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Gaming Notebook:Should I wait til Dec./Jan?

by LotsatiArma / November 5, 2004 11:08 AM PST

Im looking for a notebook I can use to play the latest games (theres a lot of these posts coming up). The only notebook that offers a 256mb gfx card are the dell xps and I believe one of the pacer(pager i forget) notebooks. Mainly focused on the game HL2, its making buying a notebook hard because that game already makes some of the new notebooks look obsolete. Rumor that theres new notebooks coming with atis and nvidias new 256 cards and have the ability to change gfx cards around christmas. Im not sure if this is true but Im not buying a XPS or that pacer notebook, nor the zd7000 or toshiba sattelites since they only have 128's in them. Main Question is: Should I wait until Christmas-Newyear to buy a notebook?

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Re: Gaming Notebook:Should I wait til Dec./Jan?
by KenSanramon / November 5, 2004 12:55 PM PST

You are paying a huge premium right now for any notebook that has 256mb dedicated video RAM in a notebook. In fact, there are only a handful of Pentium M notebooks that have even the ATI 9700 video card with 128mb video RAM (and the Athlon 64 notebooks out have 64mb dedicated video RAM max).

Also, Windows Longhorn in late 2006 or 2007 is going 64bit so you don't want to pay more than $1500 now (or $2000 at most) as you notebook will be obsolete then 64bit hits in earnest (Linux versions are 64bit now).

The Athlon 64bit notebooks will run 64bit but they only go to 64mb dedicated video now as I said.

Unless you have money to burn I would save your money and at least wait for the 2 cpu 64bit chips to come out later (it could be next year but no timetable) and wait for the 256mb video cards in notebooks to become mainstream.

I'm sure the 256mb video card notebooks you are looking at must be close to over $2500 and that is too much to pay for a notebook that will be obsolete by 2 to 3 years maximum from this date.

You can easily get an affordable desktop and pop in the top video card for $500 or less and hold onto your cash until the notebook technology catches up.

128mb dedicated video notebooks will play many games very well but if you are focused on Half Life 2 it may be at reduced settings. The HPzd7000 is a highly rated notebook at zd7000forums.com (see cnet reviews) with a 17" LCD but of course battery life is under 2 hours. Dell has a Pentium M model with the Hitachi 7200 rpm hard drive and ATI 9700 with 128mb dedicated video available and a 17" LCD -- and the Dell 8600 (Centrino) also has the 7200 rpm hard drive and 128mb dedicated video with a 15.4" widescreen.

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Re: Gaming Notebook:Should I wait til Dec./Jan?
by sdbeede / November 24, 2004 3:03 AM PST

I'm in the same boat as the individual who asked you the original question, however, I need to buy something now as my current notebook is simply inadequate to play some of the games I would like to play (most notably EQ2). I think I will wait for 64bit processors and 256mb video before I unload for a state of the art machine, but I need something better than my current machine. What would you suggest as a serviceable bridge that would play games adequately for now and not break the bank while I save my pennies for a real burner in a year or two.

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Re: Gaming Notebook:Should I wait til Dec./Jan?
by KenSanramon / November 24, 2004 8:12 AM PST

If you are going to pay over $2,000 for a notebook you should absolutely wait for an Athlon 64 -- preferably the low voltage version to come out in 2004.

Otherwise, you are just paying too much as you will want to upgrade to a new notebook when Windows Longhorn 64bit comes out in late 2006 or 2007 likely.

I don't know of any AMD 64 notebook that has even 128mb dedicated video mainstream (there are Pentium M and Pentium 4M's that have it as you know like the Dell 8600) so you likely will have to wait to get 64bit with the video card you want (unless you risk it on smaller manufacturers Sager or Alienware)

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