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genedjr

Gaming Laptop

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OK here goes - as usual I would like feedback on the subject of gaming laptops.

My need is very simple - a 1080p 15"/17" laptop that I can use for gaming.  With TD as the example, I want at least 60FPS on high settings.

My research - 
- Tom's Hardware, youtubers, PC Mag and other reviews
- guessing at the used/refurb market
- Micro Center for a little hands on.

Right now I am debating a Acer Predator Helios 300 as it can still be had at just over $1000 (and I have a 500gb disk to through in it).  Or a refurb with a GTX 1060m.  Or ebay with at least a GTX 970m.

So for those that use a laptop for gaming - all info is welcome.

...gene

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I think I have mentioned on other posts that I am not in the gaming laptop scene. I have know too many people who all had too many issues with them. Especially with Alienware, that has been the worst. Back when I was a Desktop Support Assistant, we had employees order Alienware laptops, and the screens ended up being dead. ASUS and MSI I have good experience with so far in other departments.

All I have to say on this. I'm sure you have put a lot of research into this subject yourself. So you may know even more than me.

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I'm not a tech head, so not handing out advice.

I use a laptop for gaming. So, mainly interested in what is said as mine is getting old.

I do have Asus  and no complaints. Value for money and reliability go PC. Which is something you'd know any-hoo. You cant upgrade a laptop effectively, what you buy is what you get until you replace. And if something breaks...

A laptop just suits me. It really needs to suit 

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16 hours ago, Oh. daesu said:

A laptop just suits me. It really needs to suit 

As I expect to be traveling for business again and the POS company laptop is simply not gaming capable.  So size and weight are also important.  As it will be a secondary rig - I don't really need that much.  And as a secondary rig - the $1000 price point is also a consideration.

...gene

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1 hour ago, genedjr said:

As I expect to be traveling for business again and the POS company laptop is simply not gaming capable.  So size and weight are also important.  As it will be a secondary rig - I don't really need that much.  And as a secondary rig - the $1000 price point is also a consideration.

...gene

Weight wise, just don't get one of those ridiculous laptops that fit a desktop size GPU, and you'll be fine I'd think. But I'm not carrying a 12lb laptop.

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21 hours ago, Callsign_Gloves said:

Weight wise, just don't get one of those ridiculous laptops that fit a desktop size GPU, and you'll be fine I'd think. But I'm not carrying a 12lb laptop.

Bah - now this is a big laptop - https://www.rjltechnologies.com/shop/product/41090442/1?gclid=CjwKCAjw7tfVBRB0EiwAiSYGM-5bwdzpQWB_yu_sCHUnOUxArXp4QDi7GLRlWVRbbuSkMR-scrkbqRoCBpwQAvD_BwE

...gene

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On 3/30/2018 at 10:42 PM, lesi said:

Dell Inspiron 15 5000 15 5000 would be a great and cheap laptop that would be awesome for you

Naw - that uses Intel integrated graphics which are very low powered.  I want GTX 1060m or better.  I have also been looking at used/refurb with GTX 980m (as well as others), but the overall packages seem to favor GTX 1060m for price/performance and at $1200 I really can't complain (less if I drop the 1TB storage as I have  500GB laying around).

Question: how do you feel about "refurb"?  I have bought "refurb" many times and am overall happy - with only one real failure.

I believe I have only a few weeks before I start traveling for business again - so I am watching daily.

...gene

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12 hours ago, genedjr said:

Naw - that uses Intel integrated graphics which are very low powered.  I want GTX 1060m or better.  I have also been looking at used/refurb with GTX 980m (as well as others), but the overall packages seem to favor GTX 1060m for price/performance and at $1200 I really can't complain (less if I drop the 1TB storage as I have  500GB laying around).

Question: how do you feel about "refurb"?  I have bought "refurb" many times and am overall happy - with only one real failure.

I believe I have only a few weeks before I start traveling for business again - so I am watching daily.

...gene

I am all for refurb. That, and the used stuff in good condition. I have yet to have a failure with anything I have gotten those ways. Of course, if the refurb price is not much less than the new price, just buy it new. Otherwise, I feel refurb is always a safe way to go. Used stuff, you just have to really pay attention. For me, it must always have images, a detailed description, and the seller has to have some reputation. I more likely to buy from a ebay seller with 4 stars and 8k reviews than the guy with 3 stars and 20 reviews.

