Need a laptop for college

Hi. I have roughly a budget of 1000 dollars. I'm in my junior year of high school, and wondering whether to get a laptop now, and if so, which.

I'm basically looking at the Sony Vaio C Series (14 inch), the XPS 15 L502X, or the apple macbook pro 13 inch.

I've been researching this for like half a year now (lol) and can't seem to find a general consensus on everything. Everybody seems to be blinded by bias, which is annoying.

Before I begin I'm wondering whether I should wait or not. The only reason I would get a computer right now would be to play games, since the dell desktop we have right now can still be used for schoolwork. So naturally I'm feeling conflicted; I feel guilty about wanting to get a computer for gaming, when I should probably just wait until college starts, but then again I feel like I should deserve to enjoy the end of my youth and do some serious gaming. No, I'm not interested in getting a desktop or building my own computer.

Macbook pro would be the safe choice for me, however I would be a little disappointed if I ended up defaulting for it, since it has no dedicated graphics and if I want to play any pc games, I have to go through the trouble of paying 200 dollars for Windows 7. Games I'm interested in are total war, battlefield, those types of games.

A lot of people (mac fans) will bitch that anything that isn't mac will fall apart after a few years; I don't doubt that macs are a better build, yet its so difficult to decide on this since so many people will tell you so many different things.

My dell xp has lasted my family 10 years; and only had to get it repaired twice, as well it got a virus a few times. But in ten years, is that so bad?

I'm looking at the XPS 15 because it could pretty much game the best. It looks like the best long term investment.

A desktop, I know from first hand experience can last you a decade if you take care of it. A laptop on the other hand, can fall apart after 5 years from simple wear and tear, to the point of being beyond repair (I assume)> is this not true? If I take care of my laptop, will it last me 5 years, or even 7?

A Dell xps 15 specifically?

does anyone have solid facts on the battery life. It's ridiculous, I'm getting figures from 3 hours to 8. Also, is the build qualtiy good?
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  1. To add onto this, I feel like the "elistists" tend to exagerrate a TON, because naturally they have higher standards. I can't believe people are bitching about the "low" resolution of the MBP 13 for example, saying it's "ugly". My brother has one and I thought it looked gorgeous!

    My mom bought a gateway laptop in 2005 and it's lasted her 6 years! One of the lowest quality laptops she could buy, and it's lasted this long? This makes no sense.
  2. Another reason why I'm confused about whether to wait or not, is that I'm actually not that concerned about spec improvements over a year or two, which is what I'll see if I'll wait. What I'm concerned about is, would it still last me four years through college, even if I get it 2 years BEFORE college;

    So will it last me 6 years?

    Also, is it as bulky as everyone says? is 15 inches too much for college?
  3. I think the 15-15.4" laptops are just fine for general use, and think an XPS would do well thru all 4 years of college....(Is not as though they have 'must play Crysis' specs for university level Word/internet surfing)

    If not intending to play anything more demanding than the old Medal of Honor games, most any 15" dual core should be plenty, in fact....
  4. I'd like to play at least shogun total war and maybe play battlefield 3 on the very lowest settings/resolution.

    It's possible to change the res right?
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