Looking for a decent gaming laptop

May 24, 2014
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Hello!

As said in the title, I'm looking for a decent gaming laptop as I'm almost coming into my senior year in college and need a portable powerful machine that I can game with from time to time. My budget is $1500. I've found these listed below and I would really appreciate it if you guys could tell me "Dude go with that" or "WHAT THE HELL WERE YOU THINKING!". Thanks.

1. http://www.amazon.com/G750JM-DS71-17-3-inch-Gaming-GeForce-Graphics/dp/B00IKF2H12/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1400981361&sr=8-1&keywords=gaming+laptop

2. http://www.amazon.com/MSI-CX61-2PC-499US-15-6-Inch-Laptop/dp/B00ISKS4A2/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1400981453&sr=8-2&keywords=gaming+laptop

3. http://www.dell.com/us/p/alienware-17/pd.aspx - the $1500 version
 

Dblkk

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msi, better specs, runs warmer, fans louder. Asus, lower specs, still games like a beast, super cool and quiet fan, excelent build, 30-45 more battery than msi. Alienware, overpriced and competes/comprable to msi
 

Dblkk

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860m with get you high settings on any game, and use half the power to do so. If you read 'ANY' 800 series gtx refresh reviews, they ALL say that the new 870m isnt worth it. The 860m performs better than the 770m from last year. The 870m performs just a smidge above that. It takes a 880m to actually make a noticable difference over a 860m.

This is coming from a Asus g750 jm (860m) and js (870m) owner.
 

Dblkk

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Its not just an extra $100. Yes it is the price difference between the laptops. But your talking huge pros cons between those two laptops. Thats worth more than $100. First of all the power draw on the 870m is more than double the 860m. The 870m is pretty much just an overclocked 770m. Putting out way more heat as well, and included in the laptop with poorer heating. Thats not good. Msi runs hot compared to the asus with 860m in both, putting and even hotter running gpu into it will increase the heat even more and make thermal noise/throttling even more so an issue.

And yes i do put alot of stress on heat and thermals. But thats killer in laptops. Running very very hot (reviews done on msi with 870m show that both cpu and gpu while gaming run 90 degrees celcuis to 95 degree average. Thats only gaming. If your going to be rendering or 3d work, those temps will only rise. I have the asus with 860m and 870. Both run games alot better. 860m runs 65c max while gaming, 870 while running ultra runs 85c. Thats with its own dedicated fan. the 4700 with its own dedicated fan runs 65-70 while gaming, and 90-100 while rendering. Now put those two together and add more power hungry 4800 i7, your talking 95's while gaming, and 100+ while rendering. Thats thermal throttle zone. Nothing like being in the middle of a game and getting throttled to due thermals and screen/game glitching like a mofo. Plus while thermals are 90-95 on msi, fan noise is noticable even with headsets on, and any review done states that while gaming the fan noise drowns out the otherwise splended laptop speakers. Thats not very fun?
 

Dblkk

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Quick google search, second page listed.
http://www.gaminglaptopsjunky.com/gtx-870m-vs-gtx-860m/


Review states just this along with most specs between the 860m 870m and 770m.

"So, bottom line, if you ask me, you should keep away from the GTX 870M for now. Wait for the Maxwell parts or go with a GTX 860M laptop if you really need one now. I’d also suggest waiting for more GTX 860M offerings, again, like the Lenovo Y50."
 

Dblkk

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Now dont get me wrong, im not trying to bash the msi. But heat is one thing that it doesnt do well. While the asus does a pretty good job (industry leader if i remember most forums saying right) with heat. Now yes the msi gives better specs, but the asus is all around better laptop. Depends on OP if hes willing to deal with heat and fan nosie, or if he wants a solid performing laptop.

