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 LATEST TOPICS |  FORUMS » GENERAL DISCUSSIONS » LAPTOP DECISION...
Subject: Laptop decision
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Randyman Mar 16, 2017 03:44 PM Reply | Bookmark
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Hi Folks,
It has been a while but I am looking for advise as to what laptop to buy. I use cad/ Solidworks and other processor intensive programs. I also like to game on a couple sites. Nothing heavy but I would like to buy one system that can handle the load and remove my desktop. Price is important but quality is what I'm looking for. Best bang for the buck if you were to buy one.
I'm depending on you young guns to help an old fart stay in touch.

Thank you,
Randy

Topic URL: http://forums.ncix.com/forums/topic.php?id=2754100

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Mr. Friendly™ Mar 16, 2017 04:04 PM Reply | Bookmark
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hey Randyman. what's your budget? if you're game to spend about $1500, take a look at the new Dell Insipron 15 Gaming. gives you a quad core i5-7300HQ or a quad core i7-7700HQ and then options for he GTX 1050 or GTX 1050 Ti on a FHD LED LCD.

if you're good to spend 'more', then look at a notebook that comes with an LCD w/G-Sync and something like a GTX 1060.

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Randyman Mar 16, 2017 04:25 PM Reply | Bookmark
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Hi,
I'd like to stay below 2 grand but was wondering what would be the best bang for the buck and be reliable. I have had great success with Toshiba in the past but that's all over now so I have no idea who is the best to go with that offers the power and reliability.
I used asus mainboards for the longest time in my builds when they first came out. ( I've been away from this for quite some time)
My wife bought me a small asus laptop and it is nothing more than a paper weight for my office. worst piece of crap I have ever seen.
I appreciate the help.
Are gaming machines out of the question or are they overkill?
I would like something that is going to last a couple years and it doesn't seem that intel has anything in the works at this time.
Randy

This message was modified by the poster at 03 16, 2017 04:44 PM

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Mr. Friendly™ Mar 16, 2017 04:43 PM Reply | Bookmark
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stay away from Toshiba. they're struggling as a company and might be selling off their PC business to help recover from a massive write-off due to a failed project.

notebooks have quad core CPU's now in the i5's or the i7's. they're clocked a bit lower, but when you do stuff that multi-threads, clock speed isn't as important as cores/threading ability...meaning the i7 is the best as it can do 8 threads due to it's hyper-threading.

from what I'm reading, Solidworks doesn't use a GPU to help accelerate anything, so video card does't really matter...but it's hard to find any gaming grade notebook with anything but nVidia.

if you're not going to look at VR, then that Dell Inspiron 15 Gaming (New) with the GTX 1050 Ti is a great deal. especially since you can add more memory (supports up to 32GB via 2x 16GB DDR4 SODIMM) and has an M.2 slot for a PCIe SSD (5x faster than your regular SSD). if you plan on doing anything with VR though, you'd have to grab something with a GTX 1060 6GB (not 3GB) as the 1050 doesn't support VR, but is a number crunching machine for 1080p gaming.

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Randyman Mar 16, 2017 08:42 PM Reply | Bookmark
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OK thanks,
Did a little research and I am not finding a very positive experience with Dell products in general.
I'm not trying to be difficult but it looks like it's either a Lenova approved for most Cad applications or MSI, Alien ware, Eurocom and such for gaming.
I'm not that familiar with Eurocom but holy smokes it's the fist Laptop I have seen that can be upgraded as you need.
I've never been a real fan of Del or HP but that's from personal experience with customers that had nothing but problems with product support.
I'll keep looking. There must be a system that can handle both without breaking the bank.
I don't do any VR. Most of what I do is for personal interest in RC model Aircraft. Solidworks, Autodesk Inventor, Compufoil, Corel Draw and Adobe Illustrator at only a few of the many programs I use. Each has it's strengths and weaknesses.
I also do Custom Airbrushing using masks created in a couple of the mentioned programs and cut on My Graphtec Cutter.
As you can see I have nothing but time on my hands since retiring.
The only game I play is called Battleground Europe. It's an online game and is really a great deal of fun. The physics are very well done so I enjoy flying the aircraft. But again you have to have a decent system to fly the Aircraft on the Game.
I really don't want to build another desktop just to play a game as I have one and rarely use it.

