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Why are there so few good gaming laptops?

Last response: in Laptops & Notebooks
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March 1, 2010 10:53:56 PM

It's totally possible that I just suck at searching, but man, I'm failing miserably at finding a good gaming laptop. Alienware seems to be using outdated parts, "regular" companies just don't have the high quality video cards... the boutique shops are just silly expensive. (Falcon NW and stuff...)

What am I missing? I'm happy to spend $2500-$3000, but I want some bang for my buck. The Asus G73 looks solid, so I might attempt to get one of those, but I just feel like I'm surely missing some segment of laptops. Are Sager laptops reputable? What should I be comparing here?

More about : good gaming laptops

a b D Laptop
a c 227 4 Gaming
March 1, 2010 11:06:16 PM

Alienware and Falcon used to just add a logo and fancy finishes to Clevo models but now Dell bought Alienware and Falcon has expanded their sources. You can read about Clevo here:
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http://forum.notebookreview.com/showthread.php?t=91510

"CLEVO is a large Taiwanese computer company specializing in laptops. While the Clevo brand name is perhaps not widely known, their products are re-branded and sold by known boutique brand OEMs (Original Equipment Manufacturers)… notably Sager, VoodooPC, Falcon Northwest, Eurocom, etc. They are also considered (by whoever knows about notebooks) to design and manufacturer the best of the best notebooks in terms of superior build quality and innovative designs.

I been buying Clevo stuff from a US distributor for going on 4 years (6 machines so far). However Asus and MSI have been impressing me with their offerings lately. Here's the last one I bought

http://www.pro-star.com/index.cfm?mainpage=productdetai...

Though I opted for the i7-820QM, IC Diamond TIM , 500 GB /7200rpm SATA-300 w/ G-Force Protection, 4x Max. Blu-Ray Reader/8x DVD±R/2.4X +DL Super-Multi Drive and a few odds and ends when I configured it.

And yes, you can buy the same W870CU from Sager tho pro-Star usually cheaper...also see same stuff at xoticpc.com



March 1, 2010 11:37:12 PM

I guess I'm a little uncomfortable with the no-name Asian company, but I do appreciate that they have the exact same components for a great price... that's certainly nice. They have fast estimated ship dates too, which I also really like!

But man... I've been burned in the past by random Asian companies with no customer support and very little recourse, ya know?

What do you guys think about the Asus G73 models?
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March 1, 2010 11:51:15 PM

I'm looking at XoticPC right now -- they seem like they have some good options. What are their main competitors?
a b D Laptop
March 2, 2010 12:30:21 AM

anogar said:
I'm looking at XoticPC right now -- they seem like they have some good options. What are their main competitors?


Xotic actually resells systems from a couple of different manufacturer's like Clevo, MSI and Asus. Their competition would include www.sagernotebooks.com , and www.pro-star.com.

I bought my Clevo laptop from Sager and it has worked well for me (see my signature). I never had to deal with support when my laptop was under warranty, but I had to buy a couple of replacement parts out of warranty which they handled pretty well.
March 2, 2010 1:04:09 AM

lostandwandering said:
Xotic actually resells systems from a couple of different manufacturer's like Clevo, MSI and Asus. Their competition would include www.sagernotebooks.com , and www.pro-star.com.

I bought my Clevo laptop from Sager and it has worked well for me (see my signature). I never had to deal with support when my laptop was under warranty, but I had to buy a couple of replacement parts out of warranty which they handled pretty well.


Clevo/Sager seem like the best options, along with Asus. What do you think about the SAGER NP8760 (Clevo W870CU) vs the Asus G73? Will I get significantly better performance from the Sager/Clevo model?
a b D Laptop
March 2, 2010 1:22:50 AM

The 8760 and the G73 are pretty similar systems. The main difference being the GPU. The 5870 should actually be a faster card than the GTX 285 (not to mention the 5870 has DX11). The Asus starts with the i7 720 and 8gb of RAM while the 8760 starts with the 820 and 4gb. If you configure the two to be as similar as possible, the Sager is about 200 more than the Asus. It basically comes down to preference.
March 2, 2010 1:41:29 AM

Okay, awesome, thanks for the feedback. What about the D900F vs the G73? How big of a performance increase would I see from the D900F?
a b D Laptop
March 2, 2010 1:45:34 AM

Same basic thing though. The D900F still only uses one GPU (the GTX 285) which would still probably loose to the 5870. You'd get the power of a desktop i7 processor which might give you a small gain while playing games, but at the same time your batter life will drop like a rock. The only one that would give you a boost would be the X8100 which uses two GTX 285's.
a b D Laptop
March 2, 2010 3:08:41 AM

anogar said:
Haha wow, an 18.4" monitor and dual 285s. That thing is pretty impressive. What do you think about these benchmark results?

http://babelfish.yahoo.com/translate_url?doit=done&tt=u...


The benchmarks look about right with what notebookcheck.net has. Though keep in mind the Alienware system is using 4870's and not the 5870 in the Asus. Even still, the dual 285's should be a better gaming solution compared to the single 5870. I'd take the X8100 over the Alienware anyway.

Take a look:
http://www.notebookcheck.net/Computer-Games-on-Laptop-G...
March 2, 2010 5:39:11 AM

anogar said:
Haha wow, an 18.4" monitor and dual 285s. That thing is pretty impressive. What do you think about these benchmark results?


