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Thread: laptop buying advice ~£1000

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    laptop buying advice ~£1000

    I'm currently at university, and I have grown tired of lugging my desktop computer around with me when I move around.

    So I'm looking to buy a laptop, but there are SOO many. I havent bought one before so I dont even know where to start. I've tried looking around, but there arent so many comparison reviews, and the "top 10" style lists all have different models in.

    I will use it for browsing, music, watching films (at my desk mainly) and gaming. I would prefer a 15-17 inch screen.

    I am looking to spend around £1000 but I can go up to £1500 if its really worth it. I want it to at least come close to my current desktop's performance, which has a Q6600 2.4ghz processor and a HD4850 graphics card. If I can get that for less, then great.

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    Re: laptop buying advice ~£1000

    Get a Shuttle or SFF PC and a nice screen. Laptops are a false economy for gaming and are expensive.

    Both my Shuttle SFF PCs are very easy to move around on the train as they only weigh a few kgs. I have Shuttle bags for both of them. Unlike a laptop it could be upgraded too.


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    Re: laptop buying advice ~£1000

    Dell xps 17s crop up on ebay every so often with a gt 555m. Occasionally there'll be one with a 1080p 3d screen and an i7 2630qm too for under £900. That would come pretty close graphically to your current pc and it would wipe the floor with it cpu wise.
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    Re: laptop buying advice ~£1000

    MSI Gaming laptops seem to be decently specd at the buget you posted....



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    Re: laptop buying advice ~£1000

    The GT555M will actaully be much slower than a desktop HD4850. A Mobility Radeon HD 4850 has the same GPU as the HD4850 but runs at 500MHZ and is considered a faster card than a GT555M. The desktop version has the GPU clocked 25% higher at 625MHZ.

    Also the GT555M comes in both DDR3 and GDDR5 versions. The DDR3 version will be much slower.

    The MSI laptops are the following:

    http://www.overclockers.co.uk/showpr...d=1828&subcat=

    http://www.scan.co.uk/products/156-m...-webcam-win7-h

    http://www.scan.co.uk/products/156-m...-ray-usb3-win7

    There are both GDDR3 and GDDR5 versions of the HD5870. The GDDR5 version is slower than a desktop HD5770 and is closer to an HD5750 or HD4850.

    I was in the same situation as the OP. The first time I bought a desktop replacement - it was a waste of time in retrospect. The second time I bought an SFF PC. People are still surprised at how small my SFF gaming PCs are!
    Last edited by CAT-THE-FIFTH; 06-08-2011 at 03:14 PM.


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    Re: laptop buying advice ~£1000

    Quote Originally Posted by CAT-THE-FIFTH View Post
    Get a Shuttle or SFF PC and a nice screen. Laptops are a false economy for gaming and are expensive.

    Both my Shuttle SFF PCs are very easy to move around on the train as they only weigh a few kgs. I have Shuttle bags for both of them. Unlike a laptop it could be upgraded too.
    i'd tend to agree with this. for the max price given you could get an amazing pc and monitor for the same price and put it into a smaller case.

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    Re: laptop buying advice ~£1000

    Thats an interesting idea. I thought that those mini PCs were normally just laptops without a screen, but apparently not.

    I already have a half decent screen from my desktop that would be gathering dust otherwise, since I'm donating my PC to my parents as a HTPC and they already have a big TV for it.

    So I guess that would be the best option. I'm even less sure about this market though, do I just buy one of their mobo/case packs and then get the rest of the parts myself?

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    Re: laptop buying advice ~£1000

    Gt555m is not bad at all imo even if it's a little slower than a mobility 4850. Anyhow, I've been out of the loop for 3 weeks, are there any llano laptops out cat? I'm looking for a laptop for around £900 maximum at the moment and I'm not sure what to get.... amazon de has some interesting options.
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    Re: laptop buying advice ~£1000

    A Shuttle are the smallest SFF gaming PCs AFAIK. They come partially completed so are very easy to build. OTH,they are a bit more expensive than mini-ITX based builds and use proprietary parts. You can do a cheaper build with the Lian Li Q08:

    http://www.silentpcreview.com/lianli-pcq08

    It weighs 2.7KG and measures (W) 279mm x (H) 333mm x (D) 407mm.

    Here is a preview of the Shuttle SH67H3:

    http://www.bit-tech.net/hardware/pcs...s-its-sh67h3/2

    It measures 323(L) x 208(W) x 196(H) mm.

    Quote Originally Posted by nibbler View Post
    Gt555m is not bad at all imo even if it's a little slower than a mobility 4850. Anyhow, I've been out of the loop for 3 weeks, are there any llano laptops out cat? I'm looking for a laptop for around £900 maximum at the moment and I'm not sure what to get.... amazon de has some interesting options.
    Let me have a look although I suspect a GT555M might be the best for around £900. OTH,OcUK have a MSI laptop with an older generation Core i7 and a Mobility Radeon HD5870 for £999:
    http://www.overclockers.co.uk/showpr...d=1828&subcat=


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    Re: laptop buying advice ~£1000

    i looked at that laptop too. It seemed like the best deal I could find, but compared to a desktop its still nothing.