Thank you in advance for all you help.
Randy

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Mr. Friendly™ Mar 17, 2017 06:51 AM Reply | Bookmark
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hey Randy, it's unfortunate, but you mostly read about bad reviews of products...most happy people don't write them down, not as motivated as a disgruntled person., so take that with a grain of salt. remember, Dell sells tens of thousands of notebooks. I would look up reviews and see what the common pro's/con's are and see if they live up to your needs/wants.

that said, Lenovo, MSI, Asus and Gigabyte have similar spec'd notebooks. I just don't know if they have the M.2 slot that would allow you to install a PCIe M.2 SSD and have the 2.5" drive space occupied with something for storage. The Dell does.

for NCIX, just type in GTX 1050 Ti (you want the Ti, it has 4GB, not 2GB like the non-Ti and much better clock/RAM speeds) and then click on the notebook filter and you'll see the options.

I prefer Dell, because you can purchase a next business day onsite warranty, so you don't have to worry about sending the notebook away to some depot if there's a problem.

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Entz Mar 17, 2017 10:49 AM Reply | Bookmark
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Dell has a lot of QC issues with their XPS line, especially with coil whine and bad screens, high temps, broken speaks etc. However that being said, once you do get a good one (and im sure the majority do) it is a fantastic choice. I just cant stand the keyboard so it is a non-starter for me (Go to a store and try one). Cost may be an issue though.

Also with dell if you go through the business channels, you can get some amazing warranties and deals. So definitely do that. Especially on the the non-xps lines. I am taking a chance on a 5480 currently myself as I got a great deal with full warranty. But do not need the graphics HP (or really any but TB requires it). Not sure if I will like the keyboard and it will likely overheat so we will see lol.

The other nice thing about Dell is you can return it without issue.

I have been looking for ages for a lighter weight system, that has a good keyboard and screen and quad core and thunderbolt and doesn't overheat like mad or scream like a banshee and there pretty much isn't anything good lol. All tradeoffs.

I know it is on the heavy side (5.6), but you can get some insanely good deals on a Lenovo P50 via EPP. Amazing keyboard, fast processor, doesn't overheat, Quadro graphics which will do very well for CAD/Solidworks and you can still do some light gaming on it (or setup external graphics at home later if you wish). Screen isn't amazing but that is one of the trade offs. or a P50s if you can live with dual core.

Other other real downside to Lenovo is you have to pay a restocking fee if you return it (normally, they have promos).

Personally I find most other brands terrible. Some Asus are okay but most are crap lol.

This message was modified by the poster at 03 17, 2017 10:53 AM

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Randyman Mar 17, 2017 11:03 AM Reply | Bookmark
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Ok I'll pull the plug on the Dell, Could you send me link to the Unit you suggest please. I don't see it listed here.
Randy

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Randyman Mar 17, 2017 01:55 PM Reply | Bookmark
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So one question,
Why are these systems not being pushed here on NCIX.
Randy

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Entz Mar 17, 2017 02:30 PM Reply | Bookmark
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Not sure where my post went. Anyways it seems a lot of their premium models only available in a few select  places, kinda like Apple. NCIX isn't one of them. Vendors typically have the best deals anyways.

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Mr. Friendly™ Mar 17, 2017 02:47 PM Reply | Bookmark
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Entz is right...doesn't look like the new Inspiron 15 Gaming has filtered down into the retail channel. seeing their first gen w/GTX 960M, but the 1050 Ti blows it out of the water.

so u might have to buy direct from Dell...  

or...you could try emailing someone at NCIX to see if they can special order for you?

I'd get the model with i7-7700HQ, 8 or 16GB of RAM, 1TB HDD, 15.6" Matte 1920 x 1080 LED LCD, GTX 1050 Ti w/4GB RAM (non-Ti is only 2GB) and then add in your own M.S SSD at a later time.

note, the 7700HQ is Kaby Lake, which is only Windows 10 compatible, you CANNOT use Win 7, no support from Microsoft, Intel/AMD or any of the OEM's like Dell/Lenovo/HHP etc.

edit - oh, and of course the full English only keyboard

This message was modified by the poster at 03 17, 2017 02:48 PM

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Randyman Mar 18, 2017 07:52 PM Reply | Bookmark
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So I'm still on the fence with the Dell. Everything looks great except that just about everyone dislikes the screen having very bad colors and difficult to see.
For me that's a game changer.
It seems they spent a great deal of time providing a good performing machine and dropped the ball on the most important part.
Randy

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Mr. Friendly™ Mar 18, 2017 08:15 PM Reply | Bookmark
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hmmm...you're right.

well, if you do a search on NCIX for GTX 1050 Ti, check the 'notebook' filter option and you'll see MSI, Asus and Gigabyte options. check reviews on them?