18.4"? Where? I hope it has 1920x1200 resolution at least, in order to be worth all the back pain, unless you're smart and leave it at home or use a roller bag.
a b D Laptop
March 2, 2010 1:40:54 PM

lotri said:
18.4"? Where? I hope it has 1920x1200 resolution at least, in order to be worth all the back pain, unless you're smart and leave it at home or use a roller bag.


That would be this guy here: http://www.sagernotebook.com/product_customed.php?pid=2...

And yes, it's full HD powered by twin GTX 285M's and mobile i7's.
March 2, 2010 2:44:36 PM

Holy crap. That's one sexy machine. O_O"

If only they gave 1200 instead of 1080p... I don't get why all these high-end laptops don't give the 16:10 resolution screens.
March 2, 2010 3:06:11 PM

Meh, I don't think the extra 120 pixels really makes a huge difference, and it probably keeps the form factor a little more "widescreen" instead of being ridiculously tall. (Not that that particular machine is anything other than ridiculously huge anyway, haha.)

My idea of mobility is being able to pick up the machine and walk between the living room and office with it, so I don't care if it's 4 pounds or 20 as long as I can pwn noobs. :p 
March 2, 2010 3:22:05 PM

Lol. You can always build some sort of pulley/lever system so even a desktop can be "portable". Btw, I don't understand how the screen would be taller, seeing as the 1200 goes horizontally?
March 2, 2010 4:04:51 PM

It's measured width x height -- so you're losing a bit of height.
a b D Laptop
March 2, 2010 4:23:58 PM

anogar said:
It's measured width x height -- so you're losing a bit of height.


Well, generally speaking, the screen's physical dimensions will remain the same. In other word's a 17'' screen is a 17'' screen. The density of the pixels will change though. A 1920x1080 screen will be slightly less dense pixel wise than a 1920x1200 screen. Probably not enough that you would notice though. And most companies are going with the 1920x1080 screens since that is considered "full HD" and would be easier to format with Blu-ray players and such.
March 2, 2010 4:57:28 PM

That's not really true; a 1600 x 1200 screen is generally 4:3 ratio and as of such much more 'square' and taller than a 1600 x 1080 screen -- you can't just squish "more pixels" into a widescreen display; the ratio has to match. Now, you definitely wouldn't want a 4:3 ratio in a 16:10 screen, but I imagine there might be some fudge with 16:10 vs 16:9?
March 2, 2010 8:40:51 PM

Hm... I just realized I had my X-Y flipped around lol. Yeah, the 1200 is slightly taller than the 1080 but it looks better imo. =P

P.S. That might be why my friend's laptop looks short and fat, while mine is mostly squarish.
a b D Laptop
March 2, 2010 8:41:34 PM

anogar said:
That's not really true; a 1600 x 1200 screen is generally 4:3 ratio and as of such much more 'square' and taller than a 1600 x 1080 screen -- you can't just squish "more pixels" into a widescreen display; the ratio has to match. Now, you definitely wouldn't want a 4:3 ratio in a 16:10 screen, but I imagine there might be some fudge with 16:10 vs 16:9?


That tends to be more of a difference between a standard screen and a widescreen. As you said, you don't typically find one type of resolution on another's screen shape.

Like I said before, I think most companies are just sticking with the 1080p screens because of HD and blu-ray. But I agree with you, I don't think you are missing a lot by losing those extra 120 pixels.

@Lotri, what is your screen res? My 1920x1200 laptop is still more rectangular than it is square.
March 2, 2010 8:43:37 PM

I think the 120 pixels accounts for about 3/4" on my screen vertically. Although if you're watching a 1080p picture, you just get the extra black space to simulate a movie theater screen.
a b D Laptop
a c 227 4 Gaming
March 5, 2010 2:35:25 AM

anogar said:
I guess I'm a little uncomfortable with the no-name Asian company,


Those no name asian companies are the ones building every single laptop sold by Dell, HP, Apple, Toshiba, Lenovo, Compaq and every name you every heard of ....

* Quanta sells to (among others) HP/Compaq, Dell, Toshiba, Sony, Fujitsu, Acer, NEC, Gateway and Lenovo/IBM - note that Quanta is currently (as of August, 2007) the largest manufacturer of notebook computers in the world.
* Compal sells to Toshiba, HP/Compaq, Acer, and Dell.
* Wistron (former manufacturing & design division of Acer) sells to HP/Compaq, Dell, IBM, NEC, Acer, and Lenovo/IBM.
* Flextronics (former Arima Computer Corporation notebook division) sells to HP/Compaq, NEC, and Dell.
* ECS sells to IBM, Fujitsu, and Dell.
* Asus sells to Apple (iBook), Sony, and Samsung.
* Inventec sells to HP/Compaq, Toshiba, and BenQ.
* Uniwill sells to Lenovo/IBM and Fujitsu.

Quote:
But man... I've been burned in the past by random Asian companies with no customer support and very little recourse, ya know?


Prostar repaired my 1st laptop I purchased from them when I had a problem, 39 months after I bought it.....3 months after warranty expired. I just bought my 6th one.
a b D Laptop
a c 227 4 Gaming
March 5, 2010 2:39:37 AM

lotri said:
I think the 120 pixels accounts for about 3/4" on my screen vertically. Although if you're watching a 1080p picture, you just get the extra black space to simulate a movie theater screen.


Those 120 pixels rock.....love being able to play games at 1920 x 1080 and still have full access to my taskbar and screen bottom for a player and other goodies.
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