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Ryanrocker

[Solved] Thoughts on a Gaming Laptop?

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Hey there guys, I've finally decided to get around to ordering Diablo 3, and Guild Wars 2 will soon follow I'm sure :) Our family computer is fairly new (2-3 years old) and I have almost no concerns about the game running on this desktop. However, with me leaving for college in September, I was thinking about buying a new laptop for school and my gaming needs. I was looking at some laptops and came across this Alienware one: LINK, the M11x. I'm not looking to spend over $1,000 and this appeared to run both D3 and GW2. I have very little knowledge about gaming laptops and I was hoping maybe some of you guys did, so if you have any suggestions it'd be well appreciated! :D

 

alienware-m11x-review-20100201072845190-000.jpg

 

Diablo 3 Tech Specs

Guild Wars 2 Tech Specs

Edited by ryanrocker1217

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I'm on my phone right now so cant really look up and suggest anything, but would suggest looking at brands other than alienware simply because you pay a premium for the label. Plenty of other manufacturers produce capable gaming laptops cheaper.

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I recently picked up one from Sager. http://www.sagernotebook.com/ I found their prices to be the best bang for the buck compared to other sites. I found alienware to be higher priced than other customer laptop makers.

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Plenty of other manufacturers produce capable gaming laptops cheaper.

 

I've taken a look at Toshiba, Acer, and HP as well. A really big draw for me is Dell's monthly payment plan, to help with the cost. Would be more inclined to pay $30 a month instead of $650 out of pocket, even if the total cost of another brand was cheaper.

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Hey there guys, I've finally decided to get around to ordering Diablo 3, and Guild Wars 2 will soon follow I'm sure :) Our family computer is fairly new (2-3 years old) and I have almost no concerns about the game running on this desktop. However, with me leaving for college in September, I was thinking about buying a new laptop for school and my gaming needs. I was looking at some laptops and came across this Alienware one: LINK, the M11x. I'm not looking to spend over $1,000 and this appeared to run both D3 and GW2. I have very little knowledge about gaming laptops and I was hoping maybe some of you guys did, so if you have any suggestions it'd be well appreciated! :D

 

alienware-m11x-review-20100201072845190-000.jpg

 

Diablo 3 Tech Specs

Guild Wars 2 Tech Specs

 

For mobility (performance is better but screen and resolution are smaller):

 

http://www.digitalstormonline.com/gaminglaptoploadxm11.asp?id=685761

 

 

For gaming/entertainment (screen and resolution are bigger but performance is lower/ still plays newer games fine, however):

 

http://www.digitalstormonline.com/gaminglaptoploadxm15.asp?id=567967

 

 

My choice would be this one if I were going to college and wanted something for gaming and watching movies in my spare time (I personally like the bigger monitor and resolution):

 

http://www.digitalstormonline.com/gaminglaptoploadxm15.asp?id=568669

 

 

Dragon Brother's correct about paying for the name with Alienware. I think their stuff is pretty good, but I thought the site was a little vague on the specs of some of the key components in the M11x.

 

Anyway, the only thing that might deter you from buying Digital Storm is no payment plan. Although I recommend them as a very reputable company that I would not hesitate to buy from if I ever wanted a laptop.

Edited by Omnicide

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Plenty of other manufacturers produce capable gaming laptops cheaper.

 

I've taken a look at Toshiba, Acer, and HP as well. A really big draw for me is Dell's monthly payment plan, to help with the cost. Would be more inclined to pay $30 a month instead of $650 out of pocket, even if the total cost of another brand was cheaper.

Any chance you could borrow from and pay back your parents? That way you save both ways and if you earn more money one month could pay back more to finish up sooner.

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Schenker builds nice gaming notebooks, but it is a german company, so import taxes may eat up a lot. Starting at 500 and ending at around 20000 euro with an 8 core xeon, 2 highend graphic cards, soldid state discs, nice display, 300 watt needed, so the battery is just an emergency power system....

 

Schenker allows to configure what you want an need. But my experience is, if a notebook is neded for college, long runtime is a must have.

