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Mobile CPU: AMD or Intel

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November 30, 2001 8:06:34 AM

I want to get a laptop computer and want to know which mobile cpu is better. I want one for under or around $2000 candaian before tax /~1300 US. I prefer one with low power consumption for max. battery life. Any suggestions? Specific brands/models?

orbz

More about : mobile cpu amd intel

November 30, 2001 8:56:28 AM

With that kind of money you will be lucky to find a brand new affordable laptop with a PIII. If you want to keep within your budget I suggest a Athlon 4 or Duron.

PIII's are often used in the high end notebook sector for the really thin and fashionable laptops.
All laptops with the Athlon 4 are 'chunky' but are still decent.
As for battery life both AMD Power Now and Intel's Speedstep are technologies are fine, each one are reasonable.

A note of warning though...There have been reported problems of Intel and AMD based laptops overheating using Windows XP because the OS does not have the correct drivers to deal with the power saving features of each of the chips. I am not sure if this problem has been resolved yet.
<A HREF="http://www.theinquirer.net/13110109.htm" target="_new">SOURCE</A>

<font color=purple>~* K6-2 @ 333MHz *~
I don't need a 'Gigahertz' chip to surf the web just yet ;-)</font color=purple>
November 30, 2001 4:03:08 PM

Athlons IMHO draw far too much power for a laptop, and a mobile Athlon is usually on a crippling chipset, like an ALi with SDRAM.

Pentium IV's are even worse in terms of power consumption, and they are usually never clocked over 1.4GHz in a laptop because of heat concerns. What's worse, they are often on crippling SDRAM chipsets as well.

Pentium III's should do much better in a laptop. The older .18u P3's draw about half the power clock-for-clock as a T-bird and perform only slightly worse. The new .13u P3's should be even more power-efficient.

If you can get a laptop that carries one of the double-cache Tualatins, that's a a real prize. I've seen such laptops from Compaq for reasonable prices, and I'm quite sure Dell has them as well. Dell, however, is expensive.

I'm currently using a Compaq Presarion 1700T with a P3-750. Battery life is ok; I have it set to SpeedStep down to 500MHz on battery power. The battery will last through some DVDs (though not Terminator 2). It comes with a crappy Phoenix NoteBIOS, which is OK for a laptop, except that its APM layer is not Linux-compatible. APM worked in Win98SE, though, before I deep-sixed the Windows install. :wink: The video card is an ATi Rage MACH64--fortunately not a UMA solution, but don't expect to be playing Quake3 on it. It can, however, do full-screen DVD in Linux. Mine comes with a Conexant HSF WinModem which I never use; it could optionally come with a 10/100 Ethernet card, but I opted for a PCMCIA Intel PRO/100 card instead. The sound card is an ESS Maestro3, which is actually a pretty good sound card--it will put out bass if you have headphones connected, but the built-in speakers won't pick it up. :tongue: There are two USB ports; I'm told later revisions of the laptop include FireWire ports as well. It came with two 64MB DIMMs; it is upgradeable to 512MB and takes standard PC100 SO-DIMMs. The hard drive is a standard 2.5" 4200RPM 16GB IBM hard drive; it is upgradeable.

As far as heat problems go, once or twice I stupidly packed the thing in its case without turning it off. It got extremely warm, but it still works just fine.

I've seen Presario 1720 laptops (very, very much like mine) with 133MHz FSB, dual-cache Tualatins. The last one I saw had twice the RAM, 20GB hard drive, built-in 10/100 network, and a DVD/CDRW combo. It cost $1450 on pricewatch; you may be able to get the price lower by chopping off some options.

Like many OEMs, Compaq will refuse to support the laptop unless it has the original operating system on it.

Kelledin
<A HREF="http://www.linuxfromscratch.org/" target="_new">LFS</A>: "You don't eat or sleep or mow the lawn; you just hack your distro all day long."
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December 1, 2001 10:25:47 PM

thx for your opinions mr_gobbledegook & Kelledin
& mark

orbz

<P ID="edit"><FONT SIZE=-1><EM>Edited by orbz on 12/01/01 07:58 PM.</EM></FONT></P>
December 1, 2001 10:57:28 PM

Mobile Athlons and Mobile P3's have similar horsepower and battery life. However, the chipset manufacturers are soon to release DDR mobile chipsets which should give the Mobile Athlon a nice 10-15% performance boost.

In late 1st quarter 2002, AMD will be releasing the mobile Thoroughbred chips. These will be more powerful, smaller, and supposedly consume less power. They will also ship in several packages for use in the thin and light notebooks.

Right now they are neck and neck, with the Duron/Athlon slightly less expensive.

Mark-

When all else fails, throw your computer out the window!!!
December 1, 2001 11:01:29 PM

What do you want to do with it? I just use mine for office apps, so I went with a celeron processor and heaps of ram. The celerons don't use much power, and the ram both speeds up the system and keeps HDD usage to a minimum.

