Picking a Laptop

So I was wondering if anyone could help me choose a laptop. I know all about desktops and build a bunch, but not a whole lot about laptop performance.

Here are some of the things I'm looking for:

Screen Size: 14" or smaller (prefer 14 though)
CPU: Any "i" series, i3-i5-i7 2nd or 3rd gen doesn't matter
Ram: Doesn't matter, most come with 4GB+ anyways
Screen Resolution/Quality: Doesn't matter a whole lot as long as it's not crappy

Uses: The reason I am looking for a laptop is because I am going to college and my desktop will remain at my apartment. I plan to be visiting home every weekend for 3 days so that is where the laptop comes in handy. The uses will be casual: internet, music. However, I do plan to play World of Warcraft. The settings don't really matter but at least POOR would be nice.

I have been looking into the Lenovo U400 with the i5 and it looks pretty solid: good CPU, decent GPU, 6gbs of ram etc, but battery life sucks. So I may be looking into something else.
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  1. Considering that the Lenovo you looked at costed 579.99, I'm assuming your budget will be around 600 Dollars.
    If you're happy playing WoW on low settings, then an intergrated GPU from intel will suit. It is hard to find a laptop with good battery life, has a Core i5, and a dedicated GPU for $600. xD

    How many hours are you looking to get?
    If you go a step down from the U400 with the i5, you'd end up with the same overall specs- except it has an i3, and 4 GB of ram. Battery lasts up to 4 hour on paper.
  2. @Junky77 - Under $600 is my ideal budget. I have a top of the line desktop so a decent laptop for class and low gaming is all I need.


    Yeah since WoW isn't a very graphic-intensive game, Poor+ settings will satisfy me.

    How many hours of battery life on a laptop is considered decent and how many is good? Because I just took a look at some other i5 laptops and they had 6 hours of battery life. Battery life isn't my biggest concern because I'm pretty sure I will always have an outlet in class.

    Also if you know any other good laptops or suggestions please let me know :)

    Edit: What about the Lenovo Z480? The Ivy Bridge CPU seems like a lot better deal. Downside is the size and weight I guess.
  3. I'll let you know as soon as I find something worth while. ;)

    The battery life on a laptop really depends on what they're designed for.

    I like to look at it this way:

    Netbooks: 8 hours
    Small Notebooks: 6 hours
    Medium sized Notebooks: 5 hours
    Large notebooks: 3-4 hours
    Desktop Replacement Laptops (Core i7 / Gaming GPU): 2-3 hours
  4. How does the Lenovo Z480 look?
  5. Lenovo sells different sub models of the Z480, do you have a link to the specific one you're interested in purchasing?

  6. After looking it over.. Even though the U400 has the "dedicated" GPU (6470m) The Intel HD 4000 surprisingly performs better. Along with the fact that the Z480 has the 3rd gen (which is just as fast as the 2nd gen, no difference in speed), the 3rd gen is more feature packed- although you won't benefit much from most of the features, it does support faster RAM than the 2nd gen does, which is always a pro. :)

    I'd suggest going with the Z480 if you have the option.

    Good luck,
  7. Would you say they're both solid laptops though?

    I was thinking about it and mobility is a factor since I will be going to class and home a lot.

    The u400 looks a lot more mobile so I'm leaning towards it - I'm just concerned with its reviews.
  8. http://www.adorama.com/ASU36SGDS51.html

    3.7 lbs, asus, i5 2.5 ghz sandy bridge, 10 hour battery life (8 cell), $683

    it's a steal
  9. jbl772 said:
    Would you say they're both solid laptops though?

    I was thinking about it and mobility is a factor since I will be going to class and home a lot.

    The u400 looks a lot more mobile so I'm leaning towards it - I'm just concerned with its reviews.

    They both seem to be solid laptops- and there shouldn't be a quality difference considering that they are both from the same manufacturer.

    The laptops are the same size, there is a slight different in weight though, the Z480 is 0.3 KG heavier than the U400... That's up to you if it is deal breaker- but I wouldn't personally choose the U400 over a fraction of a kilogram- especially when there is an advantage in performance from the Z480.
  10. That ASUS is a very good choice. Damn I think you sold me. It's a little over budget but a lot nicer.

    I read more reviews on the U400 and has been declared as not as good as other laptops in its price range. Many reviews complained of a bad screen, bad touchpad, and few slots. It also only has 1 headphone outlet and no microphone one :/

    The Z480 is about 0.4" thicker than the U400 I think.
  11. Ok I'm sold - getting the ASUS if I can afford it.
  12. I should have read up more about that website. Apparently they didn't have it in stock and now they sent a request for the manufacturer to ship it - some people said it took months before they received their item -_-

    Sent a request to cancel my order and they said they won't know for 2 business days whether or not Asus shipped it or not...2 days to call them and ask? Not going to buy from this website again. Hopefully they can cancel it so I can order from somewhere else.
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