2) From HP Direct for $1,112.99:
Operating system - Genuine Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit
Processor - Intel(R) Core(TM) i7-720QM Processor (1.6GHz, 6MB L2 Cache, 1333MHz FSB) edit
Memory - 6GB DDR3 System Memory (2 Dimm)
Hard drive - 500GB 7200RPM SATA Hard Drive with HP ProtectSmart Hard Drive Protection
Graphics card - 1GB Nvidia GeForce GT 230M
Display - 15.6" diagonal High Definition LED HP Brightview Widescreen Display (1366x768)
Primary optical drive - LightScribe SuperMulti 8X DVD+/-RW with Double Layer Support
Personalization - Webcam Only
Networking - Intel Wireless-N Mini-card
Primary battery - HP Long Life Notebook Battery
My problems are: With Costco I do get the unlimited tech support and a 2 year warranty but I don't get the 6 GB, Wireless N Card, and HP Long Life Battery.With HP I only get a 1 year warranty, I can't afford the 2 year warranty, but I get a better computer. So what I wanna know is which one should I buy? Basically I'm only going to use this laptop for Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Adobe Photoshop CS2, Adobe Acrobat 7.0, Mozilla Firefox, and some older games like Unreal Tournament 2004. So is it worth it to buy the one from HP direct or will the one from Costco do the job just fine.
The only thing that really matters is the battery, here. If you know you'll need the extra battery life, go with that. Otherwise, head for costco and the better warranty.
Note that you can always buy the battery separately from HP.
Well you're right about that but if I buy the battery seperatly it's going to be about $150 and if I buy it with a computer it's $20. But what my biggest concern is are the 4 GB of RAM sufficient for everything I mentioned or should I go 6GB?
I agree. You might as well go with the HP. It costs extra for the warranty and such, but it sounds that you're after a bit more performance in the RAM department.
Well I'm not exactly looking for more power from the RAM I just wanna know if 4GB is enough because what I noticed is that having twice the required amount of RAM means you will have about 50% usage, at least in windows vista. So I figure having 6GB might put me at 20% usage. I just wanna know is this theory of mine correct or not?
You don't need 6GB of memory, looking at your uses. In fact, you hardly need 2.
Windows Vista and 7 do not use 50% of your memory. They reserve it to speed up what they expect you to open in the future. If their prediction is found to be incorrect, and you actually do need the memory, they free it to allow the current application to use it. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Windows_Vista_I/O_technolo...
Given the circumstances, as I said before, weigh if you'd like the battery life or the warranty, because that's all that's at steak, here. If I were you, I would go for the longer warranty.
Thanks this explains a lot. My main problem was the RAM because windows vista was a RAM hog and 2GB was not enough for it. But I guess according to you Windows 7 is better at this. Hey one more question, what RAM usage % can I expect when running like 3 of my mentioned programs simultaneously?
It depends on which three, but with Superfetch, the "memory usage" stat really doesn't mean a thing. Right now I have 2 firefox windows and foxit reader open, and Windows reports that 1.71GB/4GB is in use. Those three things don't take up 1.71GB themselves - Windows reserves some memory, attempting to predict the fact that I might just open Matlab or Counterstrike. So, even though I have 1.71GB reported as "in use", my programs aren't actually using that amount.
Edit: The moral of the story is - you won't run out of memory, basically. You don't need to worry about how much memory you consume as long as you're in the ballpark of your software usage, which you are. Let Windows take care of the rest.
4GB is still plenty (unless you want to run a database server) Besides, you can always buy memory third party cheaper than the OEM is selling it for. . . usually. . . most likely. And you can add in an AGN card later, too.