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Nov 9, 2004

Last updated July 2020,

Updated: Nov 19th, 2019 - PC Gaming nerds: You must buy a pascal (i.e. 1080, 1070, 1060, 1050ti or 1050) GPU. You get tons more performance per watt, which equates to lower temps, less fan noise, and gobs more better battery life. In addition with the 1060 and higher cards, you get access (with some models) to VR capability

  • 1070 is currently the best value, with the 1080 providing 15% more performance for roughly a 50% markup
  • 1060 provides excellent value
  • 1050 TI is 66% the performance of a 1060
  • 1050 standard is 50% the performance of a 1060

Per Dr. Dork:

Dr. Dork posted:

The numbering scheme has gotten slightly better, since there's no "23478 version of the 1060" stupidity this time around.

1050 < 1050Ti < 1650 < (1650Ti and 1660 non-Ti don't exist for laptops) < 1060 3GB < 1060 6GB < 1660Ti ~= 1070 < 2060 < 1080 ~= 2070 < 2080

The biggest jump in laptop-land is from the 1650 to the 1660Ti, which is a 30-90% increase, depending on game and settings. 1660Ti's are also available in sub-$1000 laptops now, and should be the go-to card for most gamers.

MaxQ really does work. It drops performance by roughly 10-15% compared to non-Max-Q, but does provide substantial thermal savings, which in some cases means a MaxQ card in a well-designed laptop can run neck-and-neck with a non-Max-Q card in a poorly designed laptop. Most of the ones that get recommended in this thread are well-designed laptops, but if you're going off-book you should look up a review to be sure. You're generally not going to see full-fat (non Max-Q) cards in many laptops, though--they're mostly custom-builds or super-high end, and generally only are available for the 2070 and 2080.

More info: (great resource)

1060 is widely considered to be "good enough" for most anything, even for high end gaming nerds, while the 1050 TI is considered "mostly good enough" for most anything while providing quite a bit more value. The 1050 standard is considered "good enough" if you are a casual gamer but need slightly more than baseline GPU. Gaming minimum requirements are generally held back to PS4 or XB1 (and now even Nintendo Switch i.e. nvidia tegra 1) hardware requirements so you're relatively safe for the next 18-24 months, as long as you don't need to do anything too fancy with VR.

Save $$ on Thinkpads:

"B&N gold" or "barnes and noble link", Lenovo laptops generally 25% cheaper than anywhere else on the internet

This one reportedly works as of 5/30/2018:

Ralith posted:

New, working lenovo perks code: PERK*GOLD

This one reportedly works as of 8/11/17:

Other option:


If it's been a while since you bought a laptop, you should know that you can play most Steam games under $25 on the built in Intel HD 4000 (circa 2012) or higher GPU. At medium or probably low settings. Confirm with benchmarks for your specific game but you may be surprised with what you can play these days. Thank you, console gamers running on 2013-era PC hardware (XB1, PS4 etc). 2015-era Broadwell Core i3 starts with HD5500 and is available up to Core i7 HD6000 and even Iris 6100 on select models.

Often Recommended Laptops sorted by OP's whimsy and general price range

Under $300 and not a chromebook: Asus X205 from Microsoft Store for $200 or HP Stream 11 which is a little faster something. They change the model weekly. You're probably looking at something with an 11 inch screen
$300-600 Have you considered used? T420, T430, T440, X220, X230, X240 from Ebay or the Lenovo Outlet are your friends.
$640-1000 in a rough order, T470, T457s/p, X270, Thinkpad Yoga, Macbook Air non-retina, XPS 13
$1000+ In rough order, T570, P70, XPS 15, Macbook retina, Macbook Pro Retina

$850 - x250/x260/x270 - 12.5" "ultraportable" laptop with IPS (better than TN) display in a variety of resolutions. Intel HD graphics are good enough for Steam games under $25. I personally own the x230 and may buy the x270. OP's Top Pick. See also: Dell XPS 13, 2015 Macbook
$650-900 - T460/T470 - 14" do-everything laptop. Comes in a variety of sub-models like the T470s, T470p etc. If you want a good laptop for under $1000 that will last you 4 years of college, buy this.
$900-1000 Lenovo Y50 - this is NOT a Thinkpad, but it is a very reliable "Gaming Laptop" which has gotten a number of upgrades over the last 2 years and is frequently recommended waiting on a new pascal nominee
$900-1000 Yoga - this is a fantastic "convertable" laptop and has gotten great reviews. Comes in Yoga 11, Yoga 13, Yoga 2 Pro (13.3"), Thinkpad Yoga (12.5", 14" and 15") flavors. Maybe consider a surface
$1000+ T550/P70 - 15" do-everything and more laptop. Holds up to 4 sticks of ram, available with Quadro graphics for physX and cuda computational stuff (mathematica, solidworks etc) on the go. If you are in engineering or hard sciences this upgrade might be worthwhile. Also available in a true quad core (8 logical processors)

