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Gaming/Portable Laptop

Last response: in Laptops & Notebooks
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Which Laptop to buy?

Total: 5 votes (3 blank votes)

  • Asus UX51VZ (U500)
  • 100 %
  • Alienware M14X
  • 0 %
November 22, 2012 9:48:28 AM

Hello fellow tech enthusiasts!

Here's my dilemma:

I want a laptop I can game on with the latest games with the optimum performance

I also want said laptop to be portable. Meaning:
> It must have decent battery life (for office work and menial duties such as Web surfing) must be >4 hours
> It must be reasonable light and compact so it can easily fit in a bag and won't be too heavy to carry etc.

Aesthetics is important to me. The reason why I don't custom build an insane laptop from Origin or MSI or Sager because, truth be told, they're ugly.

Context:
I am not a really hardcore gamer. I don't play hardcore FPS like Crysis and Battlefield but love Team Fortress 2. I enjoy RPG and adventure games (Assassins Creed, Dishonored etc.). I also like RTS and enjoyed the End of Nations Beta which i joined.
I am also a student which means I move around quite a bit
I absolutely enjoy playing games with friends, having LAN parties
I love having the option that I can go to one of my friends' house with the intention of just having lunch or socialising and we can end up playing games for hours on end because my laptop is portable enough that i can take it with me everywhere
I might be planning on getting into light 3D modelling later on (if I have the time)
I live in Australia: Warm climate; Every tech item is at least 10% more expensive than it is anywhere else in the world.

I've been searching for a new laptop for a while now and have managed to narrow it down to 2 main competitors

Asus UX51VZ (15.6")
Quad Core 3rd gen Processor
8 GB RAM
nVidia GT 650M 2GB VRAM
Screen Resolution: 1080p
Touch Screen

for full specs and an in depth review see:
http://www.notebookcheck.net/Review-Asus-Zenbook-UX51VZ...

Alienware M14X (14")
Fundamentally the same specs as the Asus, except (for a limited time) I'll be able to upgrade to 12 GB RAM for free
except
Screen Res: 900p
No touch screen
~ 1 cm thicker
~ 1 kg heavier
More compact (due to 14" form factor vs. 15.6")

for full specs and in-depth review see:
http://www.notebookcheck.net/Alienware-M14x-R2-Review.7...

Same prices (M14X : AU$2100; Asus : $2100 not released yet in Aus so I don't know the Aussie price)

For a price >2G I want something that will last me for a long time. That will let me play the top games 3 years from now comfortably (not really into FPS so forget about Battlefield and Crysis)

This Poll really begs the question:

What makes a gaming laptop: The internals under the hood (GPU, CPU etc.) / The cooling system or optimisation for gaming?

So really:

Why is the Alienware classified as a gaming laptop while the Asus isn't, even though they have essentially the same internals?


I have entered these 2 options in the Poll

Please answer the poll truthfully based on the details given

Also if you can give a quick overview of why you selected that answer and answer the above 2 questions it will be extremely helpful.

Also if you have any more suggestions to add to the Poll don't hesitate to suggest them

Thx in advance! :) 

More about : gaming portable laptop

November 22, 2012 10:05:17 AM

Since they're both the same price, pretty much same specs, but the Asus has a 1080p screen rather than 900p, I would go for the Asus.

Yes, you'll get 12GB of RAM with the Alienware but, trust me, that won't make a difference unless you're doing heavy video rendering, whereas the 1080p vs 900p screen will make a difference.
November 24, 2012 11:40:11 PM

Thx rene!

I like your logic, but I'm just going to throw a few questions which I'm a bit confused about:

Won't the difference in screen res be really minimal because the Alienware has a smaller 14" screen whereas the Asus has a larger 15.6" screen with 1080p res?

If I have to buy the Asus in Australia and the price ends up being $200 more than it's retail price anywhere else in the world (making the price ~$2300) , would it be more worth it to get the Alienware or the Asus?

Thx again!
Related resources
a c 455 D Laptop
November 25, 2012 4:09:23 PM

I would go with the Asus. Yes, it is bigger, but it is also lighter.

Note that the nVidia GT 650m is only decent for playing games at 1920x01080 resolution. You may need to lower the resolution and / or lower graphic settings. The 650m is ideal for 1600x900 in my opinion. And great for 1366x768.
a b D Laptop
November 26, 2012 3:21:58 AM

I think you should go for the Lenovo Y580, which trumps both these laptops. It has the same specs, core i7 processor, 8GB RAM, and a NVIDIA GeForce 660M card. It's a 15.6 inch laptop with a 1920x1080 resolution, all for under $1,000.

Here's the link

http://www.notebookcheck.net/Lenovo-IdeaPad-Y580-20994B...

Anyway, if you really are determined to look at ONLY these two laptops, go with the Asus. This is because in any case, the 1920x1080 resolution will make everything look a lot better, especially with a decent card. The 650M is a entry level class 1 GPU and will manage most games on medium settings, and some on high. Also, the Alienware m14x DOES deliver performance, but it's way too overpriced and at the end of the day, there are a lot of laptops that are better than it that are in the same quality/price range. And 14 inch screens suck :/  If you're going to game, you need a 15.6 inch for feeling the effects. Why buy a station wagon when you can buy a porsche? :D 
November 26, 2012 11:24:32 AM

Thx jaguar & Labrynthian!

@Labrynthian:

I've been stumbling on these Lenovo 'gaming' laptops for quite a while now. I don't know what it is but I automatically dismiss these laptops. I've been reading around and Lenovo is supposed to make some of the best quality laptops around. When I think of Lenovo I think of IBM and the mammoth of a laptop my father bought way back in 2000.

I guess it deserves to be added to the list.

But I just found out it does not sell in Australia. I asked a Sales Rep and they said if I got the laptop from the US they would cover the warranty here.

Anyone know a quick, reliable and cheap way to import laptops to Australia? I will probably have to do that with any laptop if I'm hoping to not waste money.

I found the Alienware for $1558 with the current discounts going on. That would make it significantly less overpriced than the Asus, considering they have the same innards. I configured something as close as possible to that US version (32 GB mSATA SSD instead of 64 GB) and it turned out to be $2300 including taxes.

That accounts for more than $700 difference :( 

So Australia sucks for buying Laptops. But I am going overseas soon.

Does anyone have any recommendations on where to look for the best laptop deals?

Thx again,
Keep 'em coming :) 
!