15"-17" Laptop advice [Urgentish] $500-$600

My friend plans to buy a laptop for college. He wants to buy it tomorrow as he needs it for classes. (Kinda short notice.. Didn't know he was getting one until about an hour before I posted this.)
He wanted to get a mac... But I have convinced him to go for a PC instead.

He'd prefer that it's a 17 inch, but 15 inch ones will work as well. He will be playing some games on it, but probably not extremely intensive ones like Crysis/BF3/MW3

He does not want an ultra-book style laptop.

Budget like in title, $500-$600.

Battery life must be in the 2-3 hour range with constant usage.
Country: USA
Hard Drive Capacity: 500+ GB.

If he was looking for one in the $1800 range it would have been much easier to suggest a few. He doesn't know much about computers and isn't brand loyal. So it's totally $/performance.

However, I've got absolutely no idea what the best models are in this price range. So I thought I'd ask the Toms.

Completely off topic side note: Anyone know of any good after market power supplies for a Sager Np9170 Gaming Laptop.. The one that comes with it is about the size of a brick.
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  1. Quote:

    500+ GB capacity
    3+ hour battery life
    $ for performance

    Just tell your friend to get this, and he's pretty much good to go.
    It's a VERY good notebook for that money, I highly recommend it.
    It will easily satisfy almost all (or all, depending on his plans. Memory can be very easily upgraded, up to 16 GB) of your friend's needs, he won't be disappointed at all.
  2. I was looking for something a little more powerful. I am not sure if it's possible at that budget. Maybe like a 7200 rpm drive and a better cpu.
  3. Its hard to get a laptop with better cpu at that budget, and plus 5400rpm and 7400rpm doesn't make a big difference. It's still a hdd.
  4. Best answer
    wannabepro said:
    I was looking for something a little more powerful.

    The notebook that I've recommended is quite powerful, it would easily run something like "Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim" at 40~50 FPS with medium graphical settings.

    Anonymous said:
    It's hard to get a notebook with better CPU at that budget.

    Yeah, what he said.

    OP, there's really no better option for that money, I've looked it through.
    Let him get what I've recommended (or don't get anything and save the money for a higher price segment), because everything else in that price segment would be a worse option.
    It's for your friend to decide in the end, I just really hope that he'll make a truly wise choice.
  5. Thanks for the help, I showed him and he is thinking about it.
  6. Best answer selected by wannabepro.
  7. wannabepro said:
    Thanks for the help.

    You're always welcome. Have a nice day/night and I wish you both the best of results.
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