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Help with a new used laptop

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November 14, 2011 10:22:07 PM

EDIT: Okay, I saw the sticky - leaving this here for anyone who wants to read it but please skip to the bottom for the formatted version as per sticky.

EDIT 11/18: Okay guys skip to the last post, have some questions asked there so this stuff up here is no longer relevant.

I received as a gift in late 2007 an HP laptop with a 15" screen, a Pentium D dual core processor and 2 GB of ram along with either a 120 GB or 160 GB hard drive - I forget exactly. I use my laptop on campus to take notes and access my university's online website. The thing is, I'm a gamer when I'm at home on my PC - and it handles it well. My laptop on the other hand is the most pathetic excuse for a gaming device ever. Anything above the built-in games, flash based games, or old games pre-2000 are way too much for it to handle. The best looking game it will run smoothly is Half Life (Not Source, just the vanilla original Half Life). It has Vista installed on it, which I'm sure is not helping, and I have access to Windows 7 32-bit I could install on it - but I feel that's largely a waste with it because it's just so weak. The processor is like a 1.46 GHz dual core.

I've tried cleaning the registry, spyware checks, etc (Not that I use the thing much) and they're all temporary fixes that speed it up slightly and then it gets real slow again. It's so slow that from power on to desktop it takes literally 1 minute 30 seconds or more (I timed it). I have only the minimal amount of software running (Avast anti-virus, Comodo firewall, no extra game or chat programs or anything like that). When I try to open things like the internet it takes it probably 15-20 seconds to fully render the first webpage - the rest come at the normal speed but it's really slow to start. Basically this describes everything it does - it works for basic functions but it just annoys me far too much with how slow it is, and it even does these basic functions slowly. Office is okay once it has loaded but it takes it some time before office is loaded and the document is loaded, hitting save takes some time as well - my PC is a 3.0 GHz C2D with 4 GB of ram and Windows 7 64-bit, I'm used to power and speed not this pokey click something then wait several seconds for it to respond business.

I thought I wanted a gaming laptop some time back, but honestly I'm not one of those "laptop" kind of people. I prefer my big desktop PC with my large display and surround sound - a laptop will never replace that for me. So I don't need top end performance, as cool as it might be to play games maxed out that are relatively new on my laptop. I want respectably good battery life (3 hours or more would be suitable, 2 hours+ could work if it had power to compensate for this lesser battery life), a good sized screen (13" bare minimum, 15" a preferred minimal size though - not opposed to the big 17" laptops). I want to be able to play a modest amount of games (For example, my laptop cannot play Minecraft...ugh...face + keyboard), the ability to play source games like Half Life 2 and TF2, L4D2 and some relatively decent graphic RTS games at decent FPS without being absolute minimum settings would be excellent for me. I wouldn't play games on it a lot, but would like the ability to do so more than I am now (which is basically nil since it can't run even the simplest of games).

I'm an Intel fanboy, so that's pretty much a given for me that it will be Intel processor based. I'm thinking i3 or i5 - but would perhaps a decent older C2D laptop be sufficient? I don't mind buying used, just seems like people overprice stuff a lot in that regard. I hate to spend too much on a laptop because I am not sure how much if I had an expensive one that I'd do any more than I do with my current laptop which is slow. The $400-$500 range would be nice to stay in - I'll sell the old laptop whenever I get a new one which will make the cost lower. I do not want any Dell laptops (Personal issues I have with Dell as a company so I am not going to be buying any of their laptops), other than that I'm open to ideas.

Just to throw out this idea (which goes against what I said above), are any of the netbooks powerful enough to play some games like Minecraft and some Source based games? Their screens are tiny, but perhaps their low cost would negate that and be a more reasonable solution for me. I sincerely doubt that I'll ever become a laptop only kind of person - so a laptop mostly needs to just be fast and not slow at booting up, starting Office, surfing the web - and if it can do some light-moderate gaming I'd be a happy camper. Anyone make it through my wall of text ( :lol:  ) to give me suggestions?

EDIT
1. What is your budget?
$400-$500 - can be less obviously, and possibly a little more depending on the difference it would make

2. What is the size of the notebook that you are considering?
Prefer a 15" or larger, but a 13" might be considerable if it has the right features.

