AMD or Intel for budget "gaming" laptop

*Please note, this is something I am merely formulating ideas and learning options for; I don't plan to buy this until the end of this year or early next year. I'm merely getting an idea of what I would need to look for when that time comes so I'm not overwhelmed or have overlooked anything.

My question; Who could give me the best bang for my buck, AMD or Intel? I've read Intel is best for processor and AMD is winning in the integrated graphics. I would like to know who would be best for my needs.
My budget will more than likely be no more than 500$ , 700 if parents buy this laptop for $200(US currency)

This laptop will be used for lan gaming, college, and internet surfing. College and gaming being the two most important. The games I will play are: Minecraft w/ Optifine, Team Fortress 2, Left 4 Dead 2, World of Warcraft, and Star Wars: The Old Republic. Low settings with native resolution will be used.

I also realize that at the price point, it may not be possible to get something worthy of gaming good, but I'm just looking for something that can do it decently with 25+ FPS. I already have a desktop setup to play on more intense games with higher settings. This laptop will just be a compliment to it.

My current laptop is an Acer Aspire 5742z with a P6100 processor and Intel HD graphics from about 2010 and it's not cutting it for me anymore. However, it's leaps better than what my parents are using.

Basics I am looking for: Low settings gaming, portability at 15.6", battery life of 3+ hours doing basic college work, within budget. So with this, who should I look towards, AMD or Intel? And what should I look for?
21 answers Last reply
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  1. probably amd.

    budget intel laptops do not tend to come with a discrete graphics card, and if they do they arent very good.

    amd does better on the cheap mobile graphics front.
  2. i have apu a6 3400m and it plays left for dead 2 very easily , its a personal choice i guess
  3. If you get an A series processor make sure the laptop is maxed out on fast DDR3. The more DDR3 you have, the better the performance of your A6/8/10.
  4. End of this year or early next year is a long time away.

    Right now the best performing integrated graphics core is the Radeon HD 7660G inside the A10-4600m. Next up is the Radeon HD 7640G inside the A8-4500m. Intel's HD 4000 probably comes in at around the same level of performance as the Radeon HD 7520G. That means there are 4 Radeon HD 7xxx cores that are more powerful than the Intel HD 4000 / Radeon HD 7520G.

    However, to use desktop graphic cards as a comparison. The integrated Radeon HD 7660G is about as powerful as a Radeon HD 5570 (and less powerful than a Radeon HD 6570). The Intel HD 4000 / Radeon HD 7520G would probably have about 85% - 90% of the performance of a Radeon HD 5550.

    However, Intel will be releasing their Haswell CPU this year and AMD will be releasing their Richland APU. How much more powerful will the graphic core in Richland be compared to Trinity? Unknown; nothing has been said, nothing has been demonstrated... at least to the best of my knowledge.

    However, the iGPU inside Haswell (Intel HD 5000 supposedly) seems to be pretty powerful especially considering it is coming from Intel. Back in Sept 2012 Intel demoed the power of their iGPU in their upcoming Haswell CPUs. It was capable of playing Skyrim at 1920x1080. Though no benchmarks were released and I assume anti-aliasing was turned off, the video of that demo at least showed that the game ran pretty smoothly... at least in non combat scenes.

    Will the Intel HD 5000 be more powerful than the best graphic core in AMD's upcoming Richland APUs? Doubtful... but the good news is that integrated graphic cores are becoming more capable of playing games. Will they be better than a discrete graphics chip like the nvidia GT 650m? Maybe in 8 years or more, but definitely not in the short term future.
  5. even if the hd4000 is comparable performance wise to some of the lower end amd gpus, it doesnt have the same compatibility in gaming. it simply wont work for some games.
  6. Way to early to pick - 6 months from now could be a whole new ballpark (Covered very well by jaguarskx)

    For gaming as that is your top prioirty. I'll use my laptop as an example - I' not a gamer.
    .. i5-2410M, 17.3"panel, blueray player/DVDRW drive, 2 SSDs, 8 gigs ram.
    .. Uses a dGPuU 540M and a iGPU HD3000

    1st thing to do is check out the GPU, to do this just google your GPU, then look for
    Review by notebookcheck- ie
    scoot down the page and on the left-hand side you will see FPS for most poular games.

