as graphic cards go, would you recommend upgrading from the standard HD 4000 graphics to the Geforce GT 635 for the extra $75?
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April 6, 2013 1:46:40 AM

Thanks again for taking the time out to help me with this, I appreciate it a lot! It definitely looks like the 635m (or 555m) would be a great upgrade for only $75. I probably won't go for the 650m seeing that they (HP's website) want $150 for it, and it's not a whole lot different from the 555m for double the price. I also see that they allow you to upgrade the screen to Full HD 1920 x 1080 for an extra $150, which seems a little much actually. Would that put more strain on my cpu/gpu or decrease performance in any way? I believe that I read in another thread here that it did, it wasn't too clear.
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a b D Laptop
April 6, 2013 3:06:07 AM

Generally the higher the Resolution the greater the 'strain' on the GPU, so expect a corresponding drop in performance. i.e. you would probably need the 650M to achieve the same performance at full HD compared to the 635M at a lower resolution.
That aside, the more I look at this laptop, and bearing in mind the mass of wires at the back of my computer desk, the more I like the sound of it!
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April 6, 2013 1:53:14 PM

Ok, I guess I'll pass on the full hd screen then. Does that also apply to external monitors though? I've almost got this thing narrowed down to what I want! Still having trouble deciding on which CPU to get (3630QM or 3740QM), though I'm leaning more towards the former since I don't think the performance difference is enough to be noticable. Found this site that compares them: http://cpuboss.com/cpus/Intel-Core-i7-3740QM-vs-Intel-C...
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a b D Laptop
April 7, 2013 12:38:55 AM

Full HD will require the same 'effort' from the GPU no matter which display you use. CPU comparison useful, guess the difference in performance not that great.
I compared them on the CPU World site side-by-side in 1/2 opened windows
http://www.cpu-world.com/CPUs/Core_i7/Intel-Core%20i7-3...

http://www.cpu-world.com/CPUs/Core_i7/Intel-Core%20i7-3...
Apart from the speed, and no TBT in the 3630, there is no difference, even in the 'Price at introduction', so the 'upgrade' price hike a bit cheeky!
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April 7, 2013 3:02:51 AM

Thanks for clarifying that for me! It looks like I'll more than likely be going with the 3630qm then. Now I just need to decide who I'm buying from! I've narrowed it down to the HP Envy (thanks for that one!), www.ADKProAudio.com custom laptop (built FOR audio work, just a little pricey), and, though I'm still doing a little more research on them, Lenavo's line of workstations. I appreciate all the help you've provided, you've definitely made this a lot easier for me!
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a b D Laptop
April 7, 2013 3:23:27 AM

Hmm. The ADK 1Q Express looks the part, but with a Quad core i7 and 12Gb SSD plus 750Gb storage it's $1600, and then there's the Pro Audio Hardware/Software on top.. or do you have that already?
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April 7, 2013 11:53:20 AM

Fortunately I do! Plus they have lifetime support and they are built specifically for audio. I'm now leaning towards them since I just realized the HP Envy doesn't have a firewire port for my audio interface :(  I'll see how affordable I can make it by checking if it's cheaper to upgrade parts (such as drives and ram) myself.
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!