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New laptop for Starcraft 2, video editing, college?

Last response: in Laptop Tech Support
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May 8, 2011 4:10:10 PM

Hi, I'm looking to get a new laptop for college with the capability to run the programs mentioned in the title!

1. What is your budget?

College student, so as cheap as possible. I want to TRY and stay below $1,000

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

15.6", 16", or 17.3", even more if possible (The larger the better, but if it's going to be a large price difference, smaller is okay)

3. What screen resolution do you want?

Doesn't matter to me, as long as it can show vids in full HD 1080p

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

Desktop replacement

5. How much battery life do you need?

Not that important, just as long as it can run for at least maybe an hour and a half without dying.

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)?

Starcraft 2: Wings of Liberty Ultimate(Max)/High

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

Video editing: Adobe CS5- esp. Premiere, After Effects

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

not that much, maybe 320gb?

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

http://us.toshiba.com/computers/laptops/satellite/A660
http://us.toshiba.com/computers/laptops/qosmio
I'm not Toshiba-specific though, just what I was looking at.

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

4+ years

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

DVD ROM/Writer

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 need something that'll last more than 4 years, and I've used Toshiba's recently to decent success, so I was looking at those, but I'm still open to everything. I want to stay away from macs, I like the greater compatibility of PCs.

13. What country do you live in?

United States :) 

14. Please tell us any additional information if needed.



I hope this can help people to better find their ideal notebook.

Additionally... you should also consider what support options are available in your area. If say you buy something abroad, will you be able to have it fixed near where you live? Does the warranty apply? How quickly do local accredited technicians fix laptops?
May 8, 2011 10:04:17 PM

I gotcha! Thanks!

If I get it pretty much as basic as possible, I'm assuming it'll have a few USB ports right? What about the GT 550 or 555 cards? Would they be able to play on Ultra?
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May 9, 2011 1:16:24 AM

This is gonna find you the best price on laptops: http://www.techbargains.com/laptopcomputernotebookrevie...
You can get an HP with a 6770, which beats the GT 540 for the same price.

The notebookcheck.net site is great for comparing notebook graphics.

You'll probably go with the i7-2630QM or i5-2520M CPU. I wouldn't accept less.
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May 9, 2011 2:50:32 AM

Thanks lovelycat, but that's not what he's looking for. He wants a gaming laptop for a good price.

Careful with suspcious links, btw.
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May 9, 2011 4:59:22 AM

It'll run you $875 for the HP 15.6" w/ i7-2630QM & 6770 and $925 for the 17" with coupon code: NB3349

My suggested parts: 7200rpm 640GB HDD ($0), 6GB RAM ($0), any screen (lower res will have higher in-game framerates), 9-cell battery ($21)
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a c 244 D Laptop
May 9, 2011 6:52:48 AM

Lingering said:
I gotcha! Thanks!

If I get it pretty much as basic as possible, I'm assuming it'll have a few USB ports right? What about the GT 550 or 555 cards? Would they be able to play on Ultra?

GT 555M still can't handle SC2 fine on ultra high
http://www.notebookcheck.net/NVIDIA-GeForce-GT-555M.419...
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May 9, 2011 9:10:57 AM

Asus N53SV is your best shot for this budget. Get the version with USB 3.0 and Full HD screen...
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a c 244 D Laptop
May 9, 2011 9:29:00 AM

^ It has pretty much the same specs as NP5160
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May 9, 2011 9:43:52 AM

Minus B&O sound, I suppose... but you're right. It's just that I like N53 looks way more =)
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May 9, 2011 3:39:29 PM

dalauder said:
It'll run you $875 for the HP 15.6" w/ i7-2630QM & 6770 and $925 for the 17" with coupon code: NB3349

My suggested parts: 7200rpm 640GB HDD ($0), 6GB RAM ($0), any screen (lower res will have higher in-game framerates), 9-cell battery ($21)


About those laptops, is the build date accurate enough? I mean, today it´s 09/05/2011, and it says that build date it´s about June 6, so.. they take about a month in building the system? that´s a lot...
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May 9, 2011 8:52:52 PM

Maziar said:
GT 555M still can't handle SC2 fine on ultra high
http://www.notebookcheck.net/NVIDIA-GeForce-GT-555M.419...


depends on what the definition of playable is. 24 fps as right at where movies play and we the eye cant tell the difference of faster frame rate. know that though there will be times when it dips below 24 and thats when nvidia's nice over clocking utility comes in handy. he can over clock the 555m and prolly get 4-5 fps more. i get 4-6 fps overclocking my 540m.
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a c 244 D Laptop
May 9, 2011 9:26:34 PM

For me,anything under 30 FPS is sluggish and most of the time unplayable(In every game I tried).
Other people may have different ideas but I checked some websites(such as guru3d.com) and they couldn't find frames lower than 30FPS playable.
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May 9, 2011 11:17:10 PM

30fps is playable if Vsync'd. It isn't otherwise, IMO.

The build time is long for the HP, but I thought the OP needed it in time for college. And it sounds like on forums that the HPs usually ship earlier than their build date--that date is worst case scenario.

The HP will take longer to get here, but the 6770M is a tier above the GT 540M. If we're talking about gaming laptops, graphics cards are kinda a big deal.
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May 9, 2011 11:18:40 PM

I've only been able to find HPs with 6490 with those prices, could you direct link me to it?
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May 10, 2011 1:19:50 AM

15.6" $896 the way I configured it (9-cell battery, 6770M, 640GB 7200rpm, etc.): http://www.shopping.hp.com/webapp/shopping/computer_can...
17" is $100 more, it used to be the same price: http://www.shopping.hp.com/webapp/shopping/computer_can...

$300 off (replaces existing $150 off) w/ Coupon Code: NB3349
Customization adds three weeks to the build time, but gets you the best parts.

Two weeks ago, this was cheaper as I ordered the 15.6" for my wife for $801 with the same configuration.

EDIT: Now they offer a "FREE" upgrade to Blu-ray, but raised the price $100.
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May 10, 2011 10:33:43 PM

I actually plan to order/buy in a few weeks, I'm in no rush and college doesn't start until August.

I heard HP's home lineup isn't exactly the most reliable set of laptop's available. From personal experience, one of the one's I had in the past few years, the backlight on the screen burned out after 2 months of moderate usage. Are they generally okay?

Thanks for your replies everybody! If you've got anymore suggestions, feel free to post :) 
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May 10, 2011 10:54:50 PM

Don't go for anything other than Sager/Asus/Toshiba. HP or Acer are a real waste of money, IMHO... they tend to lag behind in technology and price their laptops as high as better stuff from Asus. And I can't say I approve of their build quality.
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May 10, 2011 11:44:00 PM

@Lingering--Here's a list of the ACTUAL laptop builders: http://www.tomshardware.com/forum/67892-35-laptop-manuf... Thanks to JackNaylor.

@amk-aka-phantom: What are you basing your statement on? I just provided links that prove the parts on the HP are better for the money. If you have evidence to the contrary, please provide it so the OP has more than just our unsupported opinions to go off of.

"Lag behind in technology"--the HP has the same CPU, more RAM at the same speed, bigger & faster HDDs, & better GPUs? I wouldn't have bought it for my wife if was old tech (like an i7-740QM for example).
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