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Planning to buy a new gaming laptop

Last response: in Laptops & Notebooks
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June 24, 2009 1:13:22 PM

1_What is your budget?

2000-2500$
or
1400-1800euros

2_What is the size of the notebook that you are considering?

I'd prefer one with a 17" screen or bigger. The weight isn't such a big deal, as I won't be moving it around a lot (still enough that buying a desktop isn't an option)

3_What screen resolution do you want?

1920 x 1200/1920 x 1080 would be nice, but not completely necessary.

4_Do you need a portable or desktop replacement laptop?

Desktop replacement.

5_How much battery life do you need?

Battery life isn't extremely important as I will have it plugged in most of the time.

6_Do you want to play games with your laptop? If so then please list the games that you want to with the settings that you want for these games. (Low,Medium or High)?

I'd like to play games like fallout 3 and similar games with good fps. More importantly I'd like to be able to buy some upcoming games like starcraft 2 and diablo 3, but knowing blizzard the system requirements for those two shouldn't be extremely high.

7_What other tasks do you want to do with your laptop? (Photo / Video editing, surfing the web, playing music, watching movies, Etc.)

Everything that was mentioned.

8_How much storage (H.D.D Capacity) do you need?

preferably 320+, but this isn't a must either. I can always buy an external harddrive if I run out of space.

9_If you are considering specific sites to buy from, please post the links to them.

I'm open to suggestions, so far I've been searching through sites like newegg, sager, eurocom, some local webpages and such.

10_How long do you want to keep your laptop?

Preferably for several years (maybe 3 or so).

11_If you would like to mention some other things about purchasing your ideal laptop, post them.

I'd prefer a dual-core processor over quad core , and a single graphic card over dual. This is both because of the price difference, and because many games and programs don't support them yet. In addition to this I want to use a site with a history of good customer support, as if I order a computer from the US and something isn't working properly, I'd like to be able to get the help needed, instead of beeing ignored and left with a broken computer I can't do anything with. An example laptop I found that seemed quite decent to me can be found in the link below:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

Something similar to that one, but with one graphic card and maybe a bit less memory (optional) to make it cheaper would be nice. Being able to order it for at least a semi-compareable price from somewhere in europe would be ideal, but I'm not too hopeful about that.

12_Please tell us about the brands that you prefer to buy from them and the brands that you don't like and explain the reasons.

Well, I've done a lot of reading during the last few days. First I had my mind set on a laptop from alienware, but after doing some more reading, I quickly decided that I would infact definitely not want to buy a computer from them. This is because (based on what I've read, which is A LOT of blogs and such), they've got poor customer service, and a lot of people also seem to think they're very overpriced. I can't comment on the latter, as all the american sites I've been browsing through look so incradibly cheap in comparison to the ones found in europe. Anyway, I'm open to suggestions.

13_What country do you live in?

I live in Finland. The reason I'm seriously considering to buy a computer from the US is because I could easily save hundereds of euros by ordering my computer from there. Then again, if there's a problem with the computer and I have to send it back and forth, it might actually end up being much more expensive and ofcourse cousing a lot more grief because of time wasted. Hence, I'd prefer a computer that runs newer games smoothly with medium to high graphics, is manufactured/sold by a trustworthy company, and still isn't overpriced. :) 

That's pretty much everything, any help would be greatly appreciated. Cheers.
June 24, 2009 3:01:01 PM

http://www.cyberpowerpc.com/system/Xplorer_X7-8800_Note... - $2025

Pretty good. Especially the graphics card. The laptop that you posted can no longer be purchased, as it is a deactivated item. You could shell out some extra cash and get an i7 processor and 6GB DDR3 RAM. Sure it may be a processor that is not utilized by many games yet, but it is amazing how quickly technology advances. I would get the i7, especially because you want your laptop for 3 years.

http://www.cyberpowerpc.com/system/Xplorer_X7-Xtreme_S1... -$2335

You can always add a little extra to it as well, for more features. I have personally bought from cyberpowerpc and I highly recommend them. My desktop from them is a little more than 2 years old and it still runs great. I think that they have a European site to. Not sure if there is a price difference or not. And yes, do not buy from aleinware, I got my desktop from cyberpowerpc $1000 cheaper than one you could get with alienware. I have also had great costumer support experiences with cyberpowerpc. I plan to buy my next computer from them, or just upgrade my existing one.
June 24, 2009 4:23:28 PM

