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Old 28th March 2018, 19:37   #5056
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Default Re: The Laptop Thread: Configs, deals & questions

Hi guys. I need some help in choosing a new laptop. sorry for the long post. I want to upgrade my primary laptop which I use for work. My current laptop (AMD A10 / 8GB ram) is now very sluggish with the work I am doing. Typically I use multiple IDEs, 1 or more servers - at least one running with resource intensive process often, cloud emulator. For my current project, I also need to use virtualization occasionally (this however is not a priority). So, as I said the main problem is sluggishness in my laptop during regular work. I also tried another laptop with 7th gen i5 (U series), with similar results.

My confusion is should I go for a laptop with the new 8th gen i5 U series or 7th gen i5 HQ series processor. The problem with HQ series is that it comes only in gaming laptops. Which means I will be paying for a lot of things that dont need - like high end graphics card. Since it is my primary work computer, I dont mind spending for more useful stuff. The difference between a basic gaming laptop and a good non-gaming laptop is more than 15k. I was thinking, IF U series processor is enough for my requirements, I can use the difference amount to upgrade the ssd and ram, rather than paying for the other stuff in gaming laptop that I do not find useful.

Last edited by mxx : 28th March 2018 at 19:43.
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Old 29th March 2018, 11:47   #5057
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Hi guys. I need some help in choosing a new laptop. sorry for the long post......
For CPU intensive work you should get I7 based machine, with an SSD. I5 will never be as fast as an I7. If you use a lot of windows and/or VM, then best get at least 16GB RAM. 32 is better.
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Old 29th March 2018, 12:17   #5058
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My confusion is should I go for a laptop with the new 8th gen i5 U series or 7th gen i5 HQ series processor. The problem with HQ series is that it comes only in gaming laptops.
I'm not sure of the budget range you are looking at, but I will suggest you to opt for the Dell Precision range of laptops. They are available in 15 and 17 inch configs with processors ranging from quad core i5 U to i7 HQ and xeon E3s at the top. The 7000 series ones especially have the better processors.

Amazon search reveals a price starting at Rs. 69,000 for the i5 U with 1tb Hdd + 128 Gb ssd. Why don't you approach the local Dell store for a custom config Laptop? This way you can just upgrade the processor from the base configuration and keep the graphic card stock.

My recommendation would be to go with a i5 HQ or a i7 HQ with a minimum of 16 Gb RAM and 256 GB SSD. You can upgrade the RAM as and when required later on if you feel the need to do so.

Last edited by blackwasp : 29th March 2018 at 12:18.
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Old 29th March 2018, 12:23   #5059
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Before we begin, we'd like to know the approximate budget that you are looking at.

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Originally Posted by mxx View Post
Typically I use multiple IDEs, 1 or more servers - at least one running with resource intensive process often, cloud emulator. For my current project, I also need to use virtualization occasionally (this however is not a priority).
Compile times for a single IDE will benefit from faster CPUs, whereas multiple IDEs can run smoothly with more RAM instead of faster CPU.
Virtualization also benefits from faster CPU, but the benefit of adding as SSD will significantly overshadow any gains made by the CPU.

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Originally Posted by mxx View Post
.... I also tried another laptop with 7th gen i5 (U series), with similar results.
7th Gen U processors were designed for efficiency, low power draw and low heat dissipation, so you cannot expect a consistently high level of performance from a laptop with a U-processor because the machine's internals aren't designed for it. HQ processors are designed for sustained higher loads.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mxx View Post
My confusion is should I go for a laptop with the new 8th gen i5 U series or 7th gen i5 HQ series processor. The problem with HQ series is that it comes only in gaming laptops. Which means I will be paying for a lot of things that dont need - like high end graphics card. Since it is my primary work computer, I dont mind spending for more useful stuff.
The 8th Gen i5-U chips are quad core which leads to higher consistent performance, and occasionally massive boosts when required, including benchmarks. For example, a jump of CPU Frequency from 1.8GHz to 4GHz is normal. But this cannot be used for sustained loads without appropriate cooling, so therefore, will need large laptops (15").

Certain gaming laptops have another big advantage: Good cooling. So you can run intense workloads for a longer duration without lag.

However, all that being said, you need to study carefully your workload before you make a decision.
  • If you're constantly stressing your laptop with file operations, then go for one with an SSD instead of higher RAM.
  • If you're stressing it with number crunching or rendering, opt for one with more CPU and RAM, and finally.
  • If you're looking at server related duties, then it has to be more CPU and an SSD.
(By the way, 8GB RAM is a minimum for Windows 10 + multiple IDEs).

