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Could use some advice in picking a solid desktop replacement laptop

Last response: in Laptops & Notebooks
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June 14, 2010 3:02:01 AM

1_What is your budget? - Under $2,000. Under $1,500 would be nice.

2_What is the size of the notebook that you are considering? - 15" to 19"

3_What screen resolution do you want? - Something that suits the screen.

4_Do you need a portable or desktop replacement laptop? - Desktop replacement. Heavy is not a problem.

5_How much battery life do you need? - Almost none

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, nothing extreme though. TF2 should run well with medium/high settings. I would like to play Diablo 3 someday.

7_What other tasks do you want to do with your laptop? (Photo / Video editing,watching movies, Etc.)
I make games, and I want to be able to work on this laptop. I need to be able to run the an editor which takes up 100% of one processor and a gig of RAM, plus photoshop, plus Word, Excel, Outlook, and Firefox with a dozen tabs open. Often I will do this with an additional monitor.

8_How much storage (H.D.D Capacity) do you need?
I would really like to get a SSD, though I don't know if I have a great reason for it. I'm just kind of geeked at the idea. 300GB+, either all on the SSD or split between that and a second drive would be ideal. I'm willing to sacrifice this idea though.

9_If you are considering specific sites to buy from, please post their links.
I considered this:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
(ASUS G Series G73JH-A3 NoteBook Intel Core i7 720QM(1.60GHz) 17.3" 8GB Memory 1TB HDD 7200rpm BD Combo ATI Mobility Radeon HD 5870)

And also the Dell Studio XPS 16 with a bunch of upgrades. I've also looked at the xoticpc Force series.

10_How long do you want to keep your laptop?
I hope it will last for 4 years

11_What kind of Optical drive do you need? DVD ROM/Writer,Bluray ROM/Writer,Etc ?
This isn't critical. Bluray would be a bonus.

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 last laptop had an Nvidia card which was constantly burning out. I've heard ATIs are more durable, but I don't know if that's true.

13_What country do you live in?
USA

14_Please tell us any additional information if needed.
I need a laptop with a lot of power, but I don't want it to be so cutting edge that it's constantly overheating and burning out components. Overclocked parts are probably a detriment, I'm not developing Crysis 2 over here. I would love to hear some recommendations for video cards I should look for that are both powerful and reliable. Are there other parts I should be especially worried about?

Any help would be appreciated. That ASUS I linked seems like overkill, and too cutting edge to be reliable. The Dell looks ok, but it's hard to get the features I really want. Leather? Really? How about a full copy of windows.

I'd also love to hear any experience with sites like xoticpc, their stuff looks pretty good, but it's hard to know without being about to touch it. The floppy lid on my last laptop was kind of a pain, and I don't want a repeat of that.

Sorry for the long read, thanks for your help!
a b D Laptop
June 14, 2010 6:05:14 PM

Volbard said:
1_What is your budget? - Under $2,000. Under $1,500 would be nice.

2_What is the size of the notebook that you are considering? - 15" to 19"

3_What screen resolution do you want? - Something that suits the screen.

4_Do you need a portable or desktop replacement laptop? - Desktop replacement. Heavy is not a problem.

5_How much battery life do you need? - Almost none

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, nothing extreme though. TF2 should run well with medium/high settings. I would like to play Diablo 3 someday.

7_What other tasks do you want to do with your laptop? (Photo / Video editing,watching movies, Etc.)
I make games, and I want to be able to work on this laptop. I need to be able to run the an editor which takes up 100% of one processor and a gig of RAM, plus photoshop, plus Word, Excel, Outlook, and Firefox with a dozen tabs open. Often I will do this with an additional monitor.

8_How much storage (H.D.D Capacity) do you need?
I would really like to get a SSD, though I don't know if I have a great reason for it. I'm just kind of geeked at the idea. 300GB+, either all on the SSD or split between that and a second drive would be ideal. I'm willing to sacrifice this idea though.

9_If you are considering specific sites to buy from, please post their links.
I considered this:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
(ASUS G Series G73JH-A3 NoteBook Intel Core i7 720QM(1.60GHz) 17.3" 8GB Memory 1TB HDD 7200rpm BD Combo ATI Mobility Radeon HD 5870)

And also the Dell Studio XPS 16 with a bunch of upgrades. I've also looked at the xoticpc Force series.

10_How long do you want to keep your laptop?
I hope it will last for 4 years

11_What kind of Optical drive do you need? DVD ROM/Writer,Bluray ROM/Writer,Etc ?
This isn't critical. Bluray would be a bonus.

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 last laptop had an Nvidia card which was constantly burning out. I've heard ATIs are more durable, but I don't know if that's true.

13_What country do you live in?
USA

14_Please tell us any additional information if needed.
I need a laptop with a lot of power, but I don't want it to be so cutting edge that it's constantly overheating and burning out components. Overclocked parts are probably a detriment, I'm not developing Crysis 2 over here. I would love to hear some recommendations for video cards I should look for that are both powerful and reliable. Are there other parts I should be especially worried about?

Any help would be appreciated. That ASUS I linked seems like overkill, and too cutting edge to be reliable. The Dell looks ok, but it's hard to get the features I really want. Leather? Really? How about a full copy of windows.

I'd also love to hear any experience with sites like xoticpc, their stuff looks pretty good, but it's hard to know without being about to touch it. The floppy lid on my last laptop was kind of a pain, and I don't want a repeat of that.

Sorry for the long read, thanks for your help!


Hi there,

The specs for the Asus are great and the nice, large screen will be perfect since you are looking for a desktop replacement. Also, the powerful processor is important since you mentioned you will have many windows open at once. Have you seen the Dell Studio XPS 16 w/ SSD? The leather accents may not be necessary, but it is less expensive than the Asus and has pretty similar specs. Check it out here: http://www.microsoft.com/Windows/pc-scout/laptop-detail....

What do you think?

Isabella
MSFT Windows Outreach Team
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June 14, 2010 11:44:57 PM

The studio XPS does look pretty good, I think I'll go with that. It sounds like the case is better constructed than the ASUS, so that has decided me. Hope the video card lasts for a bit!
a b D Laptop
June 15, 2010 10:28:30 PM

Hi Volbard,

I'm glad I was able to help. Let me know if you have any more questions that I can help you out with!

Good luck with the new laptop.

Isabella
MSFT Windows Outreach Team
!