My son starts college in August and has requested the newly released Alienware m17x laptop as his graduation gift. He is putting some of his money up and I am covering everything else. We have looked at basically every custom gaming rig available but he wants the flash of an Alienware (lights & bragging rights). I like Falcon NW & Sager, but he has made his mind up. We are looking at something he can use for school, blu-ray movies & enjoy crysis on with no flaws. Any help or thoughts would be greatly appreciated. Here are the initial specs.
Intel Core 2 Duo T9800 2.93 GHz
Dual NVIDIA GeForce GTX 280M
4GB DDR3 Memory
320 GB 7200 RPM HDD
Vista Ultimate 64-bit
For the processor we opted to upgrade slightly, but not to the level of the Quad or Extreme Quad. Was this processor a good choice or should I step up more? I have found in past experiences with gaming the GPU is where the major upgrades should be taken, and not so much the processor. It will be used as a laptop at times but normally will be treated as what it is...a desktop replacement.
The next portion in question is RAM. Is 4 GB enough to run crysis or other intense games of this nature? There is also an option for 1066 or 1333 MHz memory. I opted for the 1066 because the processor FSB is 1066, so even if I bought 1333 it would still run at 1066...right? HDD was my next worry. Should raid options be considered? I have read it's not an actual hardware setup, but raid software controlled. I figured it would be easier to get him a 500GB external & let him back-up to that. SSD is also an option, but again from what I have heard it still has a large amount of flaws that are being addressed (ie: handling small files & limited cell re-write times)
Sorry for the large amount of questions but I want to make sure I am making the right choice before spending the money. Again, any thoughts/advice is greatly appreciated!!
Thats a solid rig,u can save some money going with the cheaper 2.8 Dual core since the performance difference isn't noticeable.
Also a 2.8 Dual core beats a 2.5 GHZ QuadCore in most games with the exception of some CPU-intensive games like FSX or so.
For RAM stick with a 4GB DDR3 1066 MHZ RAM there isn't any point really to choose the DDR3 1333 MHZ since the difference between 1066 and 1333MHZ isn't much.
Also 4GB RAM can handle everything excellent.(no need to get more RAM for now)
About RAID it depends on u,RAID works faster than a single HDD but it has its own problems (like data loss too).if u can go for SSD,then i say get a SSD for OS and a regular HDD for apps,games etc...