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Old March 25, 2011, 11:51 AM
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As someone who has had 15 and 17" laptops, the only reason I would go 15" is if you really need the portability. Otherwise the 17" screen is sooo much nicer, plus generally you get a numpad on your keyboard (which I love because I use excel quite a bit). I have been looking at laptops for a while and MSI's quality scares me, ASUS's customer service scares me. I have had good luck with Toshiba's in the past, but I like the customization option with dell.

If you can find something you like within your budget then I'm jealous because I can NEVER do that. If I were you I would be looking at a Dell XPS 17. You can get an i7 2630m, 550M 1GB (with optimus), upgraded battery, backlit keyboard, 4GB ram. The only weird thing is that it is 900p instead of 1080p...

Prices out at $1150 on their website, but I know from ordering a PC for my folks that if you call dell you can get a better deal than whats listed on the web.
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  #22 (permalink)  
Old March 25, 2011, 05:48 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Keltron 3030 View Post
that HP looks like a solid unit!

I haven't heard anything on performance of the new PHII mobile chips, but it looks more than adequate.

HD 6550 looks more than capable of playing modern games, albeit some of them may need reduced quality. Here's more info on the card AMD Radeon HD 6550M - Notebookcheck.net Tech
I had my hands on one this evening, and didn't mind the feel at all. (of course, anything seems almost "magical" compared to the 8 yr old P4 (desktop 3.01 chip) HP I use for most of my surfing.... ;) ). I'm a little bit concerned about the lack of L3 cache and low clock speed on the proc though, so I'm going to try to find a bit more info before I take the plunge.

Quote:
Originally Posted by johnnyblazzwa View Post
look like a nice laptop with high res but if your really serious about gaming on the thing i still think you should get the msi you had. Nothing is going to touch that 5870 mobile in that price range. That msi would out perform my gaming rig no problem with the same resolution i use though i guess thats not saying much
I'm really torn on that MSI laptop. On one hand, I've always been willing to give a relative unknown (in the laptop field anywise) manufacturer a chance when they're offering a bargain.... on the other hand, I can find absolutely no real reviews on it, and with John's (Charlie3.0) experience with his 5870M laptop, I'm even more concerned.

There's no doubt though that if it works well, there's nothing even close to it sub-$1K.

Quote:
Originally Posted by dustin1706 View Post
As someone who has had 15 and 17" laptops, the only reason I would go 15" is if you really need the portability. Otherwise the 17" screen is sooo much nicer, plus generally you get a numpad on your keyboard (which I love because I use excel quite a bit). I have been looking at laptops for a while and MSI's quality scares me, ASUS's customer service scares me. I have had good luck with Toshiba's in the past, but I like the customization option with dell.

If you can find something you like within your budget then I'm jealous because I can NEVER do that. If I were you I would be looking at a Dell XPS 17. You can get an i7 2630m, 550M 1GB (with optimus), upgraded battery, backlit keyboard, 4GB ram. The only weird thing is that it is 900p instead of 1080p...

Prices out at $1150 on their website, but I know from ordering a PC for my folks that if you call dell you can get a better deal than whats listed on the web.

I'll have to look into that Quad Dell with 550M. I'm also coming to the conclusion that a 17" screen might be more important to me than I thought.

As far as being within budget... I've never really had a problem with that, but I generally don't set my expectations too high, figure out how much I can spend, and then find the absolute best deal within that price range. If anything, I often drop down from my intitial budget when I discover I'm paying a hefty premium for fairly little gain.


As far as the HP is concerned.... does anybody have experience with the P9XX series AMD quads? What was/is your impression(s)?
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  #23 (permalink)  
Old March 25, 2011, 06:30 PM
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Here's a little more info on the CPU AMD Phenom II X4 P960 Notebook Processor - Notebookcheck.net Tech

Apparently its comparably to a desktop Athlon X4
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Old March 25, 2011, 06:43 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Keltron 3030 View Post
Here's a little more info on the CPU AMD Phenom II X4 P960 Notebook Processor - Notebookcheck.net Tech

Apparently its comparably to a desktop Athlon X4
Yeah, I saw that (it's where I got the info on the lack of L3 cache).

I find it appalling that there is so little information available on AMD laptops and their mobile components (procs and GFX). I don't know much about notebookcheck.net, so can't say that there is anything wrong with their stats/suggestions/conclusions, but it'd be nice to have more than one source as a reference.

I'm not sure if it's just an AMD thing.... maybe the lack of reviews reflects a conscious effort on their part to not send out review units of the various procs / gfx chipsets.
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  #25 (permalink)  
Old March 25, 2011, 07:00 PM
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This is were I hang when I need in-depth notebook resources for my customers: Laptop Reviews - Notebook Reviews and Netbook Computer News & Reviews

Forums: Laptop Forums and Notebook Computer Discussion

HP Pavilion sub-forum: HP Pavilion Notebooks
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  #26 (permalink)  
Old March 25, 2011, 07:04 PM
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Cool!! Thanks John, I'll have a look over there as well. There's a good chance that I may end up buying myself an early b-day present in the AM to take my mind off of the first day of becoming a non-smoker...... ;)

edit: Holy cwap there's a lot of posts in the HP pavilion 6XXX thread!!!! :)
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  #27 (permalink)  
Old March 25, 2011, 07:12 PM
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No problem. Congratulations on quitting smoking, been 3 years for me (touches wood).

As for that thread, it is for the 6xxx model; the HP you linked is a 4xxx series. I quickly glanced, but I didn't see one in regards to the model you are looking after.
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Old March 25, 2011, 07:15 PM
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I think its just lack of reviews; notebook check is has a pretty good database of internal and external data involving components. also, to get a review of a certain component, they need a laptop with that component in it to review it. for example, in order to get a review on the AMD 6970M, they got a laptop from EUROCOM.

I doubt this is AMD's doing. I honestly think it's just a lack of interest from laptop manufacturers to want these things reviewed

and finally, the only thing i could find close to a review of the cpu were within these laptop reviews

Toshiba Satellite L655D (S5164RD) Review - A Review of the Toshiba Satellite L655D (S5164RD)

Toshiba Satellite A665D-S5175 Review & Rating | PCMag.com
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  #29 (permalink)  
Old March 25, 2011, 07:33 PM
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Ok, it's 100$ over your budget, but it's a lappy with the new i7 quad, 6Gb of ram and the GT550M as GPU. And it's a 17".

XPS 17 Laptop Details | Dell Canada
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Old March 25, 2011, 07:36 PM
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Yeah, I was just looking at that. :)

I'm waffling now.... The HP AMD quad is probably good enough for what I want, and I can invest the extra $200 in some decent headphones. :)
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