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Notebook Recommendations

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 
I've scoured the internet quite a bit already, but I figured I'd see if anyone here had any suggestions that I may have overlooked smile.gif

Here are the criteria I need met in a new notebook:

$1500 or less
12.6-15.6" screen size
1600x900 or higher resolution (Preferably 1080p)
Discrete GPU - Nothing fancy, even a GT 620M will do.
Ivy Bridge CPU, preferably a low-voltage model such as the Core i5 3317 or preferably the Core i7 3517
Weight under 4.5lb
A touch screen or convertible would be nice but is not required.

The new Dell Inspiron 15z nailed every criterion on my checklist, and then some, except in the resolution department. I NEED something higher than 1366x768, as I cannot do my work on a resolution this small. I'm currently using the following:

Acer Aspire Timeline
13.3" 1366x768
Core 2 Duo SU9400
4GB DDR3-800
Intel GMA 4500MHD
128GB Agility 4

The battery life and screen are as great as when I bought it in mid 2009 (8-14 hours of continuous use smile.gif), but the processor has become very outdated, it can't handle simple games such as Minecraft, and the resolution limits my productivity on the go. I had intended to wait for ultrabooks with thunderbolt ports to show up, but I need something new sooner rather than later... but at the same time I'm in no rush to upgrade tongue.gif

My primary uses will be very light gaming (Minecraft, Guild Wars 2, Civilization V, Sim City (2013)) - I only want something that can run the games at low-med settings at 900p/1080p as I don't need a powerhouse, productivity (Office, etc), and statistics programming (R, SAS, simulations, etc).

My current front-runner is the Dell XPS12, which comes in at $1400, but I'm unsure if I'll be satisfied with the low-power version of HD4000 (lower core clock than the standard mobile offerings). I love the screen (1080p @ 12.5" and pretty solid from what I hear) and the versatility of the device, though.

I've already looked quite a bit to see what's out there, but maybe I've missed something that's out or due out soon tongue.gif

Any recommendations are appreciated.
    
CPUGraphicsRAMHard Drive
Intel Core i7 6700HQ nVidia GTX 965m 16GB DDR4-2133 120GB M.2.SSD 
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480GB Crucial M500 Windows 10 Pro Dell Ultrasharp u2713hm Corsair Vengeance K70 
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480GB Crucial M500 Windows 10 Pro Dell Ultrasharp u2713hm Corsair Vengeance K70 
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post #2 of 16
i would recommend a lenovo
http://shop.lenovo.com/SEUILibrary/controller/e/web/LenovoPortal/en_US/catalog.workflow:category.details?current-catalog-id=12F0696583E04D86B9B79B0FEC01C087&current-category-id=AC523278A4F13F27A84F5F5622D1AC7A&action=init#.UIcasoZVoz0
custimze it to what you like

maybe something like this
http://shop.lenovo.com/SEUILibrary/controller/e/web/LenovoPortal/en_US/catalog.workflow:item.detail?GroupID=457&Code=20994NU&category_id=AC523278A4F13F27A84F5F5622D1AC7A#.UIcbYYZVoz0
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i7-3770k Gigabyte GA-Z77X-UP5 TH MSI GTX460 G.Skill TridentX 2400 2 x 4GB 
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Plextor M5p 128GB 2 x WD 500GB Blues LG Prolimatech Megahalems Rev C 
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Coolermaster HAF 912 advanced (Asia version) 
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I5-3570K Gigabyte Z68X-UD3H-B3 Inno3D Ichill GTX660 8GB G.Skill RipjawsX 1600 
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Samsung 830 128GB WD black 500GB Liteon Coolermaster Hyper 212+ EVO 
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1.67Ghz Atom stock 1GB DDR2 2 x 500GB Western Digital Cavier Blacks [RAID 1] 
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stock DSM3.2 [built on linux] stock stock 
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Synology DX510 Expansion unit 5 x 1TB WD Cavier Blacks in a RAID 6 
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Going to be chaep
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Wife's Rig
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CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
i7-3770k Gigabyte GA-Z77X-UP5 TH MSI GTX460 G.Skill TridentX 2400 2 x 4GB 
Hard DriveHard DriveOptical DriveCooling
Plextor M5p 128GB 2 x WD 500GB Blues LG Prolimatech Megahalems Rev C 
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Arctic F12 CO PWM x 2 Push/Pull Windows 7 64 bit Ultimate LG IPS235V Corsair AX850 
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Coolermaster HAF 912 advanced (Asia version) 
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Samsung 830 128GB WD black 500GB Liteon Coolermaster Hyper 212+ EVO 
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Win 7 ultimate Samsung Syncmaster 932gwe+ OCZ ZT series 550W Coolermaster 410 
CPUMotherboardRAMHard Drive
1.67Ghz Atom stock 1GB DDR2 2 x 500GB Western Digital Cavier Blacks [RAID 1] 
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stock DSM3.2 [built on linux] stock stock 
OtherOther
Synology DX510 Expansion unit 5 x 1TB WD Cavier Blacks in a RAID 6 
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post #3 of 16
Thread Starter 

The Y-580s have good specs, but they are much too heavy for my ultrabook lifestyle tongue.gif My current model is 3.5lb - I'm not willing to go any higher than about 4.5lb, and that would have to be for something special wink.gif Thanks, though.
    
