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View Poll Results: Which laptop should I buy?

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  • Samsung Series 7

    1 100.00%
  • Asus N56VJ

    0 0%
  • Asus Q500A (touchscreen)

    0 0%
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  1. Thread Author  Thread Author    #1  
    BMIC50's Avatar

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    Default First New Laptop in 7+ years!

    My old laptop was a 17" Gateway that I bought to get me through school over 7 years ago. It was one of the first models sold with Vista upgraded here locally and I maxed it out to 2GB ram. But recently, it died and I am itching to buy a new laptop. My constraints:
    • Budget of $1,000
    • Must last me 3-4 years
    • At least have a 15" HD (720p or 1080p) screen
    • Can handle casual, but sometimes professional, use of photoshop (CS2)
    • Keep up with my video-heavy, multi-tab web consumption
    • Play Bluray discs (I might just buy an USB 3.0 external player) exported to my tv via HDMI
    • Last 4+ hours without charge


    That left a lot of options, so when I went out and searched. I found that I can afford a decent 15.6" Core i7 (3rd gen) laptop with 8+GB of RAM and 1TB 5400rpm HDD. Some laptops had discreet 1GB graphics, while others had full 1080p screens, and others had touchscreens. Below is a shortlist that I have created based on research, playing with them in stores, and style.

    PC Likes Dislikes
    Samsung Series 7 $899 from BestBuy Great design, 1GB Nvidia graphics, 8GB RAM, 2 USB 3.0 ports, 1600 x 900 screen, 8 cell battery, solid metal construction No touchscreen (nice to have with Windows 8)
    Asus N56VJ $943 Amazon Prime (no tax and free shipping) Full 1080p screen, 2GB Nvidia Graphics, Bang & Olufsen audio, 4 USB ports (2-3.0 & 2-2.0) No touchscreen, 6 cell battery, black lid, hybrid color design (I like more uniform, clean designs)
    Asus Q500A $949 BestBuy 1080p Touchscreen!, 4 USB ports (2-3.0 & 2-2.0), darker and consistent brushed finish, Intel 400 graphics, 6 cell battery, 1.0MP camera, only 750GB HDD (not really a negative but its less than the others)

    had to split into two posts because text after the table was funky
    Last edited by djjr50; 02-18-2013 at 10:28 PM.
    Treo 300 -> Treo 600 -> Treo 650 -> Treo 700p -> Palm Pre -> Samsung Galaxy S II Sprint Epic 4G Touch->Samsung GS3 16GB Pebble Blue->LG G3 White
  2. Thread Author  Thread Author    #2  
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    Default Re: First New Laptop in 7+ years!

    I am not a computer gamer, but I figured that discreet graphics would be an necessary item when I got my new laptop. But I am reading in some forums that the new Intel 400 chip isnt too bad and may suffice for me. Also, I would like to upgrade the HDD to a SDD but I dont recall locating the HDD slot on any of these. Last thing I would add is that I am considering downgrading to Windows 7 if I dont get the touchscreen one, but I am finding out that its not just a push-button operation. So I might stay on Windows 8.

    I'm waiting on my tax return, so this could take 2-3 weeks before I can actually buy it. In the meantime, I would love to hear your input on the following things:
    • Is integrated graphics good enough to stream HD content both on the device and to an external screen?
    • Are any of these NOT compatible with dual-booting ubuntu?
    • Is Windows 8, in your opinion, navigable better with a touchscreen or can a multi-touch touchpad (like the one that all of these have) keep me from tossing it through a window?
    • Do any of these choices have any real drawbacks that should take them out of contention?
    Treo 300 -> Treo 600 -> Treo 650 -> Treo 700p -> Palm Pre -> Samsung Galaxy S II Sprint Epic 4G Touch->Samsung GS3 16GB Pebble Blue->LG G3 White
  3. #3  

    Default Re: First New Laptop in 7+ years!

    If you're not a gamer, might I recommend an AMD machine? Better integrated graphics, and cheaper than Intel. That's what I would buy. Also, I've never used it, but I hear Windows 8 sucks. I personally would stay away from a Windows 8 device like the Surface.

