Recommended next laptop to buy?


May 31, 2011
So, I haven't bought a new laptop in.... almost 7 years? Time for a new one. And a less expensive one. Overheating the main issue with this one (AMD GPU). I have been out of the PC gaming hemisphere for quite some time, and haven't kept up with technology much. I would like a budget laptop around the price range of ($500-$650). Okay... $700 at the max. I have a few main criteria for this laptop. It doesn't need to play modern games, nor would I expect it to, but I want it to have to have no problem running games on max settings with good fps from several years ago, like Dragon age Origins, and most valve games (at least up to portal 2 era),, and have 12+ tabs open at a time (some video). The next is longevity. I don't want to buy a new computer in 2 years. If I got 4-5 years out of it I would be happy. Looking for Intel i CPU's. My current top 3 pics are:

(Someone told me Dell has improved over the years, and it has good reviews)

If anyone has better recommendations, I am totally willing to hear them. Again, I don't think I'm asking too much by casual 2017 standards.. I just don't know how much integrated graphics like a 620 have improved over the years, and dual cores as well. Quad-core is definitely preferred, but not at the cost of a GPU that can't do any gaming! Let me know. Thank you to anyone that reads and replies!




If you're willing to go as far as $700, the Dell on your list is very attractive. You get your quad-core i5 Skylake CPU and a 4GB 960M card which will allow you play a host of modern games, e.g. Batman: Arkham Knight, Rise of Tomb Raider and Metal Gear Solid V. The newest releases may be out of reach, but given your background info, I'd say the 960M card will be more than enough, and it's definitely better and more than you'll get from the 2GB 940M cards in the ASUS and the Acer.

The only 'weak' point is the RAM capacity, but that's only if you plan on expanding your gaming ambitions markedly. Besides, the Dell supports up 16GBs of RAM that you can install yourself later on. The included IPS panel serves to make it a truly portable device; the 2 other laptops on your list rely on TN panels - cheaper to produce, slightly less weight and usually a few more hours of battery life. But the limited viewing angles often restrict portability because the screen will wash out if you move the laptop even slightly away from your direct line of sight.

The Acer is the only one to feature a dual-core Kaby Lake i5 CPU. The HD 620 IGP will be a massive improvement on any IGP from 7 years ago and will run most of the games you mentioned. It is, of course, also $80 less expensive, but you'll have to settle for a 2GB 940M card and a TN panel.

In my opinion, the Dell is the machine to get.

About long-life: Modern mainstream laptops are not generally designed to last more than 2 or 3 years. After that, batteries and network components (wireless and cables) tend to degrade drastically. And more and more laptops are designed as sealed-off units meaning any hardware failure equals a new laptop, because you're not supposed to crack it open and repair/upgrade it yourself.

Some brands are more prone to this scenario than others, and the slimmer/lighter and more stylish they are, the more vulnerable they become - and so also more expensive in the long term. If you are a 'regular' consumer with a 'regular' kind of life, you should have no problem with getting 4 or 5 years out of the Dell on your list. ASUS currently has some problems with battery failure, chiefly the slim ultrabooks, and Acer has always relied on offering 'affordable' build quality at equally affordable prices.

A quad-core machine that will last 5+ years will send you past $1,000 in the blink of an eye (ThinkPads and Precisions).

Best of luck,
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