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hdragon
07-17-2007, 08:51 AM
I will be living off campus this year, so i decided to get a laptop, just a for the sake of it :D. I look over dell website and thought they have the monthly payment option. ( If anyone has done it, could u tell me more then). Well, im not sure if i should get a laptop from dell. As far as i know, dell is more expensive, and i wouldnt want to spent too much money on something that i could get it somewhere cheaper.

I was thinking about a gaming laptop, since im majoring in computer science, and i need a strong graphic computer. Any advice would be appreciated.

indigo0086
07-17-2007, 08:55 AM
You need a computer with a nice video card and processor if you're doing game design, but moreso for gaming. I'm doing comp sci and most of the stuff I'm doing (in class at least) doesn't require substantial amount of computing power.

hdragon
07-17-2007, 09:15 AM
Well, i have a desktop already, but bc im living off campus, i wouldnt want to waste time to go back and forth from my place to school. School's computer's graphic is not that great for graphic, so i wouldnt bother to work with it. So many restriction put on the school's computer anyways.

indigo0086
07-17-2007, 09:18 AM
Can't you bring your desktop to your dorm? If you want a gaming pc then you should get one, but having a nice gaming pc and being in comp sci aren't mutually exclusive. I'd just get one because it would last you many years in the future.

hdragon
07-17-2007, 09:21 AM
well, i will bring my comp to my apartment. But i would only spend most of my time in school, instead of going home. The laptop is a secondary tool to work and play.

indigo0086
07-17-2007, 09:28 AM
You could check out Alienware they are specifically designed for games, but dell has a lineup for gaming, and Alienware is kind of expensive. Just make sure you try and get a dual (possibly quad) core pc and you'll be gaming quite well.

abachler
07-17-2007, 09:48 AM
Dell has the best technical support. If you intend to do your own technical support, then any old brand is ok. We use Dell at work, because if a system goes down we want it fixed asap.

QuestionC
07-17-2007, 12:27 PM
Any modern notebook will probably be able to handle anything you do as part of a computer science major... even if you do a lot of graphics projects.
Dell will rip you off. I have had good experiences with using Staples Laptops (http://www.staples.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/CategoryDisplay?ts=1184658589143&secondlevelCategoryId=10912&firstlevelCatName=Products&firstlevelCategoryId=12292&langId=-1&storeId=10001&prodCatType=1&cm_re=CATS_ALL*TECHNOLOGY*Computers%2B%2526%2BPDAs&catalogId=10051&categoryId=10113&secondlevelCatName=Technology)
Pay close attention to the battery you get, it matters. You don't want to buy a laptop with, say, a 4-cell battery.

JaWiB
07-17-2007, 12:39 PM
I've had good experiences with Dell (I have a Latitude D820). Their prices seemed reasonable to me, too.

VirtualAce
07-17-2007, 01:20 PM
Any modern notebook will probably be able to handle anything you do as part of a computer science major... even if you do a lot of graphics projects.


Simply not true. Most notebooks lag far behind in the graphic card department because most notebook users are not using them for graphics. Besides where there is speed as in a next gen graphics card there is heat and a lot of it. I've seen the fan on my video card and I'm not sure a smaller more compact version of it would even be possible given the amount of heat it would put out.

I don't know what your courses will require you to do but my guess is it won't consist of shaders or any large projects which require a lot of graphics. So in that sense a notebook should suit your needs. But if the projects get large or complex or use modern technologies like shaders, post processing effects, floating point render targets, branched shaders, etc, etc.....then a laptop/notebook most certainly will be inadequate. Based on the lame college projects I've seen in my stay here at cprog you should be ok. Unless of course you are attending Full Sail or something. Computer Science is not about graphics and not about games. Far from it.

QuestionC
07-17-2007, 03:01 PM
I should probably back up my "Dell will rip you off" claim. I picked the cheapest laptop I could find from Dell's catalog "As Advertised" section, and compared it to the first close price laptop I could find on Staples.

HP Pavilion DV9540US Notebook PC vs Dell XPS M1330
Both cost 1,299
Both use Intel® Core™ 2 Duo T5250
HP comes w/ 2 Gigs of memory. Dell only has 1 Gig. I don't have timing info.
HP comes w/ 240 GB hard drive. Dell only has 120GB. Both are 5400 RPM.
Dell comes with a 2 Megapixel Webcam
HP comes with a 17 Inch display. Dell comes with a 13.3 inch display.
HP comes with Vista Premium. Dell comes with Vista Home.
HP comes with NVIDIA GeForce 8600M GS. Dell comes with a Intel® Integrated Graphics Media Accelerator X3100.
HP Comes with an 8-Cell Battery. Dell comes with a 4-Cell Battery.
Both come with a 1 year warranty.
Couldn't really get meaningful details on their DVD burners or Sound

Now, I know this is just an anecdotal comparison, but even then... the comparison sides overwhelmingly against Dell. And it's so arbitrarily easy to find examples like this.