3. What screen resolution do you want?
The highest possible given the screen size - but I expect most have the 1280 x 800 which is meh at best to me.

4. Do you need a portable or desktop replacement laptop?
Portable, I'll never be a laptop only kind of guy.

5. How much battery life do you need?
2 hours+ is minimum 3 hours+ is preferred

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)?
Minecraft (High), HL2/TF2/L4D2/Gmod/CSS (Medium/High), Fallout 3 (Medium), Company of Heroes (Medium)

7. What other tasks do you want to do with your laptop? (Photo/Video editing, Etc.)
First and foremost is note taking, using the entire suite of Office. Will not ever do video or photo editing on it - would do that on my desktop. Internet surfing a given as well, like YouTube and such.

8. How much storage (Hard Drive capacity) do you need?
160 GB+ - larger is better of course but I don't need lots

9. If you are considering specific sites to buy from, please post their links.
I always like www.Newegg.com but they seem a bit high, would also consider www.TigerDirect.com. Not opposed to other websites per se, just don't know of many others.

10. How long do you want to keep your laptop?
Ideally for several years - it doesn't need to keep up with the latest games, but as long as it can keep playing my old games I'll be happy with it. I'd say around 4-5 years if not longer.

11. What kind of Optical drive do you need? DVD ROM/Writer,Bluray ROM/Writer,Etc ?
DVD-ROM is basically it, Blu-ray drive would be cool but totally not needed (Don't even have one on my desktop). I expect most laptops have DVD-RW drives minimum anymore though.

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 don't have any decided brand preferences - I never buy pre-built PCs, have always built my own so I don't really know what brands actually make decent PCs. My current laptop is an HP, albeit an older one - I'm disappointed with how slow it is but functionally it's just fine and hasn't really crashed or done stupid things to me. I will not buy Dell laptops however, too many people complain about Dell's poor service and I recently experienced it through a pre-order of something on their website - which they screwed me over on and now I get nothing and lost pre-order bonuses thanks to their incompetence. Dell is the only big no that I have.

13. What country do you live in?
United States

14. Please tell us any additional information if needed.
For this, see above paragraphs. Will add that I hate glossy screens if they're avoidable I would prefer a matte finish screen all day long - but don't expect this to be very likely since every laptop it seems is glossy finish anymore.

More about : laptop

a c 572 D Laptop
November 14, 2011 10:39:01 PM

No i3-i5 CPUs or 13" screens in 'Netbooks.
Typically, 'Netbooks would have less CPU power than your 2007 HP.
You could have saved some effort using our 'standard' Laptop Buyers FAQ

edit;
See you found the FAQ
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a c 572 D Laptop
November 14, 2011 10:43:26 PM

This might be close - it's between a 'Netbook and standard laptop in CPU power.
TOSHIBA Satellite L745D-S4350 14" Notebook $460
AMD E-450 (1.65GHz) Dual-Core Fusion APU, 4GB RAM, 500GB HDD, 14" 1366x768 LCD w/ Radeon HD 6320 graphics IGP.

AMD Radeon HD 6320 review
Computer Games on Laptop Graphic Cards
It's looking like the gaming performance is lower than I expected it to be. Mostly low even in the older games.
Probably partly due to the low performance of the APU.
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Related resources
November 14, 2011 10:45:31 PM

WR2 said:
No i3-i5 CPUs or 13" screens in 'Netbooks.
Typically, 'Netbooks would have less CPU power than your 2007 HP.
You could have saved some effort using our 'standard' Laptop Buyers FAQ

I know that's true, however I know they tend to be less resource demanding given the smaller screen and whatnot - I never really followed netbooks much so didn't know if they ever got much better video capabilities. It just seems like I see people using them and they kinda zip around doing stuff - my laptop pokes at everything I ask from it, which is embarrassing when I turn it on and it sits at a black screen for a long time because it's loading...makes it look like my laptop is broken or ancient.

Sorry about the original formatting, I noticed the FAQ after I typed the post and was editing it as you posted - hopefully will make my post more readable!
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November 14, 2011 11:03:50 PM

Yeah, I just was looking on there - quite impressive scores it got for L4D and Lost Coast. Source based games could easily tide me over if I couldn't get the other games to work as well. This one seems quite nice - even has a bluray drive and a 17.3" screen with above average resolution (I would give up some battery life for a large high res screen)

HP Pavilion g7-1156nr Notebook Intel Core i3 370M(2.40GHz) 17.3" 4GB Memory DDR3 500GB HDD 5400rpm BD Combo Intel HD Graphics

Just says Intel HD graphics though, why they don't mention which one I have to wonder.

