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Can anyone recommend a light but powerful laptop that doesn't break the bank?

post #1 of 26
Thread Starter 
What is your maximum budget?
Around $1300.

What country are you in?
US.

What will be the uses of this laptop?
Primarily web browsing/streaming/schoolwork, but I do game.

Do you have brand loyalty or care which brands we select for you?
Nope.

What screen size do you require?
At least 13".

What screen resolution do you require?
1920x1080.

Are you looking to buy NEW or would refurbished/recertified/used be okay?
Refurb/used is fine.

How long should the battery last? (Under optimal conditions, no movies/games/heavy internet)
Three hours minimum.

What games would you like to play with your laptop? And on what settings?
I primarily play Source games like TF2 and CS:S and occasionally BF3 or COD, but I'd like to have the power to be capable of playing whatever I want from my sizable Steam library with at least medium settings.

What operating system do you need? (if any)
Windows 7 but it really doesn't matter what it comes with, I can install it myself.

Is there a certain style of laptop you want? (aluminum, black, gaming, etc.)
The lighter, the better.

How much hard drive space do you need?
500GB minimum for a standard HDD, 128GB if it's an SSD.

Do you need any special hardware? (blue ray, webcam, specialty ports, etc.)
Nope.

Is there anything else we need to know?
I was looking at the Sager 9130, and after the free 670m upgrade that seems like the best bang for the buck right now at $1,080. Is the only difference between the 9130 and 9150 the matte vs glossy screen and illuminated keyboard? My only problem with it is that it's a little on the heavier side at 6.8lbs but I guess that's the tradeoff. The Zenbook Prime UX51VZ-DH71 is pretty much perfect but it's way out of my price range at $1,880.
    
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post #2 of 26
Samsung Series 7 Chronos

- retails for $1199 new (if you can, get it used/refurbished. I currently have a refurbished 17" Chronos and it looks practically new!)
- 1080p matte screen (for 17"0 or 1600x900 (for <=15.6" versions)
- 1" thick
- 6.6 lbs (for the 17") and 5 lbs (for 15")
- Core i7 and Nvidia GT 640m (for 15") or 650m (for 17") (newer models come with AMD's new Radeon HD 8870m/8770m, 8570m for the ultrathin)
- 1 TB hard drive
- 8-cell battery (lasts 9-10 hour on idle)
- illuminated keyboard + other goodies

overall very good laptop with nice reviews and ratings on notebookcheck.net

You can check out all the top rated multimedia laptops Here, but they either don't have a 1080p screen, too pricey, heavy, old, or the GPU is too weak.
Edited by Bitech - 3/17/13 at 10:14pm
post #3 of 26
Thread Starter 
I'm having a hard time finding that...
    
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240GB Intel 520 1TB WDC Optiarc with lightscribe n stuff MCP-655 
CoolingCoolingCoolingCooling
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post #4 of 26
I ordered a Sager 9150 for Xoticpc last week. Should arrive Monday. The laptop is not light but it has excellent cooling. Both the GPU and the CPU have independent fans. The case is not fancy but who needs fancy. It is a 15.6 inch 1920 x 1080 display with I7, 16 GB 1600 MHz memory, Bigfoot Network Killer 3 x 3, and a Nvidia GTX 670 MX with 3 GB of DDR5. It has an illuminated keyboard, mSATA support, 750 GB 7200 RPM standard hard drive, and the system is upgradeable. The system was Tax free with free shipping in the US, and the total cost was 1299.99. Granted you are looking for a light laptop, I understand that; and you want long battery life, but you sacrifice performance, cooling, and the ability to upgrade with the lighter thinner models. I researched and looked for a laptop for weeks and compared every brand, model, and configuration before deciding on the Sager 9150. It was the best bang for the buck I could find. I will sacrifice light for heavy if in the end I can service, upgrade, and maintain my laptop far beyond what you could ever do with ultrabooks and most laptops.
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post #5 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by Supacasey View Post

I'm having a hard time finding that...

Tried Amazon? Ebay?
post #6 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by Supacasey View Post

I'm having a hard time finding that...


REALLY? I just copied and pasted "Samsung Series 7 Chronos" and found all kinds of them for sale.
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post #7 of 26
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by zalittle View Post

REALLY? I just copied and pasted "Samsung Series 7 Chronos" and found all kinds of them for sale.

For the most part I only see reviews and articles. I did find this though, $1,150 used isn't bad.

I did some researching and it seems the 9150 would be a better choice over the 9130 considering it's user upgradeable, but I'm having second thoughts about getting a gaming laptop. I already have a fantastic desktop so getting a beefy laptop seems redundant.
    
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i7 930 4.2GHz HT ASUS Rampage III Extreme PNY GTX580 SLI 12GB Corsair Dominator GT 
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CoolingCoolingCoolingCooling
MCP-655 EK Top DangerDen GTX580 Chrome HWLabs GTX360 EK Supreme HF AU 
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240GB Intel 520 1TB WDC Optiarc with lightscribe n stuff MCP-655 
CoolingCoolingCoolingCooling
MCP-655 EK Top DangerDen GTX580 Chrome HWLabs GTX360 EK Supreme HF AU 
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post #8 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by Supacasey View Post

For the most part I only see reviews and articles. I did find this though, $1,150 used isn't bad.

