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    The PC (Personal Computer) is a highly configurable and upgradable gaming platform that, among home systems, sports the widest variety of control methods, largest library of games, and cutting edge graphics and sound capabilities.

    first gaming laptop

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    luce

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    #1  Edited By luce

    Ok guys, so I just saved up about 1k for a graphic design laptop. But I'm also a huge gamer so I was wondering what would be a good laptop that can do both. I have no clue how to shop for laptops but I saw an "HP pavilion" laptop at a computer store with something called "radeon graphics" and it costs about $940

    Should I buy it?

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    Meowshi

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    #2  Edited By Meowshi

    HP pavilion are high performance laptops, but not really gaming ones. You should probably ask this over at Notebook Review forums. They will have the best recommendations.

    All you're going to get here is "get a desktop, laptops are for word processing!"

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    RedRavN

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    #3  Edited By RedRavN

    No. Check out models from MSI or asus if you want a good deal. You might be looking at more like 1200 to get an actual gaming laptop. You also need to decide if battery life is a big deal to you or how much weight is appropriate. Larger laptops can have a 17 inch screen but they can be bulky. I personally do not mind the 9 ish pounds of my laptop because I find that a trivial amount of weight. I have the MSI gt780dxr model and am very pleased. It runs all games maxed out or close to it. I would recommend sticking with nvidia's 5 series mobile cards because the drivers are more stable and that is important.

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    Tennmuerti

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    #4  Edited By Tennmuerti

    @luce: For $940 you are better off putting together a good desktop, you will get way more bang for your buck.

    There are good gaming laptops out there that can run anything you throw at them and then some. BUT gaming laptops are highly overpriced, especially the high end ones. Speaking as some one who has so far had 3 different gaming laptops. They are harder to repair, harder to upgrade, use a shitload of battery power, way more expensive then equivalent desktop hardware. Only go for a gaming laptop if portability is an absolute must for you.

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    MudMan

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    #5  Edited By MudMan

    @Meowshi: Only people who have not been paying any attention to the laptop scene would say that at this point. There are many good portable solutions for PC gaming across many price ranges these days, starting as low as $600.

    You are right, though, HP is not the way to go.

    @luce: At 1000 you're going to need to choose which features you care most about. Asus has great stuff for that price, with Nvidia 540M graphics cards that put an Xbox to shame and can run Battlefield 3 on medium or high at native 720p resolution. The catch? Asus tends to skimp on screens. Bad viewing angles are found across the board, and they only build 1080p displays in top of the line gaming stuff that is a bit more expensive than what you're looking for. They're good deals, though, and have HDMI and VGA outs, so if you have a monitor or an HDTV they are a great choice.

    MSI have good quality/price gaming laptops, but they tend to start a bit higher than 1k. For 1200 you can get a very powerful machine. It will look like something out of The Fast and the Furious, but it will run games, have a decent screen and be a serviceable desktop replacement as well.

    Alienware... is a thing that exists. But it's too expensive.

    Some other manufacturers have models comparable to the Asus ones, too. Samsung, Toshiba and HP are all putting together more or less standard laptops with an i7 cpu, 4 to 8 gigs of RAM and Nvidia 540M or 560M. Those will do. At that point you may want to just look at the thing yourself. Check whether they come with a multitouch trackpad (at least two finger scrolling makes all the difference), a good screen and, very important for gaming and multimedia, good speakers.

    What you want is perfectly doable, though. I've been desktop free for a couple of years now, and there aren't more than one or two games I had to skip on due to being unable to run them on my two year old, 1k laptop.

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    Yummylee

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    #6  Edited By Yummylee

    Woh woh woh, first things first: LUCE BRAAAAAAAAAAAH, WERE YO BIN HOMBRE.

    I'm afraid I cannot contribute anymore than that to this thread.

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    Tennmuerti

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    #7  Edited By Tennmuerti

    @Meowshi said:

    HP pavilion are high performance laptops, but not really gaming ones. You should probably ask this over at Notebook Review forums. They will have the best recommendations.