CPUGraphicsRAMHard Drive
Intel Core i7 6700HQ nVidia GTX 965m 16GB DDR4-2133 120GB M.2.SSD 
Hard DriveOSMonitorKeyboard
480GB Crucial M500 Windows 10 Pro Dell Ultrasharp u2713hm Corsair Vengeance K70 
MouseAudio
Logitech G600 Creative T20 
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CPUGraphicsRAMHard Drive
Intel Core i7 6700HQ nVidia GTX 965m 16GB DDR4-2133 120GB M.2.SSD 
Hard DriveOSMonitorKeyboard
480GB Crucial M500 Windows 10 Pro Dell Ultrasharp u2713hm Corsair Vengeance K70 
MouseAudio
Logitech G600 Creative T20 
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post #4 of 16
The Sager NP6350 seems to fit the bill pretty nicely. 1080p stock and would sit at around $1,115 if you add the i7-3630QM and the 95% Gamut Matte screen. smile.gif

Clevo makes pretty nice machines. If it matters, it comes with a 2GB GTX 660M, so if you really wanted, you could use that to whatever end you might want... mobile folding rig maybe? :3
     
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Intel Core i5-6300HQ Dell Proprietary 4GB Nvidia GTX 960M Samsung 12GB (1x8GB 1x4GB) DDR3L 1600 MHz 
Hard DriveHard DriveCoolingOS
256GB SanDisk M.2 SSD 1TB HGST 7.2k HDD Custom Cooling by Dell Solutions Windows 10 Home 64-Bit 
MonitorKeyboardPowerMouse
15.6" 1920x1080 IPS Screen Dell 130w PSU Logitech G602 Wireless 
Mouse Pad
Xtrac 'Ripper' Mouse Pad 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Intel Core i7-2760QM Toshiba Qosmio X775 Nvidia 1.5GB GTX 560M 8GB DDR3 1333 
Hard DriveOptical DriveCoolingOS
120GB Samsung 830 SSD + 1TB HGST 7200RPM HDD CD/DVD-RW Stock Windows 10 Home 64-Bit 
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17.3" - 1600x900 Standard backlit 180w Power Adapter Logitech G500s 
Audio
Harmon/Kardon Onboard 
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CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Intel Core i5-6300HQ Dell Proprietary 4GB Nvidia GTX 960M Samsung 12GB (1x8GB 1x4GB) DDR3L 1600 MHz 
Hard DriveHard DriveCoolingOS
256GB SanDisk M.2 SSD 1TB HGST 7.2k HDD Custom Cooling by Dell Solutions Windows 10 Home 64-Bit 
MonitorKeyboardPowerMouse
15.6" 1920x1080 IPS Screen Dell 130w PSU Logitech G602 Wireless 
Mouse Pad
Xtrac 'Ripper' Mouse Pad 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Intel Core i7-2760QM Toshiba Qosmio X775 Nvidia 1.5GB GTX 560M 8GB DDR3 1333 
Hard DriveOptical DriveCoolingOS
120GB Samsung 830 SSD + 1TB HGST 7200RPM HDD CD/DVD-RW Stock Windows 10 Home 64-Bit 
MonitorKeyboardPowerMouse
17.3" - 1600x900 Standard backlit 180w Power Adapter Logitech G500s 
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Harmon/Kardon Onboard 
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post #5 of 16
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the recommendations. Unfortunately, the Sager models are all too chunky for my liking tongue.gif

I may end up settling for the HD 4000, but what I'm really after is something in the GT620/30/40/45M range - a nice little bump from the HD4000 for light gaming on the go and GPU acceleration when advantageous.
    