$850-1200 - XPS 13 13" "ultraportable" laptop with IPS display in 1080p or 3200x1800 QHD+ touchscreen, high build quality, definitely worth looking at. Fits between the T470 and X270 in size and price while having a better screen and build quality. OP's Top Pick. See also: Thinkpad X270, 2016 Macbook

$200 X205 - this is asus' "son of Eee PC" and if you order it from the Microsoft Store direct you can get it for $199, make sure you opt out of the MS Office 365 to get that price. You get what you pay for, not upgradable, only about 20GB of usable space, fast enough for Netflix, Facebook Youtube but not much else. It will probably play many $5-10 steam sale games if you are patient. It does have USB and SD for expansion if you're a masochist. The keyboard and trackpad are mind blowing for the price point, above average (just barely) and the screen is about what you'd find on a quality mid-grade laptop. For $200. An excellent value. Yes this RUNS WINDOWS.

$250 Stream 11 - this is a little faster than the X205 and is priced as such. It will also probably play many $5-10 steam sale games if you are patient. Screen and keyboard are not nearly as nice as the X205 but pretty close. Yes this RUNS WINDOWS.

These do NOT run windows without significant hacking.
Generally buy in at the price/quality point you would like. You get what you pay for generally.
Toshiba makes an Intel powered x86 model with a really nice IPS 1080p screen for about $300
HP can't seem to make a chromebook power adapter that will survive for more than 6 months
Asus/Acer make great chromebooks, the C720 in particular has legendary mod support from the community (they're all rootable for the most part). I have seen very, very few complaints about these devices despite their low specs. If you don't like taking chances this is a Good Buy.
Samsung makes their Chromebook 2 but the Exynos ARM processor is a little wheezy trying to keep up with more than 2 chrome tabs and the screen is 1080p but not amazing apparently

I like charts, have a chart.
Here is a chart I made based purely off my own opinions and no science was actually used, charting general value by price range, assuming three years ownership. Because everyone always buys for 2 years, but ends up hanging on to their laptop for three. What I'm trying to illustrate here is that $400-600 is the most profitable segment for manufacturers. Thar be dragons, etc. Poor build quality, substandard parts, washed out screens, broken hinges all exist in the broken backbone of the Laptop Value curve chart. Have you considered buying a used T420, T430 or X220, X230 from Ebay, or something from the Scratch and Dent section of the Lenovo Outlet store? People get astounding deals at the Lenovo Outlet all the time.

General advice and points to ponder (written probably in 2013 but generally still valid as of January 2017, cleaned up slightly):

17" is too big unless you or your parents have sight problems
Gaming Laptops: Affordable/Durable/Portable/Powerful, pick any two

Thinkpads get a lot of love in this thread, and there's a reason why. IBM began the brand back in the early 1990s, and the basic design hasn't changed a whole lot - a black "bento box" with a blue enter button, black matte finish, ultranav mousepad and the quintessential red trackpoint in the middle of the keyboard.

Most importantly, however, was that IBM's laptop for businesses were built to a higher standard, with a magnesium (metal) frame and more recently composites like fiberglass or carbon fiber. Hinge design hasn't changed much in 15 years and those iconic stainless steel hinges serve a purpose - in most cases they'll support the weight of the laptop if you open it upside down. The hinges also allow you to open the display "flat", a full 180 degrees.

Many consumer laptops have plastic frames that flex and creak, crack and break after only a year or two of use. Many, if not most ThinkPad users are happily chugging away on their thinkpad three, five years after purchase, generally only retiring them when their internals have become woefully obsolete.

ThinkPad laptops are completely seperate from Lenovo "Ideapads".

It's best not to recommend entire brands. For example HP's ProBook series and Dell's 6000 series Latitude laptops are awesome machines on par with a ThinkPad, but HP's consumer line is synonymous with trash, and Dell's offerings are mediocre plastic tupperware at best.


Thinkpad X, T and W series are worth looking at. They are the last of the IBM legacy models with true metal frames. They start respectively at $750, $650 and $750

Lenovo has started shipping a lot of consumer variants of the T430, the T430s, the T430u etc and have dramatic concessions made, like sealed or irreplaceable batteries, worse hinges, plastic frame or all of the above. The X, T and W series all use standard parts, standard screws and you can generally get replacement parts for your laptop in most major countries either same day or next day. Replacement screens can be bought new from third party vendors for about $100.


