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Notebooks what is the best 12" laptop for me?

Discussion in 'Hardware' started by Xtrafresh, 1 Sep 2008.

  1. Xtrafresh

    Xtrafresh It never hurts to help

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    I am in need of some advice on what laptop to buy.

    First of all, here's my use case:
    I sit in the train for 3 hours a day. I have a laptop, but i find it too bulky (15.4") to use in the train. I want something smaller, and have decided on the 12.1" format.
    I would like to use the laptop for office tasks, as well as some light gaming to keep me occupied. I understand i wont be playing crysis or Race driver: Grid on this thing, but at least i'd like to be able to play some older strategy or RPG-games. Let's take Baldur's Gate as a minimum to illustrate.
    Obviously, i can recharge at the office, so a battery life of 1.5 hours is the absolute minimum. 3hrs would be perfect, as it would get me back home again, so i can leave the heavy powerbrick at home :)
    I'm gunna use an external mouse (touchpads are the work of satan).
    And last but not least i want the thing to be cheap. :lol:

    To recap:
    • 12.1"
    • light
    • battery life 3hrs wanted, 1,5hrs bare minimum
    • capable of light gaming.
    • as cheap as possible. max-out at 1000 pounds.

    As i have no clue about what is good and what isn't in laptopland, i'm just going ask you guys: which laptop would you buy?
    :idea:
     
  2. Matticus

    Matticus ...

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    Check out the Samsung Q series laptops.

    http://www.laptopsdirect.co.uk/Samsung_Q210-AS02UK_NP-Q210-AS02UK/version.asp

    That is a pretty good example, not sure where you would get it from in Holland though. In terms of specs and price (laptopsdirect can be a bit pricey) they are pretty awesome, I don't know about the battery life though. I imagine if you went for one with an intel GMA X3100, you will probably be able play older games with much better battery life.
     
  3. Xtrafresh

    Xtrafresh It never hurts to help

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    is the X3100 a dedicated card or a version of integrated graphics? I'm not really clear on what exactly the x3100 is :p

    Thx for the linky though, i'll check it out :thumb:
     
  4. blah

    blah Minimodder

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    M1330 is 13.3" but has inbuilt DVD and you won't find anything smaller for 13".
     
  5. samkiller42

    samkiller42 For i AM Cheesecake!!

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    Look at the Asus U Series at www.asuslaptop.co.uk

    I'm currently looking to buy the £1300 laptop in that list, but the others are reasonable.

    Sam
     
  6. Xtrafresh

    Xtrafresh It never hurts to help

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    So far it's a toss-up between the samsung and the dell. The Dell is looking a tad expensive though...

    Does anyone have any gaming experience on a X3100 chip? i'd like to know what it can do, i'm a bit afraid that i'll regret going for that thing 6 months from now.
     
  7. GoodBytes

    GoodBytes How many wifi's does it have?

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    Check out the Dell latitude series, they claim to have 19hours of battery life (probably with 2 batteries, as the description seams to support that).
    Dell told me it comes out in Mid-September.

    13.3 inch featuring a normal laptop Intel Core 2 Duo, back light keyboard, LED back light screen, up to 8Gb DRR3 RAM (yes DDR3 not DDR2 (unless typo)), Magnesium alloy LCD back and base and eSATA, metal hinge for the screen.
    http://www1.ca.dell.com/content/pro...top_latitude_e4300?c=ca&cs=cabsdt1&l=en&s=bsd

    Here is the 12inch model, where it uses Low power Intel Core Duo (1.3Ghz I believe, I am not sure), pretty much the same as the 13.3inch one. Oh yes both are widescreen.
    http://www1.ca.dell.com/content/pro...top_latitude_e4200?c=ca&cs=cabsdt1&l=en&s=bsd
     
  8. oasked

    oasked Stuck in (better) mud

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    Dell XPS M1330 looks like a good choice for you. You can configure it with a 8400M, which should be better than the Intel X3100. :)
     
  9. Moriquendi

    Moriquendi Bit Tech Biker

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    The X3100 is one of intels integrated graphics solutions and as such acceptable for solitaire but not much else as far as gaming is concerned AFAIK. From what I understand though you pay dearly for the geforce in battery life, so much so that they wont let you have the 4cell battery if you order the geforce.

    I'm also in the market for a reasonably small, light laptop but im trying to choose between the XPS M1330, the M1530 and the studio 15

    Moriquendi
     
  10. Xtrafresh

    Xtrafresh It never hurts to help

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    Those lattitude bricks are serious cheesecake... except they al have Intel 950 integrated graphics :grr:
    Also, it seems like Dell is playing into every single fear a computer owner and/or user could have and make you pay dearly for each one :wallbash:

    The XPS 1330 seems a LOT closer for me, but i am not sure about the size difference between those and the 12.1 inchers.