CPUGraphicsRAMHard Drive
Intel Core i7 6700HQ nVidia GTX 965m 16GB DDR4-2133 120GB M.2.SSD 
Hard DriveOSMonitorKeyboard
480GB Crucial M500 Windows 10 Pro Dell Ultrasharp u2713hm Corsair Vengeance K70 
MouseAudio
Logitech G600 Creative T20 
  hide details  
Reply
    
CPUGraphicsRAMHard Drive
Intel Core i7 6700HQ nVidia GTX 965m 16GB DDR4-2133 120GB M.2.SSD 
Hard DriveOSMonitorKeyboard
480GB Crucial M500 Windows 10 Pro Dell Ultrasharp u2713hm Corsair Vengeance K70 
MouseAudio
Logitech G600 Creative T20 
  hide details  
Reply
post #6 of 16
How about the Sony Vaio S series? It's thin and light, 13" variant is about 3.8 lbs, can be upgraded to 1600x900 matte screen and a GT 640M LE graphics card. Processors are all 35W so nothing too power hungry. The 15" variant is 4.4 lbs and has a 1080p IPS screen. Both should fit pretty well in your price range if you don't get any hard drive upgrades, I'm assuming you are going to borrow the SSD from your old laptop? If not you can buy one aftermarket, still should be well within $1500.

http://store.sony.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/CategoryDisplay?catalogId=10551&storeId=10151&langId=-1&categoryId=8198552921644768015
Number Five
(15 items)
 
   
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Intel Core i7-3930K GIGABYTE GA-X79-UP4 NVIDIA GeForce GTX 780 Ti NVIDIA GeForce GTX 780 Ti 
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Corsair Hydro Series H80i Dell UltraSharp U2414H Dell UltraSharp U2414H Dell UltraSharp U2415 
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ASUS ProArt PA248Q Corsair RM1000i Phanteks Enthoo Luxe 
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Number Five
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Samsung Green DDR3 Corsair XMS3 DDR3 Seagate 600 SSD Crucial MX100 SSD 
CoolingMonitorMonitorMonitor
Corsair Hydro Series H80i Dell UltraSharp U2414H Dell UltraSharp U2414H Dell UltraSharp U2415 
MonitorPowerCase
ASUS ProArt PA248Q Corsair RM1000i Phanteks Enthoo Luxe 
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Intel Core i5-2520M Intel HD Graphics 3000 DDR3 Seagate 600 SSD 
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post #7 of 16
Desktop!
(13 items)
 
Spare Gaming Rig
(11 items)
 
 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
R7 1700X 3912 Mhz @ 1.375v BIOSTAR X370GT7 eVGA GTX 1080 ACX 3.0  CORSAIR Vengeance White LED 3200 Mhz (4x8GB) 32GB 
Hard DriveHard DriveCoolingMonitor
256GB Samsung 850 Pro 1TB Samsung 850 Evo NZXT Kraken X52 Dell S2417DG 165Hz 1440p G-Sync 
KeyboardPowerCaseMouse
Razer Ornata Corsair 750 RM Phanteks Evolv ATX Logitech G602 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
i7 4790k @ 4.6Ghz Asus MAXIMUS VII GENE GTX 980 Ti @ 1400 Mhz 4 x 4GB (16GB) Corsair LPX DDR3 
Hard DriveHard DriveCoolingOS
240GB Seagate 1TB RAID HDD Cosair H240 Windows 10 
MonitorKeyboardPower
Asus P278Q Razer BlackWidow Corsair 650W 
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Desktop!
(13 items)
 
Spare Gaming Rig
(11 items)
 
 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
R7 1700X 3912 Mhz @ 1.375v BIOSTAR X370GT7 eVGA GTX 1080 ACX 3.0  CORSAIR Vengeance White LED 3200 Mhz (4x8GB) 32GB 
Hard DriveHard DriveCoolingMonitor
256GB Samsung 850 Pro 1TB Samsung 850 Evo NZXT Kraken X52 Dell S2417DG 165Hz 1440p G-Sync 
KeyboardPowerCaseMouse
Razer Ornata Corsair 750 RM Phanteks Evolv ATX Logitech G602 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
i7 4790k @ 4.6Ghz Asus MAXIMUS VII GENE GTX 980 Ti @ 1400 Mhz 4 x 4GB (16GB) Corsair LPX DDR3 
Hard DriveHard DriveCoolingOS
240GB Seagate 1TB RAID HDD Cosair H240 Windows 10 
MonitorKeyboardPower
Asus P278Q Razer BlackWidow Corsair 650W 
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post #8 of 16
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Shiftstealth View Post

This should fit the bill nicely:
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16834230670

I've been looking at that model, but I don't like that it comes in a 2x2 configuration with 2GB of the memory soldered onto the motherboard. I'm a picky one tongue.gif
    
CPUGraphicsRAMHard Drive
Intel Core i7 6700HQ nVidia GTX 965m 16GB DDR4-2133 120GB M.2.SSD 
Hard DriveOSMonitorKeyboard
480GB Crucial M500 Windows 10 Pro Dell Ultrasharp u2713hm Corsair Vengeance K70 
MouseAudio
Logitech G600 Creative T20 
  hide details  
Reply
    
