Need to choose a gaming laptop in a hurry. Have 2 ideas and a lot of background info.

mara_r

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May 29, 2013
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I find myself needing a laptop within a few weeks at the latest. I'll be going abroad for some time and I need to take it with me. I didn't see anything that would work for me on Newegg, so I looked at Xoticpc.com as was suggested in some other threads in this forum. I found two laptops that I think might work for me, but I'm just not confident of my choices, so I'll tell you a bit about what I want it for and then post the specs of the two laptops.

I plan on using this laptop for some gaming and some movie watching and media editing. The games I plan on playing on it are Oblivion, Starcraft II, and fully upgraded Sims 2 with a lot of custom content. With my current computer, I can only play on the lowest settings and still have to save & restart every 40 minutes because of lag, so any improvement will look wonderful to me. But on the other hand, my computer is almost 9 years old, so I'd hope that any halfway decent modern computer could do a better job.

The other programs I'll be using are Photoshop, Illustrator, 3-D modeling programs such as SketchUp and Blender, and hopefully some kind of video editing software. (I've never been able to run a video editor without crashing my computer.)

Other considerations: Battery life is completely unimportant to me; I plan on having it plugged in at all times. I'm focusing on 15" screens because the increased price for 17" is just not worth it to me. Whatever I end up getting absolutely must come with Windows 7, not 8.

Should I look at SSDs? If I upgraded to a 120GB SSD it would put me at the extreme far end of my budget. Does the increase in speed and decrease in temperature justify the price or should I stick with a 7200rpm traditional drive? (Space is not an issue, I have plenty of external drives, so a 120GB main drive would be just fine.)

Any other thoughts you may have regarding the quality/reliability of the components in these two builds will be greatly appreciated. Unfortunately the links won't show you the selections that I made, so I have a summary pasted here of what I would choose.

http://www.xoticpc.com/asus-n53svdh71-limited-availability-p-3351.html?wconfigure=yes&change_view=rbm

ASUS N53SV-DH71 - Limited Availability
- FREE!!! – U.S. UPS GROUND SHIPPING (Use Coupon Code "FREESHIP" in Checkout) [U.S. Lower 48 ONLY / Restrictions Apply]
- 15.6” HD 16:9 LED Backlit Wide screen (1366x768) Super Clear Glare Type Screen (SKU - X1R312)
- 2nd Generation Intel® Core™ i7-2670QM, 2.2-3.1GHz, (32nm, 6MB L3 cache)
- IC Diamond Thermal Compound - CPU + GPU (Cools better than all Compounds) (XPC Service)
- nVidia GT 540M 1024MB PCI-Express GDDR3 DX11 with Optimus™ Technology (SKU - X3R407)
- 8GB DDR3 1600MHz [SKU-422BP] (CL11 Dual Channel Memory (2x4GB SODIMMS))
- 750GB 7200RPM 16MB Cache Buffer (Serial-ATA II 3GB/s) (SKU - X5R303)
- Combo Dual Layer SuperMulti DVDRW/CDRW Drive w/ Software (SKU - X7R451)
- Regular Size Notebook Cooler - Dual Fans - USB Powered (For up to 15.4" Laptops)
- Windows 7 Home Premium 64-Bit Pre-Installed + Drivers & Utilities Disk (Supports up to 16GB of RAM)
- 2 Year ASUS GLOBAL OEM Warranty 24/7 Support / 1 Year North America (N.A.) Accidental Coverage (Accidental Requires Registration) (SKU - A9R102)
$1,051.00



http://www.xoticpc.com/msi-cx61-0nf621us-p-5507.html?wconfigure=yes&change_view=rbm

MSI CX61 0NF-621US
- FREE!!! – U.S. UPS GROUND SHIPPING (Use Coupon Code "FREESHIP" in Checkout) [U.S. Lower 48 ONLY / Restrictions Apply]
- 15.6” FHD 16:9 LED Backlit Wide screen (1920x1080) Super Clear Matte Type Screen (SKU - X1R354)
- 3rd Generation Intel® Ivy Bridge Core™ i7-3630QM (2.4GHz - 3.4GHz, 6MB Intel® Smart Cache, 45W Max TDP) (SKU – X2X317)
- IC Diamond Thermal Compound - CPU + GPU (Cools better than all Compounds) (XPC Service)
- nVidia GeForce GT 645M 2,048MB PCI-Express GDDR3 DX11 (SKU – X3X532)
- 8GB DDR3 1600MHz [SKU-422P] (Dual Channel Memory (2x4GB SODIMMS)) – Default
- 750GB 7200RPM 16MB Cache Buffer (Serial-ATA II 3GB/s) (SKU - X5R304)
- Combo Dual Layer SuperMulti DVDRW/CDRW Drive w/Software (SKU - X7R452)
- Regular Size Notebook Cooler - Dual Fans - USB Powered (For up to 15.4" Laptops)
- Windows 7 Home Premium 64-Bit Pre-Installed + Drivers & Utilities Disk (Supports up to 16GB of RAM)
- 1 Year MSI US Parts & Labor 1 Year Global Warranty w/ Lifetime Tech Support (SKU - M9R303)

$1,027.00


(Yes, I know I'll have to add rush charges and fast shipping on top of this, that's accounted for in the budget.) But will either of these laptops work for what I want, or both, or neither? Lots of thanks if you get through reading all of this, or even part of it. Or if you have any other laptops to recommend in the same price range, that would be helpful too.
 

vrumor

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Jan 17, 2012
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Probably should have no issue running those games, but be aware. Those GPUs are both garbage. Any GPU with DDR3 nowadays is slow. Will it work for the games you want? Yes. But also keep in mind, youll find other games that you want to play, since youll have upgraded hardware, and it will run them. So is it good for modern games? Not a chance in hell. StarCraft 2 may even lag on this. The 2nd one has a 1080p display the other is 1366x768 which is garbage. If you are going abroad, you could always build a SFF PC and take it with you (small form factor).
 

gamerxavier

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Apr 4, 2011
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If not that I'd look into www.ibuypower.com www.cyberpowerpc.com www.digistalstormonline.com
For gaming laptops, I usually check those websites and browse forum sites like this and check their articles.
 
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