1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.

What is the best laptop on the market right now?

Discussion in 'General Chat' started by warren_S5, Feb 12, 2012.

?

Best laptop of the moment....

  1. MacBook Pro

    38.5%
  2. Alienware

    23.1%
  3. Something else (name in post)

    30.8%
  4. What is this laptop nonsense you speak of stranger?

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  5. Roland Roland I'm only trying to help you Roland

    7.7%
  1. warren_S5
    Offline

    warren_S5 Moderator Staff Member Moderator

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2007
    Messages:
    7,176
    Likes Received:
    2,358
    As the title says, what is the best laptop available at the moment.

    I don't want to open the typical Mac vs. PC debate, but on the list for consideration to replace my aged MacBook Pro are:

    1) MacBook Pro 15" 2.4GHz i7 Quad Core, AMD Radeon HD 6770M with 1GB, 8Gb RAM
    2) Dell Alienware M14x 2.4GHz i7 Quad Core, NVidia GForce 3Gb, 8Gb RAM

    Both are coming in at similar prices so not a lot of difference there (about £1800-£2000)

    I'm normally a Mac man but I want to keep options open as Mac stuff seems to be slipping in absolute quality of late.


    THE MAC
    Good: Dependable, easy to integrate in a largely apple network at home, looks as expensive as it's price tag, better screens, 7+hrs battery life

    Issues: It's end of line, hoping new variant launches in April as this mating can only take max 8Gb RAM so at nearly £2k it's not very expandable or future proofed, supposedly new model due in April. Low dedicated graphics ram.


    ALIENWARE
    Good: Can take unto 24Gb of RAM!! Has bucket loads of dedicated graphics ram on the board. Unique, don't see them about much.

    Issues: It's big, I don't like the design, it's been due a refresh for some time, battery life is 1/2 that of mac. Is it really Alienware or just a badged Dell?


    The big question: Is there anything else I should be considering at this price point that can match these two machines which will be used in the main for photo editing large uncompressed D-SLR photos in Photoshop and downloading/editing 1080P video from a DSLR. I'm NOT a prolific gamer, so mental frame rates not required.

    Over to you (thanks in advance)....
    #1
  2. Sandra
    Offline

    Sandra MODERATOR Staff Member Moderator

    Joined:
    Sep 12, 2010
    Messages:
    15,983
    Likes Received:
    2,313
    Warren, personally I think the alienware. Its far better as an all round laptop. Can be used for normal things like spreadsheets etc. yes the alienware is excellent for gaming with good quality graphics card fairly standard on most models. I think it would be most useful for photoshop and editing, but have not tried those functions out as yet. I like apple products, but not keen on the new range of laptops they are currently churning out. They are heavier and more bulky than the alienware which is very compact and more eyecatching to look at.
    #2
  3. warren_S5
    Offline

    warren_S5 Moderator Staff Member Moderator

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2007
    Messages:
    7,176
    Likes Received:
    2,358
    Interesting; and very good points.

    I just wish I coul see one in the flesh as it horrible looking to part with big money and not being able to touch or fiddle with one.
    #3
  4. Sandra
    Offline

    Sandra MODERATOR Staff Member Moderator

    Joined:
    Sep 12, 2010
    Messages:
    15,983
    Likes Received:
    2,313
    Thats the downfall with alenware, you spec online, but dont get the feel for it as such.they are well wicked machines, i can tell you that much. Ok, they are a bit gimmicky with the alienware logo that lights up and the backlit keyboard which can be changed at the touch of a button in a choice of many colours, are really nice. i like the red and the blue personally. Dell may have taken over the company,but the internals are still alienware. The quality of Finished product is excellent and cant be faulted.
    #4
  5. ScottD3
    Online

    ScottD3 I want your faulty electronics

    Joined:
    Nov 24, 2010
    Messages:
    15,095
    Likes Received:
    1,010
    what do you want a laptop for?
    If it is photo editing, surly a good quality PC that's built around that would be better?
    #5
  6. warren_S5
    Offline

    warren_S5 Moderator Staff Member Moderator

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2007
    Messages:
    7,176
    Likes Received:
    2,358
    Because I travel a lot a desktop doesnt really work for me, so would rather have a high end laptop. I appreciate it presents significant compromises in terms of raw processing power but I like the freedom to work from where I want. In the lounge in the current house there isn't the space for a MacPro & monitor. I work from home 80% of the time our home office is effectively a place of work and once the working day is over I walk out and shut the door on that room!

