Laptop Sanity Check

tuffalobuffalo wrote:
Malor wrote:

Are you on Windows, or a Mac, bandit? My experience is that RAM matters tremendously more on Windows, but on a Mac, you want an SSD before anything else.

That seems correct for a desktop, but on any laptop, whether it be OSX or Windows, an SSD is awesome for powering on or resuming from hibernate. That's coming from someone who uses his laptop infrequently, however, so I put it into hibernate a lot.

I've heard it's not a good idea to hibernate on ssd, since it has to write a huge chunk of data every time, potentially wearing out the drive more quickly. Any truth to this?

Chairman_Mao wrote:
tuffalobuffalo wrote:
Malor wrote:

Are you on Windows, or a Mac, bandit? My experience is that RAM matters tremendously more on Windows, but on a Mac, you want an SSD before anything else.

That seems correct for a desktop, but on any laptop, whether it be OSX or Windows, an SSD is awesome for powering on or resuming from hibernate. That's coming from someone who uses his laptop infrequently, however, so I put it into hibernate a lot.

I've heard it's not a good idea to hibernate on ssd, since it has to write a huge chunk of data every time, potentially wearing out the drive more quickly. Any truth to this?

*shrug* I haven't heard anything along those lines. If anything's gonna fail on my laptop, I doubt the SSD will be the first to go. I think you have an M11x too. That's what I"m running it in.

It could totally be possible but sounds like a myth along the lines of plasma TV myths.

Wow, thanks everyone. Lots to look at.

He's looking at a science major, like psych, but not sure yet. Probably not computer stuff, but who knows?

Looks like the Y570 is out of stock at Newegg... That's a good sign. But a problem for buying it...

Oh, and I definitely use Crucial for RAM, and I have an SSD in my current system and will get one for the laptop if it's supported. RAM and a faster drive are the two simplest upgrades, and with SSDs the speed is really noticeable. As long as you don't fill it up...

Robear wrote:

Looks like the Y570 is out of stock at Newegg... That's a good sign. But a problem for buying it...

Oh, and I definitely use Crucial for RAM, and I have an SSD in my current system and will get one for the laptop if it's supported. RAM and a faster drive are the two simplest upgrades, and with SSDs the speed is really noticeable. As long as you don't fill it up...

Any reason you don't want to get it direct from Lenovo? The price I'm seeing is cheaper ($749 after discounts), comes with more ram (8 vs 6), and a faster spinning HD.

Malor wrote:

Are you on Windows, or a Mac, bandit? My experience is that RAM matters tremendously more on Windows, but on a Mac, you want an SSD before anything else.

Windows. If I was choosing between 8gb of ram and a SSD I'd take the SSD first and upgrade the ram later.

Robear wrote:

Looks like the Y570 is out of stock at Newegg... That's a good sign. But a problem for buying it...

Oh, and I definitely use Crucial for RAM, and I have an SSD in my current system and will get one for the laptop if it's supported. RAM and a faster drive are the two simplest upgrades, and with SSDs the speed is really noticeable. As long as you don't fill it up...

You'd be hard pressed to find a laptop not supporting SSD. It runs over a sata connection.

Any reason you don't want to get it direct from Lenovo?

Ummm... Hadn't thought about it. I'm fairly set in my ways. That's a good idea.

You'd be hard pressed to find a laptop not supporting SSD. It runs over a sata connection.

I was more worried about form factor, to tell the truth. Is that not something to be careful of? Or is there a standard for laptop SSDs?

Slight hijack, but I was just looking to pick up a laptop in the $500 range and found the Lenovo Z575 with a 1GB AMD Radeon HD 6650M. I am so out of the loop regarding laptops but Lenovo sounds like a solid choice? I have a desktop gaming machine but I'd still like to do some gaming on it, even if they're older ones. One of my worries is that it sounds like you have to upgrade the video drivers from Lenovo rather than AMD, and wonder how long they'll keep updating drivers.

Robear wrote:
Any reason you don't want to get it direct from Lenovo?

Ummm... Hadn't thought about it. I'm fairly set in my ways. That's a good idea.

You'd be hard pressed to find a laptop not supporting SSD. It runs over a sata connection.

I was more worried about form factor, to tell the truth. Is that not something to be careful of? Or is there a standard for laptop SSDs?

laptop hard drives and SSDs are the same size.

bandit0013 wrote:

laptop hard drives and SSDs are the same size.

Yeah, both are just 2.5" drives. In fact, pretty much all SSDs are 2.5" drives whether or not you use them in a laptop or desktop.

McFinn wrote:

Slight hijack, but I was just looking to pick up a laptop in the $500 range and found the Lenovo Z575 with a 1GB AMD Radeon HD 6650M. I am so out of the loop regarding laptops but Lenovo sounds like a solid choice? I have a desktop gaming machine but I'd still like to do some gaming on it, even if they're older ones. One of my worries is that it sounds like you have to upgrade the video drivers from Lenovo rather than AMD, and wonder how long they'll keep updating drivers.

For video drivers, all vendors offer their own "flavor" of video driver. In reality, this is just an outdated version of whatever AMD or Nvidia driver is out there (at least that's been my experience). just use the latest version from AMD or Nvidia. My guess is that they have to do a bunch of testing, so they just stick with whatever old version they have tested and know "works". That way, when someone calls up for support and doesn't have that version, they can point the finger at you and say "It's your fault!"

Edit: Whoops! I didn't check that like I should have. I dunno if $500 is a good deal, but that video card should be able to play most games.

15" LCD with 720P resolution make me cry... plus they look very coarse.

TheGameguru wrote:

15" LCD with 720P resolution make me cry... plus they look very coarse.

if you're serious about gaming you're going to buy a 23" monitor to output to anyways.

bandit0013 wrote:
Robear wrote:
Any reason you don't want to get it direct from Lenovo?

Ummm... Hadn't thought about it. I'm fairly set in my ways. That's a good idea.

You'd be hard pressed to find a laptop not supporting SSD. It runs over a sata connection.

I was more worried about form factor, to tell the truth. Is that not something to be careful of? Or is there a standard for laptop SSDs?

laptop hard drives and SSDs are the same size.

Some SSDs are slightly thinner, however, like the Samsung 830. Which might cause a problem if the laptop is designed to hold the SSD firmly in place with pressure from the cover plate.

Thanks everyone for the help! Went with a Lenovo G570. About $760, well within budget.

Robear wrote:

Thanks everyone for the help! Went with a Lenovo G570. About $760, well within budget. :-)

Just a head's up: saw this deal on the G570 from Buy.com. Might not be the specs you want, but it's really cheap...