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Hey hey people, time to update this thread with my findings :) Found this laptop here on Best Buy for $618 Acer - 15.6"Aspire-as5750G Notebook. Yes, I do realize that it is possible a downgrade on some of the other laptops out there that you guys recommended, but it is cheap :P I'll post specs below, just was curious if anyone had thoughts about running some games on medium settings like Diablo/Guild Wars or if anyone has experience with Acer brand laptops :)

 

Specs:

Processor: Intel® Core™ i5

Processor Speed: 2.40GHz

Battery Type: 6-cell Lithium Ion (Li-Ion) 4400mAh

Display Type: Widescreen Active Matrix TFT Color LCD LED Backlit with CineCrystal Technology

Screen Size (Measured Diagonally): 15.6"

Cache Memory: 3MB

System Memory (RAM): 6GB

Type of Memory (RAM): DDR3 SDRAM

Hard Drive Type: Serial ATA 5400 RPM HDD

Computer Hard Drive Size: 640GB

Graphics: NVIDIA GeForce GT 520M

Video Memory: 1GB

Battery Life: 4.50Hour

Operating System: Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit

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Hmm...the i5 processor is fine, but for games the 520m might be a little sub par. Theres a site here which has info about it and other notebook cards, but from the list of frame rates it has on the page it doesn't look like many of the games listed are playable at medium settings. Perhaps something a little stronger would be better?

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Theres a site here

 

Thanks for the link! I feel like that site will be really helpful for some quick readups. Is it possible to replace the graphics card if it's dedicated in a laptop? Because at home we have a 2GB card sitting in the closet that never got used, and if it can be installed that'd be sweet ;)

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Nah, laptop cards possibly can be replaced, but it needs to be with another laptop card. A desktop chip wont work, to big and hot.

 

I can understand how difficult it can be to find something you want in terms of laptops though. It seems like the good dedicated graphics cards come in the laoptops with an i7 processor which both raise the price...no i5 plus good dedicated in most cases...

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I can understand how difficult it can be to find something you want in terms of laptops though. It seems like the good dedicated graphics cards come in the laoptops with an i7 processor which both raise the price...no i5 plus good dedicated in most cases...

 

Haha my thoughts exactly. Can't seem to find i5, 6gb RAM, and a good dedicated card under $800-900. Stupid laptop monopoly :P

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I can understand how difficult it can be to find something you want in terms of laptops though. It seems like the good dedicated graphics cards come in the laoptops with an i7 processor which both raise the price...no i5 plus good dedicated in most cases...

 

Haha my thoughts exactly. Can't seem to find i5, 6gb RAM, and a good dedicated card under $800-900. Stupid laptop monopoly :P

 

It may be possible to customise a Dell or Lenovo laptop to suit your needs. Cheaper than alienware for sure, and they do offer a fair bit of freedom, especially useful if you find any student discounts or promocodes that are likely to happen around the end of financial year (if you guys have that over there...may not be the same time as for us even if you do though...), or just any generic deals.

 

And 4Gb is probably enough ram...8GB is overkill so 6GB is probably the sweet spot I guess...

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Boom, a few hours later and I happen to stumble across a Father's day deal on Lenovo for $599 (Once again, thanks for the tip DB). The IdeaPad Z570 Laptop. Specs posted here, and according to the website you linked earlier, the graphics card isn't too bad. My next question would be if anyone has any experience with a Lenovo computer and how is the quality? :)

 

Specs:

Processor: 2nd generation Intel Core i5-2450M Processor( 2.50GHz 1333MHz 3MB)

Operating system: Genuine Windows 7 Home Premium 64

Graphics: NVIDIA GeForce GT 540M 1GB

Memory: 8.0GB PC3-10600 DDR3 SDRAM 1333 MHz

Display: 15.6" HD Glare with integrated camera 1366x768

Hard Drive: 750GB 5400

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For that price I dont see much else. For a little more there is the y series, which the two low end models have a 555M, i5/i7 (quad core i7), 4/8 GB ram and a 500GB (smaller but faster) hard drive, same screen/OS as the one you linked, at $719/$749 (The $30 difference here is probably worth the upgrade in cpu and ram if you were to consider it). So thats still under your budget of 800-900 but then a $600 one leaves more in the bank account. Really it comes down in what you are looking for in terms of gaming capability. Pay the extra for what appears to be a decent jump in gpu or save the money. From the looks of things, the 555M is pretty similarly ranked to a 6770M which my laptop has and with an i7-2630 (just lower than the i7 in the lenovo y series) and 4GB ram at 1366x768 screen res It can run pretty much anything I throw at it on max. And when I plug it into a 1920x1080 monitor it still plays D3 at pretty close to max (It could run Sacred 2 at max with elite graphics but I had issues with the game getting to the 1.2GB ram limit it had and crashing faster so had to turn it down).

 

But yeah, enjoy me adding further indecision :)

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But yeah, enjoy me adding further indecision :)

 

Lol, it is much appreciated. Just two questions for ya, as those Y series ones looked reasonable as well. Do you own a Lenovo laptop, and if so what is your experience? Curious about the brand make and quality. Second, one of the models in the link has a i5 processor and the other has a i7 processor. The gHZ on the i7 is slower, so is it technically a slower processor? :Just_Cuz_21:

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I don't, I have an HP laptop so can't really comment on much beyond the hardware experience which is as I posted above. You might have to do a bit of internet trawling to get feedback on lenovo in general, I've not heard much about them, although of the little I've heard there hasn't been anything negative, but some research could be in order.