    All you're going to get here is "get a desktop, laptops are for word processing!"

    Thankfully the illuminati conspiracy theorist that was the loudest tool about laptops is no longer with us.

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    luce

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    #8  Edited By luce

    @NoelVeiga: Hmm...guess i'll save up a bit more. My friends telling me to get a Mac Book Pro but fuck that noise

    @Abyssfull: WUT UP DUDE WE SHOULD BRO OUT LATER

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    bed

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    #9  Edited By bed

    @Abyssfull said:

    Woh woh woh, first things first: LUCA BRAAAAAAAAAAAH, WERE YO BIN HOMBRE.

    I'm afraid I cannot contribute anymore than that to this thread.

    i wasn't going to post this BUT I'M GLAD SOMEONE DID WHAT UP LUCE

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    JoeyRavn

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    #10  Edited By JoeyRavn

    I find it amazing that nobody recommends Sager laptops, especially if price is not a concern. They are great.

    But, yeah. Say whatever you want about me, but if you're truly going for a powerhouse, get a desktop PC. Not only you'll be getting more for less, but you'll also be able to upgrade when you need to.

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    Tennmuerti

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    #11  Edited By Tennmuerti

    Also if you are dead set on a gaming laptop be ready to troubleshoot your graphics card and drivers as card manufacturers are frequently lax about mobile drivers, leading to late updates, sometimes minor graphical errors in games to outright blue screens of death. I've had issues with different laptop manufacturers with both Nvidia and ATI cards. Thankfully dudes on laptop tech forums are quite friendly about helping each other out with those.

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    zeforgotten

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    #12  Edited By zeforgotten
    @Tennmuerti said:

    @Meowshi said:

    HP pavilion are high performance laptops, but not really gaming ones. You should probably ask this over at Notebook Review forums. They will have the best recommendations.

    All you're going to get here is "get a desktop, laptops are for word processing!"

    Thankfully the illuminati conspiracy theorist that was the loudest tool about laptops is no longer with us.

    Aw man, I got all excited! I thought you meant he got killed in a well deserved car accident but then I realized he was just banned :(
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    Tennmuerti

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    #13  Edited By Tennmuerti

    @ZeForgotten: Now now let's not cross the lines of basic human decency.

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    PeasantAbuse

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    #14  Edited By PeasantAbuse

    @ZeForgotten said:

    @Tennmuerti said:

    @Meowshi said:

    HP pavilion are high performance laptops, but not really gaming ones. You should probably ask this over at Notebook Review forums. They will have the best recommendations.

    All you're going to get here is "get a desktop, laptops are for word processing!"

    Thankfully the illuminati conspiracy theorist that was the loudest tool about laptops is no longer with us.

    Aw man, I got all excited! I thought you meant he got killed in a well deserved car accident but then I realized he was just banned :(

    He hasn't posted anything in the Steam group comments in three weeks, so I actually do think he died.

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    Kidavenger

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    #15  Edited By Kidavenger

    HP laptops are garbage.

    Apple > Lenovo > Sony/Samsung/Toshiba > Acer > Dell/HP

    This one has a decent video card.

    http://shop.lenovo.com/SEUILibrary/controller/e/web/LenovoPortal/en_US/catalog.workflow:category.details?current-catalog-id=12F0696583E04D86B9B79B0FEC01C087&current-category-id=7794F9514CE80460C7C2782FB02A5EB6&action=init

    When you are comparing laptop video cards, the second number in the video card's model number is it's relative power, so a radeon 4670 would be better than a nvidia 520 or a radeon 7150 (made up model number to make the point).

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    CJduke

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    #16  Edited By CJduke

    Over the summer I bought an ASUS G53S Republic of Gamers series laptop. It was $1,100 with a $100 dollar rebate and has been the best investment I have ever made. I can run every single game there is on max settings without a problem (except Starcraft 2 still lags when there is a ton of shit on the screen). Its an amazing laptop for a good price, if you need a laptop and not a desktop.
     