I was just trying to stress the 860m vs 870m isnt a HUGE deal> The 870m performs avg 5fps better than the 860m on most games, with the edge going up to about 10fps more on few games. And those averages are based on the same games and settings, in which both cards were at least at a playable 30fps. Yet games like crysis, both cards failed misrably, and the 880m just nudges into the playable catagory, at high settings.
So is the 870m better, yes. Is it a deal breaker, not solely no. WOuld i personally take 5fps and get a 870m and deal with heat issues, no. I'd take the 860m, have my parts last longer since heat is the number one killer of components, deal with quieter fans, no thermal throttling, and 45 min better battery.
 

morgan payne

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i would go with the asus g750m-ds71
since Construkt reccomended it on my other forum close to mine heres the link
http://www.tomshardware.com/answers/id-2077573/inch-gaming-laptop-1500.html
the asus would be better than the msi and alienware in the cooling specs and i would go with the asus since you do not need to get a good cooling pad
i am already saving up for the asus hopefully it will deliver performance
if you are going for a desktop replacement go for the asus or alienware
hope this helps
morgan
 

Dblkk

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If you look at any comparisons done between the msi and asus, the battery life will vary from 30 min more on asus to 1 hour 30 min more on the asus over the msi. As for 10-15 fps difference, that is not ' a lot' of games, those are very few. And those are on highest settings. High setting on either chip will be very very close, and with a 17" 1080p laptop screen, the differences between ultra/high are extremely minimal. Plus those comparisons also have all goodies on as well as to show worse case for either card.

Any review of gt70 shows that fan noise and heat are cons for the laptop, battery life, keyboard flex, build quality (a lot of plastic) are also most conned parts of the laptop. Asus has its more expensive than an msi, and its weight (which is less than 1 pound more than the msi so 8.6 vs 9.4 lbs oh wow). Yes the gpu is better, but to sacrifice an all around laptop just get get maybe ultra played better? idk, that's op's final decision, which is worth it.
 

Dblkk

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Not to slam you or do anyside justice. Just best reviews ive found on both laptops. OP, read and decide. MSI edges out on performance, Asus edges out of quality. Performance boost is nice but not dramatic, quality is nice but also not dramatic.


http://www.cnet.com/products/asus-rog-g750jz-xs72-17-3-core-i7-4700hq-windows-8-1-pro-64-bit-32-gb-ram-1-tb-hdd-plus-512-gb-ssd/2/

http://www.digitalversus.com/laptop/asus-republic-of-gamers-g750-p16529/test.html

http://www.digitaltrends.com/laptop-reviews/asus-g750jx-review/

http://www.eurogamer.net/articles/digitalfoundry-2014-msi-gt70-2pe-dominator-pro-with-gtx-880m-review

http://www.trustedreviews.com/msi-gt70-2pc-dominator_Laptop_review_msi-gt70-performance-and-battery-life_Page-2#tr-review-summary

http://www.gizmodo.com.au/2014/04/msi-gt70-dominator-pro-notebook-australian-review/

http://www.anandtech.com/show/7924/msi-gt70-review-gtx-880m-edition/7

Some light reading for you. Msi ones I believe all mention keyboard flex in the middle. But I guess we'll take your word on it. Don't matter as its minimal anyways.

But all of which compare batteries and give examples of several types of tests done. Whether its battery run down wifi off movie on, or the best example, wifi on and looping webpages over and over to determine normal web browsing time. In that case the msi lasted just short of 5 hours for continuous web browsing, the asus over 6 and a half.

You'll also be able to read a review of last years g750 with gtx 770m in which they just rave about how well the machine and the graphics card are. Now yes its last years, but the gtx 860m is better performing than the 770m chip. Just food for thought.

Honestly just comes down to second rate laptop with better specs, or top rate laptop with step down (still very impressive) specs. Personal choice OP has to make, facts are out. Arguments done. It is just that, there is absolutely no argument against that statement as you can read every/any review and its just that.
 

Dblkk

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'Don't get me wrong either. I love the ASUS laptops. That's why I bought one and had my dad do the same.'

So you and your dad both bought asus laptops. Yet at any given year, at similar price points msi has 'always' offered next step up gpu. Yet, same exact case here, you opt to tell OP to go msi, when even yourself didn't, and had you dad get asus as well. Very hypocritical don't you think?

Example, this year $1400 will get asus gtx 860m/msi 870m, $1800 asus 870m/msi 880m
last year asus $1400 765m/msi 770m, $1800 asus 770m/msi 780m
...ect.ect.
 

