Author Topic: Buying a gaming laptop  (Read 698 times)

Offline jesslc

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Buying a gaming laptop
« on: January 28, 2019, 03:03:54 AM »
I've read the buying guide on this forum carefully, but I'm still a bit confused. And reading "best budget gaming laptop" guides on the internet is only confusing me even further. :-(

I am looking to buy a 15" gaming laptop that can play The Sims 3 and 4 and that would hopefully still be good if Sim 5 ends up coming out within the next few years. (Of course we can't know what's going to happen, but I'd like to future proof the laptop as far as I can within my budget). I'm pretty sure that the other games I play are typically less demanding than The Sims games - examples: Don't Starve, Age of Empires 2, Tales of Monkey Island series.

My budget is 1500 - 2000 Australian Dollars, but I'd prefer to spend towards the lower end of that range for the laptop as I'm hoping that my budget will also cover the external monitor/keyboard/dvd drive and cooling mat I'm going to need. Those things will probably take up $300-400 AUD. (My existing desktop is so ancient that its monitor and keyboard won't be able to be used as externals for a new laptop).

I'd prefer to buy from an Australian company because shipping stuff here from Amazon (or elsewhere overseas) is usually overly expensive. Also I'd like to make a decision in the next day or so, as I think the sales on the laptops I've been looking at end on Jan 31st.

Questions etc:
1) The guide says "Look for an HQ or MQ suffix (e.g. Core i7 6700HQ) on Intel processors for example" - but hardly any of the laptops I've looked at have the HQ or MQ suffix on the intel processor. They're mostly either H or U suffixes. I know the guide says a U suffix is no good, but what about H?

2) I've been looking at these possibilities:

Metabox N850EK $1,454.00 AUD
Metabox N850EP $1,654.00 AUD
Dell G5 15 $1,529.00 AUD
Dell G5 15 $1,869.00 AUD (extra storage and RAM)

Note: with the two Metabox laptop prices I've included the extra I'd have to pay for operating system installation as that's not included in the base price.

At the moment I'm leaning towards the first Dell (It's the cheapest with the 1060 video card) but I feel like I don't really know enough to be sure... These are the sort of things I'm wondering:

- Should I be paying that bit extra for the 1060 video card ie. getting the second Metabox or one of the Dells? I think I probably should because it'll probably make the laptop last longer (right?), but if a 1050Ti is good enough I could also look at the Dell G3 series too.

- The Dells have i5-8300H (quad core), whereas both Metaboxes have i7-8750H (hexa core) - will this make much of a difference?

- Is "128GB Solid State Drive (Boot) + 1TB 5400RPM Hard Drive (Storage)" (the first Dell), better or worse than "WD 480GB M.2 SSD" (Metabox)?

- Is second Dell worth paying extra for - as far as I can see, it adds a 2nd 8GB RAM and changes the 128GB SSD for a 256 SSD - is that worth an extra AUD$300+?

- screens: IPS WVA Matte 60Hz LED (Metabox) vs IPS Anti-Glare LED-Backlit Display (Dell). What the difference? Is there even a difference? (And given I regularly use my pc with f.lux running - even for gaming sometimes - I should probably not care about this as it's quite likely that I won't notice any minor screen differences)

- I can see in the pictures that the Dells look like they has a pretty good cooling system, the Metabox just says "Dual Thermal Zone Cooling" but I can't tell from the pics what it's actually like (should I be concerned..?) Some reviews/comments I read about the Metabox said it got overly hot but they were from 2017 and so possibly earlier models - and I don't know whether I should be concerned or not.

- ports and stuff, I don't really know what ports I need. I plan to sometimes use it with an external monitor, keyboard and mouse plugged in so it needs to be able to do that and I'll also probably also be plugging in an external dvd drive occasionally.

- Which one would you recommend for me?

I'd be happy to hear of other recommendations in my budget too if there are any. (I did look at JB HiFi Australia's gaming laptops too but nothing there seemed competitive with these Dells/Metaboxes - most of the ones within my budget had the U suffix).

Thanks very much (in advance) for your help.

Offline MrsFlynn

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Re: Buying a gaming laptop
« Reply #1 on: January 28, 2019, 03:46:29 PM »
I'd go for either of the Dell laptops as they have both 1060 graphics with 6GB memory plus a solid state drive and hard drive.

Dell G5 15 $1,529.00 AUD
Dell G5 15 $1,869.00 AUD (extra storage and RAM)

The other laptops don't have enough hard drive space for windows plus whatever games you're wanting to put on the system.

Having a solid state drive, plus hard drive is very much recommended, due to the solid state drives usually being small in drive space.
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