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Old 08-13-2010, 09:50 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default New Laptop - A few questions

I am looking to buy a new laptop fairly soon that I will be using through my last year of high school and throughout college. It needs to be fairly portable for college purposes, but I'd also like to be able to use it for occasional gaming and such.

I don't know a ton about computer hardware, so my questions are:

1) Which would you suggest.. the Intel® Core™ i3-350M processor (2.26GHz) or the Intel® Core™ i5-520M processor (2.40GHz)?

2) Is 4gb ram enough to support the windows 7 64bit operating system as well as multiple applications or should I go for a bit more?

3) Is it cheaper to buy a laptop with a lot of ram or buy one with lower ram and put more in myself?

4) Intel® Graphics Media Accelerator HD or ATI Mobility Radeon™ HD 5470 GPU (512MB VRAM)?

Thanks in advance to anyone that answers. Help is greatly appreciated.

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Old 08-14-2010, 04:45 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: New Laptop - A few questions

1) Depends on what you need it for. If you just need it for taking notes and such, go for one with an i3. If you need some beefier processing for things like CAD and video editing, go for one with an i5. Though, if you see an i5 one for cheap, by all means go for that.

2) Yes, it's plenty.

3) It varies, though generally it's better to buy the laptop with the RAM than get the RAM later separately - though pretty much all laptops nowadays come with 3-4GB, so it's unlikely you'll need to upgrade.

4) Preferably the latter, though if you're not doing anything graphics-intensive then it doesn't make much difference. Potentially the ATI will be slightly better in games, if you're going to be using it for gaming at all.

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Old 08-17-2010, 12:34 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: New Laptop - A few questions

Scott Lagerbom wrote----- Buy the best processor you can. You can always add RAM later or a better video card but never a better processor. Getting it with the RAM already is cheaper than putting it is yourself becuase it will come with some amount of RAM which will probably fill up the RAM slots so if you buy more you end up removing and throwing away the RAM that came with it. ATI over the Intel. 4GB is minimum. If you get a lot of RAM on teh graphics card it will help the system alot.
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