should i get i3 laptop vs i5 laptop for uni student? both have gt920m

Michael_Lian

Estimable
Jan 12, 2016
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0
4,510
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im looking for a laptop as a uni student. i already have a gaming desktop but i need a laptop too. but i want the one at least can play games like dota 2.
should i get the i3 5005U laptop or the i5 6200U laptop? both have dedicated gpu that is Nvidia GT920M.
the i5 is RM600 more. is it worth it? or is there any other recommendation?
or should i get the i3 one and add 4gb more ram and change the hdd to ssd(got one)? is there any difference in performance?
thanks
 

photonboy

Distinguished
1) Check the TURBO values for those CPU's. That should give a rough idea. I can't just look up the performance as the laptop manufacturer can change those to fit the laptop design. (lower for thinner)

2) RM600 more. I'm not sure what the normal price is. As a guess I'd say maybe it's worth it if the Turbo and cost are similar (i.e. 20% more CPU performance vs 20% more cost, or less cost).

3) add 4GB more syste memory?
It depends how much you have now. If you have 8GB then that's fine already.

If you only have 4GB then I'd get more. **HOWEVER** I'd open it up and use pcpartpicker and/or Google to attempt to find an IDENTICAL stick if you have another slot.

Many laptops bottleneck the CPU at times by using a single stick of memory.

4) SSD?
While I like them for faster boot, and slightly snappier desktop usage, this won't change your gaming experience much. It only affects load times which is mostly the initial game load.

(Windows is also getting better at memory management by buffering stuff into system memory from the main drive. This reduces slightly the advantage of a faster main drive since data is more likely to load from the system memory than several years ago. Having said that, there are a few times when I sit waiting for my HDD to do stuff. Heck, I get ansy waiting eight seconds for my HDD to start up when it's in sleep mode; maybe I'm abnormal that way)

It helps a lot with SKYRIM since it has a lot of load points (building, jump map points etc).

Installing Windows 10 to a fresh SSD isn't too hard now, but you may need some help. I'd CLONE with Machrium Reflect Free or similar which may need a USB-> SATA connector, but another option is:
a) MS media creation tool-> create W10 USB stick (for exact same version)
b) backup data (if anything yet)
c) remove HDD, add SSD
d) boot W10 media
e) do NOT enter a key (will be handled automatically)
f) wait for MS Updates to finish (it adds drivers etc)

g) *My main concern is whether NVidia Optimus is installed or not. You should investigate that prior to any commitment. Probably not an issue for a new computer. It handles the switch between iGPU and dGPU (otherwise it stays on the Intel iGPU).

Leaving the HDD untouched is a good idea until you sort out whether this works or not. The CLONE might be the best choice though.

**Also, if the laptop has an M.2 SSD slot then I'd use that instead (see pcpartpicker). If so you can use the SSD and the HDD. For example, CLONE the HDD to SSD then test for a while. If it works fine, then add back the HDD (fix BIOS boot order if it now boots to HDD), then FORMAT (full format) NTFS the HDD and then use it for making a backup Image of the SSD, other media, games etc depending on SSD capacity.

5) Other things:
a) Warranty
b) Quality/comments
c) RESOLUTION and size of screen
- 13" to 15.6"
- 1600x900 or 1920x1080 (possibly higher, but not if quality of panel is worse such as TN vs IPS etc)
d) GSYNC? (very unlikely, however it would be nice)
e) weight (you are carrying it)
 

Chugalug_

Estimable
Jan 28, 2016
763
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For uni, I highly recommend getting the i5, as it allows you to do much more multi-tasking and productivity work without getting laggy performance. There will be a large difference in performance in regards to the CPU, and the graphics utilization might be a bit better just because of the i5's stronger cores, but it will remain relatively similar in terms of Dota 2 performance.
It should run it 60fps no problem in Dota, and as long as it has 8GB of RAM you shouldn't need to upgrade it.
 