    Newer Intel IB's come with the HD4000 as a iDGP. for that look At:
    When I last checked, Intel/Nvidea did better at switching betwen iGPU (2D apps) and dGPU for 3D apps such as games.

    Generally for the same $$$ the AMD will get you a better GPU, HOWEVER
    The trade off is, as you mentioned the CPU is better for the Intel model. But that is not all. Intel builds are NOT just about the CPU, as Intel based systems generally have better support chipsets and provide better drivers - Reason is simple, Intel has More $$$ and more support personel. Also 3rd party venders consentrate more on Intel based system - pure and simple reason is that it is a larger market share.

    Not saying which to buy as that is your choice, and your $$$s. Just how to evaluate the Graphics capability and pointers on CPU choice. BUT you are headed in the right direction - EVALUATE before buying.
  7. jaguarskx said:
    End of this year or early next year is a long time away.

    ^This. Read the commentary that follows. Historically, Intel's integrated graphics has been a poor joke. You've got plenty of time to wait for benchmarks.
  8. budget gaming laptop boils down to the GPU. let's be serious here. getting a better cpu and worse gpu will only hinder gaming.
  9. So, it seems the general advice is to go with AMD unless Intel pulls out something good by the time I'm ready to buy. I guess I'll be researching and watching Intel as the year goes on and see how they do.
    Thanks for the info, everyone. It probably is a bit too soon to begin choosing laptops, but I guess it can't hurt too much. (Who knows, maybe I'll have to buy one sooner than expected)
  10. My advice is to wait. Haswell is being designed to provide a huge boost in integrated graphics as well as power saving. It pays just to wait until their June release before even trying to make up your mind.
  11. BriboCN said:
    My advice is to wait. Haswell is being designed to provide a huge boost in integrated graphics as well as power saving. It pays just to wait until their June release before even trying to make up your mind.

    Not sure where you are seeing that. Everything I am getting from the Intel boards points to Haswell giving a 10% performance boost, just like Ivy.
  12. ivy didnt really have a 10 percent boost. it was as little as 2 or 3 percent in many instances, infact, in some instances it even had a worse IPC than sandybridge.

    something that no one seems to take into account on the benchmarks is that the ivybridge cpus were clocked 100mhz higher than the sandbridge equivilents. meanwhile, sandybridge overclocks higher than ivybridge does.
  13. Hawell is going to be a 5% increase on average for interger OP's but almost double the floating point output
  14. Off course its AMD! INTEL has got nthing to do with the word budget..LOL

    Probably the laptop with a APU chipset like A10 4800k with a discrete graphic card.
    This will be the most sensible selection of any person for budget gaming.
  15. Why not Intel I managed to pick up a Lenovo Y570 new for $620 from their outlet store.
    It has a 555m and an i7. I did the research and the AMD A10 can't touch the performance of mine.
    I'm sure you could get something like a Y580 with a 660m within your budget, you just have to be patient and get the laptop when it's the best price, they add them often and if you wait a day laptops are often sold out.
  16. "can't touch the performance of mine"

    wrong, an amd laptop for the same price would perform better in games.

    see the title, budget "gaming" laptop
  17. But I got it within his price range and the A10 or any other laptop under the price range won't be better. Sandy i7 and 555m (that overclocks nicely mind you).
  18. it's a 700 dollar laptop before taxes.

    his budget is 500.
  19. thats not the mobile space
  20. He said he may be able to go to $700 with his parents help and it's a $600 laptop for the i7 and with an i5 right now you can get it for $500. So I don't think it's all that far off, they should be still for sale but cheaper by the time he wants to buy so would be valid.

    Look at what they sell before before saying it's over his budget.

    "My budget will more than likely be no more than 500$ , 700 if parents buy this laptop for $200(US currency)"
    It fits in his budget an i5 and 555m for $500.
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