Dblkk

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Still hypocritical. At $1800 youd get an msi with 880m vs asus with 870m. 20-25% performance increase there. SSD included are a slower m.2 sata which can be had for $100 brand new and faster anyways. Your unlimited budget netted you the same specs for $600 more. So what that tells me is that having an asus is worth an extra $600 to you. Not really helping your case. Unlimited budget or not, for price of asus jz model, you could've gotten msi with gtx 880m 8gb gddr5, three m.2 ssd in raid 0 at over 800mbps read, blu ray burner instead of reader only. More and better msi specs, yet chose to overspend over the $1800 needed for gpu, and still while overspending got an asus with inferior specs. Don't get it?
 

Dblkk

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How does that not make sense. Anyway you look at it, you spent way more for the asus than the msi. While maintaining almost identical specs on your asus, an msi could've offered way more for less. And your dads, you spent the same for asus with 870m as you could've a 880m.

MSI depending on country does offer 2 year warrenty. But if you read any msi forums, their warrenty isn't perfect, but yes it does give 2 years.
Upgrading, at the cost of $600 for a 860m and $800 for an 870m, I think you'd be better off just purchasing a new laptop years down the road. You can only upgrade on the exisiting motherboard socket. Leaving you with 4800/4930 for cpu, or 860m/870m/880m. The processor is yes faster, and yes only concerning when running virtual machines, video editing or heavy work. But what you fail to realize, is that any of that work puts 100% load on cpu and a great deal on gpu, which if you read any forum positive msi or not, will result in thermal throttling. Thereby making any excuse the processor is better, useless since you wont have the full potential anyways. You yourself chose asus, twice. Reguardless of price. The 860m has been the largest single processor performance leap ever known to mobile gpu's. Typical upgrades yield 10-20% performance over the last generation. The 860m not only beat that, but also surpassed the 770m by a solid 10%. You say the 870m is just worth the upgrade no matter what basically, and use 30% for your figures. Yes if the 770m vs 780m yielded a 20% performance increase, and the 870m is still less powerful than the 780m, and the 860m is 10% more powerful than the 770m. I just don't get how or why the 870m could be that huge a difference. I give examples, websites, ect showing the fps is minimal, yet you say oh I don't use that site, or oh this or that. Bring up battery and you throw a website not even used, as an example of why the msi is equal, even though I can give you over 10 other well documented and respected sites that show otherwise. You say an 870m can run ultra on anything, yet it cant. It edges out the 860m yes, but it doesn't run every game at ultra. Why is it that if you go to websites to read user reviews on the laptops I can rarely find more than a few (counted on a single hand) that rated their msi, yet the asus is just loaded on every site. At $1400 budget, choice between asus g750 jm will result in well over 50-75 user reviews, yet msi gt70 maybe 10. If it were that great a deal and just undoubtable beats out the asus, why do more people go asus? You can say and be correct by saying that not every person that buys a laptop will review it. But normally if its great, people do. Normally if theres plenty wrong with it, people do. But that works both ways, asus and msi. You yourself chose asus reguardless of price or not. Saying budget was unlimited, but chose asus even though msi would've offered more. Excuses or not, you did chose lower spec'd asus over higher spec's msi, yet unwittingly telling OP to go msi or go home. You back up msi like you have stock it in, yet don't even chose that laptop out of 2 purchases?
 

Dblkk

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Keep it simple for you. Your own words.
"The GT60 to G750JS comparison is a difference of build quality, heat, and SSD for another $350. Well worth it."

Considering the ssd is worth $100. Your saying the asus is worth $200 more than the msi, because of build quality and heat.

Wow, if you'd go back above, those were my main points to OP about the msi. Yet you argued those with me. Now you use them yourself?

You also agree your willing to spend more to get an asus because money doesn't matter to you. An extra $500.

So now, both times with both your laptops you got less specs and performance to get an asus. And yet your telling OP to do the exact opposite. That's hypocritical. I don't see how you don't, I guess don't look into mirror to often now do you.
 