Sony makes excellent laptops with great screens, but are plagued by terrible driver support. Whatever laptop you buy from sony will get driver support for 6 months, after which point you'll be trapped with outdated drivers and no chance for updates.


There is a dedicated Apple Hardware thread. Apple makes amazing hardware but you're likely to get the best discussion over there. You're welcome to discuss them here however.

Laptop parts:

Intel or AMD?
Intel. AMD is trying to stay relevant in the mobile market, but Intel processors are 1.5 generations ahead of AMD across the board. This means an Intel processor gives you better performance with less heat and more battery life. Intel support in linux for the Core i3, i5, and i7 series along with their HD3000 and HD4000 graphics is very solid. The HD4000 will handle most any casual/indie games you will find on steam, especially at 1366x768

The great resolution debate?
For whatever reason, budget laptops settled on 1024x768, and when widescreen became common, 1366x768 and has stagnated here for years despite business laptops having resolutions as high as 1600x1200 (1.92MP) in the early 2000s. Nowadays you pay a premium for 1920x1080 (2.07MP)... when you can find it.

Generally, for typical content consumption, 1366x768 is acceptable, especially for things like Netflix, web browsing, facebook, takinc classroom notes, etc. Windows 8 in particular seems optimized for consumers using this resolution.

For content creation, i.e. actual work, many people consider 1600x900 to be the bare minimum. For others, especially in graphic design 1920x1080 (1080p) represents a usable workspace.

The screen size debate?
First and foremost, IPS vs TN. IPS is a vastly superior display panel technology both objectively and subjectively. IPS is generally brighter, has better viewing angles, and much better color reproduction, especially when viewed from the side.
TN "glass", or panels are the exact opposite. But they're also a lot cheaper, by about 30%, so you will only see TN panels in cheaper models. There are a wide variety of quality TN panels, but sie by side the TN panel is almost always going to look worse than an IPS. IPS panels are typically either an upgrade or found in flagship models.

Screen size is closely related to resolution. A 1080p display on a 10" screen isn't very usable with today's GUI scaling technology, while on the other end of the spectrum, 1366x768 on a 15" screen is equally as bad. Choose accordingly and to your needs. Some people can and do need 1080p in such a tiny space, and others are fine watching their second hand anime on what's basically a mobile desktop at 1366x768.

The other thing to consider with screen size is heat dissipation. You can technically cram a quad core i7 in to a 10", but you can't realistically cool it even at idle without the fan going in to hairdryer mode. Conversely, if you stick an i3 in a 17" laptop, you probably won't even be aware that it's on. 14" laptops seem to have no problem with heat when powered by an i5, and a 12.5" laptop gets notably warm, almost borderline uncomfortably warm with an i5 in there. Some people are more sensitive to heat than others, expecially if you live in warmer climates like CA, TX, FL etc.

SSD vs mSATA vs Rotational hard drives?

SSDs are the future, Ultrabooks by definition must have them. SSD is a catch-all term for rotational (classic, mechanical) hard drive format drives using solid state technology. A newer standard, called mSATA allows you to cram 256, even 512gb in some instances in to your laptop. Some newer laptops like the Lenovo Yoga feature two mSATA slots with no option for a rotational hard drive.

As of May 2015 SSD prices have plumeted, Samsung is flooding the market with $130 256GB SSDs and sometimes 128GB SSDs can be found for under $90. Factory stock SSDs are generally very reliable, however if you're thinking about buying a laptop and swapping in a higher performance SSD, be very careful, aftermarket SSD brands like OCZ have return rates of almost one in 10 (10%) for certain models (update, they've been bought by another company but they are still less reliable than Samsung or Intel). We have an SSD megathread to help you navigate this topic. You should stick to Samsung or Intel and definitely brows through the excellent SSD thread for up to date info.

Sure, but I need something under $XXX.xx?

So, you walked in to this thread with the nice, round number of $500. Well I have good and bad news for you, the bad news is that inflation has had an impact on the minimum cost for a quality laptop. The good news is that retailers know this and are lining up around the block to sell you a substandard disposable laptop for $499. Do you have the willpower to make the right decision? Well, do ya punk?

Generally, go $600 or go home. Intel has identified $600 as the price point where manufacturers can build a quality machine with acceptable performance for the consumer at a price/profit ratio that the manufacturer can make a profit without going broke and the consumer gets a machine that won't break before you get it home and out of the box.