Recommendations:
Dell XPS 13
Xiaomi Notebook Pro
Dell 7567
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Old 29th March 2018, 12:50   #5060
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Currently me and my wife share a HP G62-149WM laptop (bought in 2010).

It is her mainly used by her for net surfing / ecommerce / office documents purpose, although with an infant to care for, the laptop hardly sees any usage now a days.
I just have a profile for 'just in case' requirements, as I have 3 desktop computers for different usage (gaming & movies / coding / NAS).
The 8 year old laptop has already gone through a keypad change, a battery change & Win 10 upgrade.

Is there any logic in trading in this laptop to get a new one? With a child growing up, is it prudent to get a new laptop or let this one bear the brunt of a toddler?
Please suggest.

Last edited by blackasta : 29th March 2018 at 12:52.
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Old 29th March 2018, 13:11   #5061
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Originally Posted by GTO View Post
Guys, requesting advice................
My laptop is to me what an Innova is to a tour operator. I cannot have it down from morning to evening (max 24 hours, but even that is too much).
Given your requirement, I would suggest to buy a new laptop, preferably from the Dell Latitude / XPS family, while keeping your current laptop as a failover option.
All critical content can be backed up in cloud and accessed via the old laptop safely, in case of any issue with the new one (highly unlikely in the first two years).
This way, chances of failure are reduced (with a new laptop) and your good old laptop will continue to serve as a backup. Something which a tour operator can't always do with cars
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Old 29th March 2018, 13:52   #5062
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I have 3 desktop computers for different usage (gaming & movies / coding / NAS).

The 8 year old laptop has already gone through a keypad change, a battery change & Win 10 upgrade.

Is there any logic in trading in this laptop to get a new one? With a child growing up, is it prudent to get a new laptop or let this one bear the brunt of a toddler?
Please suggest.
The solution becomes clear as soon as you imagine laptops to be like cars.

My recommendation is to install an older version of Windows, say XP, onto the laptop and use it for a while. The example is sort of like using a beater car to learn driving, and then, as the child grows and gets acclimatized to the hardware and software functions as well as the interfaces, then you can consider the purchase of a new laptop.

Food for thought:
There's a reason that the best driving schools still start off beginners with a Maruti 800.

PS: I'm not saying that beater cars are equivalent to old laptops in all aspects. It's just that you're more prepared to take damage on the beater than the main one.
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Old 29th March 2018, 14:20   #5063
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@Mods: Since there are two separate queries, and also because I've crossed the time limit, I am posting again. But feel free to merge if necessary.

Quote:
Originally Posted by GTO View Post
I'm using a Dell Latitude E6430 which is nearing the end of its 5-year warranty (31st March). Love Dell because - whatever fails in the laptop - they get it up and running on the same day.
Yes. Dell is amazing in that aspect. Also. standardization of parts across various models aids in the speedy repair process. Also, their customer care has good follow-up.

Quote:
Originally Posted by GTO View Post
The laptop is currently working flawlessly and I've already upgraded to an SSD + new battery. In its 5 years, it's only had a single warranty replacement (cooling fan).
This tells me that your laptop usage is placing stress on the cooling fan. Whether you use it on the bed a lot or whether you don't open it up and blow dust away, or whether you do a lot of heavy lifting, I don't know. Moving forward, such a replacement shouldn't set you back much. Also, buy a spare battery sometime in the future so that you aren't losing out in case Dell starts to focus on a different model of battery.

Quote:
Originally Posted by GTO View Post
1. Should I replace it with a new one? Primary reason would be the uptime requirement. I cannot have a dead laptop on any working day (loss of productivity is too much).
If it ain't broke, don't fix it. But consider getting another B-laptop if you're happy with the Latitude.

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Originally Posted by GTO View Post
2. What's the typical life of a laptop? By when should a business user replace it (warranty or no warranty)?
Specifically for business users, the life of the laptop is only as long as the warranty exists. Laptops are electronic components, and therefore, quite unpredictable. Of all laptops, MacBooks have been rumoured to last long, but that's also because most MacBook users don't run it under sustained load. As long as there's warranty, there's peace of mind.

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Originally Posted by GTO View Post
3. If the worst part fails, what's the max time we can have it up & running in? 1 day? Or more?
The worst part that could fail is the motherboard, and the max time depends on how close you are to the manufacturer and and it's service centres. Since technology is evolving at a faster rate than cars, one cannot expect the same duration of support that car manufacturers, FNGs and aftermarket vendors give. Nevertheless, business lines of laptops stick to similar parts for a long time, and so, support shouldn't be an issue.