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15 hours ago, genedjr said:

Naw - that uses Intel integrated graphics which are very low powered.  I want GTX 1060m or 

well, I sit corrected - here is a review for the dell with a 1060 6GB

http://www.tomshardware.com/reviews/dell-inspiron-15-7000-gaming-laptop-max-q-gtx-1060,5456.html?utm_source=th-newsletter&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=20180330-th

If cost were the only factor, this is a winner.  But I think for the extra $200, I would still get the Acer 300.  But great to see a real competitor at the $1K mark.

...gene

Edited by genedjr

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OK, last call here.  I am ordering this week as I am in Miami! and expect to be for the next month.
As this is mostly ust to game traveling - price and 60FPS on med+ is the low bar.

...gene

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OK, pulled the trigger on the Helios 300 - OMG...

If this is the low end - WOW
As this is The Division, on high, I get 60fps - period. Bench - 59.2 and I saw as low as 40 but not experiencing that in game - so far.

For other games - I get 60fps period (but those are older games).
I need to do more testing, if you need a travel rig --- WOW this is it.

The good
Everything not listed below, I am just WOW! - if you need a 1080p gaming laptop - this is it. REALLY!

The bad - 

  • keyboard will take getting used to - nice feel, very different placement, for me.
  • weird screen backlight, not sure how to describe this but REALLY MINOR nit.
  • touch pad sucks, hard to control, jumpy = buy a good mouse. (hopefully Acer can fix this with software) - bought $20 MS wireless mouse - works really well.
  • weight - not sure exactly, but the power brick is 180W and huge. (I will update) So the 6lbs is not accurate. - Almost 7lbs with brick.
  • well - very minor nits - 
    • big and heavy - I will weight when I add the power brick - but BIG. 
    • keyboard needs better touch (double/missed keys)
    • Keyboard - and minor, but you will need to learn touch typing.

so far (10hr) I love this! excellent value.   AND it GAMES!

...gene 

(5/13 - This is a winner.  Did several 5+ hour sessions using hotel wireless and it performed flawlessly.  I have not tried to overclock it, no need IMNSHO.  You always wonder when plunking down $1140 (taxes, everyone pays taxes) if you had made the right choice.  I did.)

Edited by genedjr
update on experience - wow just wow.
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Almost 3 month review. WOW WOW, just perfect.  My only not really a complaint  - its very heavy.

This is still Tom's HW editors choice - for a long time before I bought mine and still today (July 13).  And I could not agree more.  For 1080p/60hz/15" this is it.  And at the price, perfect ($1140 w/tax).

I added:

  • MS wireless mouse, very standard, (note: the touch pad is not good at all) - add $20.
  • 1TB SSD, move all game stuff to it.  No noticeable drop in performance - add $200.
  • Cheapo ear bud set for mic/speakers - add $30

I use a controller that I use both at home and while traveling - add $0

One side note:  When I was in a bed and breakfast that did not have a desk, I tried to use this on my lap, not a good choice.  After about 2 hours it went into a real heavy throttling mode, down to just 20FPS (or less) in TD.  It confused the crap out of me.  I thought the darn thing had died.  But on your lap you restrict airflow - bad bad bad.  Once I figured that out, use a desk! (or a tray!) all is OK.

Since then, 3 more trips with hotel connectivity - I am just ecstatic!  Money splendidly well spent.

NOTE:  This is my first gaming laptop.  I had only the expectation of 1080p/60FPS on high settings - done! Exceptionally done!

...gene

 

 

Edited by genedjr
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2 minutes ago, genedjr said:

But it works!

But it feels like I'm carrying a child... a mechanical one.

Just kidding. Glad your so pleased with it gene!

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On 3/31/2018 at 0:42 AM, lesi said:

Dell Inspiron 15 5000 15 5000 would be a great and cheap laptop that would be awesome for you

I know that I’m way late and that you’ve already bought, but for anyone that’s reading through this laptop definitely won’t game. I bought one for less intense work (editing YouTube vids, web serfing, future classwork/homework) and the Intel graphics won’t play games. It does fine with what I use it for, but it struggles to run a resource intense program (like GIMP or ShotCut) and OBS at the same time. 

I have a slightly older model (2016 or 2017 edition, no DVD drive), but otherwise it’s pretty much the same: 

Stats of laptop:

- Screen size: 15.6” 1920x1080 touchscreen 

- Processor: i7-7500U dual-core 2.7GHz 

- Memory: 8GB DDR4 RAM

- Hard drive: 1TB HDD

- Graphics: Intel HD Graphics 620

- OS: Windows 10 Home

- Ports: HDMI, 3 USB - 1x 2.0/2x 3.0, headphone/mic port

- Wireless networking

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