HP ProBook 4530s (XU015UT#ABA) Notebook Intel Core i3 2310M(2.10GHz) 15.6" 4GB Memory DDR3 1333 320GB HDD 7200rpm DVD Super Multi Intel HD Graphics 3000

This also seems nicely loaded for the money, but again I'm unfamiliar with newer models so models with issues I will be oblivious to.
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a c 572 D Laptop
November 14, 2011 11:05:05 PM

Acer Aspire AS5560 15" Notebook $450
AMD Fusion A6-3400M(1.4GHz) quad core APU, 4GB RA, 500GB HDD, 15.6" 1366x768 LCD w/ Radeon HD 6520G

The only option for a higher resolution close to your budget range is a 17" chassis and it's standard 1600x900 resolution.
TOSHIBA Satellite L775D 17" $590
AMD A6-3400M(1.4GHz) 4GB RAM 640GB HDD 17.3" 1600x900 LCD w/ Radeon HD 6520G
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a c 572 D Laptop
November 14, 2011 11:06:06 PM

That's because the HD Intel is about 1/3 the GPU power of the newer Sandy Bridge HD 3000 graphics.
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a c 572 D Laptop
November 14, 2011 11:08:09 PM

You'd need a Core i3 2xxx Sandy Bridge CPU to get the HD 3000 graphics.
Lowest I saw on NewEgg is $630
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November 14, 2011 11:14:48 PM

WR2 said:
You'd need a Core i3 2xxx Sandy Bridge CPU to get the HD 3000 graphics.
Lowest I saw on NewEgg is $630

Well, the HP ProBook I linked to above had an i3 with the HD 3000 for $484 with free shipping (Also included a free USB to HDMI adapter) It says the regular price is $549. It seems to be mostly what I'm looking for, but still open to ideas.

Another consideration I need to make, what is my laptop honestly worth? It's a model HP dv6628us - here's the link to HP's site with the specs. I was honestly thinking around $200-$250 on Craigslist - it has a restore partition I haven't used because it will wipe all my data but I'd do that along with some other drastic cleaning measures to restore it to its original modest speeds (It wasn't always this painfully slow). It's in perfect shape except a tiny scratch on the outer cover. Still have the box and the other accessories it came with in the bag.
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a c 572 D Laptop
November 14, 2011 11:23:49 PM

HP ProBook 4530s covers all the essentials.
And it has Bluetooth 3.0 which is a nice touch in a business class laptop.
Has a matte, anti glare screen. Handy in awkward lighting schemes in lecture halls and library, and outdoor in the shade.
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November 14, 2011 11:36:12 PM

WR2 said:
HP ProBook 4530s covers all the essentials.
And it has Bluetooth 3.0 which is a nice touch in a business class laptop.
Has a matte, anti glare screen. Handy in awkward lighting schemes in lecture halls and library, and outdoor in the shade.

Matte screen you say? This is starting to sound pre-decided for me! I figured I was doomed to glossy glare screens since everything has them these days - I can attest to glossy screens being bad in any moderate amount of light. My HP gets glared out badly when the sun is anywhere within my eyesight and I'm using the laptop. I'm sure the ProBook has to have some cons, any typical complaints people have about it?

EDIT: Found that same HP ProBook for $450 at TigerDirect. I checked out Best Buy's website and spotted this:
Asus - Laptop / Intel® Core™ i5 Processor / 15.6" Display / 4GB Memory - Matte Brown Suit

The i5 is a 2xxx series so that means it would have the same HD 3000 video capabilities. It has a 500 GB hard drive over the HP's 320 GB but bumps down from 7,200 RPM to 5,400 RPM :\. Comparative difference there, you think the i5 makes up for the slower hard drive or would the faster drive on the i3 be better?