Or go get a Chromebook for $200-$350 depending on options.

Sure, but I need a gaming laptop! what kind of mobile GPU do I need for sweet headshots?

Expect to get a lot of flak for this, 10 lbs is too much to haul around from dorm to lecture hall, and "sitting down anywhere and gaming" is unrealistic. Nobody actually does this. You've already stopped reading and are posting in the thread, but if you haven't you can expect a lot of people to tell you to buy a gaming desktop and a cheap ultrabook for the same price as your glory hallelujah gaming laptop. Unless you're in the military or work on an oil rig your use case does not represent a good case for a gaming laptop.

There's a chart of mobile GPUs a couple posts down, because we do get a lot of relevant CAD and 3D modeling related questions. I will try and put the most informed Quatro driver posts in here at some point.

sage advice from our previous Glorious Leader:

p.s. R.I.P. old Laptop Megathread, Dec 16, 2009-June 2, 2013

Hadlock fucked around with this message at 22:56 on Jul 10, 2020


Nov 9, 2004

Reserved for: your highly reccomended laptops, sure bet, etc, base model price, rounded up to the next $100

To start:

T430/440 $700 (see note about differing oppinions of the quality of this screen)
X230 $800
Yoga 13 $800
Yoga 11s $800

Apple Macbook $1100
Apple Macbook Pro $1300
Apple Macbook Pro (Retina) akak MBP retina $1500

XPS 12 $1100

Will add as we go on

Also, here's some "best of" from the previous thread

PC Gaming on the HD4000, aka "will LoL, DoTA 2, civilization V etc run on this?"
hd4000 gaming demo @ 1366*768

Architecture/model differences

Intel's Tick-Tock cycle

outdated graphic

x120 (11.5") vs x230 (12.5") vs T400 (14.0")

Macbook Pro 15" vs Macbook Air 13" vs Macbook Air 11.5"

How Lenovo tiers products internally

Full album here:

Screen sizes, pixels-per-inch, Hedwig and the Angry Inch, or why you shouldn't buy a 17" laptop

1920x1080 on a 15" screen looks really crisp. High end phones have a ppi (pixels per inch) of ~320, that 15.2" screen has a ppi of 145. 1600*900 is 120 and 1366*768 is 103. So the HD+ is 17% sharper and the 1080p display is 40% sharper than the base screen. The display on the x230 (12.5") is 125ppi and my Nexus S phone (pretty standard 800x480 resolution on a 4" screen) is 223ppi for comparison.

Screen size, Vertical Resolution, PPI, Description
15" 1080 - 145 ppi hi- end 15" laptop
15" 900 -  120 ppi mid ran 15" laptop
15" 768 -  103 ppi low end 15" laptop

14" 1080 - 151 ppi hi- end 14" laptop
14" 900 -  131 ppi mid ran 14" laptop
14" 768 -  112 ppi low end 14" laptop

13" 1800 - 282 ppi yoga 2 p13" laptop
13" 1600 - 226 ppi MBPr    13" laptop 
13.3 1080- 165 ppi hi- end 13" laptop 
13" 900 -  127 ppi mac bk  13" laptop
12" 768 -  125 ppi mid ran 12" laptop
11" 768 -  135 ppi mac bk  11" laptop

4.9" 1080 - 445 ppi high end Nexus 5
5.0" 1080 - 441 ppi high end Galaxy S4
4.8"  720 - 305 ppi high end Galaxy S3
4.7"  768 - 318 ppi high end Nexus 4
4.0"  480 - 223 ppi low  end Nexus S
3.5"  640 - 325 ppi high end iPhone 5
2.9"  640 - 329 ppi mid rang iPhone 4
Adapters and junk

mDP (Mini Display Port) to HDMI Adapter known to work with Thinkpads, and will do audio + video in one cable to your TV/home theater center.

A Fantastic multi-nation power adapter plug I've used this one in eight different countries, works great.

Cheap Ultrabay drive caddy and youtube instructions on how to remove the DVD cover for most laptops to use with the caddy.

A word on upgrading your wifi
Buy it.

intel advanced wifi ultimate vs advanced
6300 - 802.11 a/g/n

6205 - 802.11 a/b/g/n

How do I upgrade...?

msata port in an x220

RAM bay in x230

Pricing? I have $500 to spend!

