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Intel Motherboards & CPUs Questions or comments on INTEL products?

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Old 10th December, 2002, 12:19 AM
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Which laptop should I get?

I need a laptop for school. Im going to be using to do 3D rendering, basic stamp editor, games of course, and other things. I need to know the basics of buying a laptop. What should I be looking for and why? I know the basics with the CPU, ram, and harddrive space, but what about everything else? Thanks in advance.
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Old 10th December, 2002, 01:16 AM
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Look for a laptop with a good 3d accelerator chip. Some of the nicer laptops come with a 64 Megabyte Radeon chip, while others come with an NVidia GeForce Go series chip.

Of course, RAM will be a big issue here, as hard drives in notebooks are relatively slow compared to desktops. Try to get a minimum of 512 megs of RAM. The more, the better, but DDR prices are kinda high these days (not sure if its the same for notebook DDR though).

This is in the Intel section, so I'm assuming you are getting a Pentium 4 Mobile. They are pretty nice. I have no idea how much experience you have with laptops, but it can't hurt to tell you about it. When you are running strictly off of the battery, the processor lowers its clock speed (and the screen dims) to save power.
I got a freind a Dell Inspiron 8200 with a P4m 1.7 GHz, 512 megs of DDR, etc. and it ran around 850 MHz when only on the battery. I can't remember if the clock speed varied with how much power was left in the battery, however.

There are plenty of things to look at when buying a laptop. First of all, consider the screen size and image quality. Don't go with the cheapest style of display, because it won't look too good. On a Dell laptop, for instance, a 14.1" (the median priced one) is not bad, but the 15" (the best one) is beautiful.

Then there is the storage needs. Bigger hard drives are better, but not only because they are bigger. Larger hard disks often have higher transfer rates, and in a laptop, this can make a huge difference. Also, those DVD / CD-RW combo drives are pretty nice, and cover all the bases. You don't have to go buy an external DVD drive or an external CD-RW drive if you have one of these things (or have to carry an external drive around, for that matter).

Warranties. What happens when you drop your notebook, or spill a coke on it? What happens when your screen gets cracked? Go with a company who has a reputable customer service record. This is why I direct so many of my freinds to go with a Dell for their laptops. Sure, they may be endlessly bothered by other people saying "Dude! You got a Dell!" but in the end, they'll be happy that their notebook's keyboard is working again after it got smashed to peices. IBM notebooks seem to be high quality too.
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Last edited by CamoAlien; 10th December, 2002 at 01:23 AM.
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Old 10th December, 2002, 01:00 PM
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An addition - if you're going to be running off battery power, be aware that running processor/graphic intensive programs can extract a serious performance hit on the battery.

As an example, I have an IBM that will manage about 3hrs of battery life when used for things like programming (mostly text editing!). Change that to something that is processor intensive (like rendering) and the battery life drops to about 50mins to an hour.

A number of machines, like some of the Dells and IBMs will allow you to swap the floppy/CD drive for a second battery to double the runtime.

Any views, thoughts and opinions are entirely my own. They don't necessarily represent those of my employer (BlackBerry).
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Old 26th December, 2002, 09:01 AM
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imho i like the Delll 8200 with Radeon9000mobile
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