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Old 10-19-2009, 06:23 AM   #1
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Default Laptops: Core i7 or High-end Core 2 Duo? (limited budget)

Hi, I'm looking to purchase a new laptop within the coming months, probably by December or January. I'm stuck in deciding whether I should get a laptop with a Core i7 or high-end Core 2 Duo. I've been holding off on buying a laptop for about a year now, just because I've been waiting for the Core i7 mobile, but after thinking about it, with my budget I probably would only get the lowest one (720QM). My budget is probably about $1200, and maybe instead of Core i7, I could get a really good Core 2 Duo processor. I'm hoping this laptop would last me 4-5 years down the line, however it's hard to tell because technology changes so often.

I'm also aware that if I wait even longer, the more energy efficient i7's will be out, allowing me to have more laptop battery life and portability, while the current i7 for laptops will probably only last about one hour.

I'd be using this laptop for gaming every now and then (waiting for StarCraft 2). Besides games, I am also interested in having the ability to run virtual machines under an Ubuntu Linux host, without a slow in performance.

My current laptop (since April 2006):
Intel Core Duo @ 1.66 GHz
2 x 1 GB DDR2 @ 533 MHz
Intel 945 Express Graphics Card
80 GB Hard Drive

Please share your ideas, Thanks!
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Old 10-19-2009, 12:26 PM   #2
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Default Re: Laptops: Core i7 or High-end Core 2 Duo? (limited budget)

For better price to performance, go for the higher speed core 2 duo, or dual core over core i7.
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Old 10-19-2009, 12:44 PM   #3
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Default Re: Laptops: Core i7 or High-end Core 2 Duo? (limited budget)

Go with the i7. The dual core won't last you 4-5 years especially in gaming.
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Old 10-19-2009, 01:32 PM   #4
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Default Re: Laptops: Core i7 or High-end Core 2 Duo? (limited budget)

laptops come with core i7?! i thought the highest they went was only core 2 duo...
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Old 10-19-2009, 02:26 PM   #5
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Default Re: Laptops: Core i7 or High-end Core 2 Duo? (limited budget)

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Originally Posted by theshadowxx View Post
laptops come with core i7?! i thought the highest they went was only core 2 duo...
I was wondering the same thing.... Last I heard the quads were just being introduced in the mobile line.
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Old 10-19-2009, 03:43 PM   #6
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Default Re: Laptops: Core i7 or High-end Core 2 Duo? (limited budget)

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Originally Posted by theshadowxx View Post
laptops come with core i7?! i thought the highest they went was only core 2 duo...
It's actually been quite a while now ever since the core i7 were incorporated into laptops (namely Sager Notebooks).

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Go with the i7. The dual core won't last you 4-5 years especially in gaming.
I don't think you should plan to game 4-5 years with a laptop lol (and by game you mean high spec requiring ones?).
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Old 10-19-2009, 04:38 PM   #7
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Default Re: Laptops: Core i7 or High-end Core 2 Duo? (limited budget)

I vote Core 2 Duo.
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Old 10-19-2009, 09:16 PM   #8
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Default Re: Laptops: Core i7 or High-end Core 2 Duo? (limited budget)

For gaming, I don't mean the high-spec ones, just moderate. I'd just like a system that, if something interests me later on, I would be able to play it without having to upgrade my system. I don't play too many games anyway
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Old 10-20-2009, 10:47 AM   #9
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Default Re: Laptops: Core i7 or High-end Core 2 Duo? (limited budget)

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I don't think you should plan to game 4-5 years with a laptop lol.

My sentiments exactly.

I think you could do better buying a very minimalistic laptop with focuses on battery life and portability for usage in classes, work, whatever your reasoning for having a laptop is, and then building a desktop for at home/dorm, with the split budget you could probably build a better desktop with the leftover money than you could afford to put gaming capabilities into a laptop. It'd also be easier to upgrade in the future.

Unless you need to game-on-the-go.
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Old 10-20-2009, 11:13 AM   #10
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Default Re: Laptops: Core i7 or High-end Core 2 Duo? (limited budget)

I've been looking at HP's new "Envy" line and they've got i7 builds with some good mobile graphics cards, however they surpass your budget (~$1600 starting point, I believe).

The i7 will hands-down perform better than a Core 2 Duo, and will offer you newer technology. You'd also want to pay attention to the graphics card since you'll be gaming once in a while. I would suggest looking into current i7 builds with graphics cards for reference. I'm not sure how manageable the prices are yet, so I'll do some more research later.

Would this be a desktop replacement for you? Or will you literally be carrying it around all the time?

(And I have to ask... do you go to USC?)

Cheers,

Chris
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