The 20994CU model of the Lenovo IdeaPad Y580 isn't a good option, because it comes with a 15.6" 1366x768 display. 1366x768 resolution in a 15.6" display makes things onscreen large, and 15.6" displays that have 1366x768 resolution tend to have very poor image quality due to low contrast.
14" 1366x768 displays are similar to 15.6" 1366x768 displays, but the difference in that scenario is that if you need the small size of a 14" laptop anyway, then it's almost unavoidable to get this type of display. The 14" size is devoid of decent displays. 1366x768 resolution is also a tad more suited to the smaller 14" size than it is to the larger 15.6" size.
As one option, I would suggest giving some consideration to the current HP DV6 deal, where you can get a NVIDIA GT 650M and a 15.6" 1920x1080 display for under $800.HP DV6t
(i3-3110M, NVIDIA GT 650M, 15.6" 1920x1080 matte IPS display) - $724 + tax
($769 + tax w/ i5-3210M)
- Use coupon code: NBY8552
- Don't: Downgrade to the 1366x768 display, unless you need the large text. You generally shouldn't buy the HP DV6 in any configuration that includes the 1366x768 display. 15.6" 1366x768 displays make things onscreen large, and tend to be low-tier LCD panels with very poor image quality due to low contrast.
- Don't: Downgrade the GPU to the GT 630M unless you only plan on doing light / moderate gaming. The GT 650M is considerably faster.
- Don't: Downgrade the GPU to integrated graphics unless you only plan on doing very light / no gaming. Integrated graphics will probably provide disappointing game performance in the majority of modern titles.
- Do not sacrifice your display (if gaming) or your GPU (in general) in order to upgrade the processor, if the processor upgrades would otherwise be outside of your budget.
- Consider: Backlit keyboard.
If you like the Lenovo IdeaPad Y580, then the only models I could recommend are the models that come with the 1920x1080 display. It's a great laptop (My sister owns one), but the 1920x1080 models are the only ones that I will recommend to most users.
The cheapest 1920x1080 model is as many more dollars more expensive as there are dalmatians in that movie, but it's worth the cost. And if you can't go the extra $101, then you should probably be looking at a different cheaper laptop model with minor sacrifices to other components instead of major sacrifices to the display as is the case with going from the 1920x1080 Y580 to the 1366x768 Y580. I do not consider the 1366x768 versions of the Y580 to be good options in most cases.Lenovo IdeaPad Y580
(i7-3610QM, NVIDIA GTX 660M, 15.6" 1920x1080 glossy display) - $949 + tax
- Sign up and sign in here: http://shoplenovo.i2.com/SEUILibrary/controller/e/na/StdAffinityPortal/en_US/Lenovo:EnterStdAffinity?affinity=barnesnoblegold
(Barnes and Noble Gold discount page)
: (i7-3610QM, GTX 660M, 15.6" 1920x1080, 500GB 7200RPM) - $949
: (i7-3610QM, GTX 660M, 15.6" 1920x1080, 1TB 5400RPM + 32GB SSD for hybrid cache) - $1039
- These models come with the 1920x1080 display. There are other models that come instead with a 1366x768 display, but those models are not recommended unless you need the larger text. 1366x768 resolution in a 15.6" display makes things onscreen large, and 15.6" displays that have this resolution tend to have very poor image quality due to low contrast.
- Click the green "Activate eCoupon" button in the cart.
(i5-3210M, NVIDIA GT 650M, 15.6" 1920x1080 glossy display) - $920 no tax
- Select Windows 7 under Operating System if you cannot acquire your own copy for cheaper.
Edited by edit1754 - 8/2/12 at 3:46pm