_Dell Inspiron 2500_
Base System: Intel® Celeron® Processor at 900MHz w/14.1" XGA Display
Battery: 8-CELL Battery 59 WHR LI-ION
Additional Battery: 59WHR Secondary Battery
Primary ROM Drive DVD/CD-ROM: 24X Max Variable CD-ROM
Floppy Drive: Floppy Drive
Hard Drive: 20GB Hard Drive
Home Essentials: Norton Anti-Virus 2002
Memory: 256MB SDRAM (2 DIMM)
Modem: 56K Internal Modem
Operating System: Microsoft® Windows® 2000 English
Microsoft® Productivity Software: Microsoft® Works Suite 2001
Video: 4MB Video Card
Warranty: 3 Yr Ltd Warranty - 3 Yr Mail-In Service + Lifetime Phone Support
Total CDN$1,998.00

The three year warranty is worth it. The two 59WHR batteries should let you run 6~8hrs, depending mainly on drive access frequency.

A 0.18 PIII-866 will cost you about CDN$250 more.
A 0.13 PIII-1200 (Tualatin) will cost you about CDN$850 more.

In office apps you won't notice the difference between a celeron and a PIII anyway. So again it depends what you want to do with it.

<A HREF="http://www.dell.ca/en/dhs/products/series_inspn_noteboo..." target="_new">http://www.dell.ca/en/dhs/products/series_inspn_noteboo...;/A>

- JW

<P ID="edit"><FONT SIZE=-1><EM>Edited by jclw on 12/01/01 08:12 PM.</EM></FONT></P>
December 2, 2001 1:57:06 AM

I'll just use it for basically surfing web, office apps, nothing too cpu intensive. I wouldn't plan to play games like q3 on it, but i might want to do some basic graphic editng. The Dell seems nice espcially with the warranty and extra battery.

thx.

orbz
December 2, 2001 3:09:38 AM

I have a very similar Dell laptop (Celeron-500, 192mb ram) and run basic office stuff, AutoCAD LT (2D schematics), CorelDraw, etc... It's fine for speed. It also plays Diablo II, Age of Empires II, and DivX movies just fine.

Even here at work we just buy Dell Celeron 1GHz machines for desktops because they are cheap, reliable, and quiet. We find the Celeron 1Ghz machines are about equal to a PIII-866 in terms of speed.

edit: You can get a free upgrade to a 56k modem + 10/100 ethernet if you look under the modem drop down when you price them.

- JW<P ID="edit"><FONT SIZE=-1><EM>Edited by jclw on 12/02/01 00:23 AM.</EM></FONT></P>
December 2, 2001 4:31:48 AM

Dells are nice, but on the expensive side.
A Compaq 1700 series, for around the same price, will probably give you better components, though not the extras like the 2 extra years on warantee or the extra battery. (unless they're running a promotion, as they often do) It's also only 5.1 lbs., and just over 1" thin.

UPDATE: A Compaq 1700 series I just configured looks like this...

Intel Celeron 933MHz
256MB SDRAM (2 DIMMS)
14.1 XGA TFT Active Matrix screen
20GB Hard Drive
24x CD-ROM (Future Bay, allowing you to purchase a CD-RW or a DVD-ROM at a later date that can be switched in and out)
Microsoft Productivity Suite (Works, Money, Encarta)
56K Modem
10/100 Ethernet
ATI's Mobility Radeon w/ 8MB DDR dedicated video RAM
3.5" Floppy (also Future Bay)
High-capacity lithium-Ion battery
AC Adapter
JBL Audio system
Windows XP Home
1 year parts/labor/1 year mail-in warranty
90-day software support
PRICE: $1253 US
Going to a 3-year warranty is $99 US more.
A 1-year accidental damage protection is $99 US more.
A Pentium III-M 1GHz is $75 US more.
An 8x DVD-ROM instead of a CD-ROM is $70 US more.
An extra Li-Ion battery would be $99 US more.
Swapping XP Home for 2000 Pro is $75 US more.
December 2, 2001 7:54:39 AM

The compaq seems nice (i like the video card and speakers), but the only problem is they don't sell that configed model to canada :frown: . On the canadian part of the site, there was lesser options. The configed system (US) seemed a litte more expensive (it had better components).

Presario 1700 Series
Mobile Intel® Celeron Processor 933MHz
256 MB SyncDRAM 133MHz, 1 SODIMM
20.0 GB UltraDMA Hard Drive
8X DVD-ROM for FutureBay
14.1" XGA TFT Active Matrix
WordPerfect® Office 2002
Microsoft Productivity Suite
Integrated 56K Modem and 10/100 Ethernet
ATI Mobility Radeon hardware accelerated 3D Graphics with 8MB DDR dedicated Video Memory
3.5" Floppy Drive for Future Bay
AC Adapter Included
High-Capacity Lilon Battery
JBL Pro Audio System with Bass Reflex
Microsoft Windows XP Home Edition
1yr Parts / 1 yr labor/1yr mail-in
90-day Software Technical Support
<font color=blue>$1,353.00/2,127.86 canadian</font color=blue>

thx
orbz
December 2, 2001 7:59:27 AM

Heres the simlar configed dell model from the canadian part of site:

Intel® Celeron® Processor at 900MHz w/14.1" XGA Display
256MB SDRAM (1 DIMM)
20GB Hard Drive
Mini PCI 56K+10/100 Modem
Microsoft® Windows® XP Home Edition
8X DVD-ROM
4MB Video Card
Microsoft® Works Suite 2001
1 Yr Ltd Warranty - 1 Yr Mail-In Service + 1 Yr Phone Support
Palmrest Colour Kit
Floppy Drive
8-CELL Battery 59 WHR LI-ION
Nylon Carrying Case
Norton Anti-Virus 2002
<font color=blue>$1,849.00 canadian</font color=blue>

thx
orbz
December 2, 2001 12:46:20 PM

Wheee!!!