Sentral
07-17-2007, 03:31 PM
I can't believe people actually buy into this Dell bull.........

mike_g
07-17-2007, 03:38 PM
I was looking at the HP laptops in staples the other day. Was tempted to buy one too. They had a nice design and screen. When buying a laptop make sure it has a good screen, mine sucks :(

Also try and get as long a warranty as possible. Laptop components can be difficult and expensive to replace. The batteries also tend to die.

Rashakil Fol
07-17-2007, 04:39 PM
...

Wait: Are you agreeing or are you disagreeing with QuestionC?

prog-bman
07-17-2007, 04:58 PM
I think he was not not agreeing. :D

hdragon
07-17-2007, 05:20 PM
The only thing i want to buy from dell is because they give u more option in customize the laptop, as well as the monthly payment plan. I wouldnt want to spend that much money at once though, gotta pay for my rent and other tuition stuff. However, i know that computer science class wont require graphic but i would want a nice graphic laptop in order to do side project. Somehow my classes' times are not close to each other, and i have to stay in the hub or do something b4 the next class. I wouldnt want to spend a little amount of money on some crappy cheap laptops, but has to be something good that let me do some regular works just as with my desktop.

@QuestionC:
Thank u for ur info, i will be looking in to it :cool:

DavidP
07-17-2007, 09:05 PM
Dell has some of the best prices out there. I searched long and hard for my current laptop, and Dell beat out Toshiba, HP, Sony, IBM, and Mac on the prices. Dell is pretty much the cheapest computer you can get without getting crap hardware (you know...something like eMachines).



I should probably back up my "Dell will rip you off" claim.


I think that this particular deal you found is a fluke. I check prices pretty often, and Dell usually beats them all out.

I'm not saying Dell builds the best quality computers in the world...but they usually have the best bang for your buck.



The only thing i want to buy from dell is because they give u more option in customize the laptop, as well as the monthly payment plan.


I wanted a laptop that could do graphics as well. As a college student, my laptop is more of a "desktop replacement". There are lots of Dells that let you upgrade to a GeForce or an ATI graphics card in your laptop. Mine came with an ATI Mobility Radeon X1300 (I believe it has 256 MB of video mem)

By the way...if you are a student, lots of companies give student discounts. Both Dell and Mac do for sure, and I am sure other companies will as well. Look into that.

vart
07-17-2007, 11:14 PM
I agree that Dell gives a reasonable price for thier laptops... But working 3 years on the Dell - I will not spent my money anymore on it...

Its quality is not sutisfying - Maximum - it is equal to the price...

If I'd buy a notebook today - I'll go for IBM Thinkpad definitely. Their prices are high, but they give the comfort in usage I could never achieve with any of the Dell's I was using...

@nthony
07-18-2007, 12:30 AM
Dude... you're getting a Dell!

Yoshi
07-23-2007, 10:31 PM
I have a Dell XPS M1210, because it is the only one in the sea that I want:

-T7200. Would have gone with Asus if they have a brain to actually put a T7200 on it instead of the T5500.
-Dedicated GFX on an ultraportable -- now that's a huge floor cleaner.
-a pair of 9 cells at start - Nope. no one I see around. I can go ~6 hours on The Sims 2 Pets.

The M1310 is a good choice if you moderately game and don't want to break your back carrying it. (4lb!) and don't compare a 13.3" with a 17", please. They are for different audience and will cost considerably more.

firyace
07-24-2007, 09:31 AM
Don't even think about buying an IBM Lenovo or Thinkpad!
I seriously had one before (centrino single core 1.8) for $1700 and it was basic crap. The harddrive periodically overheats and the monitor had three dead pixels. Even with fresh install it was slow as hell and it periodically stucks with the harddrive banging, not to mention the customer telephone support just does not help.

I returned it to the local retail shop with full refund after 3 days of fustration and are scared of buying a laptop for a year.

Then I bought the Dell 6400 laptop centrino duo and I had no problems with it. Its cheap ($1000), and its hardware is simply not bad at all. I have never deal with Dell's customer support, but thats simply I never have to.

Just be sure to get a fresh install right after you get the computer, its unuseable with the stock installation.

CreatedByShadow
07-29-2007, 07:05 PM
Why not just build your own laptop?