    After reading a ton of reviews on the Samsung Q210 i've decided i'm going for that one. The store around the corner from work sais they'll stock a few on thursday, so unless something better comes along before that, it's a done deal :D

    Thanks everyone for excellent advice :thumb:
     
  11. GoodBytes

    GoodBytes How many wifi's does it have?

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    between a 12 and 13inch the size difference is very small.
    It's more for people that go "i want the weight of a 12inch one but a slightly bigger display so I can see things a bit bigger"
     
  12. Xtrafresh

    Xtrafresh It never hurts to help

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    oh dang!

    I just got a look at the HP pavilion TX 2500 series 12.1" tablet. It's absolutely stunning compared to what all the others offer:

    [​IMG]

    It sports an all-new ATI Radeon HD3200 graphics card. There's videos on youtube of this baby running mass effect! :eeek:
    And it's still only about €900 (700 pounds)! It's got tablet functions, is small, under 2kg, has all needed connectivity, and even a remote!

    Man i'm glad i kept looking. Now i just gotta control myself from running to the first store that has stock, or i'll pay too much :lol:
     
  13. GoodBytes

    GoodBytes How many wifi's does it have?

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    It's HP.
    Be prepared to freshly re-install the OS as their is so much crap in it, it will be easier to re-install using your own Vista disk then remove all the crap and commercials they put in. If it follows my friend 1k$ desktop, you have ebay, 50 mp3, and HP games that features the same Windows games but with ads about everywhere you can think of, and almost every multimedia button is a process (they can't make 1 software for all the buttons for some reason), and an anti-virus trial, and a bunch of other things. It pretty much redefines crapware.

    Also the tablet PC on this laptop is not great. If you think you will draw with it or write a lot with, you will start battle yourself with it.
    The screen view angle is not great as well. This is mostly in issue for tablet as when you write you head is on the side a bit, so it could end up being annoying. Also battery life is short due to the tablet PC digitize screen (this affect all tablet PC). Finally the 9-cell battery makes the laptop in an angle and hard to write on it, and if you are lefty, then you are screwed, and I do mean screwed, it's trying to write on a paper hat is inside a 2inch thick binder and your head is on the metal ring. the battery is THAT thick! Even if you right with your right hand it's in an angle. You are better off getting 2 or 3 6-cell batteries instead of a 9-cell battery.
    The mouse touch thingy is in smooth plastic so if your finger is warm, humidity will make it a bit harder to slide your finger on the pad.

    Also it's HP, it may not be Windows 7 compatible, even thus there is no reason why not too.
    Oh and finally its a warm laptop, so in quiet place or class room you will hear Mr. Fan, (laptop using AMD Turion X2). Screen shakes too on desk vibrations.

    It's a fine laptop, it's just that you get what you paid for.
    If you want a high-end tablet PC, like one of teh best digitize/touch screen you can find on a laptop, about just as good as the real thing that artist uses. Check out the 12incg Dell Latitude XT.
    http://www1.ca.dell.com/content/products/productdetails.aspx?c=ca&cs=cabsdt1&id=latit_xt&l=en&s=bsd
    It's just 3000$ and has a basic video card and low power CPU. This is really a machine if you want a professional tablet PC that will feel the closets to paper and pen, and you won't battle yourself with it.
     
    Last edited: 2 Sep 2008
  14. Xtrafresh

    Xtrafresh It never hurts to help

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    thx for the input goodbytes :thumb:

    i think i agree on just about every point you make, it's just that these are no valid drawbacks for me ;)

    Bloatware is annoying, but i guess it keeps the price down. If i have to sit down for a day or two to remove the crap and tune the thing to my liking, that's fine. i was planning on that anyway.
    Running hot and noise levels are at complete and utter none-issue for use in the train.
    I understand that there's better tablets out there, but for me the tablet function is just an added bonus, nothing more.
    Windows 7? I thought we we all still complaining about vista! :p
    The only thing i really worry about is the battery... ah well, i'll get one extra when i need it.

    Its like you say: you get what you pay for. Bang-for-buck this thing beats everything else i can find, especially on the graphics chip.

    Want!
     
  15. Xtrafresh

    Xtrafresh It never hurts to help

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    15 days later, the webshop i ordered it totally screwed up the order, so i had to cancel that one.

    Ordered it somewhere else, these people were a lot more professional, but this time the supplier screwed up :wallbash:

    So today i was fed up with it and i just went to the store and got it. I'm so happy with this thing, it's really a joy to use and play around with. :lol:
     

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