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Should I purchase this?

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May 18, 2010 4:50:59 PM

Dell.ca has a great sale on the Studio 15 right now, I can get the following notebook for $1439+tax (Canadian). It is $469 off the regular price of $1908. I was going to get the Studio XPS with the better graphics chip and faster RAM but I made $1500 after tax my budget, and this Studio was the best sale available.

CPU: Intel Core i7 720QM 1.6GHz (2.8GHz Turbo)
RAM: 6GB DDR3-1333 (running at 1066Mhz)
GPU: ATI Mobility Radeon 5470 1GB
LCD: 15.6"LED 1920x1080
HDD: 500GB 7200RPM
ROM: Blu-Ray Combo (read,dvd/cd write)
Sound: Soundblaster Xfi MB
OS: Windows 7 Home 64bit
Bluetooth: Internal card
Battery: 9-Cell
Free Targus Messenger Bag

Good deal? Thanks for the input.

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a c 572 D Laptop
May 18, 2010 4:58:24 PM

What is the laptop going to be used for?
As a gaming laptop? The Mobility Radeon HD 5470 is a bit too weak to be called a good solution for a big res 1920x1080 LCD.
As an entertainment laptop? There is a lot more CPU there than is required. And do you actually need a Blu-Ray player?

If you get the idea I'm thinking this is halfway to Gaming and half over what is needed for a General Purpose/Entertainment laptop you'd be about right.
May 18, 2010 5:08:08 PM

This laptop is for general and multimedia use, with light gaming(if anything). I will use this as a blu-ray and hd video player internally and externally. I like the fact the radeon chip can output 7.1 lpcm to my reciever for hd audio formats as well. I love the 1080p resolution and multitask often. Is there any component over something else I can choose that would hinder my battery life? The way I understand it is if I'm not using cpu intensive applications, the clock speed will stay at 1.6GHz. Does turbo boost automatically turn itself on or do I need to enable it? Also I heard the "i" series of cpu's have a built in graphics chip so the ati graphics only get used if you do more demanding tasks video wise...or is that only on the Macbooks? Thanks for your help!
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May 18, 2010 11:39:27 PM

Wow, the comparable Macbooks are like over $3000...they have better graphics chips but less RAM and don't do 1080p or 16:9 AR in the 15".
a c 572 D Laptop
May 19, 2010 2:08:31 AM

wetcardboard said:
The way I understand it is if I'm not using cpu intensive applications, the clock speed will stay at 1.6GHz. Does turbo boost automatically turn itself on or do I need to enable it?
TurboBoost is more than just boosting above 1.6Ghz. It will nearly shut down un-needed cores. It can boost a single core as needed to leave other cores at minimum power, or call a 2nd core up to split the workload. Example shows i7 920XM but the 720QM operates the same way in it's own 1.6GHz - 2.8GHz range


The Arrandale mobile series has the CPU packate integrated graphics. i3-3xxM, i5-4xxM, i5-5xxM, i7-6xxM
The Clarksfield mobile series lacks the CPU package integrated graphics. 720QM, 820QM, 920XM PM55 chipset motherboards don't have IGP. HM55 motherboards do have IGP.

Arrandale mobile

Clarkfield mobile


The MacBooks have their own method of switchable graphics (discrete GPU & IGP). It requires a reboot or a logout to shutdown or re-start the discrete GPU.

For more info on switchable graphics, including the newest Nvidia Optimus check this AnandTech aticle:
A Brief History of Switchable Graphics
May 19, 2010 2:29:48 AM

Thanks for the informative reply WR2,

I actually sent a request into D3ll to change from a Studio 15 to a Studio XPS 16, for about $100 extra I get the exact same system except the video gets a significant upgrade to the HD4670. Savings are around $380 as opposed to $470. Whether or not they let me switch is in question, but I only placed my order yesterday so I don't think it will be a problem.

Even though I won't use it primarily for gaming, it's nice to know that I have the option to run most games at medium detail. This will also help me hold off a bit longer before I build a monster desktop in the fall/winter.