I also found this Toshiba for $399 with an i3 with HD 3000, much similar to the Asus above but with an i3 instead of i5
Toshiba - Satellite Laptop / Intel® Core™ i3 Processor / 15.6" Display - Matrix Graphite

These specials got me wondering, do you think it's worthwhile to wait until Black Friday or closer until/after then for some possibly even better deals? This isn't so urgent that I need to buy right away so I can stand to wait if there's benefit in it. But I'm not going to go out and fight people on Black Friday, I'd be ordering online.
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a c 572 D Laptop
November 14, 2011 11:46:30 PM

Not many - the business class notebooks have a rep for being a bit more robust and sturdy vs the consumer models.

HP ProBook 4530s Review review
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a c 572 D Laptop
November 14, 2011 11:57:02 PM

A slower hard drive is a good trade off for a i5 CPU higher base clock and it's turbo boost option.
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November 15, 2011 12:02:47 AM

Hmm, I do have to agree the ProBook looks well built and not cheap and junky like so many laptops I see. The name's similarity to MacBook Pro seems intentional and similar build quality in a PC laptop would be nice. So that kinda overrules the Toshiba I listed above's low price. It still leaves the Asus however - I know i5 is quad core and i3 is dual core, so comparatively the Asus would outperform even my desktop PC. I don't think the ProBook would perform poorly, but for gaming performance wouldn't the i5's extra power help the HD 3000 perform some of the games a little better than the i3 could?

On Black Friday deals, do you think it's possible we'd see something like an i7 laptop discounted to $500 or something crazy like such? I'm somewhat torn here between the two, I was considering an older MacBook Pro in part for the high quality build of the laptop and had figured I'd give up PC gaming mostly since it wouldn't do it as well running through boot camp (But have had no luck finding one). The high build quality is appealing to me...but the Asus and the i5 is immensely appealing on a power level. I have to wonder which laptop will be powerful and still adequate in 3-4 years so I don't need to buy another one. I imagine the HP wouldn't fall apart, but just because the Asus is plastic I don't think that instantly means it's cheap and will fall apart - my HP is all plastic and it's in perfect shape, I'm a gentle person with my laptops and take great care not to bang them around.
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a c 572 D Laptop
November 15, 2011 12:03:02 AM

The annoying thing about Black Friday / Cyber Monday is that popular bargains can sell out.
And that Asus K53E Core i5 @ Best Buy might just fall into that category.
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a c 572 D Laptop
November 15, 2011 12:03:40 AM

The i5 is dual core in a laptop.
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a c 572 D Laptop
November 15, 2011 12:05:19 AM

Im guessing that the HD 3000 would be holding back both the i3/i5 CPUs from better performance in games.
I wouldn't be surprised if they gamed pretty much even. Certainly not a major difference in game performance.
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November 15, 2011 12:11:35 AM

WR2 said:
Im guessing that the HD 3000 would be holding back both the i3/i5 CPUs from better performance in games.
I wouldn't be surprised if they gamed pretty much even. Certainly not a major difference in game performance.

Hmm, shame that - so what advantage is i5 supposed to hold over i3 in a laptop? Does that mean the i7 is a quad core only? I know on PC's it shows up as 8 threads despite being quad core. I know what you mean about the sales, I'm capable of sitting around on the PC until the stuff hits sale and buying it though. The people waiting outside the stores all night are crazy though, don't even want to get into that.
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a c 572 D Laptop
November 15, 2011 12:17:32 AM

There are dual core i7 CPUs as well.
The faster base clock and turbo boost helps most applications.
It's games that depend on the GPU/graphics that when they hit the GPU limit... faster CPUs don't make a difference.
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November 15, 2011 12:48:51 AM

I started looking based on GPU - what do you think of this one?
Acer Aspire AS7741G-5877 NoteBook Intel Core i3 350M(2.26GHz) 17.3" 4GB Memory DDR3 1066 320GB HDD 5400rpm DVD Super Multi ATI Mobility Radeon HD 5650

I checked benchmarks, this seems to play lots of games on medium settings and several on high with good FPS. They said it played most DX10 games quite well. For example, compared this on Bad Company 2 - the HD 3000 had below 30 FPS on the high settings, the 5650 had right at 30 FPS as an average on high settings. Sims 3 was low FPS on the HD 3000, came out at 132 FPS for the 5650 - L4D came out a a solid 60 FPS - though the HD 3000 I think did 65 FPS.