Dblkk

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You also boast about the msi's 2 year warranty. But don't even know or think upgrading to an ssd is going to void it. You obviously don't know to much about the products your trying to recommend. Msi's warranty allows the same upgradability as the asus. Ram and HHD. As long as if/when you have a problem and send it in for service, you ship it the way you receieved it, which is with original hard drive and ram.

I spent several weeks debating over msi and asus. First with my $1400 jm purchase. Then again with my latest js purchase. I searched the web, read every forum, every review, every single bit of information I could find on either.

And hows this 'cooling pad' you keep reffering to going to fix the heat issue with the msi. You got some magical cooling pad that just blasts air through the laptop? Cooling pad will keep OP's lap from burning, which in msi's case during gaming the rear left of the notebook by the fan will reach over 105c. That's hot. And yes you will need a cooling pad just to use that sucker. But that doesn't fix the overheating inside the laptop. That's where the throttling takes place. Plus, better be grabbing an extra large backpack, not only to fit your laptop in, but got to carry the cooling pad with you everywhere you go just to use your laptop.

I like you agree that the asus is worth the added premium. Yes the g870m is better than the 860m. But guess what, the 860m isn't this huge downgrade you make it out to be. It will play almost every game on high, within minimal fps difference on the 870m (except apparently your magic webpage which also must sell those magical cooling pads). The asus in general is the better laptop, better keyboard, better track pad (sorry msi yours is a joke), and great cooling. No, you wont get the performance you would with the msi, but you'll get consistent performance without throttling, without burning your lap, without the 'need' for a cooling pad just to keep you safe from 3rd degree burns.

If those flaws are worth the added performance to anyone, then yes get the msi.

But between both people arguing on this thread, neither one of us were willing to deal with those issues. Yet one of us is at least honest enough to let you know. The other is willing to spend whatever it takes to stay with the asus, but the only one telling you not to. Has no problem telling stranger to go msi, yet even has his dad spend more money just to get the asus.

That's cra cra
 

Dblkk

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Wow, I had no clue these cooling pads you speak of existed. You could honestly post a link to one of these? I'm using one right now and I'll bet im still hitting 100c and thermal throttling while I render a movie. Guess what, any professional review of cooling pads, will tell you that you might and I mean might see a degree or two difference while using a cooling pad. And in most cases, cooling pads actually suffocate the laptop's airflow and create more heat.

Yes I read exactly what you say, and exactly what you say is exactly opposite every other person ive read on any forum or review.

And yes, buy the msi so that you cant game on the go.

SO.................. why is OP buying a laptop? Since he cant game on the go? I mean serieously buy a pc then. I thought laptops, especially gaming ones, were made to game on the go. Now that's also news to me.

Laptops that aren't made to sit on your lap. UM.....ok. Then what are they?
 

Dblkk

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Do you read and interpret what your saying?

Gaming laptops that aren't made to game on the go, magical cooling pads that drop temps over 10c, laptops that aren't made to be on your lap, and a laptop you cant upgrade at all is what you recommend.

Your not making any sense man.

And the point of cooling pads, to get your money #1, and #2 to keep your lap from getting burned when you buy laptops that don't cool properly.
 

Dblkk

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Funny, as I use my laptop on my lap all the time. I ordered and use a very well rated cooling pad and at $45 I see no difference.

And from what i got from reading all your posts and your own words.

Buy the msi. I feel the quality and cooling of the asus was worth $500 to me and also talked my dad into spending $200 more for the asus. But I want OP to do what I wasnt willing to, nor allow my father to.

And upon buying this msi. You'll need a cooling pad, you cant bring the laptop anywhere, you cant use it on your lap, you can upgrade the cpu/gpu ,but you cant upgrade hhd or ram at least until the 2 year warrenty is up.

Did I miss anything?
 

Dblkk

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I'm comparing the gt vs the g750. Doesnt matter which model since as soon as you throw a gtx 870m into an msi, you'll get the heat that comes with it. Build quality and every single other aspect are identical except the gpu. So, im not sure how or what your even talking about.

