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Old 12-05-2006, 02:29 PM   #1
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Default Buying a laptop...

Hey everyone.

I'm looking to buy a laptop...

It will be an Intel Core 2 DUO (I do alot of 3D rendering, and might Edit music, etc on it), have a good graphics card to perform in 3D programs and games, preferably have a 17 inch screen, have at least 2GB's of memory, and preferably 2 big hard drives configured for RAID.

Portability isn't really an issue, as it's only probably going to stay in the house alot of the time anyway, but will allow me to move around.

I'm not sure wheather to get a laptop with the highest performing Intel Core 2 DUO 7600, or go for a lesser one which may suit my needs. Do remember, that 3D rendering is all processor, and I want it to be the fastest it can be.

Also a bit confused as to which graphics core to go with, considering laptop screens resoloutions etc, seem to go alot higher than my desktop 17inch, stated at 1280x1024.

I'm just confused where to go, what else to think about, and if I should even try to build my own, and if so, where do I buy laptop parts.

Also, I'd love a good battery life (Preferably 3 hours or more, but that may be asking too much), and one that performs just as good on battery as on power (I hate laptops that drop everything, slowing it to half speed and what not)

But yeah, basically a desktop equivilent, and just as capable

Thanks alot for the help

MY IDEA:

My idea is to have it as my main computer, with internet, connected up to a MIDI keyboard in my room for dedicated music making, and then I can take it around the house to work on 3D and that when I want to. So a good sound card is needed too, but, I could probably buy a USB one, if I couldn't get one with a real dedicated sound board.
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Old 12-05-2006, 02:37 PM   #2
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Default Re: Buying a laptop...

whew, you're looking to spend a lot of money for a high performance laptop. How much are you willing to pay for it? If 3d rendering is what you use it for, I would get top of the line CPU and a fair amount of RAM too. Max out on the video card (basically getting the best money can buy). I'll have to do some research later because I have to get back to work, but right off the top of my head, how about the high end Dell XPS systems?
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Old 12-05-2006, 02:50 PM   #3
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Default Re: Buying a laptop...

Haha, yeah I just want it to last a while with me basically, and be great at rendering. My AMD Athlon 64 3500+ is okay on my desktop, but it isn't as fast as I'd like at it.
Since 3D Studio Max likes Dual cores/Quad cores, having an Intel Core 2 DUO will be worth it!

RAM is an issue also yes, as for textures and that, at really high resoloutions, I need the memory to keep the processor happy

I think the fastest mobile GPU capable of playing games also is the 7900 but I may be wrong...

A Dell XPS might be worth considering. I'll have to have a look at the range

I'm willing to spend in the region of around £2-3,000. Alot I know, especally since the best system I could come up with using Micro Direct for a desktop system cost £1,900 for the same type of spec...

EDIT:

It may just be me trying to aim for the apsoloute BEST performance, when I really don't need it. So I'm also looking for suggestions on wheather getting the BEST Dual Core 2 DUO is the way to go compared to a version below that may only be slightly slower, and won't notice a difference.

So don't let me go completly money mad, if I can get a system capable of doing what I do, and doing it well at a fraction of the cost of a ultra high end that may only be a few MHZ faster.

EDIT 2:

Hehe, look at this bad thing :

http://www.dell.com/content/products...=design#tabtop
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Old 12-05-2006, 03:04 PM   #4
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Default Re: Buying a laptop...

Sorry to bump, but using the system above in my link, The Dell XPS, configured to the best customisation money can buy, comes to:

£3686.72 or $7282.00, haha...

I could probably drop the 200GB hard drive for a 120GB RAID model, but it comes with a X800 Radeon, and Core 2 DUO 7600 (The best out), and 4GB's of the fastest memory available on it.

2 year warranty, repair at home, and accidental damage 2 years free, and a free Premium Media Centre edition Vista when it arrives in the shops exception card.

Might be a bit too much money definetly, but I'm on the right track now, thanks

Am I mad?...
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Old 12-05-2006, 07:13 PM   #5
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Default Re: Buying a laptop...

Take a look at the ASUS laptops. Very well made, tend to have nice high end video cards in them for great prices. They're a major maker of motherboards, ODM/OEM laptops, and other computer parts.
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Old 12-06-2006, 08:13 AM   #6
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Default Re: Buying a laptop...

Thanks Yeah, I was looking at the new G2 laptops, yet, I'm not sure wheather a X1700GPU will be up to the task of 3D modelling and light gaming of the latest stuff.

I'm not going to get the Dell listed above by the way
It came in at 55 mins battery life, and isn't exactly as portable as I'd like, as its more a desktop.

I'm wondering wheather I should get a laptop with just a 3D card for modelling and so won't run games very well... Like there are a few laptops with a Quadro chip built in.
But that'll probably be limiting me, and would suit probably a latest gaming chip instead which may actually offer more performance...

I'm also worried about Widescreen, as alot tend to be now, yet I believe that'll limit me too, since alot of programs/games still don't work right with widescreen settings.

Plus, looking at some more Dell laptops, I'm confused as to what processor is really the best to go for. I mean, looking at the specs, there are only slight differences in MHZ between each one, yet costs alot more:

Intel® Core™2 Duo T5500 (1.66GHz 2MB L2 cache 667MHz FSB) [subtract £60.00]
Intel® Core™2 Duo T5600 (1.83GHz 2MB L2 cache 667MHz FSB) [Included in Price]
Intel® Core™2 Duo T7200 (2.0GHz 4MB L2 cache 667MHz FSB) [add £100.00]
Intel® Core™2 Duo T7400 (2.16GHz 4MB L2 cache 667MHz FSB) [add £230.00]
Intel® Core™2 Duo T7600 (2.33GHz 4MB L2 cache 667MHz FSB) [add £430.00]

So so confused... I want the best for rendering speeds, BUT, if there isn't really going to be that much difference in speed, the price premium probably isn't worth getting the full 7600 model for instance...

And since you can't upgrade laptops too much, when new technologies come out, I'd probably like to switch to get even faster speeds (But not for about 3 years since 3D modelling doesn't really take any more processing as time goes by, unlike games), in which case, spending £2000-3000 may just be a waste.

EDIT:

What about this:

http://www.dell.com/content/products...=19&l=en&s=dhs

It has a great gaming card too, which will also push polygons in 3D modelling to the highest I can possibly muster.

EDIT 2:

Final Price:
$3,999.00
Not bad, ends up to be 2034.28 UK pounds, with the T7600 (Has a better battery life apparently as wlel as speed), 2GB's memory, 100GB SATA 7200RPM hard drive, Media Centre 2005 with Viesta Home Premium exception card, and of course, I can't forget the Nvidia 7950GTX with 512MB of mem!
And all those pretty lights, OoOoO...

I'm serious about this one. As soon as I get my student loan, I'll buy it.
When I get the money from my job for it after about 4 months, place this in a seperate bank account, and then pay the loan back when I'm earning 15 grand or more, which I'll already have the money for.
Plus, theres no interest!

Nice huh?!

I could drop the Nvidia 7950GTX to the 7900GTX, which will save me a few quid, since I probably won't be getting many new games, and when Direct X 10 comes out, it'll be pretty pointless anyway once it gets started, but, for 3D modelling should be perfect.
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