    Therefore I'm afraid it must be a laptop!
    #6
  7. ScottD3
    Online

    ScottD3 I want your faulty electronics

    Joined:
    Nov 24, 2010
    Messages:
    15,095
    Likes Received:
    1,010
    Thats fair enough.
    Just wanted to make sure :D

    Size and weight an issue?

    What ever you go for make sure the screen is good and consider a spider as well to get the best colour out of the screen.
    #7
  8. lil_coz
    Offline

    lil_coz Active Member

    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2007
    Messages:
    1,641
    Likes Received:
    19
    Warren, as you know I'm out for a new laptop at the moment and I'm going down the route of Dell. I've shortlisted a high specced XPS 14z out of the ones that are on the market at the moment. Alienware for me wasn't an option for 3 reasons.

    1: I wont be using it for what it's designed to be capable of, so would be a complete waste of money
    2: Don't like the look of it/too big and heavy
    3: I'll also be using it for work purposes, so having a laptop lit up like a xmas tree with aliens on it wont come across as very professional!

    I'm holding fire on it a the moment because Dell have an XPS 13 Ultrabook out next month. So I'm going to wait and see what that will be specced like before I make my decision.
    #8
  9. warren_S5
    Offline

    warren_S5 Moderator Staff Member Moderator

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2007
    Messages:
    7,176
    Likes Received:
    2,358
    My wife was really ill last night (right during bloody Top Gear), so I had to can looking into this in any more detail. Pleased to say she's a bit better today!

    I have spoken to a guy who works for Apple UK HQ this morning (used to work with him in a previous job), and he says the new MBP takes a serious step forwards in April 2012 in terms of some of the upgrade capability.

    I found a pic on the web of what it's supposed to look like, and early signs are good:

    [​IMG]

    The more I've scratched my head about which is the best one to get, I keep coming back to one key issue. The amount of time this will get used away from home, the 7 hour battery life and portability / weight is a critical factor. Nothing else seems to come close.

    Also the matte screen option is something I invested in for the one I have now as gloss screens just don't work for me.

    Whilst Apple aren't exactly the last bastion of great service these days, I've read some hideous reports on the internet of how people have been treated by Dell, and as they are 'online' providers, it's not like you can walk into a shop and sling your 'brick' at them when it dies on it's arse (like I did when my graphics card packed up on MBP late last year).

    I think there is only one outcome whether I like it or not....
    Last edited: Feb 13, 2012
    #9
  10. ScottD3
    Online

    ScottD3 I want your faulty electronics

    Joined:
    Nov 24, 2010
    Messages:
    15,095
    Likes Received:
    1,010
    Have you explored all makes?

    Surly apple are not the only contenders for what you want?

    A laptop for photo editing with long battery life.
    I'm not sure if that's possible is it?
    Due to size of the screen that will be needed/wanted, will limit the battery life.
    #10
  11. jcs356
    Offline

    jcs356 Brum brum

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2004
    Messages:
    2,682
    Likes Received:
    34
    Hmm, I think you're going to have to compromise somewhere here. Either go for a big spec as a desktop replacement and accept that it is going to weigh a lot and battery life may suffer; or go for something ultra-portable and accept a smaller screen and slower performance but get portability and battery life.

    I've always been in the latter camp - granted, my work is just MS Office based stuff so not photo based so the downgraded power or RAM isn't an issue. What has always been an issue for me is carrying 3kg plus of laptop around. This started from my early days as a consultant with KPMG when we were given chunky 15 inch Thinkpads or Compaq's to work with. Boy were they heavy.

    When I went independent in 2007 I went for a Vaio SZ which is now nearly 5 years old but a HDD transplant late last year up to 500Gb has given it a new lease of life. For me a 13 inch screen and something weighing as close to 1.5kg is most important, then comes the rest of the spec.
    #11
  12. warren_S5
    Offline

    warren_S5 Moderator Staff Member Moderator

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2007
    Messages:
    7,176
    Likes Received:
    2,358
    I did have a look at your HP link and whilst I like the fact it looks strikingly familiar to the MBP range I don't find for the money you pay that the future upgrade path looks that solid.