This message was modified by the poster at 03 18, 2017 08:17 PM

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Randyman Mar 18, 2017 08:35 PM Reply | Bookmark
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I'll do that thanks,
Everything you mentioned about Dell was spot on for Customer service and such so that will have a lot to do with my decision.
So many models to choose from. Oh well, here we go again.
Again I appreciate your help.

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Entz Mar 19, 2017 12:22 PM Reply | Bookmark
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Could hook it up to an external monitor if you need to do anything colour critical or for gaming. Xps 15 is a better choice for the screen but it isn't as good of a gamer and you of course pay for it. Even with the The 10% + 10% off it is likely going to be 2k taxes in. There isn't a perfect choice, sadly. I have been looking for 6 months lol

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NaX Mar 19, 2017 12:47 PM Reply | Bookmark
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Make sure the keyboard is the type that you would want to work with.
There is a plague in Canada ... it is called bilingufail (bilingual) keyboards (supposedly bilingual english and french layout, but I've heard that even some french typists hate the keyboard; imo it is an utter failure and downright frustrating to use the keyboard)

edit: i only use a standard USA/North America English layout

This message was modified by the poster at 03 19, 2017 12:48 PM

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Mr. Friendly™ Mar 19, 2017 03:45 PM Reply | Bookmark
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what NaX says is truth. so look for US SKU's for Asus, MSI & Gigabyte notebooks.

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Randyman Mar 19, 2017 06:17 PM Reply | Bookmark
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Thanks Folks, I understand what your saying.
Perhaps what I could do is contact Dell and see what my options are and get some firsthand info on the screen problems.

I understand that some people's expectations are higher than what they want to pay and some folks will complain about anything.

Things do happen and unfortunately not everything gets caught in testing. That's when you expect the Manufacture's to step up and take care of their customers.

I would suspect if the screens are as bad as folks are saying in their reviews that Dell would pull them off the market rather than sell them for the sake of a sale or have the system returned and offer the customer another option.

There are those manufactures that could care less ( ASUS ) seems to be one of them in their low end systems ( notebooks) as I have had the unfortunate experience with.
MSI I have never dealt with so I have no opinion.
Like I said, I only do one online game and the rest of the time I use the system for Graphics and Cad work like I mentioned a few posts above.

Randy
Randy

This message was modified by the poster at 03 19, 2017 07:18 PM

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Mr. Friendly™ Mar 20, 2017 06:59 AM Reply | Bookmark
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hey Randy, MSI and Asus have CDN depot's, so their available support is better than the likes of Gigabyte, which has to be shipped to the US.

I guess you could also look at Lenovo's Y series with the GTX 1050 GPU too.

most important thing for you is the quad core i5 or i7.

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Randyman Mar 20, 2017 08:42 AM Reply | Bookmark
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I thank you for your help and yes I will look for those specific cores.
My feelings for ASUS are somewhat mixed as I started using ASUS mainboards for Desktop builds almost from the beginning of their release.
Those items that I assembled worked flawlessly for the most part.
Now it's been several years since I have built anything so I have lost touch with the newer technologies.

The last two ASUS Notebooks we purchased though were complete Garbage so I'm not sure if I want to take a chance on any of their higher end Laptops.


On another note if I go with the SSD drive can they be upgraded?
A 256GB drive is not very big when it comes to loading some of these huge programs especially when you have Microsoft adding more and more crap to their operating system and sucking up computer recourses.

This message was modified by the poster at 03 20, 2017 09:17 AM

This message was modified by the poster at 03 20, 2017 09:19 AM

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Entz Mar 20, 2017 09:25 AM Reply | Bookmark
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Another one to look into is the new Yoga 720. Basically same specs as the XPS 15 but with discounts it will end up a fair bit cheaper. Not reviewed yet, but is shipping in the US supposedly so shouldn't be long. Only issue there may be a failboard as I am not sure how much you can configure (typically not CTO like Thinkpads).

On the Inspiron 15 gaming, definitely. It actually has a slot for both a 2.5 and a M.2 drive. Depending on your config I am guessing you will get one or the other.

I think outside of Apple and Microsoft drives are upgradable. On some vendors you may require an adapter to move from 2.5" to M.2 as some share the same bay.

Edit: some clarification..

