Tips for purchasing a new laptop?



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Hero

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So yeah, just sent in my laptop in for repairs. I think the graphics card died because the monitor's colors looked inverted/washed out. Soon after, the monitor ceased to show anything. I might have to purchase a new one if the cost of repairs is too high.

So I'm looking for tips. I bought this one willy nilly back in June of '09, it's been good to me but I don't want to have to buy one every few years. I replaced the hard drive a year or two ago. What are the things I should look for in laptops in terms of processor, graphics card, etc? Brands? I'm not looking for something that can run Crysis or Bioshock Infinite just fine on the highest settings, but I don't mind it packing somewhat of a punch. It's mainly going to be used for daily personal uses. A Mac is out of the question simply because, as a computer science major, it is a hassle using them for programming purposes. I am willing to shell out money for a good laptop.
 

Zetsumei

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Protip:

Unless you plan on having your laptop plugged into the charger all the time (thus defeating the purpose of a laptop), then don't use a laptop to play games.

Here's what I do:

Get a nice gaming PC, a big screen TV, a Tablet, and some nice wireless peripherals. Hook up your PC to your TV, sit back on the couch with your wireless mouse and keyboard, and use tablet to surf the web while you play games on big TV. :) Feel like playing console ? hook that up to TV as well, and a simple input mode switch is all you need to switch back and forth. No need to even get up off the couch :p

Really the only time buying a gaming laptop is a good idea, is if you're the type of person that goes to LAN parties and don't feel like bringing your whole PC every time. Games kill batteries, no two ways about it. My ex-gf had a $3000 gaming laptop and the battery lasted about 20mins while the GPU was running at full capacity.
 
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Annoyance

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Okay so because the comments above would cost you way more than what you're probably willing to pay for a gaming laptop, I guess I'll put in what little I know. My Toshiba laptop is a decent mid-tier gaming laptop and runs anything I give it. I got it because I don't have room for a gaming computer, and I travel a lot and go to LAN parties, I personally don't see the problem in having a laptop do both work normally and have it be able to play good games. Also not a fan of tablets or netbooks. Having it plugged in isn't really a bad thing. I use it at my desk plugged in, and if I need to move around my house for a while, I unplug it. No big deal.

One of the things I specified while looking on newegg for it was a dedicated graphics card and a decent amount of RAM, while I don't have that much myself (4 gigs), it's still never frozen on me outside of when it's actually my fault [like my laptop being closed in the middle of TF2 or something.] I spent about 600ish on it a year ago.
When looking for the laptop, try looking up reviews of the graphics card they mention, and look at reviews on the site you're using. I personally used newegg.
 

KeyofEvil'sBane

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Going along the above post, I bought a Toshiba in over a year ago, and I've loved it. I would recommend doing some research as to what components you want for the purposes you wish to use your laptop for. As far as where to buy it, that's another thing I loved about Toshiba, on their site, you can custom build and order your own laptop to your specifications
 

Annoyance

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Going along the above post, I bought a Toshiba in over a year ago, and I've loved it. I would recommend doing some research as to what components you want for the purposes you wish to use your laptop for. As far as where to buy it, that's another thing I loved about Toshiba, on their site, you can custom build and order your own laptop to your specifications
I find that will make the price go up more. My laptop was supposed to be around $750-800 at the time but Newegg had it on sale.
 

Taylor

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Don't buy a gaming laptop because they tap out pretty easily and are usually over-inflated in price.

Sabrina spent $600 on a gaming laptop; I spent ~$750 on my PC and I guarantee you it's way better than her laptop. Even if I only spent $600 it could be better. Guaranteed. If your current laptop is still rolling around just fine, then just use it for its portable utilities; or buy a cheap netbook for like $200 and build a solid rig for dedicated gaming.
 

Hero

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I would build my own PC, but as a college student, I need something that I can carry around with me.

Anyway, I've decided between two:

Amazon.com: ASUS K55N-DS81 15.6-Inch Laptop (Black): Computers & Accessories

and

Amazon.com: ASUS K55A-DS51 15.6-Inch Laptop (Mocha): Computers & Accessories

I had originally settled on the first laptop, but I'm eyeing the second because of the better processor, bigger hard drive, and it's got twice the amount of ram. Both are also a steal in terms of price and can handle casual amounts of gaming.
 

Taylor

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that's why you build a gaming rig and buy a cheap laptop that can just take notes and run simple programs that you might need on the go???
 
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