    At least with the Alienware you can spec up to 24Gb of RAM in the larger models which for a 2+ grand laptop is the kind of options that should be on offer. In many of the laptops I've been looking at whilst some are offering i7 quad core it should be standard at over £2k. As should the option to spec a range of graphics cards with varying amounts of RAM. I appreciate this spec will take a toll on battery life, but AW offer upto 3Gb on the graphics card. As the Mac is coming to end of it's life they only offer upto 1Gb which is poor.

    I think the other key thing that is putting me off PC's is how they suffer with age. My 4 year old MBP is pretty much as it was on day of purchase even though I've upgraded from Leopard to Snow Leopard, then to Lion. The latest cloud / Match web platform integration has caused it to twitch a bit, and it doesn't like processing 1080P video much, but other than that she's sound as a pound. We have an 18 month old Acer to run VCDS and it only gets used for that, and it's slow, creaky and just about fit for what it does. The deterioration in performance over time is awful. Yes virus software doesn't help, but as I don't use any on the Mac it's something else I have to worry about.

    To be honest I'm suprised there isn't more about. It's almost pushing me to look back at desktops.
    #12
  13. wez3570
    Offline

    wez3570 Member

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2011
    Messages:
    713
    Likes Received:
    20
    I have the M11x R2. Good build quality, upgradability. I've upped the RAM to 4gb and hard drive to an SSD and it flies.

    Dont like the glossy screen but anti glare protectors are available.

    I like my iPhone and iPad but prefer the Alienware to anything apple has to rival.
    #13
  14. warren_S5
    Offline

    warren_S5 Moderator Staff Member Moderator

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2007
    Messages:
    7,176
    Likes Received:
    2,358
    Alienware owners do seem to love them, it's just a bit of a bummer not being able to have a fiddle with one in a shop before buying one!

    Buying blind at £2k+ is a big leap of faith!
    #14
  15. N8
    Offline

    N8 Kowalski Details

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2007
    Messages:
    17,159
    Likes Received:
    686
    Loving my Lenovo X220. Got mine for 50% off as well, I have more available pm me if need be.

    [​IMG]
    #15
  16. simon.m
    Offline

    simon.m Active Member

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2009
    Messages:
    2,745
    Likes Received:
    6
    have just been through this myself and can say the lenovo/ibm is really some thing worth buying i have the lenovo g575 with hd lcd screen and 4gm ram and 750gb memory dule core proser 1.3khz so 2.6 in full love it mate
    #16
  17. wez3570
    Offline

    wez3570 Member

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2011
    Messages:
    713
    Likes Received:
    20
    Your welcome to have a nosebag at mine if you're near Sheffield Warren.
    #17
  18. warren_S5
    Offline

    warren_S5 Moderator Staff Member Moderator

    Joined:
    Oct 31, 2007
    Messages:
    7,176
    Likes Received:
    2,358
    Unfortunately I'm near the south coast mate but it's a very kind offer.
    #18
  19. consilio
    Offline

    consilio Up the owls!

    Joined:
    Aug 29, 2007
    Messages:
    666
    Likes Received:
    3
    Sony do a nice looking high end range with decent battery, might be worth a look.

    Sorry but those Stinkpads are ugly!
    #19
  20. h5djr
    Offline

    h5djr Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2003
    Messages:
    7,484
    Likes Received:
    564
    I have a Sony SB1X9E at the moment and I'm very pleased with it. 13.3" matt finish screen, Intel i5-2410 processor. Battery life is quoted as 7.5 hours in Stamina mode and I have a second very thin battery that clips onto the base and doubles the battery life. It came with Windows 7 Pro - 64bit and has 500Gb hard disk and a DVD-RW. Certainly meets my current requirements and cost just under £900.
    #20
  21. N8
    Offline

    N8 Kowalski Details

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2007
    Messages:
    17,159
    Likes Received:
    686
    Sony's are good laptops.
    #21
  22. BlueSpark
    Offline

    BlueSpark 6th Gear

    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2010
    Messages:
    386
    Likes Received:
    6
    I bought a Dell XPS 15 last year and am well pleased with it, especially as i got a 25% discount on it at the time. Built quality is very good and operating temperatures are low compared to my previous laptop. Spec as below i might miss some:

    intel i7 2.50Ghz with turbo boost to 3.60Ghz
    8 GB RAM
    2GB NVidia GeForce graphics card
    Full 1080P HD screen
    backlit keyboard
    Intel Centrino Advanced N wireless Card
    500GB HDD
    Bluray Drive
    Windows 7 Ultimate 64bit
    #22

Share This Page