Tyor said:
http://www.cyberpowerpc.com/system/Xplorer_X7-8800_Note... - $2025

Pretty good. Especially the graphics card. The laptop that you posted can no longer be purchased, as it is a deactivated item. You could shell out some extra cash and get an i7 processor and 6GB DDR3 RAM. Sure it may be a processor that is not utilized by many games yet, but it is amazing how quickly technology advances. I would get the i7, especially because you want your laptop for 3 years.

http://www.cyberpowerpc.com/system/Xplorer_X7-Xtreme_S1... -$2335

You can always add a little extra to it as well, for more features. I have personally bought from cyberpowerpc and I highly recommend them. My desktop from them is a little more than 2 years old and it still runs great. I think that they have a European site to. Not sure if there is a price difference or not. And yes, do not buy from aleinware, I got my desktop from cyberpowerpc $1000 cheaper than one you could get with alienware. I have also had great costumer support experiences with cyberpowerpc. I plan to buy my next computer from them, or just upgrade my existing one.


Thanks a lot for the reply Tyor. I must say that both of the laptops you mentioned in your post look very promising. The first one was pretty much exactly what I was looking for, but you do make a point about technology moving fast, so now I'm thinking about the other alternative aswell. I checked the european site aswell, and was a bit upset. On the european site, the Xplorer X7-8800 Notebook you proposed has a screen that only supports 1680x1050 resolution, and seemed to have some other lower quality (less important) components, yet it would be roughly 400$ more expensive than if I'd buy it from the US site. The Xplorer X7-Xtreme S1 Notebook on the otherhand seemed to have almost identical specs on boths sites, but it was 500$ more expensive on the european site. Hence I'm sure that if I decide to go for one of these laptops, I'll certainly order it from the US. Something I found nice on both sites, though, was this: SERVICE: STANDARD 1-YEAR LIMITED WARRANTY AND LIFE-TIME TECHNICAL SUPPORT, which doesn't sound too shabby to me. :) 

Anyway, I probably wont buy the new laptop before I get my next paycheck in roughly a month, so I'd love to get some more suggestions. If anyone else has ordered stuff from cyberpowerpc.com I'd love to hear what you thought about their service aswell. If anyone owns one of the above mentioned (quoted) pc:s, I'd love to hear how it's been performing aswell. Thanks again for the help, and keep the suggestions coming. Any help is appreciated. :) 
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June 26, 2009 10:08:54 AM

I've been doing some more research and found the following laptop from Sager:

Sager NP9280 (Built on Clevo D900F) Ultimate Custom Laptop
- 17" WUXGA "Glare Type" Super Clear Ultra Bright Glossy Screen (1920x1200)
- Arctic Silver 5 Thermal Compound
- Standard Dead Pixel Policy
- Intel Core i7 Quad (Nehalem) 920 2.66GHz 8MB Cache 130W
- nVidia GeForce GTX 280M 1,024MB PCI-Express DDR3 DX10 (User Upgradeable)
- No External Graphics Card
- No Video Adapter
- ~ 6,144MB DDR3 1066MHz Memory (3 SODIMMS)
- ~Combo 8x8x6x4x Dual Layer DVD +/-R/RW 5x DVD-RAM 24x CD-R/RW Drive w/Softwares
- ~ 320GB 7200RPM (Serial-ATA II 300 - 16MB Cache)
- HDD Raid Settings - OFF
- Internal 7-in-1 Card Reader (MS/MS Pro/MS Duo/MS Pro Duo/SD/Mini-SD/MMC/RS)
- Internal Bluetooth + EDR
- Built-in Intel® PRO/Wireless 5300 802.11 a/g/n Wi-Fi Link
- No Network Accessory
- Integrated Digital Video Camera
- Sound Blaster Compatible 3D Audio - Included
- Basic Black Business Case - Included
- Smart Li-ion Battery (12 Cell)
- No Dock/Hub/Adapter
- Logitech MX518 2-Tone 8 Buttons USB Optical Mouse
- Full Size Black Aluminum Notebook Cooler - Dual Fans - USB Powered (For up to 17" Laptops)
- None Standard - Drivers & Utility Software Only
- No Software Bundle
- 3 Year Labor* 1 Year Parts Warranty Lifetime 24/7 DOMESTIC Based Toll Free Telephone Tech Support (Labor Warranty through Xotic PC)

Discounted price: $2394.93, which makes it the same price as the Xplorer X7-Xtreme S1 (they have raised it's price).