I did some researching and it seems the 9150 would be a better choice over the 9130 considering it's user upgradeable, but I'm having second thoughts about getting a gaming laptop. I already have a fantastic desktop so getting a beefy laptop seems redundant.

Get the gaming laptop, trust me, down the road you'll hate not having enough gaming power in your laptop. I know you can always use your desktop, but you might change your mind once you get a gaming laptop. But if you just want a laptop for your general use_ I recommend looking at an ultrabook_ you either get some serious power by buying a gaming laptop, or you get some serious portability on the move with an ultrabook_ your pick thumb.gif

I've since stopped turning on my desktops, just because I enjoy the laptop so much more_ its just so compact and I feel comfortable tinkering with the laptop more, its just more limited and with these limitations comes challenges and thats what makes it fun haha (although it is my personal opinion)

A laptop is like, you got to deal with what you got and a desktop, well, if you don't got enough juice you can always buy more_ you just can't do that with a laptop as much.

I recommend the Asus G46 laptop, its small and compact, yet gives you a good punch and its design is really nice looking_ good on the eyes, best of all good for the money_
Edited by httuner - 3/17/13 at 10:02pm
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post #9 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by httuner View Post

Get the gaming laptop, trust me, down the road you'll hate not having enough gaming power in your laptop. I know you can always use your desktop, but you might change your mind once you get a gaming laptop. But if you just want a laptop for your general use_ I recommend looking at an ultrabook_ you either get some serious power by buying a gaming laptop, or you get some serious portability on the move with an ultrabook_ your pick thumb.gif

I've since stopped turning on my desktops, just because I enjoy the laptop so much more_ its just so compact and I feel comfortable tinkering with the laptop more, its just more limited and with these limitations comes challenges and thats what makes it fun haha (although it is my personal opinion)

A laptop is like, you got to deal with what you got and a desktop, well, if you don't got enough juice you can always buy more_ you just can't do that with a laptop as much.

I recommend the Asus G46 laptop, its small and compact, yet gives you a good punch and its design is really nice looking_ good on the eyes, best of all good for the money_

Display is only 1366x768. No 1080p version.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Supacasey View Post

For the most part I only see reviews and articles. I did find this though, $1,150 used isn't bad.

I did some researching and it seems the 9150 would be a better choice over the 9130 considering it's user upgradeable, but I'm having second thoughts about getting a gaming laptop. I already have a fantastic desktop so getting a beefy laptop seems redundant.

Not really. You can get it for $1199 NEW here: http://www.ebay.com/itm/SAMSUNG-NP700Z7CH-Chronos-Series-7-17-3-i7-8GB-1TB-Nvidia-Geforce-GT-2GB-NEW-/171006839558?pt=Laptops_Nov05&hash=item27d0cd4b06

Amazon has jacked up prices. The listings on Ebay are lower.

http://www.ebay.com/sch/Laptops-Netbooks-/175672/i.html?_from=R40&_nkw=samsung+series+7+chronos
Edited by Bitech - 3/17/13 at 10:26pm
post #10 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by Supacasey View Post

What is your maximum budget?
Around $1300.

What country are you in?
US.

What will be the uses of this laptop?
Primarily web browsing/streaming/schoolwork, but I do game.

Do you have brand loyalty or care which brands we select for you?
Nope.

What screen size do you require?
At least 13".

What screen resolution do you require?
1920x1080.

Are you looking to buy NEW or would refurbished/recertified/used be okay?
Refurb/used is fine.

How long should the battery last? (Under optimal conditions, no movies/games/heavy internet)
Three hours minimum.

What games would you like to play with your laptop? And on what settings?
I primarily play Source games like TF2 and CS:S and occasionally BF3 or COD, but I'd like to have the power to be capable of playing whatever I want from my sizable Steam library with at least medium settings.

What operating system do you need? (if any)
Windows 7 but it really doesn't matter what it comes with, I can install it myself.

Is there a certain style of laptop you want? (aluminum, black, gaming, etc.)
The lighter, the better.

How much hard drive space do you need?
500GB minimum for a standard HDD, 128GB if it's an SSD.

Do you need any special hardware? (blue ray, webcam, specialty ports, etc.)
Nope.

Is there anything else we need to know?
I was looking at the Sager 9130, and after the free 670m upgrade that seems like the best bang for the buck right now at $1,080. Is the only difference between the 9130 and 9150 the matte vs glossy screen and illuminated keyboard? My only problem with it is that it's a little on the heavier side at 6.8lbs but I guess that's the tradeoff. The Zenbook Prime UX51VZ-DH71 is pretty much perfect but it's way out of my price range at $1,880.




http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/891165-REG/ASUS_g55vw_dh71_i7_3630QM_8GB_DDR3_500GB_HD_Windows_8.html

Is this laptop good enough for you? I do admit the GPU isn't that great compare to other hard-core gaming laptop.

How about this one?

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/919950-REG/lenovo_59345717_y580_intel_i7_8gb_memory_1tb_hdd_blu_ray_windows.html

This one looks powerful

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/924651-REG/lenovo_59359559_y500_intel_i7_3630qm_16gb_ddr3_1tb_16gb_ssd_windows.html

Anyway, that website is legit!
It's from NYC, so you get FREE TAX AND SHIPPING.
All you do is pay the laptop's price and you are done.
     
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Intel(R) Core(TM) i5-2500K  P8Z68-V LX Galaxy Geforce GTX 670 Kingston 8GB RAM  
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