It pretty much boils down in to five tiers

$1500 and up - Great machines with quality parts, quad core mobile procesors, build quality still varies widely
$1000 and up - $600-999 models with all the bells and whistles, sweet screen upgrades etc
$600-999 - Ultrabooks and about 80% of the laptop market
$500-600 - Last year's Ultrabooks and 80% of last year's remaining laptop market
$499 and under - tupperware crap that isn't nearly as durable as your mother's fine china. There are some gems here and there

There are exceptions of course, but Intel has flat out said that Ultrabooks are designed to meet a $599-and-up price point

Price history. Laptop prices fluctuate about $125 over the course of the year. Buy low, cry high.

prices as of 10/28/12
Thinkpad x131e (11.6") using the B&N link: $469.06
Thinkpad Edge (14") using the B&N link: $497.26
Thinkpad T430 (14") using B&N link: $623.20
Thinkpad x230 (12.6") using the B&N link: $669.13

prices as of 11/20/12
T430 $584.25 with i5 as the base processor
T430u $584.25 with i5 as the base processor
T430S $721.24 with i5 as the base model
T530 $584.25 with i5 as the base processor
X230 $608.30 also i5 with base model

prices as of 12/11/12
x1 carbon touch $1409.06 i5 base model
t430 $662
T430u $662

T430 $662.15

T430 $649

T430 $662.15

11.6" Macbook Air - $999
12.5" x230 - $711.75
13" Yoga 13 - $934.15
14" T430 - $612

T430 $660

T430 $650

T430 636.75
T430s $696.75
T431s $824.25
T430u $829.00
T530 $662.22
X1 Carbon Touch $1071.75
X1 Carbon $1049.5
x230 $641.67
x230t $1023.20
x131e AMD $499.00
x131e INTEL $649.00
Helix $1343.20
Twist $679.78
L430/L530 $551.65
W530 $1043

Hadlock fucked around with this message at 10:18 on Nov 23, 2013

Nov 9, 2004

Reserved for HD4000, 4600, 5200 charts

If you have an hour, read this:

It looks like, roughly on average, the HD4600 is 25% faster than the HD4000 in most cases, and the 47W HD5200 is 70% faster than the HD4000

I am biased (WookWook) but until the average laptop resolution moves away from 1366x768, this is the graph that matters the most to the average "gamer" who isn't interested in buying a 2-in-1 Spaceheater/"Laptop" combo

i.e. BF3 is playable on the HD5200, which is about as demanding as most games you are going to play. If you aren't playing a game where you're plying a near-photorealistic helicopter, and then a near-photorealistic F-18 fighter jet slams in to you head on at 300mph, and you need to see the ensuing near-photorealistic chaos at 60fps, then the 5200 can probably handle your more normal video games. You could probably use the 5200 in a pinch for BF3, but I wouldn't recommend it as your primary gaming platform.

That said, the HD4000 will eat up most any other game out there, and I'd have no qualms about recommending the HD4600 or 5200 for the casual gamer based on this information.

Also, Nvidia/AMD charts <forthcoming>

Here is a quick reference* Nvidia/AMD chart for BF3 @ med. 1366x768 medium 4xAF

Huh, so the 880M is a marketing bait-and-switch for the Rev. B of the 780M?

It looks like the 820, 830, 840, 850, 860 are all new Maxwell class chips, while the 870 and 880 are last gen Kepler technology. Good to know, thanks sir!

*meant for general use only. Different games will have wildly different results based on the card, manufacturer, resolution, ram etc use at your own risk. Generally these are just to prove wether or not you can play indie games or year old AAA titles on your laptop

more links of usefulness:

Hadlock fucked around with this message at 17:40 on Mar 29, 2014

Nov 9, 2004

RVProfootballer posted:

HDD with a small SSD cache has been sufficient.

I think he's refering to the spec. Ultrabook is a protected name (registered trademark?) of Intel's. There are certain size (maximum thickness) and hardware (power, processor type) requirements to qualify for official Ultrabook branding. You'll never see an AMD laptop marketed as an "Ultrabook".

One of the requirements of Ultrabooks is that at least one drive is an SSD. New for 2013 is that they must have a touchscreen.

Nov 9, 2004

The Bananana posted:

I'd like to piecemeal the new PC in. Could I buy a tower and, while I get money for a proper screen et al, use my year old laptop as the screen?

Nope, but a 15' HDMI cable is about $10 on amazon, and will plug in to the back of most any modern TV. 40" gaming rig! You may need a $3 DVI->HDMI adapter if your card didn't come with one or doesn't have HDMI out for some reason.

