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Gaming Laptop December 2009

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Last response: in Laptop Tech Support
December 3, 2009 7:08:47 PM

1_What is your budget?

2_What is the size of the notebook that you are considering?
15-17 inch screen

3_What screen resolution do you want?
high enough

4_Do you need a portable or desktop replacement laptop?
Portable Desktop replacement. I want it all, power and style and all in a weightless package.

5_How much battery life do you need?
2+ hrs minimum

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)?

Defiantly want a gaming laptop. I want a machine that is ready for Supreme Comander II and Diablo III. Till then I would like to be able to play Borderlands and Dragon Age. Maybe Crysis.
Currently I am playing Supreme Commander and Solitaire. Of course i would like settings as high as possible but hd is not that important to me.

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

Photoshop cs3 and Lightroom. MS office applications, internet browsing, movies.

8_How much storage (H.D.D Capacity) do you need?
Not a lot. I store most things on external drives. I would probably be fine with less than 350 GB. Would love a S.S.D.

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

HP and Dell are my favorites. (see below)

10_How long do you want to keep your laptop?
3-4 years

11_What kind of Optical drive do you need? DVD ROM/Writer,Bluray ROM/Writer,Etc ?
DVD rom. Lightscribe DVD burner. Bluray might one day be nice but i dont have a home bluray player and no bluray disks.

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.

My wife and i have 4 HP's between us. I would probably stick with them but i dont much like their current design and styling.

13_What country do you live in?

14_Please tell us any additional information if needed.

Ok here is my story.
I am looking to get a new gaming laptop. I do a significant amount of travel. Currently I am stuck playing old games but still enjoying them.

I am confused by the differences in naming of processors and graphics cards.
I don’t need HD as I still enjoy playing the 10 year old supreme commander, but would like to be ready for the future, (if the future ever gets here).

I am ready to order a new computer today but could easily be convinced to wait till January. I have also considered buying a home laptop and a ultra portable for travel, but that seems a little extravagant. (a netbook just isnt quite powerful enough for me but if one had a dvd player it would be close)

Style has been a big motivation for my past computer purchases.

So with all that said I am looking at 4 machines.
HP dv7t quad, HP envy 15 series, Dell Studio XPS 16, and Alienware M17x (full specs below)

The HP dv7t is by far the cheapest but totally lacking in wow factor or interest in design.

I don’t know much about the Envy 15. Its expensive. I just haven’t heard much about it but it sounds like the lightest of the bunch and good for travel. But its rather simple in style and i am not sure about the external optical drive.

Both HP’s have the quad core i7 which, from what I have read, isn’t optimal for intensive games. But they are the newest processors on the market.

The Dell Studio XPS has nice style with the leather accents but I lost faith in Dell when they outsourced years ago. It’s the next to the cheapest. But for me Dell went from great service to major language issues. This one is also fairly heavy.

Alienware is beloved by gamers. It’s the most expensive and probably heaviest and so I probably wouldn’t want to travel with it. I recently had a friend buy an Alienware desktop and he had lots of software trouble with it and trouble getting it rectified. The design is defiantly a wow factor. Love the backlit keyboard. (The question here is red to protect night vision or blue for a nice cool electric effect (automan anyone?))

Thanks for any advice or suggestions

dv7t Quad Edition series ($1,664.98)
Color Espresso Black

Operating system Genuine Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit

Processor Intel(R) Core(TM) i7-720QM Processor (1.6GHz, 6MB L2 Cache, 1333MHz FSB)

Memory 6GB DDR3 System Memory (2 Dimm)

Hard drive FREE Upgrade to 500GB 7200RPM SATA Hard Drive with HP ProtectSmart Hard Drive Protection

Graphics card 1GB Nvidia GeForce GT 230M

Display 17.3" diagonal HD+ High-Definition HP LED BrightView Widescreen Display (1600 x 900)

Primary optical drive Lightscribe Blu-Ray ROM with SuperMulti DVD+/-R/RW Double Layer