    Also Fuck Apple and their shitty laptops.

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    zeforgotten

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    #17  Edited By zeforgotten
    @Tennmuerti: I just said I kinda hoped he was dead, that's all. Didn't describe the accident or anything like that.  
     
    @PeasantAbuse: Thank god!
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    Kanden

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    #18  Edited By Kanden
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    TruthTellah

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    #19  Edited By TruthTellah

    @luce: I actually did exactly as you did; I saved up about $1k for a new multimedia laptop. $1k is absolutely doable for a nice gaming laptop. I did a ton of research, and here's my best recommendations.

    The big thing is to try to avoid hardware bottlenecks alongside that nice graphics card. So, having all of your components on a similar level. That means one of Intel's new quad core i7s (or a i5 if you have to). 4GB Ram or more. A 7200RPM HDD of just about any size. 1080p screen. Battery probably isn't a big thing, as a gaming or multimedia laptop will probably be plugged in most of the time. A Nvidia GTX card or Radeon HD 6000 or above will get you medium-high easily(1GB cards or higher. 1.5 or 2.0 is preferable).

    I went with HP because they had an amazing deal that got me a high end Radeon HD 2GB DDR5 with 1080p screen, quad core i7 CPU, 700GB 7200RPM drive, and 8GB Ram with HDMI out for $950. Everything's customizable and upgradeable; so, I'll be able to extend the life of the laptop later if I like. The sound is their new Beats Audio system, and it's quite nice. The screen is Macbook Pro quality, as well. I like HP's solid builds; though, they are generally more multimedia than straight gaming. Still, if you get one with an upgraded graphics card, it can game quite well.

    I looked at ASUS and MSI(and Sager!), and their pricing just wasn't within my budget. I could get a pretty darn good one for 1100 or 1200, but not for under 1000. The ASUS is great for gaming, but since I use my laptop on my lap, the extra bulk of the ASUS's unique cooling solution was simply not for me. MSI has some good stuff, but their pricing just wasn't there. I was really impressed with Sager, and it honestly came down to HP's offering vs. Sager at the end of my search. I ended up going with HP because it provided a wider array of features for the price, and I was actually able to get a slightly better graphics card than the Sager was offering.

    I wish you the best of luck in your search! Dealzon was useful for me, but just look around. Notebookcheck is super useful for comparing graphics cards if you can cut through all the jargon. Just look at the FPS reports next to current games at the bottom of each page. Other than that, just find a good deal with a wide range of features and get it. You can definitely get a good one for under $1k; so, keep at it. :)

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    QuistisTrepe

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    #20  Edited By QuistisTrepe

    An ASUS G74 series would be a good fit.

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    VisceralWhimsy

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    #21  Edited By VisceralWhimsy

    @TruthTellah Excellent info to look into!

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    Kubelwagen

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    #22  Edited By Kubelwagen
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    MudMan

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    #23  Edited By MudMan

    @Tennmuerti said:

    Also if you are dead set on a gaming laptop be ready to troubleshoot your graphics card and drivers as card manufacturers are frequently lax about mobile drivers, leading to late updates, sometimes minor graphical errors in games to outright blue screens of death. I've had issues with different laptop manufacturers with both Nvidia and ATI cards. Thankfully dudes on laptop tech forums are quite friendly about helping each other out with those.

    This is SO no longer the case. I've been on an ATI mobile card for two years and only old-ass bad ports (see Saints Row 2, which fails to run on many desktops as well) have given me any trouble. Drivers are updated day and date with desktop ones and work just as well.

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    MudMan

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    #24  Edited By MudMan

    @QuistisTrepe said:

    An ASUS G74 series would be a good fit.

    I actually don't like the G74. It has a shitty display and it literally packs the same hardware than the far cheaper Asus N series. Cooling and a backlit keyboard seem to be the reason why that laptop is so much more expensive than their theoretically non-gaming laptops, and it's not worth the tradeoff. And like somebody said up there, the bulk on that thing is pretty shameful.