EDIT: Humm, this Acer seems to perform on a level like I want for games - the i3/i5 laptops off the HD 3000 would probably do the minimum I'd need since they look like they like source games well. They also look to have better battery life, but the Acer is still 2-3 hours which is what I'd want. So I'd say I'm between the Acer with the HD 5650, the ProBook with i3 & HD 3000, or the Asus at Best Buy with the i5. Acer seems like a company with mixed reputation, anything to beware of if I went with that laptop? The reviews only seem to mention the hard drive as an occasional problem source. I do so hate giving up build quality like the ProBook has, but on the notebook graphic card website you linked the 5650 is Class 2 Mid-Range whereas the HD 3000 is Class 3 Entry (I think my HP is Class 4 or 5...very sad when you can't play Minecraft on a computer).
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a c 572 D Laptop
November 15, 2011 3:13:01 AM

That's a pretty good package; 1600x900 LCD, a decent CPU with enough power to support that HD 5650 graphics card.
The Radeon Mobility HD 5650 was the cutoff recommendation for an entry level gaming machine around here for quite a while. Anything lower than that we didnt think of as a gaming GPU.

Acer is a budget MFGR even among the other budget MFGRs like Dell, etc.
But overall, almost any laptop regardless of the MFGR, and at the same price point is going to have overall reliablity with a few percent of each other. Exceptions for the business class models, give them few extra % improvement in overall ruggedness.

At the end of the day, the laptop that's best taken care of vs the one that's dropped will probably last longer.

You have a pretty good idea of the tradeoffs for different features and performance I think.
And you have enough good choices pegged out to use as benchmarks when it's time to sort through Black Friday specials.
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November 15, 2011 4:33:03 AM

Thanks for the help, definitely steered me in the right direction (Plus I was unaware of the Core i3/i5/i7 processor core difference in the laptops as well as the difference between the older Core series and the newer Sandy Bridge series). The Acer holds a pretty low MSRP even regularly ($529) so I'll hold out for some sales on some other models and if I don't see any will probably spring for that. To me it seems the difference between the Acer and the HP ProBook is in build quality, game performance, and battery life. HP wins in the first and last categories, and it does fair in the game area - the Acer seems fair in the build quality, good in game performance, and fair in battery life. I know top end gaming laptops are about 1 hour battery life typically - made to be used plugged in. I know super portable laptops are made to have battery life 5-6 hours+. For me I am never so far away from a plug on campus that I need extreme battery life, so battery life is of moderate interest to me only. Build quality is of course preference, but most would probably prefer build quality like the HP ProBook - myself included.

I'm going to stop by Best Buy/Office Depot/Staples tomorrow and see if I can get my hands on any of these laptops to see their quality in person and see which feels right. I'm probably going to have to go by online reviews for the Acer though, unless I get lucky enough that they carry a similar model in-store. At worst I suppose I can compare a cheap Acer to their most expensive offering at the store for build quality differences. Does the Acer have a gloss screen or is it matte finish? If the prior, this would be another point in the HP ProBook's favor.

I remember last year there was some big website that had a list of upcoming Black Friday/Cyber Monday deals before they were live - is there such a website this year, or at least one for tech related deals?
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November 16, 2011 4:51:19 PM

Ok guys I need some advice ASAP - I can get a used Asus ROG G74SX for $600. Is there anything to note about it as far as problems go? I saw a few people complaining about trackpad issues - are these people just unlucky or is this a known issue? If so, is there any solution (mind you he told me it has no issues though)? I don't mind the battery life given the insane power. Your thoughts on this are greatly needed! Also it is about a year old - so I don't have specs other than what I've listed.
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a c 572 D Laptop
November 16, 2011 5:10:23 PM

Im guessing that's a BestBuy special: Asus G74SX-BBK7 review
It's 1600x900 resolution vs 1920x1080 on the majority of G74SX models.
But it does have that GTX 560M graphics card.

Here is that laptop on NewEgg - a re-certified (used) model: ASUS G74 Series G74SX-BBK7 Refurbished $950

Still available @ BestBuy G74SX-BBK7 $1200

Im thinking if your friend sees those links he's going to raise the price on you.
Assuming there isn't anything wrong with his G74SX it's looking like a steal.
Just make sure it IS his laptop - receipts and all, etc, etc,.