 

As to the processors, if you mean on the Y series 08626FU having the i5 and the JU having the i7, the i5 is only dual core so for thermal limits can be clocked higher whereas the i7 is a quadcore and while clocked a little lower would have the benefits associated with the extra cores. They both turbo boost to the same speed (3.1GHz) though, so really, in terms of capability they would be pretty similar, i5 have better battery life perhaps whereas i7 is an extra frame or 3 in games and a little snappier in slightly heavier workloads.

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Late to this thread sorry mate.

 

Sager

 

NP9170 w/ custom configuration:

 

2nd Generation Intel® Core i7-3960X Processor Extreme Edition ( 15MB L3 Cache, 3.30GHz / 3.90GHz in Turbo Mode, 6 Cores )

32GB Quad Channel DDR3 SDRAM at 1333MHz - 4 X 8GB

Dual Nvidia GeForce GTX 580M GPU NVIDIA® SLI® Enabled with 2GB GDDR5 Video Memory + Additional AC Adapter & Power Converter Box [Ranking : 6]*

2.25TB RAID 0 (3x 750GB 7200rpm SATA Hybrid Hard Drive with 8GB SSD )

THX TruStudio Pro Audio

17.3" Full HD LED-Backlit Display with Super Glossy Surface (1920 x 1080)

 

I did not read the entire thread so am not sure if you have a budget? With custom configuration your looking to invest around $5,100-$5,200.

 

For the serious hardcore gamer. Which I know you are, but comes at a huge price tag!

 

I remain, :butcher:

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Haha...he mentioned a budget of $800-900 somewhere I think Etherian :)

 

Still, one can dream :)

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Haha...he mentioned a budget of $800-900 somewhere I think Etherian :)

 

Still, one can dream :)

 

Opps!

 

I remain, :blush:

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Opps!

 

I remain, :blush:

 

Lol eth :sweating: If only that money tree in my backyard would grow faster :xmastree:

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I don't, I have an HP laptop so can't really comment on much beyond the hardware experience which is as I posted above.

 

DB, gave HP another shot and browsed their selection and found a customizable system for $688. Now I know that the Lenevo Y570 Series you picked out would be a bit better (Would be the $750 one you showed), but I feel a little less comfortable going with a brand I've had little experience with, and is based in China not US (I prefer supporting here at home). Specs posted below, and if you've had a good run with your HP I might roll with it :)

 

  • Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit
  • 2nd generation Intel® Core i5-2450M Processor (2.5 GHz with Turbo Boost up to 3.1 GHz)
  • NVIDIA® GeForce® GT 630M Graphics with 1GB of dedicated video memory
  • 6GB DDR3 System Memory (2 Dimm)
  • 640GB 5400RPM Hard Drive
  • NO mSSD Hard Drive Acceleration Cache
  • 6 Cell Lithium Ion Battery - Up to 6.0 hours of battery life +++
  • 15.6-inch diagonal HD BrightView LED-backlit Display (1366x768)

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Thats a decent looking system and cheaper is always nice too :)

 

I had an issue recently where my laptop spaked, and shut down and wouldn't power on. HP and there warranty service was all good, got it organised with them and a repair centre to be picked up in the next few business days. Only problem was it turned on for the first time when they came to collect it and in the end they found nothing wrong...since then I havent had any issues with the same thing, so all in all its been reliable.

 

I'd say if that system is enough for you then go with it, low res screen so the leser graphics card shouldn't be an issue either.

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Woot! Just wanted to update the thread here guys, about my final choice, just incase anyone else might find this discussion useful. Ordering an HP laptop at $800 with the following specs below. I'm pretty excited, even more so when I found out that the specs on here are actually BETTER than Alienware, while saving a good $200-300. Very happy I posted on here and did some research instead of just dropping some cash :) Thanks to everyone who helped out, especially DB!

 

• 3rd generation Intel® Core i5-3210M Processor (2.5 GHz with Turbo Boost up to 3.1 GHz)

• NVIDIA® GeForce® GT 630M Graphics with 1GB of dedicated video memory

• 8GB DDR3 System Memory (2 Dimm)

• 750GB 7200 rpm Hybrid Hard Drive with HP ProtectSmart Hard Drive Protection

• 6 Cell Lithium Ion Battery - Up to 6.0 hours of battery life +++

• 15.6-inch diagonal HD BrightView LED-backlit Display (1366x768)

• SuperMulti 8X DVD+/-R/RW with Double Layer Support

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