Nov 9, 2004

So to clarify product differentiations:

i7 mobile - all quad core except one, all have HD5xxx graphics, all have turbo boost

i5 mobile - all dual core, all have HD4xxx graphics, all have turbo boost

i3 mobile - all dual core, all have HD4xxx graphics, none have turbo boost

or to put it another way

i3 - dual core intel processor

i5 - dual core intel + turbo boost

i7 - + quad core intel (mostly) + turbo boost + HD5xxx graphics

am I missing anything?

Nov 9, 2004

Bob Morales posted:

Nice eBay daily deal for $225

Inspiron 11Z

$225 sounds mediocre at best. medicore screen, keyboard, average quality case, awful touchpad. Get what you pay for etc etc, probably not a bad buy for someone who is going to connect a mouse to it and maybe an external monitor. i3 these days is nothing to sneeze at.

notebook review posted:

The chassis feels reasonably durable thanks to strong internal support under most surfaces. The palmrest and keyboard showed very few signs of flex under strong pressure, but the area just above the keyboard does suffer from a little bit of loose fitting plastics when pressed. Additionally, the slightest bit of pressure will cause the scree lid to bend and flex,

panel offers good color saturation and the LED-backlighting frovides even coverage and helps extend battery life. Contrast is average, and varied depending on the vertical viewing angle. The vertical viewing sweet spot is quite small, meaning colors quickly look washed out when you view the screen from above and look distorted or inverted when viewed from below.

keyboard on the 11z is basically full-size and very comfortable to type on

In fact, we went as far as to call the touchpad on the 11z the worst touchpad ever.

Nov 9, 2004

They may get desperate towards the end of back to school season, but by the time Ivy Bridge came around, mfgs had a good idea of what tablets were going to do to their sales forecasts. The iPad and android tablets were still an unknown sales figure when mfgs made Sandy Bridge purchasing agreements with Intel, and probably why they're still trying to unload Sandy Bridge models. Now through the end of September is likely when you will see the biggest discounts as they burn through the rest of their stock. Expect to see Ivy Bridge chips in Lenovo's "lower end" builds until Intel ramps up production of their mid-range and i3 Haswell chips.

Nov 9, 2004

Anti-Derivative posted:

I quite liked the psudo mechanical looking keyboard on my thinkpad W520. Are the new apple style key-in-body keyboards on the thinkpads better/worse than those?

There are a couple of people who swear that the new thinkpad keyboards are worse, but the overwhelming opinion is that the new keyboards are as good or better than the old ones, and they're certainly still in the top two, right up there with macbook keyboards.

My buddy has a T400 (old style, 2008 era) and a x120 (new style (2010 era), he has no preference. Compared with my x230 (new style, 2012 era) they are all equally good in general.

Nov 9, 2004

Shofixti posted:

Yeah the whole race to the bottom thing between PC manufacturers has really started to screw them. I guess what I'm surprised about is that no PC manufacturer has decided to position itself as the "Apple of PC laptops" for lack of a better term. Just a simplified line up of quality (and I guess pricier) hardware.

This is pretty much the entire argument for Intel's Ultrabooks. A happy medium between craptops and $$ apple laptops. Sort of an "intel stamp of 'not complete poo poo' approval" that hovers around the $600 price point.

Nov 9, 2004

The x131e was slow and the hardware driving it was at End Of Life when it was released, it's mainly been coasting on how awesome the similar x120e was in 2011.

The T430 is a vastly better machine (if slightly larger) and the sandy bridge chip in it is approx 5-6x faster in real world use. Graphics will last you another couple of years for regular things like 1080p youtube, new indie games, etc.

In other words, x131e is in sunset mode of it's lifespan while the T430 is near the beginning to midway through it's usefulness.

Nov 9, 2004

apple posted:

11-inch is jumping from an average of five hours to nine hours of juice, while the 13-inch is being bumped up from seven hours to 12 hours.

Not bad, Apple! $1100 for a 12 hr battery, 13" macbook air with 128gb SSD

Nov 9, 2004

sigma 6 posted:

What is up with the thinkpad sales? Do they happen often? There is one ending tomorrow!! (12% off!)

Sounds like a Haswell Asus or Sager might be a cheaper solution if I am willing to go without the Quadro GPU.

W530 is a great buy as a workstation, if you don't mind a full size, rather large laptop.

Check the OP, look for the there is a link to the B&N gold thing that gives you about a 25% discount over the main retail site. Myself and many (most?) others have used this link.

Nov 9, 2004

sports posted:

While touch-based interfaces are cool, the gimmick wears off quickly and you'll probably end up just using the laptop as you normally would.
Such is the fate of literally every touch screen/convertible laptop I know.

Is it possible for you to post a fact in this thread, or at least a link to at least support your statement? Looking through your ambitious post history in this brand new thread, you aren't contributing anything here.