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a c 572 D Laptop
November 16, 2011 5:11:46 PM

One solution to a trackpad issue (some people just can't figure them out) is to turn it off and use a mouse.
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November 16, 2011 5:42:25 PM

He says it came from Best Buy last winter - does that narrow down possible configurations?
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a c 572 D Laptop
November 16, 2011 5:49:17 PM

As long as it's the BBK7 model the config should be the same. BB = Best Buy
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November 16, 2011 5:58:49 PM

I found the exact model and specs

Asus G73 JH
i7 1.73 GHz
6 GB Ram
Radeon HD5870
Resolution is 1600 x 900

Still a good deal?
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a c 572 D Laptop
November 16, 2011 6:20:34 PM

I don't suppose you have the rest of the model number? Asus G73 JH-XXXX?

ASUS G73Jh review from 20 months ago. A 1920x1080 model with 8GB RAM.

RefurbDepot has the Asus G73JH-RBBX05 for $850
Have seen other refurb listings of the same model going from 1000 to 776
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November 16, 2011 6:26:27 PM

That I don't know - these seem to be $600-$700 used on eBay. A review I saw seemed to say they were basically non-customizable so maybe he has his resolution set lower than native? It says they're all 1920 x 1080. So is this i7 still a quad? Bottom line, would you say this is worth pursuing over the $500 Acer?
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a c 572 D Laptop
November 16, 2011 6:31:51 PM

It's certainly worth looking closer at it.
As far as gaming goes, the Acer cant' touch it.
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a c 572 D Laptop
November 16, 2011 6:36:18 PM

RavinRivie said:
A review I saw seemed to say they were basically non-customizable so maybe he has his resolution set lower than native?
I see what you're saying.
Actually, I'm pretty sure BestBuy specs the less expensive parts for it's stores so Im thinking 1600x900 is the native resolution.
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November 17, 2011 2:06:47 AM

Okay, I'm almost certain after looking at it it's a G73JH-BST7. Seemed to run fine, no issues except the left mouse button seemed to click weirdly (Right side was fine, left side felt like the whole thing kinda moved when I pushed down so I had to push the left side harder than the right to click). It wasn't serious so I think some minor disassembly and fiddling will fix it, or at the worst I'll deal with it and just use a mouse otherwise! I'm going to be picking it up tomorrow for $500. So is now the time I dance the happy dance because I got this laptop for a great price? WER for graphics was a 6.0 on it IIRC and the processor was a 7. something. Hard drive is a 640 GB, has the DVD-RW drive not Bluray. I saw someone nitpick about the screen not going back real far and I can agree, it kinda doesn't but not a huge problem to me as it works for me as it is.
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a b D Laptop
November 17, 2011 3:02:07 AM

I doubt you will even use the mouse pad button on ASUS laptop. They are multi touch and I almost never use the button.
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November 18, 2011 3:07:31 AM

Well I still wanted the button because I don't always use the mouse - I still plan to use the laptop to be mobile, not as a desktop replacement. The 2 hour battery life makes this doable for me - so having to use a mouse is a pain. I disassembled it (what a stress btw), tightened the screws and elsewise saw nothing wrong - only to put it back together and now it still does it...ugh, face + keyboard. What's stupid is like it doesn't always do it - sometimes it does and other times it seems fine. I'm not pushing really hard or anything so I don't understand the problem. There's a metal plate behind where the circuit with the mouse button is so it's not like it can really flex or anything. I considered putting some aluminium foil over the button on the left side so it would be taller and not flex - truly what it feels like is happening though is the whole left button pushes down too far, so while it clicks the little button like the board it is attached to also moves down so it requires you to push down really hard or else the button lifts up.

So I have a question now - he gave it to me with all his personal data removed but still has other things he has installed. Should I format and reinstall Windows on this drive or just do a ton of thorough cleaning (Deleting stuff in programs and features, running registry cleaner/antivirus scan/spyware scan/defrag/updates)? To format I've been reading about using this ABR program which pulls your key off the current installation of Windows, stores it to a .exe and then allows you to run it again after it has been reinstalled so you don't have to call Microsoft to allow the version of Windows to be installed again. It mentions using freely available .iso's that are online to reinstall the correct version (Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit in my case) and then using the Asus restoration stuff from their website to put the things back on it.

