Replacement Home Office/Gaming Laptop for 6-year-old Sager

Discussion in 'What Notebook Should I Buy?' started by soNGS, May 5, 2021.

  1. soNGS

    soNGS Newbie

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    Hi everyone,

    I'm looking for a replacement for my Sager P65_P67SE, which this community helped me find many years ago. It served me well but it is approaching end of life now and I need a good replacement that will do basically the same things I used it for, but with improvements in a couple of areas.

    What I liked about the Sager:
    • Clean Windows install
    • Great port selection (2 external displays is a must have for me)
    • Powerful enough to handle anything I threw at it
    • Great screen (IMO, I'm not an expert)
    • Trackpad with discrete left and right click buttons
    • Numpad
    What I did not like:
    • Battery life is miserable for general use (topping out at 2 hours typically)
    • Screen flex got to be a problem, eventually cracking the bezel. I suspect this was because of the hinge design and placement, which put a lot of stress on the bottom of the bezel and hinges
    • Sound output is poor (both the internal speakers and power for driving headphones)
    Thank you all for any help. Standard questions below.

    General Questions


    1) What is your budget?
    ~$1500

    2) What size notebook would you prefer?
    d. Mainstream; 15" - 16" screen

    3) Which country will you buying this notebook?
    USA

    4) Are there any brands that you prefer or any you really don't like?
    a. Like:
    b. Dislike: Anything loaded with bloatware
    5) Would you consider laptops that are refurbished/redistributed?
    Yes

    6) What are the primary tasks will you be performing with this notebook?
    Remote office work using 2 external monitors, light gaming, media consumption

    7) Will you be taking the notebook with you to different places, leaving it on your desk or both?
    Both

    8) Will you be playing games on your notebook? (If so, please state which games or types of games?)
    Yes. Strategy games (e.g. Civilization), action/adventure (e.g. Metal Gear Solid V, Dark Souls), indie games (e.g. Hollow Knight). Not likely to play any FPS or other competitive multiplayer.

    9) How many hours of battery life do you need?
    I'd love to be able to get 4 hours of battery for general use after 4 years of life. Hopefully that means even more to start with

    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?
    Sight-unseen is fine.

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

    Screen Specifics

    12) What screen resolution(s) would you prefer? (See further below for explanations.)
    1080p is fine

    13) Do you want a glossy/reflective screen or a matte/non-glossy screen? (See further below for explanations.)
    Would prefer matte but am willing to compromise if need be.

    Build Quality and Design

    14) Are the notebook's looks and stylishness important to you?
    I don't want anything too garish. Other than that I'm not fussed.

    Notebook Components

    15) How much hard drive space do you need?
    500gb would be the sweet spot. Certainly no less than 250GB.

    Timing, Warranty and Longevity

    16) When are you buying this laptop?
    In the next couple of months.

    17) How long do you expect to use this laptop?
    5+ years. This is very important.

    18) How long could you afford to do without your laptop if it were to fail?
    In non-COVID-19 times, no more than a couple of weeks.

    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?
    Open to both.
     
  2. ZaZ

    ZaZ Super Model Super Moderator

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    I think the Dell XPS 15 would make an excellent choice. Buying in the Dell Outlet should offer you some savings. As long as it's not marked scratch and dent, it's likely a return that'll look new.
     
    JRE84 likes this.
  3. soNGS

    soNGS Newbie

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    Thanks for the reply. I've had experience buying a refurbished XPS 15 about 10 years ago, and that went well so I definitely have no qualms going that route.

    A couple follow-up questions that I'd love to get your opinion on:
    1. How do you feel about the 7590 model vs. the 9500? I see 2 main differentiators; the 7590 has the superior OLED screen, and the 9500 has only 3 USB C ports (1 of which must be used for the power)
    2. Do you think either of those models would be good enough for the gaming I described at mid-high settings?
     
  4. ZaZ

    ZaZ Super Model Super Moderator

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    In my own opinion everything in life comes with pros and cons. It's more about what you're willing to accept. OLED does offer better PQ, but it's significantly more expensive and OLED can suffer from burn-in issues. Also of note, 4K screens, like the OLED XPS is, hit the battery much harder than a 1080p screen.

    I think the XPS offers a decent mid-range GPU, but what that means for the settings I can't say as I'm not much of a gamer.
     
  5. soNGS

    soNGS Newbie

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    Thanks, I appreciate you not pushing me one way or another--you're right that I need to figure out what I'm willing to accept. That being said, I've read a lot of user reviews complaining about QC and heating from the XPS 15s. I'm thinking the Precision line may be the way to go, especially if I can snag something good on the outlet site.
     
  6. ZaZ

    ZaZ Super Model Super Moderator

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    People with a complaint tend to be much more vocal than the happy campers, so that makes it seem like a bigger phenomena than it is in reality. I've seen the XPS and it seems like a well made notebook with a beautiful screen to me. The Dell Outlet return policy is fairly liberal as I recall. They even picked up the return shipping the last time I sent something back. If you get a bad feeling, it should be easy to get your money back. As always with durability and longevity, there's a certain amount of chance involved. Two of the more common mishaps, a drop or liquid spill are accidents, which are unplanned and would not be covered by the warranty unless you purchased accidental coverage.
     
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