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Find me a better deal on a mid-high range gaming laptop

Last response: in Laptops & Notebooks
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March 27, 2010 12:09:26 PM

Hello all, it's time again that I need your help finding something that will suit me well. I've been looking for a laptop for the past 3-4 weeks and I've narrowed down my search a bit. Forgive me if I'm overly thorough or verbose, I just want to make it clear what I'm looking for so that you can help me find a great deal. Thanks in advance. :) 


1_What is your budget?

I'd really like to stay under $800, but if I spotted an amazing deal like a laptop with a mobility Radeon 5870, I'd splurge for the value.

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

I currently have a 17.3" and I'm pretty happy with it's size. Some argue that the 15.6" have longer battery life, but mine is plugged in for most all of its usage time, so that isn't really an issue. So I'd say 17" or bigger, but again, my main priority is gaming and value, so if I spotted a 15.6" with a 5870 for $1000, I'd probably sacrifice screen size for gaming performance, as long as the resolution was higher than 1366 by 768.

3_What screen resolution do you want?

I really want something that is at least 900 pixels high, 1080p would be very nice, but most of those are $1200+

4_Do you need a portable or desktop replacement laptop?

Not sure of the definitions of these categories around these parts of the interweb, but I've got a nice desktop at home. I need a laptop that will be nice too, weight and stuff like that doesn't matter.

5_How much battery life do you need?

It's all pretty relatively low in my eyes until they come up with something that will run games for 8 hours. It'll be plugged in most of the time, so not an issue.

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)?

YES YES YES. That's the main factor here. I want to play MW2, WoW, and CS:S. MW2 being the most demanding of those, I'll focus on that. I've been studying two links like there's no tomorrow, they are HERE and HERE. Here is where I might start rambling a bit...

Basically I've found a couple of 17.3" laptops that are very similar and have the HD 5650 graphics card. Here's links...

Acer Aspire AS7740G-6364 Intel Core i5 430M(2.26GHz) 17.3" 4GB Memory 500GB HDD ATI Mobility Radeon HD 5650 NoteBook - Retail $849

Gateway NV7901u Intel Core i5 430M(2.26GHz) 17.3" 4GB Memory 500GB HDD ATI Mobility Radeon HD 5650 NoteBook - Retail $899

I've compared them side by side, and if I remember correctly, they seem like the same laptop with different branding. According to those Notebookcheck links, it appears that I could play MW2 on High settings at around 42 FPS, or 30 FPS on Ultra settings. So compared to the Intel GMA 4500 graphics I've got now, that would make the game playable with settings that look pretty nice too, all for $850. But I dug a little more and realized that the GTX 260M, while showing the same color-coded performance class as the 5650, might perform just a tad better on some games, so if I could find a 260M for around the <$800 range, I'd be just as happy with that, but a little hesitant because the 260M isn't DX11.

The only 260M models I see at Newegg are two models at $1699 and one http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168... one for $799[/url" target="_blank">. But I don't like to buy refurb/recert gear, but have never tried it so perhaps I'm unjustly biased.

There are a few other mobile graphics cards that would perform almost equally to the 5650/260M, but I'm having a hard time finding ANY laptops at Newegg and TigerDirect that feature these cards, and/or are less than $1200. It doesn't help that TD makes you click 12 times just to find out what graphics card their laptops have. Anyway, these other similarly performing cards are...

GTS/GTX 250M
GTS/GTX 350M
Mobility 57XX series
GeForce 9800 variations
Radeon 48XX series

So keep an eye out for those as well.

Then there's the option of bumping it up a level to a card that could play MW2 on ultra settings with FPS at 40+, those would be the top tier on those benchmark links. If I could find a 17"+, 320GB HDD+ (preferrably 7200RPM), 4GB RAM+, at 1080p resolution with Win7 and one of those top tier cards, I might be tempted enough to go nuts and spend $1200, but that really would be the top end of my budget, and I'd probably cry the first few games I played on it just knowing I could have spent it on something else. :D 

So I guess if I had to boil it all down, I'd say that I would like to play MW2 at high settings for ~$800, but would pay a little more if it was an amazing bargain.




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

Watching movies, browsing web.

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

320GB seems pretty standard. Anything higher than that doesn't really matter.

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

Whoever has the best price/service, price a little more important. Good experience with Newegg on my Desktop.

10_How long do you want to keep your laptop?

Until I spill a drink on it at a time AFTER the warranty has expired, or until December 21st, 2012 if what multiple prophecies say will happen, actually happens.


11_What kind of Optical drive do you need? DVD ROM/Writer,Bluray ROM/Writer,Etc ?

Bluray tech would be very nice, but not a dealbreaker.


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.


No real preferences due to lack of experience. Recommendations would be appreciated as far as trusted brands, overall value, service, etc...

13_What country do you live in?

USA


14_Please tell us any additional information if needed.