    EDIT: Never mind, I got my numbers mixed up. The G5x series is the crappy one. The G7x series is the one with the good 1080p screen and a better GPU, which is a big difference. I'd go with a cheaper N series for 720p gaming, but if you want fullHD the G74 is a good choice.

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    Tennmuerti

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    #25  Edited By Tennmuerti

    @NoelVeiga said:

    @Tennmuerti said:

    Also if you are dead set on a gaming laptop be ready to troubleshoot your graphics card and drivers as card manufacturers are frequently lax about mobile drivers, leading to late updates, sometimes minor graphical errors in games to outright blue screens of death. I've had issues with different laptop manufacturers with both Nvidia and ATI cards. Thankfully dudes on laptop tech forums are quite friendly about helping each other out with those.

    This is SO no longer the case. I've been on an ATI mobile card for two years and only old-ass bad ports (see Saints Row 2, which fails to run on many desktops as well) have given me any trouble. Drivers are updated day and date with desktop ones and work just as well.

    And 11.12 just BSODs many mobile ATI cards, so... poop.

    I've been on mobile graphics cards for 4 years. ATI cards on last 2 laptops, my previous laptop the ATI card (1.5 years ago) overheaded and grey screened of death the system after 10-20 minutes of play in factory install, untill I spent a day figuring out what was wrong and had to do a clean system install and put in custom graphical drivers. So again ... poop.

    Obviously not everyone's experiences will be the same. But I'm also far from alone in these problems, when there are plenty of people on various laptop boards posting about these problems and way more are lurking for solutions.

    The "day of release" is also a very recent thing, as recently as RAGE/BF3 ati drivers for mobile cards were still not coming out day of. And beta drivers (which are frequently necessary for fresh game fixes) are always just for desktop cards, they sometimes work for laptops but there are never guarantees.

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    WilltheMagicAsian

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    @Tennmuerti said:

    @NoelVeiga said:

    @Tennmuerti said:

    Also if you are dead set on a gaming laptop be ready to troubleshoot your graphics card and drivers as card manufacturers are frequently lax about mobile drivers, leading to late updates, sometimes minor graphical errors in games to outright blue screens of death. I've had issues with different laptop manufacturers with both Nvidia and ATI cards. Thankfully dudes on laptop tech forums are quite friendly about helping each other out with those.

    This is SO no longer the case. I've been on an ATI mobile card for two years and only old-ass bad ports (see Saints Row 2, which fails to run on many desktops as well) have given me any trouble. Drivers are updated day and date with desktop ones and work just as well.

    And 11.12 just BSODs many mobile ATI cards, so... poop.

    I've been on mobile graphics cards for 4 years. ATI cards on last 2 laptops, my previous laptop the ATI card (1.5 years ago) overheaded and gery screened of death the system after 10 minutes of play in factory install, untill I spent a day figuring out what was wrong and had to do a clean system install and put in custom graphical drivers. So again ... poop.

    Obviously not everyone's experiences will be the same. But I'm also far from alone in these problems, when there are plenty of people on various laptop boards posting about these problems and way more are lurking for solutions.

    The "day of release" is also a very recent thing, as recently as RAGE/BF3 ati drivers for mobile cards were still not coming out day of. And beta drivers (which are frequently necessary for fresh game fixes) are always just for desktop cards, they sometimes work for laptops but there are never guarantees.

    Yeah I have a friend with a laptop that has a Mobility 5870 and he can't even get BF3 to launch and has problems with OpenGL games.

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    Tennmuerti

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    #27  Edited By Tennmuerti

    @WilltheMagicAsian: OpenGL is more of a general ATI issue, they have had bad OpenGL support for all their cards not just mobile versions. (the RAGE debacle, altho again the beta "fix" drivers were released only for standard cards not mobile ones)

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    MudMan

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    #28  Edited By MudMan

    @WilltheMagicAsian: Wait, how many OpenGL games are you playing right now?

