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Laptop for transition period

Last response: in Laptops & Notebooks
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July 24, 2011 12:01:11 AM

Hey guys,

I have landed a new job and will be moving country soon.

I have offloaded my desktop and am looking for a transitional laptop as I will be moving about 5 times.

Thank you.

1. What is your budget?

Up tp £1000. Willing to go over if it makes sense. Really planning on spending around £500.

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

15" and up.

3. What screen resolution do you want?

13xx and up.

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

Portable. Sold my desktop as I couldn't be bothered posting it.

5. How much battery life do you need?

Not much. Will be plugged in most of the time.

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)?

Leage of Legends nowadays. Not sure, not too bothered as it runs smoothly. I will buy a desktop/console if I feel the need for horsepower.

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

Programming/development. Database etc.

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

Will mst likely get external and ssd.

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

No idea. If not buying from Switzerland will need international(european) waranty.

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

Budgeting it to last 14 months.

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

DVD reader.

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.

No preference.

13. What country do you live in?

Will be Switzerland. Currently UK and visiting Denmark next month.

14. Please tell us any additional information if needed.

Need to have warranty in Switzerland with me not having to have to post it overseas etc.
July 24, 2011 9:59:18 AM

Forgot to mention, would like an English layout keyboard, UK.
July 24, 2011 11:10:48 PM

I wrote this for a friend last week, but it should be helpful:


The only thing that really matters for a new laptop is the processor (and weight and battery size). If you go Intel, ou want a new Intel Sandy Bridge Laptop. That includes i7, i5, & i3 -2000M series CPUs. I have separated the CPUs by price tiers:

~$800:
i7-2630QM
i7-2720QM (faster)
i7-2820QM (fastest)
You won't notice a performance benefit of anything better than the 2630QM (that's what I got my wife). It will cost you several hundred dollars to upgrade though. No other i7 CPUs are good because they are either low power (slower) or they lack hyperthreading (4 threads only instead of "true i7" 8 threads).

~$600:
i5-2410M
i5-2520M (faster)
i5-2540M (fastest)
i7-2620M (even faster, and not a "true i7)
These will get better battery life than i7's. Just like the i7's, the slowest of this bunch will be capable of more than it will get used for. Unlike the i7's, the upgrades aren't so expensive as to be completely out of the question.

~$500:
i3-2310M
It'll do everything you need quite well. Battery life should be similar to the i5-2410M.

Any laptop will also list its graphics. Intel HD 3000 graphics is adequate. Fancy discrete Radeon or GeForce graphics will help you play more 3D games though. A Radeon 6630M is roughly equal to a GeForce GT 540M. And any number higher than those is better than those.

AMD/APUs: If you're really interested in budget gaming on a laptop, AMD's Llano processors (APUs) recently came out. They're basically Phenom II's with attached mid-low graphics. They can play just about any game, but only on low. These CPUs will be slower than the i3-2310M, but perfectly adequate. They really are only worth it if you're into gaming on a budget and it hits the right price point. Otherwise an i7 w/ discrete graphics would be a better buy. These AMD APUs (Accelerated Processing Units) get better battery life than Intels while gaming.

You also don't need more than 4GB of RAM because it's very cheap to upgrade ($25 currently) and you won't notice a performance difference anyways (unless you run virtual machines or do a lot of work in Rivet).

The business lines (Vostra for Dell, Thinkpad for Lenovo) tend to be built a little sturdier. Some people also like higher resolution screens so consider "full HD" 1920x1080 and "HD+" 1600x900. 1366x768 is "720P HD" and typically adequate (what I got my wife), but lower resolution than a standard desktop monitor.

Hard Disk Drives (HDD): It's hard to say what size you need. My wife's laptop has a 640GB 7200rpm drive. The important thing is that you get a 7200rpm drive over a 5400rpm drive. You'll notice the speed difference.

Solid State Drives (SSD): This use less power, are shock resistant, and are MUCH faster than standard HDDs. However, they are MUCH more expensive. It's worth upgrading yourself if you want one (~$100 for 60GB, ~$200 for 120GB), but manufacturers always overcharge for including one.
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July 24, 2011 11:16:19 PM

I didn't give specific suggestion of a laptop to buy because I don't know British websites and deals. If you could give me some websites (and hot deals websites), I could help more.

How good of gaming graphics do you want? The HD 3000 on the Intel i3-2310M can play most games, just not that well.
July 25, 2011 4:52:15 PM

Hey,

Thank you for the reply, but it seems I will ultimately be unsatisfied with a laptop.

I have decided to build a new rig for my girlfriend and take her current rig for myself.

Now to decide on Desktop components...
!