Nov 9, 2004

Bleh Maestro posted:

I'm excluding apple...and talking about windows laptops.

Macbook Air is just a windows ultrabook with some goofy unix fischer price hybrid OS preinstalled. Windows 8 has some goofy problems, but it's completely normal to install Win 7 on them.

Nov 9, 2004

Bleh Maestro posted:

I also want a full size laptop

13" is full size, it has a full size keyboard, has full size resolution, full size speed/power/memory etc; do you mean you want a heavier laptop, or do you have bad eyesight or something?

Nov 9, 2004

Dell makes a full size 18" tablet now:

Bring your own type M keyboard and bluetooth adapter

Nov 9, 2004

Y410 is $769.00 using the link in the OP

Nov 9, 2004

Intel does in fact support XP for their HD(4000, etc) video drivers.

But, it's time to move on, man.

It's neat to keep around your car from high school for sentiment sake, but there's really no reason to keep an old OS more than 3 years after the new version comes out. Vista/Win7 wasn't a good option initially due to poor driver support for games, but we're over that hurdle and XP driver support is in it's legacy stage at this point.

Nov 9, 2004

fookolt posted:

I'm looking for 2 12-14" laptops at $800 each. Ideally, they'll be thin and light (under 3-3.5 pounds if possible) and also have nice keyboards, battery life, and SSD's (we'll be using them primarily for a whole lot of note taking, using Google Docs and also presenting Powerpoints at conferences).

I'm guessing a ThinkPad of some sort? Are the Haswell models announced and priced out yet?

x230 is a great choice, no SSD but you'll be able to get parts for it in 10 years' time, great keyboard, with the 6 or 9 cell battery they last for 5-10 hrs depending on the battery

You don't really need an SSD for presentations or google docs, but it's a very simple upgrade you can do down the road. Haswell x230/x240 haven't officially been announced yet.

Nov 9, 2004

The B&N link price in the OP has been $643-690 since last summer

Nov 9, 2004

fookolt posted:

And what's the max memory for it?

Max memory is 32gb, however you can't buy SO-DIMMs larger than 8GB currently so you're physically limited to 16gb

Swapping the drive is a single screw, then just slides out and the SSD slides in like an old NES cartridge

Nov 9, 2004

My grandmother has a 15" laptop. She uses it about an hour a week to write email. The rest of the time it lives closed leaned up against the couch in the living room. She's from a different era, my grandfather has a full office with a computer, while her "sewing room" has no flat surface to put a computer

Nov 9, 2004

The 3320 is the corporate model designed for enterprise users, in theory it might be binned higher, but for home power users yeah the main difference is the VT-d which allows you to run virtual machines inside of virtual machines at near native speeds.

Performance is basically i3/i5/i7 dual core/i7 quad core, which sub-model you get has very little bearing on normal desktop use unless you compile code or do 3d modeling, etc

Nov 9, 2004

Chop Suey posted:

When I was searching I probably just wasn't seeing any thinkpads with a designated graphics card for under $800.

dGPUs aren't as important as they used to be. You can play Skyrim comfortably on an HD4000, and the HD4600+ in haswell will be a 25% improvement over that

Nov 9, 2004

Different manufacturers sell different models in different markets at different prices

You can buy a Thinkpad S series in New Zealand and Europe, but not America, the x131e is/is not available in various countries on alternating thursdays, the T430 is $650 in America but $1200 in Norway

Fujitsu and Sony sell a bunch of awesome laptops that you'll never see outside of japan

Brands like Clevo don't exist outside of the EU

On top of that, new models are phased in while there's some overlap on old models being phased out (T430s, T431s), rushed ship dates, slipped ship dates, vaporware (Thinkpad Helix) and everything inbetween.

To use a car analogy, enterprise laptops like the T430 and Dell Latitude 6xxx series are the only "Ford F series" of "Corvette" type models that have any staying power and can be reliably recommended year after year.

If someone comes up with something, please let me know and I'll add it to the OP

Nov 9, 2004

shrughes posted:

Does anybody know when dual-core 37W CPUs like the i5-4300M and friends are going to be out?

Sometime this fall. Intel is rolling out the i7's (highest margin? also to help sell down the i3/i5 ivy bridges?) and then standard i5 stuff will follow once the bleeding edge i7 crowd has had their fill. Probably late/end of September when Back to School season ends and the Christmas season begins.

Nov 9, 2004

Ur Getting Fatter posted:

So, just to be clear, for someone such as me that has been happily chugging along with his E8800 + Radeon HD 4850 for the past 3 years, does this mean that this year I could, theoretically, buy a laptop that would completely replace my desktop and get even better performance?

