Relatively portable laptop with good performance

Discussion in 'What Notebook Should I Buy?' started by epicninja, Jan 7, 2020.

  1. epicninja

    epicninja Notebook Consultant

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    1) What is your budget?
    $1200 or so, flexible

    2) What size notebook would you prefer?
    d. Mainstream; 15" - 16" screen or
    e. Desktop Replacement; 17"+ screen
    3) Which country will you buying this notebook?

    4) Are there any brands that you prefer or any you really don't like?
    No preferance
    5) Would you consider laptops that are refurbished/redistributed?

    6) What are the primary tasks will you be performing with this notebook?
    Primarily gaming, some programming

    7) Will you be taking the notebook with you to different places, leaving it on your desk or both?
    It will mostly stay on my desk but should be portable.

    8) Will you be playing games on your notebook? (If so, please state which games or types of games?)
    Yes. A mix of everything, from dota2 to Europa universalis to Arkham Knight, etc.

    9) How many hours of battery life do you need?
    Ideally 3+ but I don't really care.

    10) Would you prefer to see the notebooks you're considering before purchasing it or buying a notebook on-line without seeing it is OK?
    I'm fine with buying it online but it would be nice to see it in person. I'll go for the best deal though unless prices and specs are extremely close.

    11) What OS do you prefer? Windows, Mac OS, Linux, Chrome OS, etc.

    Screen Specifics

    12) What screen resolution(s) would you prefer? (See further below for explanations.)
    1080p 120 or 144hz

    13) Do you want a glossy/reflective screen or a matte/non-glossy screen? (See further below for explanations.)

    Build Quality and Design

    14) Are the notebook's looks and stylishness important to you?
    I'd rather it look more like a laptop and less like a gaming laptop but performance is key. I definitely don't need it to look stylish.

    Notebook Components

    15) How much hard drive space do you need?
    Ideally it would have a 2.5" bay for a sata ssd and a pcie slot for the main drive, but if it's 2 pcie slots that's fine with me.

    Timing, Warranty and Longevity

    16) When are you buying this laptop?
    Soon, or whenever I see a good deal on it depending on eventual price settled on.
    17) How long do you expect to use this laptop?
    Probably until 2 generations of graphics, so extrapolating from past release schedule, 3 years?

    18) How long could you afford to do without your laptop if it were to fail?
    I'd be fine

    19) Would you be willing to pay significantly extra for on-site warranty, or would it be acceptable to you to have to ship the laptop to the vendor for repair with perhaps a week or more outage?
    I'm fine shipping.

    So far I think my best option is the Eluktronics Mech 15 on Amazon for 1300 , but I'm interested in any advice.

    Also saw a used Sager NP 8967 for $1050, but I couldn't find many reviews or stats on it so I'm not sure if it's worth buying a used unknown quantity. It is significantly cheaper for what appears to be a similar configuration (eluktroboost 2060 = 2070 maxq from the reviews I saw) however.
  2. Charles P. Jefferies

    Charles P. Jefferies Lead Moderator Super Moderator

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    The Eluktronics you mentioned is a popular choice here and gets good reviews, although I don't have personal experience with it. There are numerous topics about TongFang notebooks (the maker of the Eluktronics' chassis) in our Other Manufacturers forum. The one you linked on Amazon has great specifications for the money.

    Other options are the Lenovo Legion Y545, the Acer Predator Helios 300, and Dell's G7 15. Of those, I'm partial to the Lenovo which I think offers a good overall balance of quality and features.

    Prioritize the graphics card; I wouldn't go lower than a GTX 1660 Ti. The RTX 2060 isn't tangibly faster although it does support ray tracing and DLSS technologies in case you play any games that support them. (Shadow of the Tomb Raider and Metro Exodus are two.) Also try for a Core i7-9750H processor and at least 16GB of RAM.

    epicninja, JRE84 and Mr. Fox like this.
  3. RefinedPower

    RefinedPower Notebook Deity

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    You can get the Lenovo Y540 for around $1230 with the I7, 2060 and 144hz screen. Based on some reviews im seeing it seems to have a little better thermal performance than the Y545.

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