    Sent from my LS670 using Android Central Forums
  4. #4  
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    Default Re: First New Laptop in 7+ years!

    I have heard that if you try to boot anything but Windows on some Samsungs in UEFI boot mode, you can brick it. Just something to keep in mind.
  5. Thread Author  Thread Author    #5  
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    Default Re: First New Laptop in 7+ years!

    Quote Originally Posted by droidmyme View Post
    If you're not a gamer, might I recommend an AMD machine? Better integrated graphics, and cheaper than Intel. That's what I would buy. Also, I've never used it, but I hear Windows 8 sucks. I personally would stay away from a Windows 8 device like the Surface.

    Sent from my LS670 using Android Central Forums
    I'm definitely not a fan of Windows 8 from the little time I've played with it. Finding Windows 7 was my original goal.

    Is AMD also more Ubuntu-friendly?

    Quote Originally Posted by throughtheblack View Post
    I have heard that if you try to boot anything but Windows on some Samsungs in UEFI boot mode, you can brick it. Just something to keep in mind.
    That's interesting. I'll have to look more into that.
    Treo 300 -> Treo 600 -> Treo 650 -> Treo 700p -> Palm Pre -> Samsung Galaxy S II Sprint Epic 4G Touch->Samsung GS3 16GB Pebble Blue->LG G3 White
  6. #6  

    Default Re: First New Laptop in 7+ years!

    Quote Originally Posted by djjr50 View Post
    I'm definitely not a fan of Windows 8 from the little time I've played with it. Finding Windows 7 was my original goal.

    Is AMD also more Ubuntu-friendly?



    That's interesting. I'll have to look more into that.
    AMD is as compatible with Ubuntu as Intel. No difference really.

    Sent from my LS670 using Android Central Forums
  7. Thread Author  Thread Author    #7  
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    Default Re: First New Laptop in 7+ years!

    For all of the searching for AMD powered machines, I could only find one within my price range that offered more for equal or less. It is the AMD identical brother of the Asus N56, the N56DP-DH11. For the price, its definitely in the contention if I can get more info on battery life. I am not sure if AMD is more conservative than Intel in power usage or not.

    The other laptops that I researched are budget laptops or gamer laptops out of my range. I have been using Tigerdirect, BestBuy, Newegg and Staples as my main sources.
    Treo 300 -> Treo 600 -> Treo 650 -> Treo 700p -> Palm Pre -> Samsung Galaxy S II Sprint Epic 4G Touch->Samsung GS3 16GB Pebble Blue->LG G3 White
  8. #8  

    Default Re: First New Laptop in 7+ years!

    Quote Originally Posted by djjr50 View Post
    For all of the searching for AMD powered machines, I could only find one within my price range that offered more for equal or less. It is the AMD identical brother of the Asus N56, the N56DP-DH11. For the price, its definitely in the contention if I can get more info on battery life. I am not sure if AMD is more conservative than Intel in power usage or not.

    The other laptops that I researched are budget laptops or gamer laptops out of my range. I have been using Tigerdirect, BestBuy, Newegg and Staples as my main sources.
    You know, if you really want to get the best advice, you need to head to Anandtech.com and post in the SFF/Notebooks subforum. The guys there, some of them all they do is offer PC build advice, 24/7. There's a handful of really knowledgeable people there who are up to date on the hardware and retail. I can only give you general advice. This is going to help you much more:

    http://forums.anandtech.com/forumdisplay.php?f=23

    Sent from my LS670 using Android Central Forums
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  9. #9  
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    Default Re: First New Laptop in 7+ years!

    Why you didn't consider a HP? I will get a HP anytime. I do admit that HP's laptop are the lousiest in terms of design but in other aspect, they perform very well.
  10. Thread Author  Thread Author    #10  
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    Default Re: First New Laptop in 7+ years!

    Quote Originally Posted by psychoken View Post
    Why you didn't consider a HP? I will get a HP anytime. I do admit that HP's laptop are the lousiest in terms of design but in other aspect, they perform very well.
    I looked but I didnt see much that I liked. I will consider them, but their styling isnt my cup of tea (especially compared to the others) and they helped sealed the demise of my beloved Palm...so there's a little animosity there!