To get a better video card on a Dell you have to go up to the Inspiron 4100 series. This includes a 16MB ATI Radeon card, but you have to get a PIII with it which will drive up your power consumption. This system also includes WinXP and a DVD since that's what you guys were posting.

In my opinion, I don't think the Compaqs compare to the Dells in terms of build quality, nor in terms of tech support. We've used four kinds of laptops here at work: Acer, Compaq, Toshiba, and Dell. Toshibas and Dells are the only ones we'ed buy again. Dell has the edge due to their layout (ie: two modular bays that will take a combination of CD/floppy/battery/ZIP/2nd HD/...) and features (ie: both touchpad and pointing stick).

_Inspiron 4100_
Base System: Intel® Pentium® III-M Processor at 866MHz w/14.1" XGA Display
Memory: 256MB SDRAM (2 DIMMS)
Hard Drive: 20GB Hard Drive
Primary ROM Drive DVD/CD-ROM: Free Upgrade to 8XDVD-ROM
Network Interface Card: Internal Network Card
Modem: Internal 56K Modem
Operating System: Microsoft® Windows XP Home Edition
Microsoft® Productivity Software: Microsoft® Works Suite 2001
Warranty: 3 Yr Ltd Warranty - 3 Yr Mail-In Service + Lifetime Phone Support
Battery: 8-Cell Lithium-Ion Battery
Additional Battery: 8-Cell Lithium-Ion Battery
Total: CDN$2219.00

- JW

<P ID="edit"><FONT SIZE=-1><EM>Edited by jclw on 12/02/01 09:54 AM.</EM></FONT></P>
Anonymous
a b à CPUs
December 2, 2001 2:09:28 PM

hey, this is my first post, ill try to make it worthwhile

anyway, i once owned a compaq 1211ca 1ghz athlon laptop. it ran fast but was bulky, and ran extremely hot. I was suprised because it even ran hotter than my father's p3 coppermine 1ghz laptop. One say last week, the computer, at the tender age of 3 weeks, died, and i was given the option of getting a new computer

i traded it in for a 1720ca, which runs a 1ghz tualatin. It runs cooler, the laptop is much smaller, and build quality is superior (i know that has nothing to do with the cpu). battery life is comparable, although the athlon's powernow is much better than speedstep (32 different clock and voltage settings). The sandra benchmarks between the two computers are comparable. you pay only a 100 dollars canadian more to go with the 1720 over the 705, which is the compaq athlon equivalent. it's worth the price, and you get a mobility radeon with the computer instead of an integrated VIA solution.

peace
December 2, 2001 5:10:39 PM

Yeah, "Computer Shopper" rated the Compaq 1700 series as the best notebook under $2000 US a few months ago, followed by the Dell Inspiron 4100. The 1200 series was garbage, though its replacement, the 700 series, doesn't seem too bad.
December 2, 2001 6:29:45 PM

orbz if you're looking into paurchasing a Dell portable you would probably be better off buying a latitude C-600/610 instaed of an inspiron 4000/4100. they latitudes and insperons are identicle except for the color kits(latitudes don't have them). plus the latitudes are a little cheaper in price, but come with better options by default.


just a thought.

<A HREF="http://www.textfiles.com/100/actung.hum" target="_new">Relaxen und watch das blinkenlights...</A>
December 2, 2001 11:06:23 PM

Thx to all for your opinion and spending time to answer. I'll probably go with celeron Dell Inspiron 2500 series on the budget side. If i can save up a little more money then maybe the Dell or Compaq or Toshiba p3s.

Anyone know the outlook for next year in the mobile market?
Do you think i should wait, then maybe i can get the p3s for cheaper. I'm in no hurry and can wait, but you know the old saying that you can wait forever as new products are always coming out, then you'll never buy. Maybe next x-mas.

orbz
December 3, 2001 12:46:37 AM

The one i know that is the more performance/option vs $$ is the Fujitsu C6611
-4 USB port
-LAN
-56K
-IEEE Firewire port
-TV-out
-DVD
-P3 900
-Floppy (whitch is an option now in most notebooks)
-Digital audio out
-14.1 TFT
-20Gb HD

http://www.fujitsu.ca/products/notebooks/cseries/c6631_...

For around 2200$ can




Sorry for my spelling i'm french...hey i ain't perfect!
!