New Laptop Advice


Feb 21, 2007
I am currently looking at upgrading my 4.5 yr old laptop and for the most part move away from using my desktop.

My current setup is a Dell XPS m1530 with a Core 2 Duo and an 8600 GT GPU with 4 GB RAM. In addition, my desktop is a built one with i7-920 and GTX 260 869 MB RAM, with system RAM 6GB.

I rarely do high intense games anymore, but do play on occasion (sticking to Guild Wars 2, and maybe go back to SW: TOR). I would use this laptop on travel for movies (not as often but do on occasion), as well and maybe look into teaching myself some mobile programming or light-weight computer game programming. The rest of my use to be honest does not matter the system as my current systems do those well enough so I know anything I get now would be better (internet browsing, mail, office products, ...).

1. What is your budget? Not expecting anything over $1000 (US) but hope the price is much less, like around 700-800ish

2. What is the size of the notebook that you are considering? Not picky

3. What screen resolution do you want? 1920x1080 (unless there is a compelling reason to not go this resolution). I do plan on watching movies (BD and DVD), as well as playing games.

4. Do you need a portable or desktop replacement laptop? Desktop replacement

5. How much battery life do you need? Maybe 4+ hours playing games or watching movies. I just want it to actually survive unplugged. My current laptop kills batteries, as in they refuse to charge. This happened at about month 13 with it, and again after dell replaced all parts in the laptop with a fresh new battery after 6 more months of use. So it has to be plugged in all the time which I absolutely hate, especially when I move and the cord pops out.

6. Do you want to play games with your laptop? If so then please list the games that you want to with the settings that you want for these games. (Low,Medium or High)? GW2 (med-high), SW:TOR (med-high)

7. What other tasks do you want to do with your laptop? (Photo/Video editing, Etc.): Office productivity, light-weight programming

8. How much storage (Hard Drive capacity) do you need? I currently have a Samsung 830 128GB SSD which I plan on using in the new laptop, as my space requirements are not that demanding.

9. If you are considering specific sites to buy from, please post their links. No specifics

10. How long do you want to keep your laptop? 3+ years, my last one is 4.5 years so it might come to that.

11. What kind of Optical drive do you need? DVD ROM/Writer,Bluray ROM/Writer,Etc ? Blu-ray player. I do not mind getting nothing in the system and an external on those occasions I want to watch a movie.

12. Please tell us about the brands that you prefer to buy from them and the brands that you don't like and explain the reasons. Not sure I want to go with a dell again because my friend also had the same battery issue with his.

13. What country do you live in? USA

14. Please tell us any additional information if needed. Since my demands are not all that great I think, I was actually curious what people though about just moving to a Surface Pro when it comes out. Do you think the games I mentioned could at least play as good or better than my current laptop. I know it will not be high details, but if it beats my current laptop I would consider it as an option if I wanted to go more portable than desktop replacement. I would of course just get an external Blu-ray player then which is fine since that is not the primary use for the device, but a good thing to have on travel with me.