My huge concern with this, is that I'll format it and reinstall Windows but it will not recognize all the hardware on the laptop. Can anyone reassure me on this concern, or is it a genuine one? I hate to leave it as it is non-formatted because if I start putting things on it I'll never format it, but if I do it I'm afraid of messing everything up that is working fine right now and not getting all the Asus software that I need back on it (I do not have any discs, I believe the stuff is all on their website but I'm not positive).
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a b D Laptop
November 18, 2011 5:35:57 AM

I think ASUS laptop comes with a Window disc. Ask the seller for it.

Your driver should be all on ASUS site.
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November 18, 2011 6:26:45 AM

Cool, I see all the Asus drivers on there - very nice. I don't think the laptop does come with an actual Windows OEM disc, when I searched online other people had complained about Asus not including this with the laptop and saying they should have - I don't have the link anymore but there was a thread on I believe the Asus forums talking about it and this way to retain the validation without calling MS. The laptop has been running quite smoothly, really makes me question doing the reformat. I'm using a C2D 3 GHz, GTX 460 1 GB, 4 GB DDR2 in my desktop gaming rig and am happy with how it performs - getting a WEI of CPU 6.5, Memory 7.4, Graphics 7.6, Gaming Graphics 7.6, Hard Drive 5.9. The Asus is getting a CPU 7.3, Memory 7.6, Graphics 7.3, Gaming Graphics 7.3, Hard Drive 5.9 (Bloody hard drives holding my rigs back, honestly is 5.9 the max possible with a non-SSD?). Coming off a laptop that pulled its highest WEI of 4. something, this laptop is amazing.

Pyree, how long have you owned your Asus? Any problems? Any tips to keep it running for a long time? I know heat is the killer on these gaming laptops (Though I do know Asus has made a quite ingenious design here with the quiet vents on the back), and I won't be gaming on it non-stop or even a ton - it'll see sporadic use for a few hours at a time and plenty of use that is non-taxing like web surfing and such. Do you use yours solely as a DTR or do you also use it mobile regularly? Depending on how frail something is may not be a factor for me - I recall some people saying they had loads of problems with laptops similar to my HP and mine has never had an issue, but I'm always cautious with it never drop it or anything like that. The notion that there are people with those pricey MacBook Pros who dent the all aluminium housing is ridiculous to me, I would be the type who would have no flaws in mine - I baby my electronics as they should be.
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a b D Laptop
November 18, 2011 7:03:50 AM

Almost 2 years of N61. Comes with driver disc, W7 64 HP disc and disc containing bloat-ware.

Problem with HDD soon after I bought it which I organised a swap. The courier picked it up next morning and the HDD was swapped overnight and shipped back to me on the same day and I received it on the next day (3 days in total).

The replacement HDD is still in use but it is on its way out. For other component, I spilled water on it, open it up to dry it and still working.

OC 17% on GPU system stable around 85-88c gaming, haven't seen over 90c yet, SSD in, DVD drive out, RAM upgrade with no problem.

Use it everyday on works days on battery for about 1.5 hours during the bus journey home since around March or April of this year.

I didn't use it on battery the first year as frequently as now because I haven't got over the psychological barrier that using a 15" laptop in a bus is dorky.

But I am dorky and I accept it and simply don't care.

The other passengers can stare and they can bored their ass off sitting through the bus journey but I am not.

They also avoid sitting next to me, which is a plus. I can have some quiet and alone time watching videos. :D 

I think the vibration from the bus is killing the HDD. But the battery is ok. Only 25% battery wearing with frequent recharge.

But before I use it as mobile, the battery wearing is much lower I think it was only about 7% at the beginning of this year, then a few months ago, it was on 17%. So I suggest you not to use it mobile if you don't have to.

I am going to get a battery replacement when it is about 33% wear level.
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November 18, 2011 8:39:52 AM

Ah, well this is a 17.3" - first comment someone made today after I bought it and was using it in class "Wow that's a big laptop!" I like the screen size though, to me the bigger the screen and thereby the laptop, the better. Where exactly are you seeing the wear %? Is this in Windows 7 or in one of the Asus programs?
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a b D Laptop
November 18, 2011 8:41:50 AM

Read battery from HWmonitor.

Congratulation. Now you can show off by running 3D benchmark on DX11 running 30fps+ next to a Mac. :lol: 
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