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Best performing laptop for $400-$450

I need a new laptop for school and my budget is $400 to $450. I'm looking for something that has at least a 17" screen, with a resolution of at least 1440 x 900, decent battery life, and a gpu that can play Starcraft 2 lag free in low settings.
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  1. Your choices are conflicting; you will need to prioritize. Large screens and long battery life in particular are not found together, especially at a low price.
    If you're willing to drop down to a more typical 1368x768 resolution and a smaller screen, you'd get the decent battery life and good graphical performance.
  2. Onus said:
    Your choices are conflicting; you will need to prioritize. Large screens and long battery life in particular are not found together, especially at a low price.
    If you're willing to drop down to a more typical 1368x768 resolution and a smaller screen, you'd get the decent battery life and good graphical performance.


    Between screen size + resolution or battery life, I'd rather keep the screen size and resolution as long as the battery can last about 4 hours of use.
  3. Four hours is a LONG time for a budget laptop. There's this one: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16834215406 but since it uses Intel HD (Highly Deficient) graphics, it may not be good for games.
    If you go a little higher, and/or play the rebate game and win, this HP might do it for you: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16834158218 . The graphics is a little better, and the battery life appears to be quite good. Expect it to be a gross exaggeration though, probably from a rundown test where the machine is sitting idle, not doing anything.
  4. Onus said:
    Four hours is a LONG time for a budget laptop. There's this one: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16834215406 but since it uses Intel HD (Highly Deficient) graphics, it may not be good for games.
    If you go a little higher, and/or play the rebate game and win, this HP might do it for you: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16834158218 . The graphics is a little better, and the battery life appears to be quite good. Expect it to be a gross exaggeration though, probably from a rundown test where the machine is sitting idle, not doing anything.


    The Acer Aspire V3-731-4695 seems good, I saw an Asus that also had a Intel Pentium B950 running some benchmarks and it did ok on starcraft 2 on low settings. Now that I think about it, battery life is not a big deal, I wouldn't mind carrying an external battery charger around. And I'm not familiar with messing around with laptop bios settings but if possible would lower the voltage make a noticeable difference?
  5. I haven't worked on a lot of laptops, but I don't ever recall seeing any BIOS settings even remotely that detailed. Probably the best things you can do is turn screen brightness down as low as possible. Replacing the HDD with a SSD can lower power use as well, but a big enough one is likely going to add another $200 or more to your budget.
  6. At that price range, if you want to game, you should look at the AMD APUs. I have a little Acer AspireOne that can game quite well at low settings.

    I would go with this new: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16834215432 (1600x900 on a 17.3" screen, Blu-ray - Full specs here http://www.cpusolutions.com/store/pc/Acer-Aspire-AS7250-E454G50Mnkk-17-3-LED-Notebook-AMD-E-450-1-65-GHz-p3094.htm)

    If you don't mind getting a refurb, this would be a lot more powerful (goes from the E-450 to the A6 and gets 2GB more ram):
    http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16834158590
  7. Best answer
    These two look identical and are the best of that bunch. APUs beat Intel HD

    http://www.bestbuy.com/site/HP+-+1 [...] Id=5290368
    http://www.bestbuy.com/site/HP+-+1 [...] Id=5044404
  8. Best answer selected by jorge89.
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