My 2012 era x230 i5-3320 laptop is about as fast CPU wise as my 2009/2010 era i5-750 desktop. My laptop was supposed to be a mobile computing crutch, now it gets about as much use as my desktop, especially since the x230 has a high end ultimate-N antenna and I can use it on the back patio with a 108mbps connection.

The HD4000 in my laptop is about half as fast as the 460 GTX in my desktop. That's plenty fast for almost any indie game on the planet, netflix, hulu, editing HD video etc.

Ur Getting Fatter posted:

The graph in the OP seems to imply that Haswell chips will have decent-to-good integrated graphics, though?

Haswell GPU will do Skyrim happily, BF3 just barely on low, based on early reports. Integrated graphics have come a long ways.

Nov 9, 2004

Call thinkpad support, I don't think I've ever heard my i5 powered thinkpad's fan turn on. If it's on, it's not audible.

Nov 9, 2004

Naffer posted:

Lenovo just announced the Thinkpad S531 but it comes with an Ivy Bridge chip. What were they thinking?

There's no i5 Haswell chip available yet, and if they put a Haswell chip in their ultrabook, they have to equip it with a touchscreen.

Nov 9, 2004

Bob Morales posted:

Smaller is better. Get the X230! The T430S is nice but the X230 is reeeally small. Remember you can plug an 11 or 12 inch laptop into a 22" monitor when you get back to your room/desk.

This is the correct recommendation. x230 is a super sturdy laptop, I <3 mine, it travels internationally all the time without any problems.

Nov 9, 2004

Michael Scott posted:

Don't by Asus -- I bought a laptop from them like 5 years ago,

You're basing your entire recommendation based off a single purchase 5 years ago?

Nov 9, 2004

I like how they manage to complain about the "tinny notebook-like sound" coming from a tablet, as if you can somehow stick in 4" woofers. Last time I checked desktops don't even come with speakers, and it's not like we've magically figured out how to hack physics to get Bose stereo sound out of a device obviously much smaller and thinner than one.

Please post pics of your Helix along with a follow up here one the "new shiny" has worn off a little bit. Those things sound like an absolute clusterfuck but you seem to like it so maybe it's worth looking at again, especially as the only Thinkpad under 15" with a 1080p screen, and the only Thinkpad with an IPS display besides the x230.

Nov 9, 2004

Brut posted:

You might have better luck in the netbook thread.

Netbooks are such outlier cases these days we should probably just add a section to the OP and close down the netbook thread.

With Google docs + a Bluetooth keyboard you can replicate the functionality of a netbook with any tablet, although supposedly the $200 Nexus 7 is a screaming deal.

There's also a Google chromebook

Nov 9, 2004

AC units on a 95 degree day use about 1watt of energy to expel 3 watts of heat. A 100 watt display might produce 20 watts of heat so you're spending 7 additional watts of energy to keep the house temperature neutral.

This only counts south of the mason Dixie line. If you live by the Canadian border you may not even own an ac unit.

tl;dr your 100watt display actually uses 107 watts in the summer.

Nov 9, 2004

6.5 cents/kwh here in Dallas, TX

But we hate the environment and keep building coal power plants in our state to keep up with population growth/demand, so we don't have to import electricity from Washington and Nevada at inflated rates.

Washington exports ~70% of their electricity due to the multiple hydroelectric dams on the Columbia River (2nd only to the Mississippi River in terms of flow in North America)

Nov 9, 2004

johnny sack posted:

Are prices comparable on the B&N Lenovo link compared to the Lenovo Outlet? I was able to log in to my account I had made at some point in the past.

today's prices (click to embiggen)

Nov 9, 2004

Civ5 will run acceptably on Low on the HD4000, that's the only taxing game you listed. The Air has a HD5000 which is supposedly ~50% faster real world.

I would pick up an external hard drive for $100 though. 256 is big for day to day word processing, but Steam games will fill up your drive rather quickly. DOTA and Civ 5 are each 8-12 GB, so that's 24gb (10% of your formatted drive) down the drain, not to mention OS, VMs, I imagine matlab is rather large as well.

Nov 9, 2004

Doctor rear end in a top hat posted:

256GB is more storage than my desktop has.

He gave a use case of Steam games and I made the suggestion of an external drive based on actual use and numbers for the games he mentioned. What is your use case and question, if any?


Nov 9, 2004

Unless you are a student working towards a professional degree (doctor, engineer, etc) you should never ever buy your hardware via a credit card.

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