Its cool that the CPU automatically adjusts depending on what I'm doing...for browsing and light use how much battery life should I expect out of a 9-cell, between 5-6 hours?

I absolutely loathe mac's and anyone of my friends who would be dumb enough to purchase them when they can get an identical system or better one for over $1000 less, I don't want to start a flame war but besides software I don't see any reason someone would buy one. IMO, they seem to be for less intelligent people who don't know how to use a real computer, the mainstream media has made people believe PC's are evil just like they brainwashed the majority into voting for Obama :pt1cable: 


a c 572 D Laptop
May 19, 2010 6:52:07 PM

Studio XPS 16 also has some nice styling going on. Aluminum case, backlit keyboard, and leather accent. (shades of MakBook Pro!)

I don't suppose you managed to snag one of those edge-to-edge RGB-LED LCDS?

Battery life.... Im guessing more like 4 hrs and maybe 3 hrs actually doing something like watching DVDs or Wifi surfing.
May 19, 2010 8:21:47 PM

WR2,

I put in my request to change my order with my sales rep but I dont know forsure if they can change it. In my order status on D3ll.com it says in production. I originally placed my first order on Saturday afternoon, then changed it early Monday morning, and now sending an e-mail and leaving a voicemail with my sales rep yesterday to change from the regular Studio to the XPS.

When configuring the Studio XPS 16 now you are only presented with two options, both of which are RGB LED's(just different resolutions, 1600x900 and 1920x1080). I went with the 1080p one. I have heard on other forums that this is one of the best, if not THEE best laptop screen available, so I am very excited if I get the Studio XPS. Even though the regular price on the Studio 15 was around $1900 and I was only paying $1400, I figure the better video card, backlit keyboard, full RGB led and nicer design is worth the extra $120. On the XPS the regular price was just below $1900 and I would be paying $1520 (Canadian dollars).
a c 572 D Laptop
May 19, 2010 9:58:02 PM

When I peeked at the Dell.ca site all I saw was the WLED (white LED) screens.
On the US site you have to switch over to the Business class laptops to find the Studio XPS with the RGB LED screen.
May 20, 2010 2:47:25 PM

Sorry WR2 you are right...for some reason I thought I remembered seeing RGB LCD, but it is WLED. I still havent gotten through to anyone to modify my order so I am really doubting I can get the XPS now anyway.
May 21, 2010 12:36:17 AM

Update: Got the Studio XPS 16. The RGB LED wasnt available. I got the notebook for $1529 Canadian configured with the following:

Core i7-720QM 1.6GHz (2.8GHz turbo boost)
6GB DDR3 RAM @ 1333MHz
500GB 7200rpm HDD
ATI Mobility 4670 1GB
1920x1080 edge-to-edge WLED 15.6" display
6X Blu-ray combo drive
Soundblaster X-Fi MB
Intel Centrino wireless-N

Looking forward to the backlit keyboard and bluetooth as well.
a c 572 D Laptop
May 21, 2010 1:05:46 AM

Nice of Dell to listen up and make the change for you.

It looks like the RGB LED isnt available anywhere @ Dell right now. It's also gone missing off the Business site options. Still carried as an option in the Tech Specs though.
May 21, 2010 3:20:44 AM

Wonder how the FullHD WLED screen in the StudioXPS compares to other brands? I haven't seen 1920x1080 resolution on notebooks smaller than 17" anywhere.
May 29, 2010 5:40:43 PM

UPDATE:

I have changed my order around again somewhat, due to Dell starting to sell the Radeon HD5730 in Canada a few days ago, now my build looks like this:

Price: $1629 after $329 savings

CPU: Core i7 720QM 1.8Ghz (2.8Ghz Turbo)
RAM: 8GB DDR3-1333Mhz
GPU: Mobility Radeon HD 5730 1GB
HDD: 500GB 7200RPM
LED: 15.6" @ 1920x1080 (WLED)
Add-ons: Bluetooth embedded

The price keeps creeping up on me but I've been told the 5730 runs cooler and uses less power than the 4670 so if that will get rid of any overheating or throttling problems then its worth it IMO.
!