CPUGraphicsRAMHard Drive
Intel Core i7 6700HQ nVidia GTX 965m 16GB DDR4-2133 120GB M.2.SSD 
Hard DriveOSMonitorKeyboard
480GB Crucial M500 Windows 10 Pro Dell Ultrasharp u2713hm Corsair Vengeance K70 
MouseAudio
Logitech G600 Creative T20 
  hide details  
Reply
post #9 of 16
Thread Starter 
I just stumbled upon this: http://store.sony.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/ProductDisplay?catalogId=10551&storeId=10151&langId=-1&productId=8198552921666487989

It hits nearly all of my spec requirements. Battery life will be a downgrade, but with thoughtful planning I can make it last smile.gif
    
CPUGraphicsRAMHard Drive
Intel Core i7 6700HQ nVidia GTX 965m 16GB DDR4-2133 120GB M.2.SSD 
Hard DriveOSMonitorKeyboard
480GB Crucial M500 Windows 10 Pro Dell Ultrasharp u2713hm Corsair Vengeance K70 
MouseAudio
Logitech G600 Creative T20 
  hide details  
Reply
    
CPUGraphicsRAMHard Drive
Intel Core i7 6700HQ nVidia GTX 965m 16GB DDR4-2133 120GB M.2.SSD 
Hard DriveOSMonitorKeyboard
480GB Crucial M500 Windows 10 Pro Dell Ultrasharp u2713hm Corsair Vengeance K70 
MouseAudio
Logitech G600 Creative T20 
  hide details  
Reply
post #10 of 16
Asus Zenbook UX32VD
$1250 (approx)
13.3" 1080p screen
i7 3517U
6GB RAM
GT620M
18mm thick
1.45kg (3.2lb)
~5-7 hour battery depending on use
Edited by doomlord52 - 10/24/12 at 9:01am
Base2
(21 items)
 
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(13 items)
 
Zenbook
(7 items)
 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Core i7 2600k @ 4.75ghz @ 1.352v Asus p8p67 Deluxe Asus GTX 970 Strix ADATA XPG1 (2x8gb) @ 1600mhz 
Hard DriveHard DriveHard DriveHard Drive
2x OCZ Agility 3  2x Toshiba 2tb Sata 3 OCZ Vertex 2 Seagate Barracuda 500gb 
Optical DriveCoolingCoolingCooling
LG Blu-Ray-RW  Corsair H70 3x Corsair AF 120 Silent Edition 2x AF 140 
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Windows 7 x64 Home Premium Asus VG248QE Asus VG248QE Ducky Shine 3 (MX Black) 
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Corsair AX 1200 Corsair 450D Razer Deathadder 2013 Creative X-FI Titanium HD 
Other
Sennheiser PC 350 
CPUGraphicsRAMHard Drive
Core i7 740QM GTX 460m 2x 4gb DDR3 OCZ Agility 3 
OSMonitor
Windows 7 x64 15.1" (1920x1080) 
CPUGraphicsRAMHard Drive
Core i3 2367M Intel HD 3000 4GB DDR3 Hitachi HDD 
Hard DriveOSMonitor
SanDisk SSD Windows 7 Home Premium x64 13.3" 1366x768 
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Base2
(21 items)
 
Edi
(13 items)
 
Zenbook
(7 items)
 
CPUMotherboardGraphicsRAM
Core i7 2600k @ 4.75ghz @ 1.352v Asus p8p67 Deluxe Asus GTX 970 Strix ADATA XPG1 (2x8gb) @ 1600mhz 
Hard DriveHard DriveHard DriveHard Drive
2x OCZ Agility 3  2x Toshiba 2tb Sata 3 OCZ Vertex 2 Seagate Barracuda 500gb 
Optical DriveCoolingCoolingCooling
LG Blu-Ray-RW  Corsair H70 3x Corsair AF 120 Silent Edition 2x AF 140 
OSMonitorMonitorKeyboard
Windows 7 x64 Home Premium Asus VG248QE Asus VG248QE Ducky Shine 3 (MX Black) 
PowerCaseMouseAudio
Corsair AX 1200 Corsair 450D Razer Deathadder 2013 Creative X-FI Titanium HD 
Other
Sennheiser PC 350 
CPUGraphicsRAMHard Drive
Core i7 740QM GTX 460m 2x 4gb DDR3 OCZ Agility 3 
OSMonitor
Windows 7 x64 15.1" (1920x1080) 
CPUGraphicsRAMHard Drive
Core i3 2367M Intel HD 3000 4GB DDR3 Hitachi HDD 
Hard DriveOSMonitor
SanDisk SSD Windows 7 Home Premium x64 13.3" 1366x768 
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