    I have started considering some ultrabooks with the thinking that I can purchase an external optical drive. They claim that battery life is better on those and most come with an SSD so I wouldnt have to upgrade that. But I am trying to determine if I will be happy with a computer with Intel 400 integrated graphics since I am not a big computer gamer.
    Treo 300 -> Treo 600 -> Treo 650 -> Treo 700p -> Palm Pre -> Samsung Galaxy S II Sprint Epic 4G Touch->Samsung GS3 16GB Pebble Blue->LG G3 White
  11. #11  

    Default Re: First New Laptop in 7+ years!

    Quote Originally Posted by djjr50 View Post
    I looked but I didnt see much that I liked. I will consider them, but their styling isnt my cup of tea (especially compared to the others) and they helped sealed the demise of my beloved Palm...so there's a little animosity there!

    I have started considering some ultrabooks with the thinking that I can purchase an external optical drive. They claim that battery life is better on those and most come with an SSD so I wouldnt have to upgrade that. But I am trying to determine if I will be happy with a computer with Intel 400 integrated graphics since I am not a big computer gamer.
    Do you use your laptop on the fly a lot? If so, an Ultrabook would make sense. It's ultra portable, and does have great battery life.


    Sent from my LS670 using Android Central Forums
  12. Thread Author  Thread Author    #12  
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    Default Re: First New Laptop in 7+ years!

    Quote Originally Posted by droidmyme View Post
    Do you use your laptop on the fly a lot? If so, an Ultrabook would make sense. It's ultra portable, and does have great battery life.


    Sent from my LS670 using Android Central Forums
    I'm back in school so yes, it will be in tow a lot. But I still want a 15+ screen. I played with Windows 8 on a touchscreen with an experienced best buy rep and it feels better than I originally feared. There are gestures and shortcuts to do more than I thought.
    Treo 300 -> Treo 600 -> Treo 650 -> Treo 700p -> Palm Pre -> Samsung Galaxy S II Sprint Epic 4G Touch->Samsung GS3 16GB Pebble Blue->LG G3 White
  13. #13  

    Default Re: First New Laptop in 7+ years!

    I tinkered with W8 (which I find funny this is short hand for wait, as in don't get it. Lol) at Best Buy yesterday and it seemed pretty usable when on the traditional desktop. The rep said it's pretty much W7 with the new start page on top of it. I'm sure that's a simplistic way to put it, but was easy to navigate without the touch screen. W8 Premium is also supposed to be easily downgradible to 7 Premium without having to reformat. I guess Microsoft realized the error of their ways.

    I Would also suggest to get something with a dedicated graphics card if you do any gaming at all. While integrated graphics have made improvements, they still pale in comparison in performance to an inexpensive dedicated card. To the point that even modest games could become a slide show. Another plus is Nvidia and ATI can now do non-display processing. If Photoshop is capable of taking advantage of these, it can do heavy work on them instead of the CPU and do it faster. Video encoding is also popular for using these processes, as well as running distributed computing tasks like Seti@home. Video cards aren't just for displaying 3D worlds anymore.
  14. Thread Author  Thread Author    #14  
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    Default Re: First New Laptop in 7+ years!

    I HAVE A NEW LAPTOP!!! It probably shouldnt be a big deal but its been 7+ years for me! Well, before I tell you what I have, let me fill you all in on what happened.