    I have this so far:



    £586 if they still do that hexus deal for delivery.

    i have a 1TB hard drive, a DVD drive and a spare copy of windows already.

    I was kind of concerned about the 300W PSU included, but their online calculator says I can have 8 usb devices and still only use 298W, and only use 280 with a typical setup.

    Any thoughts?

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    Re: laptop buying advice ~£1000

    Quote Originally Posted by joz12345 View Post
    i looked at that laptop too. It seemed like the best deal I could find, but compared to a desktop its still nothing.

    I have this so far:



    £586 if they still do that hexus deal for delivery.

    i have a 1TB hard drive, a DVD drive and a spare copy of windows already.

    I was kind of concerned about the 300W PSU included, but their online calculator says I can have 8 usb devices and still only use 298W, and only use 280 with a typical setup.

    Any thoughts?
    An HD6870 might be OK with the 300W PSU as GTX460 1GB cards work with it and the Shuttle PSUs are usually decent. Shuttle do sell a 500W SFF PSU too:

    http://www.expansys.com/shuttle-pc63...=base&ito=1701

    However,I would not be pushing the PSU within an inch of its life in the long run. An HD6850 1GB would be a safer bet.

    Also,the RAM needs to be dual channel and the H67 chipset cannot be used for overclocking. I would get the standard Core i5 2400 or Core i5 2500.
    Last edited by CAT-THE-FIFTH; 06-08-2011 at 06:27 PM.


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    Re: laptop buying advice ~£1000

    No, H57 is the first i5 not the sandy bridge i5 . . . hang on, scan's got that wrong it is an H67 not H57

    Ram is only dual channel not triple channel, so go for a 2x4gb or 2x2gb kit

    The H67 means no overclocking so drop down to the plain i5 2500 or the i5 2400
    There's no Z68 mini-ITX motherboard yet so you are going to be stuck with H61 or H67, zotac are going to but it's not out yet.
    Sorry it is http://www.eclipsecomputers.com/prod...Z68ITXAE&af=50
    this would allow scope for a high end mini-ITX system

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    Re: laptop buying advice ~£1000

    Quick build
    zotac Z68ITX-A-E http://www.eclipsecomputers.com/prod...Z68ITXAE&af=50 £128
    i5 2500k http://www.scan.co.uk/products/intel...-cache-95w-oem £155

    case options
    lian-li pc-q11 http://www.scan.co.uk/products/lian-...%28atx-fits%29 £81 uses full atx psu so you can carry your current psu over, max card length 24cm (9.5inch)
    Silverstone SG06 http://www.scan.co.uk/products/silve...00w-80plus-psu £81, microatx psu 300w included, however a silmline dvd will be needed, max card length 22.8cm (9inch)
    Lian Li PC-Q08 http://www.scan.co.uk/products/lian-...%28atx-fits%29 £96 uses ATX PSU, has a top 120mm fan mount which you can fit a corsair H50 (ie single 25mm fan + 25mm rad) 2nd hard drive cage can be removed for up to 300mm video cards.
    Silverstone SG07 http://www.scan.co.uk/products/silve...e-2-full-slots £155 comes with a very good 600w psu but will take any ATX psu (the psu that comes with it has custom short cables) silm line dvd needed, but can fit any length graphic card on the market (12.2inch) and has very good cooling

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    Re: laptop buying advice ~£1000

    Yes, im stupid

    This is fine right?


    I didnt plan on any overclocking anyway, I just thought the K on the end of the cpu was worth 50p. I guess getting a retail version is better if there is no other benefit.

    Pob - TBH I dont mind if its not so upgradeable, I would be happy with my Q6600 and cheap DDR2 ram for another few years.

    edit: didnt see your last post, i guess i have more to consider
    Last edited by joz12345; 06-08-2011 at 07:13 PM.

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    Re: laptop buying advice ~£1000

    The Asus HD6850 1GB has a very wide cooler.

    The HD6850 1GB cards are quite expensive on Scan but either the rebranded VTX one they sell or the Sapphire or XFX ones will fit.

    OTH,what HD4850 model do you have?? This may also work.

    Edit!!

    Some of the parts are also on offer this weekend:

    http://www.scan.co.uk/todayonly/inde..._icmp=AkaIX3H4


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    Re: laptop buying advice ~£1000

    The main issue with the Silverstone SG05,SG06 and SG08 are the fact they are steel cases and weigh more than the Shuttle SH67H3 and Q08. The Shuttle SFF PCs do not weigh much due to the SFF components they use. OTH,of course they use propriety parts as I mentioned earlier.

    If you don't mind sticking with your older parts then this older Shuttle model would work with your current parts:

    http://www.scan.co.uk/products/shutt...-300-sata-raid

    It uses the X38 chipset.

    This one uses the X48 chipset:

    http://www.expansys.com/shuttle-sx48...=base&ito=1701

    I have the older SD37P2 which I bought in late 2006 and it still works now although a few of the SATA ports are a tad flaky now. I am running a mildly overclocked Q6600 and an HD5850 1GB in it ATM.

    Edit!!

    I think the second Shuttle uses DDR2 but I would check as there is a DDR3 version too and the website is vague about the version.
    Last edited by CAT-THE-FIFTH; 06-08-2011 at 07:30 PM.


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