Thanks for taking the time to read this long post. :) 

EDIT: Also worth mentioning is if I could get a quad core instead of a dual core, that would be another factor that would add to value and possibly get me to spend closer to $1000-$1200, especially if it was an i7.
March 28, 2010 4:02:25 AM

Bump for 33 reads and no replies. :( 
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March 28, 2010 6:45:41 AM

Could a mod maybe delete my bump so that this thread can properly show as having zero replies. This is frustrating
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a b D Laptop
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March 28, 2010 6:48:24 PM

Your budget is a bit low to move up to the next level. Most of the custom built laptops are gonna cost you $1700 or more with an i7 and 280M / 285M / 5670. The Clevo W860CU / W870CU are popular gaming laptops which are sold by a variety of boutique shops.

http://forum.notebookreview.com/showthread.php?t=91510

Also check out some of the Asus models.....not customizable but cost effective....some have reported heat issues on some models.
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March 29, 2010 6:12:28 AM

JackNaylorPE said:
Your budget is a bit low to move up to the next level. Most of the custom built laptops are gonna cost you $1700 or more with an i7 and 280M / 285M / 5670. The Clevo W860CU / W870CU are popular gaming laptops which are sold by a variety of boutique shops.

http://forum.notebookreview.com/showthread.php?t=91510

Also check out some of the Asus models.....not customizable but cost effective....some have reported heat issues on some models.


Yeah, I'm never going to spend $1700. But as far as what I posted, do you think I can find a better deal than that $850 model with the HD 5650 that could play MW2 on high settings fluently or on ultra settings at 30FPS? I realize my post isn't exactly cut and dried, there's a few factors that I'd be willing to spend a little more for, but my top end is firm.
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Best solution

March 29, 2010 7:17:48 AM

Here's a nice asus for $1200, but if you catch it on sale then it would be around a thousand, but its not in stock yet

http://www.bestbuy.com/site/Asus+-+Laptop+with+Intel%26...
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March 29, 2010 7:26:25 AM

anonymousdude said:
Here's a nice asus for $1200, but if you catch it on sale then it would be around a thousand, but its not in stock yet

http://www.bestbuy.com/site/Asus+-+Laptop+with+Intel%26...


Very nice find, thanks a bunch. 6GB RAM, i7, 17.3" display, 500GB 7200 RPM HDD, HD 5870, 1600 X 900 resolution. backlit keyboard, runs MW2 at maxed settings at 60-80FPS according to review, all I can say is WOW. If that thing was on sale for $1000 I would pull the trigger and soil my underwear immediately. If it had a Bluray RW drive instead of DVD and 1080 instead of 900, I'd pull the trigger right now for $1200 (if it were in stock).

I'll definitely keep my eyes out for this model, it's nearly perfect, and a pretty impressive price. If it was in stores for $1199 I could probably talk them down to around $1000. Thanks a bunch man, I know it probably took a lot of work deciphering my post and then finding that, so if I end up getting it I'll definitely give you the best answer. :) 
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March 29, 2010 7:41:57 AM

babachoo said:
Very nice find, thanks a bunch. 6GB RAM, i7, 17.3" display, 500GB 7200 RPM HDD, HD 5870, 1600 X 900 resolution. backlit keyboard, runs MW2 at maxed settings at 60-80FPS according to review, all I can say is WOW. If that thing was on sale for $1000 I would pull the trigger and soil my underwear immediately. If it had a Bluray RW drive instead of DVD and 1080 instead of 900, I'd pull the trigger right now for $1200 (if it were in stock).

I'll definitely keep my eyes out for this model, it's nearly perfect, and a pretty impressive price. If it was in stores for $1199 I could probably talk them down to around $1000. Thanks a bunch man, I know it probably took a lot of work deciphering my post and then finding that, so if I end up getting it I'll definitely give you the best answer. :) 



seeing as the G73JH is 1549+ on most other sites I would be very surprised that best buy some how managed to get a shipment of a laptop that is already in high demand, with back orders til may at most places, for 350 - 400 dollars less than others. I would bet you anything that is an error and when they get them in I bet they go up to 1599
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March 29, 2010 8:27:31 AM

Maverick4396 said:
seeing as the G73JH is 1549+ on most other sites I would be very surprised that best buy some how managed to get a shipment of a laptop that is already in high demand, with back orders til may at most places, for 350 - 400 dollars less than others. I would bet you anything that is an error and when they get them in I bet they go up to 1599


The ones you see at those specialized gaming laptop sites have other stuff added that I don't need, like 8GB RAM instead of 6, bags, Bluray, extra HDD's, etc...
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March 29, 2010 1:35:56 PM

"Not in stock" I also doubt seriously this will appear as something you can buy for under $1400, at least not until they can build them fast enough to keep up with the demand.
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March 29, 2010 4:08:30 PM

jitpublisher said:
"Not in stock" I also doubt seriously this will appear as something you can buy for under $1400, at least not until they can build them fast enough to keep up with the demand.


Then why would they prelist it as $1199, and why do plenty of other websites have them in stock? Is it possible that we have people posting here that have vested interests in companies that sell laptops with inflated prices and post disinformation about competitors products and prices? I know you're not, but it sure sounds like you are. :D 
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March 30, 2010 10:32:10 AM

anonymousdude said:
Best buy has a version of this laptop for $1600

http://www.bestbuy.com/site/Asus+-+Laptop+with+Intel%26...


Compared to the other model for $1199, the only difference is 2GB more RAM, which is unnecessary. If the one you linked had a Bluray RW and bluetooth, and was 1080p, it might be worth that much, but I'm not paying $401 for 2GB of RAM. :D 
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April 11, 2010 8:43:26 AM

To update this thread, I just purchased the G73 laptop from Best Buy tonight for $1199 +tax. I'm just gonna try it out and most likely return it, but we'll see how it goes. So far I'm really impressed with it, but haven't tried any games on it yet.
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April 18, 2010 12:25:33 PM

Best answer selected by babachoo.
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