Quote:
Originally Posted by GTO View Post
My laptop is to me what an Innova is to a tour operator. I cannot have it down from morning to evening (max 24 hours, but even that is too much).
Then, I'd recommend you get a Thinkpad, that are made by Lenovo (formerly IBM, the Toyota equivalent of the computing world).

Do not got for the ultra-slim one with RAM and SSD soldered on, but the slightly thicker one where the aforementioned can be upgraded/replaced. This also gives you better cooling.

Word of advice:
Heat is the biggest enemy of laptops. So purchase one with a good thermal design and also good upgrade-ability options in case there are changes to be made.

Cheers and good luck, GTO!
PS: Feel free to inbox me in case of any detailed clarification.

Last edited by CaptainPrice : 29th March 2018 at 14:22. Reason: Added Mod note
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Old 30th March 2018, 01:09   #5064
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GTO View Post
1. Should I replace it with a new one? Primary reason would be the uptime requirement. I cannot have a dead laptop on any working day (loss of productivity is too much).

2. What's the typical life of a laptop? By when should a business user replace it (warranty or no warranty)?

3. If the worst part fails, what's the max time we can have it up & running in? 1 day? Or more?

My laptop is to me what an Innova is to a tour operator. I cannot have it down from morning to evening (max 24 hours, but even that is too much).
Generally everything in a laptop slows down after a few years, be it the processor, the overall tweaks and also the keyboard etc, the main reasons being dust and heat the enemies of electronics so I'd say 5-6 years is a good time to exchange IF the need is reliability and maintaining good performance.

However one laptop remains at the pinnacle of solidity, reliability and good old fashioned security and that's the first laptop to ever be made - the ThinkPad, this remains my only suggestion to anyone I know till date even if IBM, its original creators have vested manufacturing rights to Lenovo completely. I call ThinkPads as the king of laptops because :

1. Water/liquid drain channels beneath the keypad, driving liquids out of sensitive electronic zones in case of spillage.

2. Carbon fibre lid and casing of the monitor.

3. Magnesium-alloy roll-cage protecting the components of the lower components like HDD, RAM, electronics etc.

4. Software tweaking and a first-in-class "airbag" for the HDD, IBM did call them airbags. The software detects motion and sudden jerks to the machine at all times using a gyroscope and shuts the HDD off in case of detecting a fall thus protecting data.

5. Keyboard feel and feedback : is tremendous and once one types on a Thinkpad there simply is no competition and hence most do repeat purchases.. the key travel is long and cushioned with well defined stroke feedback and bounce. Macbooks in comparison have the worst keys I've seen

6. The TrackPoint - a red mouse scroller inbetween the keyboard.. for Excel heavy users like me its a blessing.

7. Its military spec tested for dust, water and gravity (impacts). The hinges are pure aluminium making them sturdy and light.

Been using ThinkPads forever, started off with the original IBM T-Series Thinkpad as a teen and used it all through b-school reliably and I upgraded only for want of speed after 7 years, this one has seen 5 years of corporate use comfortably. Also have an X-Series at work (portablity) though I suggest the thicker desk-usage related models like T-Series and workstation like W-Series because the greater the thickness and size the better is the heat dispersion, keyboard feel and feedback. A T470 with i5 processor, 8 GB RAM and 1 TB RAM will fly, my 5 year old i3 with 4 GB RAM opens Win7 in less than 20 seconds. The 3 year onsite warranty is a bonus though I've never used it ever. The likes of Dell or Vaio or Macbooks (I've used all 3 belonging to other people) don't come a mile close to this one.

Last edited by dark.knight : 30th March 2018 at 01:10.
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Old 31st March 2018, 13:28   #5065
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Originally Posted by Aroy View Post
For CPU intensive work ...
Quote:
Originally Posted by blackwasp View Post
I'm not sure of the budget range ...
Quote:
Originally Posted by CaptainPrice View Post
Compile times for a single IDE will benefit from faster CPUs...

thanks guys.
So, I have decided to go for an i5 HQ series and upgrade RAM and SSD.

I have been doing some research on google about this, and the suggestions are similar tho what you guys have said. ie for workstation loads, get a HQ series processor. Although in peak performance, 8th gen u series can match some of the 7th gen hq series. but the peak performance on u series will not be sustained for longer periods.
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Old 1st April 2018, 11:29   #5066
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Thanks guys!

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Originally Posted by aamateen46 View Post
I would suggest to buy a new laptop, preferably from the Dell Latitude / XPS family, while keeping your current laptop as a failover option.
Will do. I can only go for the Latitude as a docking port for dual monitors is a must. That's a good idea to keep the current laptop as a failover.

