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Which of these would be best multimedia hi spec laptop

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August 9, 2010 8:12:03 PM

Hi All,

I've been doing my research regarding which laptop would be the best multimedia one (40% net surfing, 30% gaming and 30% HDMI blu ray output to 1080HD tv).

My budget is approx £1200 GBP but I could stretch to up to £1500 if the difference was great.

I'm looking at an i7 core CPU to future proof but would consider i5 if the GPU performance outweighed the CPU in terms of quality. I'm thinking display quality is probably slightly ahead of speed in my wishlist but I do want good speed too. I also want a 7200 RPM HDD and a decent graphics card. And a screen size of at least 16" but ideally 17" [18.4 at a push]

The current shortlist is as follows and I'd appreciate feedback (especially if you own or have experience of any of these).

Acer Aspire 8943G - i7-720QM & ATI Mobility Radeon HD 5650

HP Envy 17-1000 - i7-720QM & ATI Mobility Radeon™ HD 5850

and

Dell Studio 17 - i7-620QM & ATI Mobility Radeon™ HD 5730

(Faster CPU although the Dell customise your laptop site doesnt seem to offer a Blu Ray which unless that can be negotiated might be a deal -breaker)

[I also liked the HP dv8-1110ea but the GPU isn't well regarded, likewise the Sony VPCF12M0E/B, and the Toshiba SAT P500-1F8 and ASUS N71JQ-TY013V were both great apart from lack of full 1080HD screen]

I'd appreciate any feedback on my shortlist or any reccomendations of other similar spec alternatives I may have failed to identify during my searching.

Many Thanks,
Alan

More about : multimedia spec laptop

August 9, 2010 8:38:51 PM

Update: Spoke to Dell and the Blu Ray is available. So it's a reasonably level playing field between the 3 I mentioned.
August 9, 2010 9:10:24 PM

I'd personally role with the Envy, it has a very clean look and has a sex factor to it, the envy series have also just been released this month, additionally, the 5850 is leagues ahead of the other two GPUs.

http://www.notebookcheck.net/ATI-Mobility-Radeon-HD-585...
http://www.notebookcheck.net/ATI-Mobility-Radeon-HD-565...
http://www.notebookcheck.net/ATI-Mobility-Radeon-HD-573...

Dell are renowned for their customer support and craftmanship, but the 5870 isn't much better than the 5650 if atall and its the weaker of the 3 CPU choices.

Acer i've always thought to have poor craftsmanship and have a tacky feel to them, i don't think you'd get the feeling of a 1.2k laptop when you look at it like you would with an Envy.

Have you had a look at Toshibas Quasmio series?
http://www.play.com/PC/PCs/4-/15945554/Toshiba-Qosmio-X...|cc:|prd:15945554|cat:Computers

Though the GPU isn't DX11, it's still a bit of a beast:
http://www.notebookcheck.net/NVIDIA-GeForce-GTS-360M.24...
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August 10, 2010 9:48:18 AM

Hey vipers992 - cheers for the info.

I know what you mean about Acer and that would be a reservation, but my first ever laptop was an Acer Travelmate and I thought it was a cracking, reliable machine - especially for the fact it was only £400 back when laptops were not cheap. Also the Acer in question is getting really good reviews.

You reccomendation of the Envy is well received though as it's replacing an HP and the HP it's replacing (Pavillion DV9500) has been a good machine in my experience.

I'd previously looked at the Toshiba you mentioned but it didnt appear to have Blu Ray and the screen wasn't full 1080. I'll take another look at the Toshiba site in case I missed anything though in the specs.

Cheers,
Alan
August 10, 2010 2:31:12 PM

My family and friends have always bought Acer's, indeed they offer good value for money and i will give them that, before they cut production on the models, they offered the cheapest 5650 systems around, shortly before i was looking for a laptop myself, disappointing, but i think it may be due to their new TimelineX series having 5650's so they didn't want a cheaper system to have the same graphics cards i guess.

Another sweet in the pick and mix, check out MSI, there are multiple places where you can customise the hardware you would like to come with your laptop-
http://www.msimobile.com/level2_productlist.aspx?id=6
http://www.xoticpc.com/msi-gx640260us-p-2766.html?wconf...

XoticPC offer a variety of models to customise.

Reliability i have heard bad things about their customer support on Laptops, and i know how flimsy their laptops feel since theres about 5 or 6 people i know with an Acer.

All the laptops we've looked at so far have a different look and sensation to them, there are many choices to go with, but go with the one you feel the most anxiety and excitement with.
There's no point in buying a laptop for the sake of having better hardware, then not being happy with your product because you 'wish' you got the prettier one.
August 10, 2010 2:35:01 PM

Oops my mistake, ive gone and posted American links, request for a moderator to delete that post above lol.
August 10, 2010 2:44:04 PM

Hi vipers992, No worries on the american links. I did have a quick look at the MSi website at lunchtime and was impressed with what I saw. Also there were details of the UK stockists on the MSi website so I could do that route.

Initial misgivings were around the lack of 1080HD displays and no Blu Ray. But if configuration is an option to get past at least one of these two obstacles then I might need to give serious thought to sacrificing the other for the graphics card that seems much better regarded than all the GPU's I've had on my list so far.
August 10, 2010 4:01:50 PM

Yes i got confused with the other thread you opened where there was an additional person in the discussion from the U.S.
MSI are great, and stylish, it may be worth looking around for them, you may find a place which imports to the UK, Laptops are duty free since they count as 'gifts', you pay VAT and delivery charges which is usually between 50 to 80 dollars.
August 11, 2010 10:16:06 AM

Hi,

So I had a look at both the MSi US site and the MSi Europe site and their UK stockists but none seem to have anything that ticks enough of my boxes(17inch 1080 screen, i7 CPU and Blu Ray).

There's obviously the option of importing one from US but that sounds like a minefield in itself. Duty, VAT, warrantee and so forth.

So whilst the Envy is still leading the pack, I figured I may as well look at it from a different angle.

What laptops are available in the UK containing top ten rated GPU's within the £1200-1400 price range?

Or whats the best rated GPU easily available in UK laptops that I should be looking for?

Figure if I look from that perspective and find a really good GPU then perhaps I can then configure the rest of the laptop to get close to my needs even if it means swapping the i7 for an i5 and focussing on the graphics quality over CPU speed.

I know the Asus G73 contains a cracking GPU, but any other other suggestions?

Thanks,
Alan
August 11, 2010 6:29:02 PM

make sure you go with the 720qm be cause the 620 is a dual core if memory serves correctly. I think i720 is the smallest of the quad cores for mobile applications. I would go with the envy. I have never had a problem with customer support.
August 12, 2010 12:09:26 PM

Looks like I can pick an MSi GX740 up for £1000 GBP which is 200/300 less than the Acer and the HP Envy.

The MSi has a cracking graphics card (Mobility Radeon HD 5870) but means I'm accepting an i5 CPU instead of an i7.

But from what I'm reading not many apps or games are likely to use the i7 to it's full potential anyway.

The MSi also has a standard DVD player not a Blu Ray.

Whats the opinion out there. Does the superior GPU mean the MSI is a better bet than the HP Envy or Acer 8943G?

Cheers,
Alan

August 12, 2010 8:38:18 PM

Forgot to mention that the MSi is available in store whereas the others would need to be online.

Anyone got any feedback on whether the MSi with better GPU makes sense even tho I'm trading down from i7 to i5?

Thanks,
Alan
!