1) Considering new laptop - anyone point me toward good info on price: performance of current mobile CPU's, GPU, ect?
2) Thinking about new sandybridge Dell XPS (15"?), Apple MacBook Pro....
Any other Notebook Brands/models should consider as well???
Looking for 15" real nice display
LONG(er) Battery life - ie: current Dell Inspiron luck 2 hours max on power saver..
* Good support/reliability
*3) Any Notebook mfr/models that are way more upgradeable than, say, Dell with all proprietary hardware?
Upgrade CPU when needed, GPU with any third party, optical drives, ect...
**Also, anyone know if there is some hardware change coming yet this summer to any of the macbook pros? Thought I'd read something about???
1)Depends on your usage
2)MBP 15" and XPS 15" are both good and will give you 7(MBP) and 5(XPS) hours of battery life
3)You can upgrade the CPU of most notebooks,but there are only few laptops(gaming ones) that allow GPU upgrades
And the MBP's has been recently updated,so I don't think we'll see a change in them anytime soon
what are you going to be using the laptop for that is what we need to know to give you a recommendation
Most likely digital photo/video editing, though just hobby level stuff.
Also, a lot of multitasking w/ multiple web browsers and software at the same time...
Possibly gaming, though I'd prefer not to have some hulking bulky laptop to facilitate...
Has to have nice full HD Display (15" maybe larger?)
Would be nice to not have to spend a ton on RAM upgrade when config, maybe add myself from new egg?
Same with Hard Drive, would consider throwing in either hybrid or real SSD?
Battery Life must be strong! Current Dell Inspiron 1520 LUCKY to get 90min on power saver profile...
***Here's my major question, I guess... With all the $500--$750 laptops available, at Best Buy, office/PC stores, would I be wiser to treat next purchase as if Laptop were 'disposable' and only invest $500-$750 ish. Just plan to buy another inexpensive laptop sooner than later then?
-> Is it naive to fall into the Dell XPS and Apple MacBook pro and spend upwards of $1500 for something not easily upgradeable and out of date hardware in 1 year?
for something like what you want most people would recommend an i7 quad core. the 2630qm would be a good choice but i would look into the 2720qm. it has a 200mhz higher base clock but turbos much higher than the 2630. its a decent upgrade for not a whole lot of extra money.
to answer your disposable laptop question, you get what you pay for. a 500 dollar laptop is probably just as reliable as a 1500 dollar laptop but it will not be able to do what you want very well.