These two laptops have almost the same specs. The difference is that the sager has a slightly better Harddrive (very small difference), a logitech MX518 mouse and a Full Size Black Aluminum Notebook Cooler. If I understood correctly though, the current price of the sager does not include an operating system. I've got a copy of windows XP, though, and I've never been a big fan of vista, so I am seriously considering the sager. I'm quite curious about the notebook cooler, however, as I've never used one before, and I'd love to hear if they are worth the money or just a useless/unnecessary addition to the computer. As both computers seem to have the same processor, graphic card and the same amount of memory, I'd just like to know if it's a good idea to trade the better HD, the mouse and the notebook cooler vs Windows. Another option would be to simply remove the notebook cooler and take a copy of Windows Vista Home Premium (64-Bit), which would make the sager roughly 25$ more expensive than the Xplorer. Please tell me what you think.

Any help would be appreciated, and feel free to suggest other laptops aswell. Cheers.
June 29, 2009 12:08:08 AM

With your budget I would suggest you to take a Dell Alienware M17X then make a little bit customization as you like. It's currently the top gaming machine.
June 29, 2009 5:47:41 AM

maldinilovegame said:
With your budget I would suggest you to take a Dell Alienware M17X then make a little bit customization as you like. It's currently the top gaming machine.


Like I stated in the first post, though, I don't want to buy a computer from Alienware. I'm sure that if I'd get a fully functional laptop from Alienware, it could probably be as or more effective than a laptop I can find on another other site. However, if I end up getting a computer with some broken components, I'm pretty much screwed, as I hear alienwares customer service sucks (based on tons of threads and blogs that I've read). Also, it would seems like the M17X can't get an i7 processor, and it can't have a single GeForce GTX 280M (the only customization options available are single 260M, 2x 260M and 2x280M). Apart from this Alienware simply is more expensive. Their computers have been made to look extremely cheap and effective, but after customization you relize that you'd end up paying much more for a very similar setup I could get from Sager for instance.

I appreciate the reply though, keep the suggestions coming.

EDIT: Also, afaik, when they compared the M17X to other gaming laptops and it was considered to be the most effective laptop for gaming, they used a fully upgraded version of the laptop. For my price range I'm sure I could get a cheaper and more effective laptop from another site. Infact I might be able to get a cheaper laptop from europe.
June 30, 2009 5:22:31 AM

Sadly it turns out that cyberpowerpc delivers pc's only within the US, so they aren't an option for me after all. :(  At this point the Sager NP9280 is my only option. The problem is that xotics international transport costs roughly 220$, (310$ on sagers official website) this would make the total price of the sager roughly 2650$. Having said that, I'm still considering it, as I'm guessing a similar computer from europe would cost a lot more.

Here's another laptop I'm considering: http://www.xoticpc.com/asus-w90vpa1-order-p-2562.html

If I'd take the Asus, I'd end up with a kind of iffy professor (2GHz quad core by default), however, I'd get Dual ATI Mobility™ Radeon® HD 4870, which if I've understood correctly is on par with dual 280M? The asus also includes windows and has a two-year global warranty while the sager only has a one-year warranty. The asus also has two 320gb harddrives, so I'd have plenty of disk space. I can't afford to upgrade the processor though, so the question is if Intel Core i7 Quad (Nehalem) 920 2.66GHz 8MB Cache is worth trading for Dual ATI Mobility™ Radeon® HD 4870? Keep in mind that this computer will be used mainly for gaming. I'm leaning towards the asus, because it seems to have all in one package, and it should be able to run the newest games (atleast the ones that have support for quad core) without problems. Then again I'm a bit worried how it will run games that support neither multi-core nor dual-graphics. Seems to me that the Asus will be kind o gimped then. Still, afaik the most important component for gaming is the graphic card, and even if the other processor (Intel® Q9000 45nm "Montevina" Core™2 Quad 2.0GHz w/6MB L2 On-die cache - 1066MHz FSB) doesn't come even close to the i7 processor, I'm thinking it's still enough.

EDIT: I thought I'd add a review of the asus, seemed quite promising to me: http://forum.notebookreview.com/showthread.php?t=370294

Please tell me what you think, I'd love to hear several opinions, as I'm really having trouble deciding. Any help would be greatly appreciated.
September 20, 2009 6:55:41 PM

I'm waiting for the Sager NP8662 or other 15" model notebook to offer the latest Core i7-290XM Extreme (Mobile Quad Core) processor and a NVIDIA GTX 280M; since the temperature demands on the GTX 280, seem to be the same or similar to the GTX 260M. Hopefully a model with these main specs. and DDR3 memory by default will be out, right around the same time I'll have the money for it (November - December 2009). Someone let me know if they can think of anything better... Also, a 3D display capable high-res. Matte Type or Glare Type LCD would be an awesome plus!
September 26, 2009 5:15:42 AM

Theres a couple of 15" laptops that are carrying the i7 processors now.

