Sub $1500 gaming-capable thin and light

Discussion in 'What Notebook Should I Buy?' started by jauffrey, Feb 13, 2018.

  1. jauffrey

    jauffrey Notebook Enthusiast

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    Hello,

    I am the proud owned of an MSI Dominator Pro (7700HQ, 1060 6GB, 17.3" 120hz) and while I love the laptop and it is super powerful, it's just too big for travel. I travel very often and want something thin and light-ish to bring with me.

    I'm looking for a thin and light-ish 15.6" laptop. An 8550u paired with an mx150 or 1050 would work great, I'm sure, but my biggest fear is thermal throttling. I was all set to pull the trigger on an HP Spectre 15 x360 (8550u, mx150, 15.6") but have read mixed reports of thermal and coil whine issues which has scared me off for now.

    This is a secondary laptop, and would need either user-upgrade-able SSD (m.2 or 2.5", or both) or a big enough (512GB+) on-board SSD. 8GB of RAM would be fine, but bonus points for 16GB at this price point. I want something light (sub-5 pounds, but the lighter the better) but it has to be 15.6", because my eyesight doesn't like 13.3" laptops. Also, I'm looking for a dedicated GPU and few (any?) 13.3" systems offer this. For the screen, I'm happy with 1080p or higher, but prefer a touch screen or glossy non-touch screen. 2-in-1s with pen support are the ideal, but not required.

    Basically, I want something portable that won't over-heat but can still play some Ark, Fortnite, *maybe* PUBG and Age of Empires/Starcraft 2 once in a while. I'm an experienced user and not afraid to re-paste. I tried an XPS 15 (7300HQ, 1050, 16GB, 4k) and it was a sexy machine but a little buggy and got pretty hot - surprising, I know - so I returned it. Also, the 7300HQ may be a bit slow for such a high TDP CPU, and thus my focus shifts to the 8550u (or a thin and light with a 7700HQ that doesn't overheat!)

    Any help is greatly appreciated!




    General Questions

    1) What is your budget?
    Up to $1,500 USD

    2) What size notebook would you prefer?
    c. Thin and Light; 15" - 16" screen
    3) Where will you buying this notebook? You can select the flag of your country as an indicator.
    US

    4) Are there any brands that you prefer or any you really don't like?
    a. Like: indifferent
    b. Dislike: Asus (bad durability-related experiences)
    5) Would you consider laptops that are refurbished/redistributed?
    No

    6) What are the primary tasks will you be performing with this notebook?
    Anything and everything, from web browsing, heavy MS Office use (not 365) to light gaming

    7) Will you be taking the notebook with you to different places, leaving it on your desk or both?
    Portability is the name of the game

    8) Will you be playing games on your notebook? If so, please state which games or types of games?
    Yes, all kinds, limited only by the GPU

    9) How many hours of battery life do you need?
    5+

    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?
    Would prefer retail availability, but online is fine

    11) What OS do you prefer? Windows (Windows 7 / 8), Mac OS, Linux, Chrome OS, etc.
    Windows 10

    Screen Specifics

    12) From the choices below, what screen resolution(s) would you prefer? Keep in mind screen size in conjunction with resolution will play a large role in overall viewing comfort level. Everyone is different. Some like really small text, while others like their text big and easy to read. (Scroll down to see screen resolution information.)
    1080p and up

    13) Do you want a glossy/reflective screen or a matte/non-glossy screen? (Scroll down to see explanations.)
    Glossy - hate matte

    Build Quality and Design

    14) Are the notebook's looks and stylishness important to you?
    No

    15) When are you buying this laptop?
    ASAP

    16) How long do you want this laptop to last?
    3-5 years

    Notebook Components

    17) How much hard drive space do you need? Do you want a SSD drive?
    SSD, 256GB+

    18) Do you need an optical drive? If yes, a DVD Burner, Blu-ray Reader or Blu-Ray Burner?
    No
     
  2. Vistar Shook

    Vistar Shook Notebook Deity

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    You can check out the Lenovo Yoga 720 (15)....it does fit most of your requirements....however I have no idea about thermals and such....hard to avoid when going for thin and light and a dGPU.
     
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  3. LordDavon

    LordDavon Notebook Evangelist

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    I second the Lenovo Yoga 720. It goes on sale often, so wait for a good sale. Bestbuy had it for $1199 with the 512GB SSD a couple weeks back, so it should head back down to that price in a week or two. I played with the display model and it was pretty impressive. It is also under 5 lbs, so light enough for travel.

    I ended up getting the Surface Book 2 instead, but was able to increase my budget. Under $1500, the Lenovo is one of the best choices.
     
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  4. jauffrey

    jauffrey Notebook Enthusiast

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    Thank you both - I had no idea they started making the Yoga with such beefy specs. I've actually been messing with buying a laptop (returning XPs 15s, etc) for the past 6 weeks, so I think I'll make my purchase this week; Best Buy has a great price match policy in the event it goes on sale in the next month or whatever.
     
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