Apples to oranges? Uh no, its msi vs asus no matter how you look at it. Or are you saying that the build quality is different between the models of the gt70 or g750. Because aparently you are otherwise your whole last post makes minimal sense, and if that is the case, you again are completely wrong.

Your the one that said you cant take laptop anywhere. Well, you said only to use the battery. Which makes sense since the only cooling pads that work at all are quite larger than the laptop itself and i doubt you'll find a backpack to carry both the laptop and cooling pad. And with that logic, then no you really cant bring it anywhere, since you cant game on it or do anything taxing at all, since even you agree the msi runs to hot and you need a cooling pad.

Before you said you got the jz model, now its the js? I thought you said your dad got the js? So yes now youve really confused me with conflicting statements yet again. And no matter how you look at it, if you go asus your overspending over the msi for same specs. Which is my point. You telling OP not to get the lower spec'd asus, yet you get and have your dad get the under spec'd asus.

And yes the msi has a warranty, in which your saying also makes it totally unupgradable. No chance at a ssd, no extra ram, nothing.
 

Dblkk

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SSD, no do not come with every laptop. Never said they did, If you read what I said, I included that in the price difference. Since the sandisk 256gb ssd that comes with the asus is worth $100. I took that $100 off the price difference.
And yes, every msi gt70 within that generation is the same laptop, with differenct gpu. Same goes for asus. Asus even has same chasis between this and last years models. How can you say any different? It is just that, its a fact. It doesn't matter if its the msi model with 870m or 880m, other than just that, its the same laptop. The higher you go with graphics the higher the heat index will get. What don't 'you' understand about that.

And the comparisons always there. Msi vs asus. It doesn't matter what price bracket, it is always the same. MSI offers next model graphics vs the asus at the same price. Once you start at over $2300, the asus finally gets the $1800 MSI graphics, but then with msi you start getting raid ssd's. So when you bought your laptop, you paid $2300 just to get an asus with 780m, when MSI offered that same GPU for $1800. That's a $500 difference, throw in a $100 ssd into the MSI (which unlike what you say does not void the warrenty), and its a $400 difference for same specs. Yet again, you had your dad buy the asus with 870m. Yet for same price could've gotten the MSI with 880m.

You make the 860m vs 870m this huge deal. Sole factor in totally recommending MSI hands down. Yet you yourself have opted to go with the performance hit to stay with asus, or your willing to spend $400 more to get the asus.

That's hypocritical. Telling somebody else to do something that you yourself wouldn't do.

I would be done to if I were you. If you go back and read any of your comments. None of them either help your case, or are correct. And yes, laptops are made to sit on your lap. And your saying theyre not. You also said you cant take it on the go and actually use it other than on battery. So no gaming, no nothing. Might as well buy an asus t100 for $200 and get a pc then? Since the whole aspect of gaming laptop I guess isn't portable gaming?

Its not right to make yourself sound good, rush with answer, back it up with some facts (right and wrong) just to grab a quick best answer.
 
May 24, 2014
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OK. So first of I like to end this on a high note as Dblkk and Construkt are kinda getting a little intense. No offense, as I'm sure you guys are passionate about this kinda stuff but lets end it here as to avoid any unnecessary headaches. Although I have looked at the MSI Construkt mentioned, the heat as well as some other problems such as the thing looks like a toy I can get at a toy store or something, I'm going for the ASUS ROG-JM. Yes yes the JS has a ssd and the 870m, #1 is that I can put in an ssd in the future for a quarter of the price that there bumping it up to the JS, and yes I know it has the 870m which leads to..., #2 From various video as well as benchmarks, the 860m provides a better bang for the buck when compared to most benchmarks to the 870m. Probably gonna piss people off but what I really need is a reliable computer that looks decent, won't burn my lap, and has decent specs that should like a game like Arkham Knight come out (so excited), I can pop it in as well as an ssd and I should be good to go. The cooling system on the ASUS ROG laptops will provide in my mind a better life for my laptop. Thank you all for the responses as well as all the links people have sent to help me with this endeavor. Construkt, you're the proud owner of a solution as you seemed to put in a lot of effort to aid me into deciding to which I'm saluting you. Ta Ta.
 
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