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New laptop for college

Last response: in Laptops & Notebooks
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April 27, 2011 2:34:07 AM



1. What is your budget?

Under $1200

2. What is the size of the notebook that you are considering?

Around 15"

3. What screen resolution do you want?

Doesn't really matter too much to me

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

I'd want it portable enough to fit into my backpack and take it with me if I need to.

5. How much battery life do you need?

Hoping for over 2 hours

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 wouldn't be playing that often but I would like to play some. Diablo III and possibly SC2. Maybe some other shooter games but I'm not concerned about those.

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

Watching movies

8. How much storage (Hard Drive capacity) do you need?

Don't really need over 500GB but the more the better.

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

10. How long do you want to keep your laptop?

I'd hope it would last for at least 4 years.

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

DVD-RW

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.

Don't really want HP. My brother got one and he had lots of problems with it.

13. What country do you live in?

USA

14. Please tell us any additional information if needed.

I'm not sure if it'll help but I'm majoring in computer science.

More about : laptop college

April 27, 2011 3:02:27 AM

I would suggest the Lenovo IdeaPad Y560p. I found the same exact computer on Newegg for "Was: $999.99 Now: $949.99" But then found even cheaper prices on amazon and tiger direct that I also linked.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...

http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/searchtools/ite...

http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/B004UQWY4A/

Here is a youtube video reviewing the computer from tiger direct.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=slgixXcjn9k

It gets up to 3.5 hours--suggested by retailer, but if all else fails you can buy an extra battery for it.

Hope that helps.
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April 27, 2011 3:35:42 AM

Are those laptops good for gaming? It's just that I don't really hear about Lenovos being used to play games.
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April 27, 2011 3:52:15 AM

ChocKoa said:
Are those laptops good for gaming? It's just that I don't really hear about Lenovos being used to play games.


I personally don't own the laptop i suggested as I am in search of laptop as well. But it is a dedicated graphics card and has 1GB dedicated memory just for the card. It also has 6GB of memory total. Not to mention second gen Intel Core i7 (Sandy Bridge) CPU. In my humble opinion it should be perfectly fine for gaming.

Here is a youtube video showing Mass Effect 2, Left 4 Dead 2 and Wolfenstein playing both cinematic scenes and gameplay.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v0qJKa39dRs
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April 27, 2011 4:08:00 AM

As for cloudy's suggestion. It has more memory, the same Intel Core i7, but the reviews I have seen for gaming kind of makes me feel blah about it, but then again I am not a computer expert.

Also the one cloudy suggested has a blu ray drive. I don't know if the code cloudly link is still in affect, but the laptop i suggested is cheaper, but still can compete with cloudy's suggestion.

For example this review might help you decide.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UbIu0XRB8Bg
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April 27, 2011 4:15:18 AM

6570M will run games just fine. At around $1100 you can probably start finding laptops with 460M's and 5800M's
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April 27, 2011 4:25:18 AM

Like i said before, in my opinion my laptop can run games fine, and plus you'll have around 270 dollars to play around with to buy a laptop cooler stand, wireless mouse, an extra battery, ect. Like you said before, you will be in college, and sure you'll game on the weekends, but 9 times out of 10 you will be studying, or maybe even partying/ hanging with new friends. The laptop weighs 5.95 lbs so its not too heavy to lug to classes in a back pack. Personally I'm even thinking about buying this machine.
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April 27, 2011 4:36:25 AM

I'll definitely consider this laptop. The only thing thats holding me back is that my friend also got a Lenovo for college and he bought it for gaming. He said it only lasted him a year and he didn't think it was that good. But I can't really believe exactly what he says because he's not that great with computers so that might have something to do with how long it lasted. I have heard great things about Lenovos so that makes me feel better if I do decide to get it.
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April 27, 2011 4:54:50 AM

Unique name doesn't know what he's talking about. A 6570 will run games just fine, or so-so, kinda poorly...but $1100 for a 460M? I just bought an i7-2630QM for $801! Don't pay that kind of money for a last generation i5.

Personally, I think you should go with reconfiguring an HP w/ coupon codes. If not, you still shouldn't need to spend more than $1000. That also comes with a discounted larger battery. This can also have a 6770M graphics card.

The Lenovo looks good--more than I'd want to pay. Also, a Sager from xoticpc.com is good.
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April 27, 2011 4:52:02 PM

dalauder said:
Unique name doesn't know what he's talking about. A 6570 will run games just fine, or so-so, kinda poorly...but $1100 for a 460M? I just bought an i7-2630QM for $801! Don't pay that kind of money for a last generation i5.

Personally, I think you should go with reconfiguring an HP w/ coupon codes. If not, you still shouldn't need to spend more than $1000. That also comes with a discounted larger battery. This can also have a 6770M graphics card.

The Lenovo looks good--more than I'd want to pay. Also, a Sager from xoticpc.com is good.



The problem with the Sager's though is the battery life which is vital during college classes :o 
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April 27, 2011 5:06:24 PM

Yea I was looking at xoticpc.com and I saw some pretty nice laptops but the battery life did look a bit low. But I do have a netbook so I might be able to deal with it. Do you think the GT 540m will be able to handle SC2 and diablo iii?
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April 27, 2011 5:10:54 PM

ChocKoa said:
Yea I was looking at xoticpc.com and I saw some pretty nice laptops but the battery life did look a bit low. But I do have a netbook so I might be able to deal with it. Do you think the GT 540m will be able to handle SC2 and diablo iii?


