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What laptop for college?

  • Laptops
  • College
Last response: in Laptop Tech Support
April 12, 2011 7:41:22 PM

I am currently looking into a laptop for college. I was looking at Dell's XPS 15 but I am still looking. I am going into Computer Engineering and this will be my freshman year. I want a laptop that will be able to run Office, basic/small programs, and any other software I might use in my field. Also, I wish to play World of Warcraft on it, preferably high settings. Any help/direction on what I should get will be much appreciated. Thanks! (I have about $1,500)

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a c 571 D Laptop
April 12, 2011 7:51:23 PM

Hello Viper1324;

You can help us out and answer a few questions in the format shown in the sticky topic:
FAQ - Read before buying / considering a laptop
This will make sure we have all the bases covered and get you exactly what you want.

a c 571 D Laptop
April 12, 2011 7:57:48 PM

Besides the Dell XPS 15:
We like the custom Sager NP8130 or the ASUS G53SW-A1.
Both have Sandy Bridge Core i7 2630QM CPU, 8GB RAM, 1920x1080 15.6" LCD w/ GTX 460M graphics. That should get you Ultra graphics settings on Wow:Cataclysm.
Related resources
April 12, 2011 9:22:43 PM

1. What is your budget? *$1,500

2. What is the size of the notebook that you are considering? *15/17

3. What screen resolution do you want? *1080p 1920x1080 High Definition

4. Do you need a portable or desktop replacement laptop? *Desktop Replacement

5. How much battery life do you need? *Not Important but longer the better

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)? *WoW: Cata (High)

7. What other tasks do you want to do with your laptop? (Photo / Video editing,watching movies, Etc.) *Computer Engineering Programs

8. How much storage (Hard Drive capacity) do you need? *Not Important

9. If you are considering specific sites to buy from, please post their links. *N/A

10. How long do you want to keep your laptop? *Hopefully 4 years

11. What kind of Optical drive do you need? DVD ROM/Writer,Bluray ROM/Writer,Etc ? *DVD

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. *Never bought one before

13. What country do you live in? *USA

14. Please tell us any additional information if needed. *It is for a freshman going into Computer Engineering

Best solution

a c 571 D Laptop
April 12, 2011 10:58:55 PM

Dell XPS 15 Notebook (i5-2410M & GT 540M) review
Probably not the CPU you'd choose but the chassis and feature set would be the same in this review as a $1160 i7-2630QM 8GB RAM, 640GB 7200rpm HDD and 15.6" 1920x1080 w/ GT 540M graphics. This should meet all your educational requirements and allow for gaming at the Med/High graphics range in most games.

@ $1360 the Dell XPS 17" with i7-2630QM 8GB RAM, 640GB 7200rpm HDD and 17.3" 1920x1080 w/ GT 555M graphics.

NVIDIA GeForce GT 540M review
NVIDIA GeForce GT 555M review
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 460M review
If you look at the vertical column of graphics cards listed at the right of the review you'll see an approximate ranking of performance with other graphics cards. GTX 460M & GT 555M are in Class1 and GT 540M in Class 2.

April 13, 2011 12:11:15 AM

Best answer selected by Viper1324.
April 13, 2011 12:12:17 AM

Thank you very much! You were most helpful. Have a good day.