Composer looking for laptop advice! =D

Hey folks, so I'm a programmer/composer/etc that's looking to augment my desktop with a laptop. I'm used to desktop-replacement dumbbells, but I don't know if I really need all that. I thought I'd ask for opinions on how far to scale my needs? Currently looking at :

Also, it tries to look like a racecar. While form factor and design are secondary to power and price, I'd like to feel older than 13. =D

1. What is your budget?
Sub 1.4k, obviously I'd like to find a point where price and power overlap (no reason to pay for more than what I need).

2. What is the size of the notebook that you are considering?
I'd rather 13-15" and lower, but could settle for 17".

3. What screen resolution do you want?
1920x1080, reasonably as high as I can. The software I work with (Finale, Pro Tools, etc.) all like to monopolize every inch you can give them. I'd like to be able to view a decent number of instruments without having to scale down.

4. Do you need a portable or desktop replacement laptop?
I have a desktop that I built myself. Intel i7 920, 6gb 1333MHz DDR3, ATI 4870 HD, etc. etc.

5. How much battery life do you need?
I've always lived with a charger cord close at hand. Weening myself off of essentially dragging a small PC with no battery around would be nice. 3+ hrs as a starting point on battery saving mode.

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 like to game, but that's one reason I have a desktop. If I travel, then the laptop would ideally fulfill that role. I'd like to at least play WoW with med-max graphics settings. Dx 11 wouldn't hurt.

7. What other tasks do you want to do with your laptop? (Photo/Video editing, Etc.)
I'm a composer primarily. While I can get by with MIDI synths, etc. I'd like the ability to hold/render sample sets and various plugins (VTSs, etc.) with require large amounts of memory, depending on the sample set, and large amounts of processing, depending on how many plugins are applied. I also program so VisualStudio 2010 will probably be in the mix as well.

8. How much storage (Hard Drive capacity) do you need?
500Gb +. Sky's the limit.

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

10. How long do you want to keep your laptop?
As long as I can get by with it.

11. What kind of Optical drive do you need? DVD ROM/Writer,Bluray ROM/Writer,Etc ?
I really don't need any, if that will help the form factor.

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 love Acer, my 6 y/o workhorse of a laptop is still kickin'. I'd rather stay away from Dell/Alienware due to how many issues I've had with defective parts, but I'd take the pros opinion over my own here.

13. What country do you live in?

14. Please tell us any additional information if needed.
This will be my life on the road. I spend far too much time on computers. I'd like something I could use to work effectively. I don't know if I need a super-powered one (as much as I'd like one). I think it's back to basics for me, and I want to hear what others have to say. Audio processing, coding, some gaming . . . Whadayathink? Thanks so much!
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More about composer laptop advice
  1. Well it's hard to determine what you would like but here are a few suggestions:

    ASUS G Series G73SW-XN2 Notebook Intel Core i7 2630QM(2.00GHz) 17.3" 8GB Memory DDR3 1333 500GB HDD 7200rpm DVD Super Multi NVIDIA GeForce GTX 460M

    I have this laptop - but an older version (G73JHA1). The case is very nice - sleek black lines, and a decent build quality. It doesn't have that childish look to it. The screen might be a little large for your tastes though. The laptop itself is quite large though.

    1920x1080 resolution


    Or since you like Acer:

    er Aspire AS8943G-6782 NoteBook Intel Core i7 720QM(1.60GHz) 18.4" 8GB Memory DDR3 1066 500GB HDD 5400rpm BD Combo ATI Mobility Radeon HD 5850

    1920x1080 res

    This one has an even Bigger screen, but slower processor and a similar performing video card. A bit bigger than the last one I mentioned.

    $1249's a pretty tough choice. And the one you mentioned is actually quite the performer as well, in a smaller package.

    Edit: I've read some good reviews on this laptop

    ASUS G Series G53SW-XN1 Intel Core i7 2630QM(2.00GHz) 15.6" 6GB Memory 500GB HDD NVIDIA GeForce 460M

    This is similar to that other Asus I listed, except in the 15.6" screen format. It has a great CPU, good mid rage GPU (for a laptop) and decent amount of RAM and HD space. It's also slighlty cheaper than the one you listed at $1149.

    This one would be great for you if you are worried about looks, as well as portability.
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