1st of you have Dell. Which there Studio XPS16 has two processor options a i7 1.6GHz or a 1.73GHz both with a 8MB cache. Also your only choice for a GPU is a ATI 4670. Base price is $1748 which right now dell has a $449 discount, which brings us to $1299. Now the Dell comes with a 1920x1020 screen. Also this system comes stock with 4GB of DDR3 at 1333MHz. Dell come with a 500GB 7200RPM hard drive with there base models. With Dell you also get a Blue-Ray player.

Your 2nd is from Sager. The NP8690 theats built off the Clevo W860CU Will carry the two processors that XPS will but it will carry one more a 2.0GHz i7. This laptop will only have a nVidia GTX 280M card. Base price from Xotic PC is $1692 but with the base price is for a 1600x900 screen. So add $40 for the same screen that you get with the Dell. Also unlike Dell this system only comes with 2GB of DDR3 1333GHz. To match the Dell you would have to add $50 to you total. Hard drive is a nother point that falls short with XOTIC PC. The laptop starts with a 250GB 5400RPM hard drive. To match the Dell you would need to pay $85 out of your pocket. Then just to top it all off you will need to spend $145 to get a Blue-Ray player for your laptop. Now with all we had to add on to this system to get to the same deal that you would be getting with Dell you would end up with the rock bottom price of $2172

Now to match these two systems up with the 1.73GHz you will end up spending another $150 with Dell for the same processor upgrade, but with all you would have to do to match the items that come stock with Dell $150 has payed itself off ten full.
September 26, 2009 7:29:07 PM

Didnt notice this till today but Alienware is not offering the i7 processor with there m15x laptops.
September 26, 2009 7:31:11 PM

sorry about the repost but i wasnt able to edit my last post but Alienware is NOW offering the i7
September 27, 2009 1:07:09 AM

Never buy DELL. NEVER!
October 17, 2009 7:27:29 PM

hollywood1982

You're damn right, the dell xps 16 is a great deal overall. However..how about its graphics card ? Wouldn't it be too weak for 1080P 60FPS video editing and playback ? Would it not stutter ? Plus, core i7 needs good heat management and Dell has only one fan and one vent. Wouldn't that make the laptop too hot and slow ?

We also have HP envy 15 with an even better graphics, 4830 and better battery life. And Toshiba Qosmio X505 with a 18.4'' and nvidia 250M. But again, the heat management and graphics are probably too low.

I think that if someone is willing to spend over 1600$ (with tax) for such a laptop that is going to have limited battery life, they might as well spend spend 2300$ to get the top of the top NP9280 or Xplorer S1. Having said that, which one woulld actually be THE top ? Xplorer has x58 motherboard and 1333 memory so I would assume that to be the best ?
February 21, 2010 12:23:51 AM

any problems with this? Display: 15.6" 1920 x 1080 FHD LED Display
$60.00

Processor: Intel® Core™ i7-820QM, 8MB L3 Cache, 1.73-3.06GHz
$190.00

Memory: (6GB) 6144MB, PC3-10660/1333MHz DDR3 - 2 SO-DIMM
$160.00

Graphics Card: NVIDIA® GeForce® GTX 285M 1GB GDDR3


Hard Drive: 320GB 7200rpm 2.5" SATA-300


Optical Drive: 2X Blu-ray Reader 8X DVD+/-R/2.4X DL Super-Multi Drive
$115.00

Operating System: Microsoft® Windows® 7 Home Premium; 64-bit
$90.00

Wireless: Internal 802.11A/B/G/N LAN and Bluetooth Card


Cooling: IC Diamond 7 Thermal Compound, CPU & GPU
$40.00

Warranty: 3 Year Ltd. Parts and Labor Warranty with 24/7 USA-Based Support
$249.00

Extras: Integrated 2.0 Megapixel Web Camera


Extras: PowerDVD & Bison Cam Software Package


Extras: Integrated Fingerprint Reader


Extras: Microsoft Office Ready OS with Free 60-Day Trial


Extras: Microsoft Windows 7 DVD-ROM


Extras: MALIBAL Software & Drivers Disc


Extras: Standard Black Carrying Case


Extras: Integrated 7 in 1 Card Reader



Product Subtotal: $2,448.00
!