    I decided to go by BestBuy Thursday afternoon to play with the Samsung Series 7 and the Asus touchscreen again to see what tradeoffs I would be willing to make. I got in there and hovered over what I thought was the Series 7 that I was eyeing when the rep pointed out to me that this was the touchscreen series 7 Chronos with 1080p screen. Very little info was there besides price, Core i7 and 8GB Ram (which is why I thought it was the one I was looking at before). The price was a sale price of $1200, normally $1300. So I played with it and fell in love! I had a 1GB dedicated video card but NO optical drive. However, it was sleek and had supposedly 10+hours of battery life. I went home and researched it some more and found out that it was one of the laptops Samsung announced at CES and was just trickling into BestBuy's country wide. That threw a wrench into my plans. When I woke up Friday morning, I was surprised to see that the IRS worked faster than they estimated and my refund was deposited. On my way to workout, I stopped by again to play with it some more and walked out with it as the clear winner. I was going to buy an external blu ray drive anyways, so missing an optical drive wasnt a loss and the better battery life was the deal maker. The screen is GORGEOUS! And I love (so far) touching it to interact with Windows 8. In fact, Windows 8 isnt too bad once you figure out everything. I use the tiles as shortcuts to my most used items so far. I deleted a lot of the crap they preinstalled. This way, I am only two clicks away from any program or service that I want to use...kinda like widgets on Android's home screen.

    In closing, I would like to thank those who helped. I plan to one day put an SSD in here and dual (or maybe tri) boot ubuntu and possibly Google Chrome. Right now, I am going back to playing with this thing!
    Treo 300 -> Treo 600 -> Treo 650 -> Treo 700p -> Palm Pre -> Samsung Galaxy S II Sprint Epic 4G Touch->Samsung GS3 16GB Pebble Blue->LG G3 White
  15. #15  

    Default Re: First New Laptop in 7+ years!

    Awesome! I'm happy you found something that you loved

    Sent from my LS670 using Android Central Forums
  16. #16  

    Default Re: First New Laptop in 7+ years!

    I'm glad you got a machine with a touch screen. I have used Windows 8 on a desktop, a non touchscreen laptop, and on a tablet/hybrid with a keyboard dock. My favorite way to use it is the tablet in the dock. You get the precision of a pointer when you need it and the ease of use of touch when you want it. Windows 8 is perfectly usable without a touch screen, and on the desktop I perfered it to Windows 7 (the laptop was a MacBook and the drivers for multi-touch on the trackpad didn't work on it, which maded Windows 8 a frustrating experience on it), but it is much, much better with a touch screen.
  17. #17  

    Default Re: First New Laptop in 7+ years!

    Considering it has touch, not a bad buy, I think. I'd be curious how often you have to clean the screen as smudges and skin oils collect on it. I put clarity higher on something like that than I would a phone because I'm usually wanting detail for gaming or visual work. Since I'm looking at new systems myself, that could influence my choice to fork over the extra for touch or not.
  18. Thread Author  Thread Author    #18  
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    Default Re: First New Laptop in 7+ years!

    Quote Originally Posted by droidmyme View Post
    Awesome! I'm happy you found something that you loved

    Sent from my LS670 using Android Central Forums
    Thanks! I am in love so far! The updates and setting it up was tedious (well, still is tedious).

    Quote Originally Posted by jdevenberg View Post
    I'm glad you got a machine with a touch screen. I have used Windows 8 on a desktop, a non touchscreen laptop, and on a tablet/hybrid with a keyboard dock. My favorite way to use it is the tablet in the dock. You get the precision of a pointer when you need it and the ease of use of touch when you want it. Windows 8 is perfectly usable without a touch screen, and on the desktop I perfered it to Windows 7 (the laptop was a MacBook and the drivers for multi-touch on the trackpad didn't work on it, which maded Windows 8 a frustrating experience on it), but it is much, much better with a touch screen.
    Yes, I am definitely glad that I got the touchscreen now. No looking back for me!

    Quote Originally Posted by Mooncatt View Post
    Considering it has touch, not a bad buy, I think. I'd be curious how often you have to clean the screen as smudges and skin oils collect on it. I put clarity higher on something like that than I would a phone because I'm usually wanting detail for gaming or visual work. Since I'm looking at new systems myself, that could influence my choice to fork over the extra for touch or not.
    The glossy screen is the biggest drawback, and will definitely highlight fingerprints/smudges. I havent noticed much so far but I plan to keep microfiber cloths in the bag that I tote this around in. I might also consider a matte screen protector/film if they exist for this size.
    Treo 300 -> Treo 600 -> Treo 650 -> Treo 700p -> Palm Pre -> Samsung Galaxy S II Sprint Epic 4G Touch->Samsung GS3 16GB Pebble Blue->LG G3 White

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