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Figuring it all out

Last response: in Laptops & Notebooks
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June 1, 2010 10:07:04 PM

I'm looking into buying a new laptop this summer but I've got a few questions I need answered prior to buying it. Please take a look at my questions at the bottom.

1_What is your budget?
$2,000

2_What is the size of the notebook that you are considering?
15.6" - 16.4"

3_What screen resolution do you want?
1920x1080

4_Do you need a portable or desktop replacement laptop?
Something small enough to move inbetween places but powerful enough for gaming.

5_How much battery life do you need?
2+ hours, but I'll sacrifice battery for performance and value

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)?
I'd like to be able to play somthing like Crysis at mid-high without noticing any lag. I'm not too worried about Ultra obviously.

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

8_How much storage (H.D.D Capacity) do you need?
minimum 500GB (7200RPM) might go with 1TB, but I'm not sure how slow 1TB acts at (5400RPM)

9_If you are considering specific sites to buy from, please post their links.
www.xoticpc.com, www.ibuypower.com, www.cyberpowerpc.com
I'm open to whichever site I can get the best deal from

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

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

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.
I'm open to what ever I can get the best deal on

13_What country do you live in?
USA

14_Please tell us any additional information if needed.

Additional desires

RAM: 8GB-12GB
Networking: Blue Tooth, Built in Modem, WiFi
External ports: Min. 2 USB, 1 USB2.0; HDMI


1) Is the difference between the classes of processor enough to justify paying the difference? Also why is it that some laptops and some sites have such varrying prices on upgrading the CPU? The diffence in price between the 720QM and 820QM seems to be radically different for each laptop I look at (I've seen differences of around $150 - $350!)?
i5-540M
i7-620M (+$80)
i7-720QM (+$50)
i7-820QM (+$300)

2) Are there times when you can get too excesive on CPU, RAM, or GPU because the other components won't support the full potential of the other components?
For example, my current laptop usually runs out of RAM well before the CPU is even near 70%.

3) What video cards should I be looking for? I'd like something that I'll be able to play new games as they come out with over medium settings with no lag.

4) When given the option for upgraded thermal paste, is it worth it? I've seen some upgrades around $20 - $50. Is this really going to matter in the overall reliability or performance of the computer?

5) Are there any market trends or new features coming out that might cause prices to drop over the next couple of months?

6) Is it a good idea to skimp on RAM and upgrade it on your own later?

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Best solution

June 1, 2010 11:45:46 PM

asus g73jh hands down, fits everything and within budget

(full hd screen, 8gb models, up to 1 TB, blu ray, very nice cooling, very good gaming performance, should easily be able to game crysis at high)
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June 2, 2010 12:09:46 AM

The only problem with the G73JH is the screen size. I like what I've seen out of Asus, but I think I'd stick to the G51JX.

I keep running into new questions... Between the following how big of a difference will I see?

ATI Mobility HD 5650
nVidia GeForce GTS 360M
ATI Mobility HD 5870
nVidia GeForce GTX285M

Also is there any common GPUs that out perform the above, but aren't considerably more expensive?
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June 3, 2010 3:55:13 PM

I can't come with any sources right now, but

The 360 should be alot faster than the 5650
the 5870 quite a bit faster than the 360, and the 285 should be a little bit slower than the 5870(atleast in gaming, the gtx285m is better than the 5870 in benchmarks)

If you can't decide between the 5870 or 285, i would say go with the 5870. It runs cooler, due to 40nm compared to the 55nm of the gtx265m, and its directx11

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June 3, 2010 4:42:47 PM

Thank you. From what I've been reading I completely agree with that. The extra $75 dollars for the 285M doesn't seem worht it when the 5870's performance is so similar.

Ultimately though none of that matters now. I think I've decided to go with the ASUS G73JH which only offers the 5870.
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June 10, 2010 1:57:05 AM

Best answer selected by Unifyzero.
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