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A portable gaming laptop with decent battery life?

Last response: in Laptops & Notebooks
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February 8, 2011 5:29:45 AM

Hi guys, thanks for taking the time to help me out. I'm looking for a laptop for university with enough power to game, but I require at least 2.5-3 hours of battery life (3 hour lectures...). Gaming is less of a priority, but I simply HAVE to play Mass Effect 3.
I'm currently using a P7805u (2.26GHz Centrino 2, 320GB, 1GB 9800M GTS, 1440x900, 17"), which I have to give to my brother if I purchase a new notebook, so I can't go for something that's only portable.


1. What is your budget?
$1000-$1300 CAD!

2. What is the size of the notebook that you are considering?
15"+, preferably not 17"

3. What screen resolution do you want?
1366x768+

4. Do you need a portable or desktop replacement laptop?
Somewhat portable?

5. How much battery life do you need?
2.5h+ with all settings turned down

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)?
Mass Effect 3: High (soon, anyway)
Black Ops: High
Battlefield 2: High

I don't mind turning down resolution to something like 1280x800 for acceptable framerates.

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

8. How much storage (Hard Drive capacity) do you need?
Doesn't matter, but 7200RPM.

9. If you are considering specific sites to buy from, please post their links.
I live in London, Canada, so it has to be a Canadian site if online. Newegg.ca, Tigerdirect.ca, Amazon.ca, Dell.ca, Bestbuy.ca, Futureshop.ca, Canadacomputers.com are okay. I would prefer NOT to buy from xoticpc, or other such sites.

10. How long do you want to keep your laptop?
2-3 years.

11. What kind of Optical drive do you need? DVD ROM/Writer,Bluray ROM/Writer,Etc ?
I doubt I'll ever use Blu-ray, but if it's included I won't complain.

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 would prefer not to buy Sager or Clevo brands in case problems arise and I require support.
I like Asus, but quality > brand.

13. What country do you live in?
Canada

14. Please tell us any additional information if needed.
I highly prefer i7, preferably i7-740, I can upgrade RAM as needed later.

I have looked at some laptops:
Dell XPS 15 ($1150 as configured): i7-740, 2GB GT435M, 4GB-1333, 500GB, 1080p RGB LED
ASUS N61: http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E1683...
or: http://www.canadacomputers.com/product_info.php?cPath=7...
ASUS N82: http://www.canadacomputers.com/product_info.php?cPath=7...
ASUS N53: http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E1683...
http://www.canadacomputers.com/product_info.php?cPath=7...
MSI GT660: http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E1683...
ASUS G53: http://www.newegg.ca/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E1683...
Lenovo Ideapad Y560: http://www.canadacomputers.com/product_info.php?cPath=7...

I would've gotten the G53 already had it not been for its abysmal battery life. I read that it barely lasted 2 hours on idle, with everything turned down.
I think I would really like the ASUS N53SV: http://www.notebookcheck.net/Review-Asus-N53SV-Notebook...
but I can't find it anywhere, and I'm not sure if it's even available.

So, should I go for one of the listed options? Something else? Or wait for the N53SV (End of Feb is my approximate deadline). If I go with one of the weaker GPUs (i.e. not G53 or GT660), which is best?

Thanks in advance!
February 8, 2011 12:17:33 PM

Gaming laptop with good battery life? Isn't that an oxymoron?

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a c 571 D Laptop
February 8, 2011 12:48:58 PM

The Sandy Bridge laptops will be out of circulation for about six to eight weeks.
Then they'll be available again.

If you choose a model with the Optimus technology you have a chance on meeting your battery life goal when not-gaming.

Asus N53SV is an excellent choice. But I think a realistic goal is Medium graphics settings. It IS a mid-range moblie graphics card after all
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February 8, 2011 2:24:44 PM

Thanks for the replies!
I don't think gaming and battery life are necessarily opposed - I can currently squeeze out just under 3 hours with everything turned down on my P7805u.
For graphics settings I would just like to be able to run some settings on high, like shadow and textures - I wouldn't use AA or anisotropic filtering.
If we forget about my Battlefield 2 hope (since it's rather intensive), in general, out of 5730, 5650, 435M, 425M and 335M, which is best overall?
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a c 571 D Laptop
February 8, 2011 2:46:49 PM

You're extrapolating your current laptop forward to newer models? What your reasoning for doing that?
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February 8, 2011 3:09:56 PM

I'm not 100% sure what you mean by extrapolating. I was simply saying that I am willing to turn down everything to squeeze out enough juice, and hoped that prospective notebook ideas you guys point out could reach about 3 hours in doing so. It's somewhat natural to want something better if it's newer, right?
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a c 571 D Laptop
February 8, 2011 3:30:19 PM

Maybe that 9-cell 86.6Wh Lithium Ion battery had a wee bit to do with that 3hr battery life as well.

You'll probably need to think about adding the extra powerful battery pack option if you want to match that type of longevity.
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February 8, 2011 3:56:36 PM

Yeah, definitely. If possible I'd like to keep expenses down and not have to worry about a second or larger battery option, since for most of the websites I listed, they are pre-built systems with no option to upgrade battery.
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