This message was modified by the poster at 03 20, 2017 09:43 AM

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Mr. Friendly™ Mar 20, 2017 09:54 AM Reply | Bookmark
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issue with the Yoga, and most other notebooks is that they only have the dual core variants of the i5 and i7.

the software Randyman wants to run is multi-threading, so it would be best for him to get something running the HQ variants, not the U.

if you're okay to spend upwards of $2000+, you could look at the Lenovo P50, which is their mobile workstation. P50s is dual core, so no option. P70 is the 17" version of the P50, but price skyrockets up into the $3K+ area. Lenovo P50 allows for 1x 2.5" drive and 2x M.2 SSD's, SATA or PCIe. just note that you have to get caddies for the M.2 SSD's if added afterwards. if you get a model with an M.2 SSD and want to add a 2.5" drive later, you need to get a special cable adapter. you can find all the part #'s needed at Lenovo Quick Pick's accessories tool/site.

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Entz Mar 20, 2017 10:03 AM Reply | Bookmark
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New Yoga 720 15 has a 7700HQ + 1050 :D

Edit: Note there are 2 version one with a 2GB 1050 and one with a 4G, would want to wait a tiny bit for the 4GB if it isn't a launch model for some reason.

Edit #2: Will also be a i5-7300HQ model as well. Which will help with price if you can live without HT.

This message was modified by the poster at 03 20, 2017 10:18 AM

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Mr. Friendly™ Mar 20, 2017 10:34 AM Reply | Bookmark
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mmm...interesting.

I hope you can get the 1050 without the 4K screen, cause that will murder any gaming potential.

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Entz Mar 20, 2017 10:39 AM Reply | Bookmark
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Definitely can, the model people were able to get last week was :
80X7001WUS
Intel Core i7-7700HQ m 2.80GHz (turbo boost m 3.80GHz)
NVIDIA GTX 1050M 2GB
8GB DDR4 2400MHz RAM
256GB PCI-E M.2 SSD
15.6" 1920x1080 display
Iron Grey color
1259 USD (list)

+ x4 TB3 and the same wacom AES digitizer as the X1 Yoga (which was great) :D

Would need to upgrade your own ram but that is easy enough -- Should be 8 soldered on with 1 slot open so max of 24 if the HMM is to be believed.

I would agree that the 1080p screen is the sweet spot. Balance both battery life and gaming.

Hopefully there will be reviews shortly. curious how good the screen and keyboard is. The XPS line are great, but slow screens, x2 TB and terrible low travel (IMO) keyboards. Most thinkpads are low gamut except for the X1s but this being consumer who knows what parts bin it got.

Anyways may be worth holding off a smidge to see if your not desperate for one. Might be the sweet spot everyone is looking for.

Edit: Actually ordering was last week, im slow :P

This message was modified by the poster at 03 20, 2017 10:50 AM

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Mr. Friendly™ Mar 20, 2017 10:49 AM Reply | Bookmark
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I could almost be tempted if it had the Ti GPU...

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Randyman Mar 20, 2017 11:06 AM Reply | Bookmark
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Yes, No panic but I want to get a feel for what I'm going to need and listen to your advice.
Randy

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Randyman Mar 20, 2017 11:49 AM Reply | Bookmark
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Ok I lied,
Looks like my Toshiba is on the verge of dying. LOL
I'll tell you one thing this is the second Toshiba that I have owned in 15 years I bet and ran them 24/7 and almost never powering off and have never had an issue either of them other than just getting old. The first one died a swift death of the screen after perhaps 6 years of service and this one well, she can't keep up with what I'm pushing.
It's to bad they dropped their Laptop division to explore the industrial end.
Is there any way you folks could email me some preferences if you could buy Brand A or B in todays market.
I respect your privacy but don't want to hold you anything you say on the forum.


Randy

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Entz Mar 20, 2017 12:26 PM Reply | Bookmark
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I would actually suggest posting on the Hardware Canucks or even LTT forums as it is possible to talk and link things without the filters going all crazy (Which ironically still shows the post when you reply). Will also be people there with more experience in MSI and the others.

It looks like you are down to either the "New Inspiron 15 7000" (1,549.99 model), direct from Dell or something else (XPS 15/P50 etc) or try and limp along and wait for the 720 (My guess is 5 weeks)

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Randyman Mar 20, 2017 12:50 PM Reply | Bookmark
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I used to belong to hardware Canucks and received no helpful information. I asked for help several times and received nothing.
That site might have had the right direction when they started but nothing but total ignorance for those that are looking for help.
The other thing was or is having to have a 20 something post rating to get some help.
For Pete's sake , Grow up Canucks. Not everyone is a bot or knows everything.

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