Personalization Webcam + Fingerprint Reader

Networking Intel Wireless-N Mini-card with Bluetooth

Primary battery 8 Cell Lithium Ion Battery

Modem Port No Modem

ENVY 15 series ($3,069.98)
Operating system Genuine Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit

Processor Intel(R) Core(TM) i7-720QM Processor (1.6GHz, 6MB L2 Cache, 1333MHz FSB)

Memory 6GB DDR3 System Memory (3 Dimm)

Hard drive 410GB 5400RPM SATA Dual Hard Drive (SSD 160GB + 250GB 5400RPM)

Graphics card 1GB ATI Mobility Radeon(TM) HD 4830

Display 15.6" diagonal Full High Definition LED HP Ultra Brightview Widescreen Display (1920x1080)

Personalization Webcam Only

Networking Intel Wireless-N Mini-card with Bluetooth

Accessories HP HDMI to VGA Display Adapter

HP Pavilion additional 120W AC Adapter

Primary battery One 6 Cell Lithium Ion Polymer Battery + One 9 Cell HP Envy Slim Fit Extended-Life Notebook Battery

External optical drive External Slot Blu-Ray ROM with SuperMulti DVD+/-R/RW Double Layer with 2 USB Ports

Dell Studio XPS 16 ($2,314)

SYSTEM COLOR Obsidian Black with Leather Accent
PROCESSOR Intel® Core™ 2 Duo T9600 (6MB cache/2.8GHz/1066Mhz FSB)
HD DISPLAYEdge-to-Edge FHD Widescreen 15.6 inch WLED LCD (1920x1080) W/2.0 MP
MEMORY6GB DDR3 SDRAM at 1067MHz (2 Dimms)
HARD DRIVE256GB Solid State Drive
INTERNAL OPTICAL DRIVESlot Load Blu-ray Disc (BD) Combo (Reads BD and Writes to DVD/CD)
WIRELESS CARDSIntel 5300 Ultimate-N Half Mini Card (3x3) with MyWiFi
BATTERY84 WHr 9-cell Lithium Ion Primary Battery
BLUETOOTHDell Wireless 370 Bluetooth Module (2.1+EDR)

Alienware M17x ($3,127)

SYSTEM COLORLunar Silver – Anodized Aluminum
PROCESSORIntel® Core™2 Quad Q9000 2.0GHz (6MB Cache, 1066MHz FSB)
OPERATING SYSTEMGenuine Windows® 7 Home Premium, 64bit, English
VIDEO CARDDual NVIDIA® GeForce® GTX 260M, 2GB – SLI® Enabled
LCD PANEL17-inch WideUXGA 1920x1200 (1200p)
HARD DRIVE 250GB 7,200RPM w/ Free Fall Protection
INTERNAL OPTICAL DRIVESlot-Load Dual Layer Blu-ray Combo (BR-ROM, DVD+-RW, CD-RW)

More about : gaming laptop december 2009

December 3, 2009 11:29:26 PM

Personally I'd probably consider the asus G51J-A1 It's got the same Core i7 720 as your first two options, but with the somewhat better GeForce GTX 260M graphics card, and a nice high res screen. The alienware does beat it in graphics, but at double the cost its your decision whether its worth it or not.

The only reason I'm looking for something else is that my budget is a bit lower :) 
December 12, 2009 1:39:42 AM

You do know Alienware is owned by Dell now right?
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December 12, 2009 5:20:52 PM

Personally I would recommend HP Envy 15. Its graphic card is ATI4850 which can handle all games today in very good details... If you are Alienware fan, take Alienware M15X no matter who owned it.
December 12, 2009 5:51:37 PM

I agree with Kiren; Asus got one of the best gaming laptop under $1500. You can customize it , and add the SSD.

Intel® Core™ i7-720QM, 4GB DDR3, 2x 320GB 7200RPM HD, nVidia GeForce GTX 260M 1,024MB,
2 Year ASUS GLOBAL Warranty, 24/7 Support, 1 Year Accidental Coverage. Gaming mouse, bag, ASUS Zero Bright Dot (ZBD) 30 Day Pixel Guarantee .