    @Tennmuerti: I'm curious, which card and laptop? On topic, desktop cards are not immune to bad drivers, bugs and compatibility problems with other hardware. I fully recommend researching the card/laptop you're going to buy to see if it's causing any trouble, but we're not talking a gaming laptop circa 2001 situations where it was a dice roll whether games would boot at all. I've had solid experiences on both ATI (I guess I need to get used to saying AMD now) and Nvidia mobile cards across the roughly 250 games I have in my Steam library and a bunch of other stuff.

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    WilltheMagicAsian

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    @NoelVeiga: Me? I still play CS 1.6 and Quake Live from time to time.

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    Tennmuerti

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    #30  Edited By Tennmuerti

    @NoelVeiga: Nvidia on Dell (cant recall number it's been 3-4 years), 5800 series ATI on Asus, 6990 ATI on Alienware.

    Yep the situation is not as bad as it was before, and gaming laptops have gotten way way better. All I'm saying is that the situation is still far from OK, or up to the standard of desktops, and card manufacturers still give preference and care more about the desktop cards. Any technical issues you are pretty much forced to rely on the community to solve. And forget about official mobile driver fixes (refering to the 11.12 completely BSOD many ATI mobile cards specifically) people either have to frequently roll back or wait for later versions.

    I have also had solid experiences on all my gaming laptops for 99% of their use time, but that is only after going through a bunch of hoops in the first few weeks of ownership, usually involving formatting those bitches clean and reinstalling everything myself from scratch. (seriously, fuck default factory instalations on laptops)

    And the fact remains that pretty much untill now, mobile ATI owners have had to wait for mobile drivers way after they were released for desktops or get modded desktop drivers. Normally this woud not be an issue, but in this day and age when many big titles rely on gfx driver updates upon launch this means that you were frequently unable to benefit from those on a gaming laptop and either wait for the drivers to catch up to play your new graphically intensive games or tough it out with an inferior experience.

    I'm not saying it's all farking terrible, blah blah.

    It's just something people looking into gaming laptops have to be aware of and prepared to deal with in my opinion.

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    hoossy

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    #31  Edited By hoossy

    @luce:

    I tried the 'gaming laptop' thing once. AWFUL IDEA. Horrible awful no good fun. Now, I did buy from IBUYPOWER, and they had zero support or build integrity, so if you do purchase one, I say at least do so from a reputable company.

    Second, I found that a gaming laptop in general means that you will now be lugging around a behemoth that will be a bitch to carry and recharge every few hours. If you could stick with something slimmer/battery efficient for just your design needs... you could build a descent desktop for your gaming free time....

    -----------

    also, after going macbook last year... I will never purchase another pc based laptop again.... ever. never ever.

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    MudMan

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    #32  Edited By MudMan

    @hoossy: I play games on my 15 incher. I wouldn't want a smaller laptop anyway. The battery life was crap even before it started losing charge, which it did after a while, though.

    There is no solution to the portability versus power compromise, but the argument seems fallacious to me. Being perfectly serious, how often do you use laptops away from an outlet or while literally on the move? Most gaming laptops can hold 3 to 5 hours of charge on power save modes, which is not ideal but decent enough if you have to watch a movie or do some work on a plane, which is about the one instance I can think of. In other portable use, from Starbucks impromptu office work to airport waits you normally can plug it in.

    You just need to decide what you want the thing for. Gaming on the move? Few good solutions there, buy a portable console instead. Working without a power outlet? Go for an ultrabook. All around gaming and working performance on a compact, self-contained unit? Plenty of good laptops with dedicated GPUs and fast CPUs for reasonable money.