Quote:
Originally Posted by CaptainPrice View Post
This tells me that your laptop usage is placing stress on the cooling fan.
I use a docking port (with enough clearance for cooling at the bottom) when working and a cooler master platform (STRONGLY recommended) when on a couch or something. Also helps protect your thighs from the heat .

Quote:
Specifically for business users, the life of the laptop is only as long as the warranty exists.
Have initiated the process with Dell's Sales team. But they are so SLOW (unlike their service department).

Quote:
Then, I'd recommend you get a Thinkpad, that are made by Lenovo (formerly IBM, the Toyota equivalent of the computing world).
Quote:
However one laptop remains at the pinnacle of solidity, reliability and good old fashioned security and that's the first laptop to ever be made - the ThinkPad
I've used a ThinkPad earlier and while it's an excellent laptop, the Latitude series is easily a match (if not superior). Be it in terms of reliability, build quality or the keyboard. I personally prefer my Latitude's soft + positive keyboard to the ThinkPad's.

Quote:
The TrackPoint
Latitude has this too.

While Dell's regular range can be a hit or miss, the Latitude is absolutely top class. And their 4-hour response time with parts + labour is simply unmatched in India. I remember how my Dell desktop had once failed and the diagnosis was taking a bit long. So they simply changed the motherboard + power supply + something else (I don't remember) just to get me up and working on the same day!
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Old 1st April 2018, 13:44   #5067
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I can only go for the Latitude as a docking port for dual monitors is a must.
Even XPS series allows dual monitor setup with the help of thunderbolt dock. I'm using xps 13 with dual monitors using thunderbolt dock purchased from AliExpress.
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Old 1st April 2018, 17:48   #5068
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I just ordered a budget gaming laptop - Lenovo Legion Y520.

I do not use a laptop much (I prefer a phone or a tab on the go as it is handy and have a desktop in my workplace) and I needed a new one just for the occasional gaming.

Now, I am not a hardcore gamer and I like to pass time once in a while and I am mostly into simulator games such as ETS2, OMSI2, Fernbus Simulator and the likes.

My current laptop was getting old (4 years) and the 1GB Radeon graphics card in my system was not upto the task anymore. I had to play the above games in the lowest graphics setting, which was not fun. Plus there was considerable lag in OMSI and Fernbus would not even start! And I wanted to play GTA V again! Also, the laptop had severe heat dissipation issues and the fan would go at full throttle even if you were streaming a movie!

Long story short, I decided to invest in a new gaming laptop and did some basic research on the net. My budget was around 60k (not a lot, I know). The Lenovo Legion Y250 seemed to offer fair specs for it's price and I went to a nearby electronics store and they had an offer on the base variant and I impulsively ordered one for around 53k.

Now the laptop was not in stock and it will be delivered to me today. The goof-up I did was that I did not check the specs thoroughly before putting down by money.
  • 7th Gen Intel® Core™ i5-7300HQ Processor (6 MB Cache, 2.5 GHz, 3.5 GHz max)
  • Windows 10 Home 64-bit
  • NVIDIA GeForce® GTX 1050 4GB GDDR5
  • 8GB RAM
  • 1 TB HDD
I have just one concern at the moment - my laptop comes with the NVIDIA GTX 1050 (4 GB) and not the 1050 Ti.

When I placed the order, I assumed that even the i5 versions have the 1050 Ti (I remember reading it somewhere), but guess I was wrong.

How much of a deal breaker is this? Will it affect gaming performance drastically?
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Old 1st April 2018, 20:18   #5069
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Looking for a laptop that can edit 4k 60 fps videos. Would prefer to stay with the Windows ecosystem. Thanks in advance.
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Old 2nd April 2018, 04:40   #5070
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Originally Posted by raj_5004 View Post
I just ordered a budget gaming laptop - Lenovo Legion Y520.

I have just one concern at the moment - my laptop comes with the NVIDIA GTX 1050 (4 GB) and not the 1050 Ti.

How much of a deal breaker is this? Will it affect gaming performance drastically?
This should not be a deal breaker. There is hardly a difference in performance between the two cards, especially so for the laptop chipsets. The difference in FPS will only be in higher resolutions (above 1600x900), which I wouldn't recommend you to exceed on the laptop you have selected anyway.

Personally, I wouldn't go for anything less than a 1060, because most modern day games come with the 1060 as the minimum requirement, but I guess for the games that you're planning to play, the 1050 would serve the purpose.

Here's a comparison report between the 1050 & 1050 Ti for you to check and see for yourself: http://www.game-debate.com/gpu/index...50M%20Ti%204GB

Cheers
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