Can you link me to what you are talking about--helps me do better research.
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April 27, 2011 5:38:24 PM

ChocKoa said:
Well there's several laptops on xoticpc.com with the nvidia gt 540m.

Here's a couple laptops with it:
http://www.xoticpc.com/sager-np5160-clevo-w150hn-p-2999...
http://www.xoticpc.com/asus-n53sva1-p-3028.html

I do like the Asus I linked to but I'm not sure how well it'll do with games



http://www.notebookcheck.net/Computer-Games-on-Laptop-G...

Check the box next to GT 540m. It is a mid range gaming graphics card at best. Basically that chart represents the frames per second on each game listed and it breaks it down by graphics settings low, medium, high, etc.
Looks like the card can handle SC2 at medium with pretty good frame rates. You would be able to play games but not at the highest settings. Which is still pretty decent.
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April 27, 2011 5:57:41 PM

ChocKoa said:
Well there's several laptops on xoticpc.com with the nvidia gt 540m.

Here's a couple laptops with it:
http://www.xoticpc.com/sager-np5160-clevo-w150hn-p-2999...
http://www.xoticpc.com/asus-n53sva1-p-3028.html

I do like the Asus I linked to but I'm not sure how well it'll do with games



I would presonally choose the sager-np5160 and here is why.
ASUS says it is 2+ hours whereas Sager has stated their battery life is 3-5
also the sager is cheaper, and it has the opt. technology meaning exceptional battery life, also is known better build quality. Plus, you can upgrade the processor from a dual core to a quad core for only $30. The other thing is that Sagers don't come preinstalled with any OS--meaning no bloatware, and most college students can get Windows 7 Home Premium for SUPER cheap, through their college that is.

Heck, What I'd suggest is the NP5160 with upgraded processor for $30, 500GB hard drive for $20, then pick up the 2 year parts and labor warranty from sager for $69 this Comes to about $908 throw in windows if you wanna, that's another $90 which is still cheaper than the ASUS and almost the same specs
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April 27, 2011 6:21:57 PM

I think I'll probably end up getting that sager. I have one last question, what's the ic diamond thermal compound and is it worth buying?
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April 27, 2011 6:32:24 PM

ChocKoa said:
I think I'll probably end up getting that sager. I have one last question, what's the ic diamond thermal compound and is it worth buying?



"Thermal Compound is a fluid substance, originally with properties akin to grease, which increases the thermal conductivity of a thermal interface by compensating for the irregular surfaces of the components. Thermal compound is primarily used in the electronics and computer industries to assist a heatsink to dissipate heat. (Heatsinks are used on both a CPU and GPU)

Thermal Compound improves the efficiency of a heatsink by filling air gaps that occur when the irregular surface of a heat generating component (CPU or GPU) is pressed against the irregular surface of a heatsink. Surface imperfections range in size from visible and tactile flaws such as machining marks or casting irregularities to sub-microscopic ones not visible to the naked eye. Both the thermal conductivity and the "conformability" (i.e., the ability of the material to conform to irregular surfaces) are the important characteristics of thermal compound."--From Website

The thermal compound or paste is used as a heat sink for your laptop basically. It lowers temperatures in your computer to keep it from getting to hot or frying O_o. I don't really know too much about these compounds, but apparently the IC Diamond thermal compound is phenomenal stuff. I would suggest buying it as drops the temps a great deal when used instead of the normal compound. Plus it is made with synthetic diamonds, and you can brag, my lappy is so awesome it is made with diamonds :D 
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April 27, 2011 6:41:31 PM

Lol alright thanks a lot for your help. Good luck with finding your own laptop.
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Best solution

April 27, 2011 6:45:37 PM

Thanks, I appreciate it. =] Don't forget to mark best answer to help others in their search as well.
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April 27, 2011 8:22:42 PM

Best answer selected by ChocKoa.
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April 27, 2011 9:24:39 PM

ChocKoa said:
Yea I was looking at xoticpc.com and I saw some pretty nice laptops but the battery life did look a bit low. But I do have a netbook so I might be able to deal with it. Do you think the GT 540m will be able to handle SC2 and diablo iii?


yes it will give you about 4 hours with power savign mode on and the screen dimmed. i would know as i have a 540m and a 2630qm.

to give you a performance idea, it will play crysis 2 on medium setting in the low 30's overclocked to 800-850/950 and thats from the stock 672/900 settings. overclocking the gpu is really really easy just download nvidia's overclocking program. it will play crysis at max at about 20ish fps
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April 28, 2011 1:24:03 AM

The HP 6770 is better than the GT 540M and comes with a copy of Windows. But the Sager can have a better resolution screen, which I like. The CPU comes with thermal compound anyways, but IC Diamond premium compound will shave a few degrees off of your temps if you're concerned.

Personally, it's a tough call between the Sager and the HP for me. Whatever it is you decided, you made a good choice with Sager's options.
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