    Also, here are the things desktops don't do well that laptops do, because most people never mention them in these threads:

    • Laptops are easy to plug to your TV. With a wireless controller you get a much better alternative to your old Xbox, for no extra money.
    • Laptops are great, silent, powerful media centres. No need for a dedicated box. Just get yourself a wireless keyboard+trackpad and enjoy your 1080p streaming/downloaded video playback.
    • Laptops, even if they won't hold charge when gaming on the move, are easy to take with you. If you're like me and go back to visit your family in a different city during holidays you'll appreciate your gaming library travelling with you without needing redownloads or other annoyances.
    • Gaming on the TV when somebody else wants to use it? Yank the HDMI cable and keep going.

    Those are real advantages and expanded functionality that is worth money. To me desktop units make sense for elite gaming performance or for very cheap office work. For mid-range gaming performance and media serving a laptop is actually superior. Yes, I went there.

    EDIT: I know it sounds like I own Dell stock or something, but I don't. It's just that I stopped just short of getting a gaming laptop twice on negative feedback from the Internet. When I finally caved and did so I hated myself for every time I lugged my desktop to my TV for large screen gaming or played on a tiny screen for being too lazy to move the PC around. My stance may change if the next batch of home consoles is so powerful that current mid-range laptops can't match it, but for a 800-1200 investment these things make a lot of sense right now.

    @Tennmuerti: Fair enough. It's not my experience, and I've bought a bunch of laptops for friends and family (mostly ASUS ones) and never had to wipe any one of them (besides the standard uninstalling of proprietary crapware), but I definitely wouldn't advise *against* researching the graphics card and the laptop you're purchasing to know if you're going to need any work or modding to get it to run well.

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    Matfei90

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    #33  Edited By Matfei90

    I have an Asus notebook from their mid range 'media' line - plays pretty much everything I want it to. I'm sure their game systems would be very solid.

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    Mendelson9

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    #34  Edited By Mendelson9
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    vitor

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    #35  Edited By vitor

    @CJduke said:

    Over the summer I bought an ASUS G53S Republic of Gamers series laptop. It was $1,100 with a $100 dollar rebate and has been the best investment I have ever made. I can run every single game there is on max settings without a problem (except Starcraft 2 still lags when there is a ton of shit on the screen). Its an amazing laptop for a good price, if you need a laptop and not a desktop. Also Fuck Apple and their shitty laptops.

    This. The Asus G - series are some of the best gaming laptops you can get right now.

    You want a quad core that is at least 2.0Ghz and, waaaaaaaay more importantly, a decent GPU:

    http://www.notebookcheck.net/Comparison-of-Laptop-Graphics-Cards.130.0.html

    Check that list and if your GPU isn't in the Class 1 range, then don't buy it.

    For $1000 you should be able to get something pretty decent. Go over to the notebookreview forums though instead of here - they know their sh*t and are super friendly.

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    Tennmuerti

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    #36  Edited By Tennmuerti

    @NoelVeiga: Another big plus of a gaming laptop is that with a simple use of a wooden board you can game in/on the bed :)

    Or even in the bath!!!!

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    RubberBabyBuggyBumpers

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    @luce said:

    Ok guys, so I just saved up about 1k for a graphic design laptop. But I'm also a huge gamer so I was wondering what would be a good laptop that can do both. I have no clue how to shop for laptops but I saw an "HP pavilion" laptop at a computer store with something called "radeon graphics" and it costs about $940

    Should I buy it?

    check out the gaming laptops toshiba makes. i have an almost 4 year old toshiba qosmio x305 that can still hang with man of today's games. no, i cannot run new games such as the witcher 2, skyrim, and some other hardware intensive games at ultra settings but they can be run with high or medium settings without a single frame rate issue. i bought it brand new for something like $1,265 after taxes.

    starting at $949.99 is the toshiba qosmio x770. it's a pre-built gaming laptop. after looking at it, i may go ahead and make the purchase. you can also go for a customized x770 starting at $1,049. compared to overpriced bullshit like alienware, i think toshiba's pricing is very reasonable.

    http://www.toshibadirect.com/td/b2c/laptop-model.jsp?family=qosmio&model=X770&lid=CFAMqosmio_SeriesLinkX770

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