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Old April 19, 2009, 06:22 PM
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Default Studio XPS 13 dilemma

Hey everybody,

I'm on the hunt for a laptop to replace my venerable IBM T41. I'm looking for something that's fairly lightweight and powerful, screen between 13 and 15.4 inches, and with a price tag of 1399 and under. So far i've narrowed it down to the following choices

Dell Studio XPS 13
Intel C2D P8700
13 inch screen
250 GB 7200 RPM hard drive
4 GB of DRR3 ram
Nvidia 9400M graphic chipset.
1199$

Apple Macbook
Intel C2D P7350
13 inch screen
160 GB 5400 RPM hard drive
2 GB of DDR3 ram
Nvidia 9400M graphic chipset
1399$

Dell Studio 15
Intel C2D P8600
15.4 inch screen
250 GB 7200 RPM hard drive
4 GB of DDR2 ram
ATI Radeon 3450
1,019 dollars

So on the outside, it would seem that the Studio XPS is the best deal. However, from what I've read it's battery life is mediocre, and it has overheating/quality problems. To counter that, I've also read that there's a BIOS update the helps this, and I wonder without the hybrid SLI the heat and battery might be not quite as bad. The macbook is a mac, over priced for what you get, but probably good quality. The studio 15 seems ok, but the lack of DRR3 and poor graphic preformance aren't good points.

If only Dell would release a updated version of the M1330
Speaking of which, how would it match up to these?
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Last edited by Wolfx25; April 19, 2009 at 06:35 PM.
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Old April 19, 2009, 09:06 PM
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Newegg.ca - MSI GT627-216US NoteBook Intel Core 2 Duo P8400(2.26GHz) 15.4" Wide XGA 4GB Memory 320GB HDD 7200rpm DVD Super Multi NVIDIA GeForce 9800M GS - Laptops / Notebooks

hmm? I dunno, it has some nice specs, specially for a laptop. 9800M is good...riiiighht?

I'm no pro so you might wanna wait for more posts :)
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Old April 20, 2009, 07:12 AM
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Do you plan on gaming?

Otherwise I think the m1330 is fine since I have a m1330 myself with a T8100, 4GB RAM, 250GB HDD, Intel X3100 graphics, 9-cell battery. Works beautifully and I can get like 5-6h of battery life out of it doing light tasks. Only like 3h playing HL2 though. Has enough power to do whatever, except any real gaming.
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Old April 20, 2009, 07:21 AM
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Why not get another Thinkpad? They always seem to have great deals on their notebooks, and the Thinkpads are very nice, sturdy notebooks.

ThinkPad EPP(Employee Pricing Plan) Website

Use Code: IBMEPP

Or how about this MSI?

Newegg.ca - MSI GT627-216US NoteBook Intel Core 2 Duo P8400(2.26GHz) 15.4" Wide XGA 4GB Memory 320GB HDD 7200rpm DVD Super Multi NVIDIA GeForce 9800M GS - Laptops / Notebooks

MSI GT627
Intel C2D P8400
15.4 inch screen
320 GB 7200 RPM hard drive
4 GB of DDR2 ram
nVidia 9800GS
1,330 dollars

It will do more than a decent job gaming as well!
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Last edited by Chilly; April 20, 2009 at 08:19 AM.
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Old April 20, 2009, 09:04 AM
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1. If you are looking for graphics performance for games, none of your choices will cut it.
2. For everyday use DDR2 vs DDR3 is not really a big deal, you won't notice any difference.
3. 13"-15.4"... There's a big difference so which do you want? Good portability with good performance (sans games) or ok portability with good performance (with games too).
4. Hybrid SLI in the Macbook requires a reboot, it is not an on-the-fly feature.

So having said all that my recommendations are:

Lenovo T series
Well built, options for graphics for gaming, range of sizes

Asus N80 14.1"
If I was buying a notebook this week, it would probably be this one or the 15" version of this one (N50). But I want the best game performance bang for buck I can get and I think this is it, without looking too gamer/plasticy. That MSI has a better GPU but I am not crazy about the laptop's style.
Newegg.ca - ASUS N80 Series N80Vn-X5 NoteBook Intel Core 2 Duo P8600(2.40GHz) 14.1" Wide XGA 4GB Memory 320GB HDD 7200rpm DVD Super Multi NVIDIA GeForce 9650M GT - Laptops / Notebooks

Dell XPS M1530
I am not a fan of any of Dell's newer consumer class notebooks. I still think the M1530 is a much better choice and the screen size is 16:10 not 16:9.
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Last edited by Thund3rball; April 20, 2009 at 09:13 AM.
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Old April 20, 2009, 05:00 PM
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lenovo is not what it used to be, and i was a die-hard Thinkpad user. Not to mension they have more pre-loaded crap than any other laptop manufacturer hands down.

the Asus N80 is a total win. It already has a 7200 RPM drive. I guess the tip-of-the-day here would be this: budget for a 7200 drive if the laptop you want doesn't have one pre-loaded.

Dell's have good value at purchase time, but the honey moon period soon fades; especially if you get a non-business class dell notebook as per Thund3rball's post.

Aside from the price and screen size are there any other criteria? light scribe? must it have a GPU? will you be doing video out to a TV or HDTV? does the keyboard need a number pad? Will you want a port-replicator for it?

happy shopping ;)
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Old April 20, 2009, 06:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by grinder View Post
the Asus N80 is a total win. It already has a 7200 RPM drive. I guess the tip-of-the-day here would be this: budget for a 7200 drive if the laptop you want doesn't have one pre-loaded.
Why not budget for a SSD?
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Old April 20, 2009, 06:24 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jdrom17 View Post
Why not budget for a SSD?
not a bad suggestion
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Old April 20, 2009, 07:03 PM
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I don't need crazy graphics, just something that would allow me to play some games on low settings so I wouldn't have to lug around my desktop all the time. The N80 seems like a great performer, but according to some customer reviews it's battery life seems to be pretty dismal. I'm hesitant about the m1330 because the parts are a little outdated and the 8400m is trounced by the 9400. Which reminds me, how much of a performance hit does the white macbook take compared to the unibody?

Btw has anybody had a hands on with the studio xps?
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Old April 20, 2009, 08:43 PM
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Ya Asus has a bad history for battery life. But anything while gaming will eat the battery quickly. Haven't seen the Studio XPS in person yet. I wish they'd give a Geforce option on the M2400 or M4400. They outclass the consumer lines in design and construction. And if your looking for battery life from Dell, that's where you'll find it. But gaming will sacrifice. Not sure how great the workstation cards are?

As for MB's:
White Macbook w/ Intel x3100:
HL2, Quake 4 @ lowest settings = lol.

White Macbook w/ Intel x4500:
HL2, Quake 4 @ lowest settings = ok.

Alum Macbook w/ Nvidia 9400M:
HL2, Quake 4 @ max settings (1024x768) = ok.
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Desktop:
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Laptop: Dell XPS M1530 \\ T7500 2.2GHz \\ 3GB 667 \\ 6 Cell \\ 8600M GT \\ 200GB 7.2K \\ WSXGA+ \\ Bluetooth/Wireless \\ MS Blue Track Mini \\ Vista Ult. (RED)


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