Buying a new performance laptop

I'll follow the guidlines first.

1. What is your budget?
Between 600-1700 USD, 500-1300 Euros, or 400-1100 pounds. I would like to be a cheapskate, I am a poor college student surviving on loans from friends and family, but I'm willing to pay into that upper end for something REALLY incredible that will last.

2. What is the size of the notebook that you are considering?
15-18, I can live with 14 if it's a REALLY great bargain.

3. What screen resolution do you want?
If it's wide screen then it must be above 720P, I hate reading documents and writing papers in 720P.

4. Do you need a portable or desktop replacement laptop?
I have a AMD Phenom II 560 core unlocked and overclocked to a 3.7 GHz Quad core (4.1 when over volted), GTX560OC video card, Intel Speed Demon Sata 3 SSD (+500GB HDD with libraries and cache relocated)

5. How much battery life do you need?
At least 4 hours of document writing/ programming. 8 would be great. Using a second battery to obtain that would be okay.

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)?
Yes, but I already have a desktop for gaming in 3D. I would like to play games like Tera on medium - high, and I want to be able to multi- account on flash games. I will not play FPS games on a laptop.

7. What other tasks do you want to do with your laptop? (Photo/Video editing, Etc.)
Autocad. Compiling/programming/coding. I may wind up editing some videos on the laptop if I visit a friend am am away from my desktop.

8. How much storage (Hard Drive capacity) do you need?
150GB would be enough really, and maybe a 32Gb + SSD for speed if there's room.

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

10. How long do you want to keep your laptop?
I am buying it for the IT university I was recently accepted into, and will want to use it for 3-5 years.

11. What kind of Optical drive do you need? DVD ROM/Writer,Bluray ROM/Writer,Etc ?
None needed except for the OS install, but if a blu-ray burner is cheap, who wouldn't want one?

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.
Lenovo/IBM is always reliable, Asus I hear makes great whitebooks, as does MSI I hear. HP is an okay pre-built brand, I don't know about their newer models. I would like to avoid Acer at all costs, Sony because they are over priced, and pretty much all other low end crap brands. Warranties are important.

13. What country do you live in?
I currently live in Finland, but I have family in the US whom can ship me items if it's cheaper to do it that way. I have to pay a 22% customs tax, but sometimes it's still cheaper.

14. Please tell us any additional information if needed.
I want something that will last me a good long time. The new ivy bridge i5's and i7's look pretty great with their overclocking and low power needs. But I've always loved AMD for ther prices. I don't need anything hyper high end, but I don't want to be the guy to show up for class with the underpowered PC.

Well as stated, I am about to start a degree program in Information Technology at one of the best IT universities on the planet. I may go for a Masters in business once I'm done, so I could be here from 3-5+ years. I want a nice high end machine that may get me some curious looks as well as nods of respect and approval from my soon to be peers. It needs to be able to handle all the things I mentioned above, but it won't have to play todays high end games on full graphics. If a GTX560OC is enough for my desktop, it's MORE than enough for my laptop.

I was hoping to built my own custom machine, I took a look at Clevo computers but from the reviews that Sager had it seemed best to stay away. I would like to see some Asus and MSI gaming whitebooks, but I can't find any models available in Europe. One question I have that I can't find an answer from ANYWHERE is, are MSI steelseries keyboards nice to use? Sure, they look great and the ads are wonderful, but how to they feel? How do they respond? Are they loud? Etc.

I'm not too familiar with the new AMD line up of laptop CPUs/APUs, there are some quad cores at only 1.8GHz, I was wondering how they compare. Would I want one in my budget performance oriented machine?

NVidia Optimus seems like a good idea for me, I'll have the power to game when needed but can kick down to an Intel chip when I'm doing something else so that the battery lasts way longer.

I really don't know what I'm doing, how to find whitebooks, know if gen3 is worth it over gen2 Intels, please help me out I'm exhausted after days and days of research.

Thank you sincerely,
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  1. 100 views and no replies. I thought that following the format of the guidelines would make things easier. If there's any way I can re-write this to get some help, I'd be happy to do it.
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