Chugalug_

Estimable
Jan 28, 2016
763
0
5,960
136

Both are dual core hyperthreaded, but the i5 has a higher clock and better memory support, also having a higher graphical dynamic frequency which probably won't mean much in regards to the 920M.
 

photonboy

Distinguished
1) Check the TURBO values for those CPU's. That should give a rough idea. I can't just look up the performance as the laptop manufacturer can change those to fit the laptop design. (lower for thinner)

2) RM600 more. I'm not sure what the normal price is. As a guess I'd say maybe it's worth it if the Turbo and cost are similar (i.e. 20% more CPU performance vs 20% more cost, or less cost).

3) add 4GB more syste memory?
It depends how much you have now. If you have 8GB then that's fine already.

If you only have 4GB then I'd get more. **HOWEVER** I'd open it up and use pcpartpicker and/or Google to attempt to find an IDENTICAL stick if you have another slot.

Many laptops bottleneck the CPU at times by using a single stick of memory.

4) SSD?
While I like them for faster boot, and slightly snappier desktop usage, this won't change your gaming experience much. It only affects load times which is mostly the initial game load.

(Windows is also getting better at memory management by buffering stuff into system memory from the main drive. This reduces slightly the advantage of a faster main drive since data is more likely to load from the system memory than several years ago. Having said that, there are a few times when I sit waiting for my HDD to do stuff. Heck, I get ansy waiting eight seconds for my HDD to start up when it's in sleep mode; maybe I'm abnormal that way)

It helps a lot with SKYRIM since it has a lot of load points (building, jump map points etc).

Installing Windows 10 to a fresh SSD isn't too hard now, but you may need some help. I'd CLONE with Machrium Reflect Free or similar which may need a USB-> SATA connector, but another option is:
a) MS media creation tool-> create W10 USB stick (for exact same version)
b) backup data (if anything yet)
c) remove HDD, add SSD
d) boot W10 media
e) do NOT enter a key (will be handled automatically)
f) wait for MS Updates to finish (it adds drivers etc)

g) *My main concern is whether NVidia Optimus is installed or not. You should investigate that prior to any commitment. Probably not an issue for a new computer. It handles the switch between iGPU and dGPU (otherwise it stays on the Intel iGPU).

Leaving the HDD untouched is a good idea until you sort out whether this works or not. The CLONE might be the best choice though.

**Also, if the laptop has an M.2 SSD slot then I'd use that instead (see pcpartpicker). If so you can use the SSD and the HDD. For example, CLONE the HDD to SSD then test for a while. If it works fine, then add back the HDD (fix BIOS boot order if it now boots to HDD), then FORMAT (full format) NTFS the HDD and then use it for making a backup Image of the SSD, other media, games etc depending on SSD capacity.

5) Other things:
a) Warranty
b) Quality/comments
c) RESOLUTION and size of screen
- 13" to 15.6"
- 1600x900 or 1920x1080 (possibly higher, but not if quality of panel is worse such as TN vs IPS etc)
d) GSYNC? (very unlikely, however it would be nice)
e) weight (you are carrying it)
 

Chugalug_

Estimable
Jan 28, 2016
763
0
5,960
136


600 Ringgit is 1:3 with the AUD pretty much, since I have relatives over there. :p
So $200 AUD for an i5 from an i3 is a pretty standard price.
Works out to about 100 USD when you take into account shipping costs, import tax etc.
 

photonboy

Distinguished
1) I'm not sure what else to say, except I'd hold off on the SSD and see how it performs.

If it's pretty snappy already, the cost, hassle and potential loss of space may not be worth it. You can always do it later so there is no rush.

Again, check to see if there is another drive slot such as M.2 SSD. It's nice to have automated backups. In fact...

2) Make sure to backup your laptop on a regular basis whether you have two drives or not. It is a mobile computer so can be stolen or lost.

Acronis True Image is a nice solution for automated backups. There are ways to set a local network such as a GIGABIT SWITCH to connect your computers. A standard router/modem might be ideal so you don't have to attach the ethernet cable constantly to the laptop.

*Acronis TI can also backup to a USB drive. That's not completely automatic, but you can set for a weekly basis and then manually attach a USB drive (set a computer reminder in e-mail or other program).

Once it's setup, then when you attach the USB drive Acronis TI will start a new backup if it detects the date for backup has passed. Then lock your USB drive away so nobody can steal it.
 
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