Buy a bare bone laptop configuration ( if needed I can supply you with some websites ) and buy some parts. Building your own rig(s) always seem to be a bit cheaper.

At least this is what I'm doing for my next laptop.

indigo0086
07-29-2007, 07:09 PM
I think the term is desktop replacement. It's hard to really Build a laptop properly. God knows why, there would be a massive market for it.

hdragon
07-29-2007, 07:59 PM
Why not just build your own laptop?

Buy a bare bone laptop configuration ( if needed I can supply you with some websites ) and buy some parts. Building your own rig(s) always seem to be a bit cheaper.

At least this is what I'm doing for my next laptop.

Yeah, that'll be great. I've never built laptop b4, but i guess it should be pretty much the same as desktop (Hopefully :D).

indigo0086
07-30-2007, 06:08 AM
http://www.tomshardware.com/2005/05/04/building_your_dream_notebook/index.html

CreatedByShadow
07-30-2007, 05:30 PM
Yeah, that'll be great. I've never built laptop b4, but i guess it should be pretty much the same as desktop (Hopefully :D).

It's not difficult just a bit time consuming.

SlyMaelstrom
07-30-2007, 06:48 PM
The idea of saving money surely is not a priority, because do-it-yourself PCs are usually more expensive than an off-the-rack model with comparable equipment.Quoi? Looks like someone doesn't want to insult their advertisers.

Anyway, the only useful thing I see out of that article is the link to http://www.abs.com which is the only real notebook DIY seller that I know of, however, their barebones appear to be severely outdated. Someone more experienced in DIY notebooks might know better deals though. I would always ebay laptop processors, though. Much, much cheaper.

QuestionC
07-31-2007, 07:51 AM
The M1310 is a good choice if you moderately game and don't want to break your back carrying it. (4lb!) and don't compare a 13.3" with a 17", please. They are for different audience and will cost considerably more.

Sorry about that. After looking again a bit more closely, I do feel that was a really bad comparison. Dell laptops are much more competitive than I indicated.

CreatedByShadow
07-31-2007, 01:15 PM
Here are few websites that sell some pretty good barebones.

http://www.rkcomputer.net
http://www.rjtech.com

Im picking a Clevo for my next barebone setup.

@nthony
08-01-2007, 01:46 AM
I wouldn't recommend laptop building just yet. Laptops, unlike desktops, are highly size-oriented, meaning that manufacturers may often make/design custom parts to specifically cut down on size. Since this is not an issue in a PC, generic parts can be manufactured for most motherboard/case combos at factory-line prices and installed easily. The same cannot be said for laptops, unless you're willing to put up with a chunkier, less fitted product, in which case, you're probably better of going with a desktop in the first place anyways.

CreatedByShadow
08-01-2007, 10:55 AM
I wouldn't recommend laptop building just yet. Laptops, unlike desktops, are highly size-oriented, meaning that manufacturers may often make/design custom parts to specifically cut down on size. Since this is not an issue in a PC, generic parts can be manufactured for most motherboard/case combos at factory-line prices and installed easily. The same cannot be said for laptops, unless you're willing to put up with a chunkier, less fitted product, in which case, you're probably better of going with a desktop in the first place anyways.

That isn't necessarily always true. When you purchase a barebone laptop, it already comes with some basic parts (CPU,RAM,etc.) you just have to worry about everything else.

@nthony
08-01-2007, 04:05 PM
That isn't necessarily always true. When you purchase a barebone laptop, it already comes with some basic parts (CPU,RAM,etc.) you just have to worry about everything else .Which is exactly my point. What are you going to fit into that? generic PC components? laptop components built for other laptop's in mind? or propietary components which will be incredibly expensive that fit only into your laptop frame?
Either way, its a bad deal, generic PC components will require that your laptop frame is relatively large, defeating much of the purpose of a laptop. Trying to fit components into your laptop that were specifically designed for other frames may prove largely unsuccesful and costly. And buying propietary components specifically intended to fit into your frame only is, needless to say, going to be costly in and of itself.

SlyMaelstrom
08-01-2007, 06:29 PM
Actually, from my experience Barebone laptops come with everything that doesn't have a size standard. They commonly come with the motherboard, the GPU, and the optical drive. Things it doesn't come with is the CPU, the RAM, and the HDD. Basically the items that have a standard form factor throughout laptops. It's almost exactly like a barebone PC, the exception being that, as you said, the parts that are included are frequently custom to the casing.

I personally can't wait to buy an ASUS C90S for my E6600 when I upgrade to an E6850. I just love the idea of a barebone laptop that takes a desktop processor.