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Need Your Help Selecting a Laptop

This is my first post on the forums. I need to get a laptop for university in a few months. I've been looking at 15.4" laptops, around $1000-1400. Laptops that I'm considering, based on some reviews I've read, are:

Asus M51Sn-B1 (Like $1050 almost everywhere + S&H)
Dell XPS M1530 (works out to $1300 with customization + S&H, and still only an 8400M GS)
Acer Aspire 5290- (5290-XXXX, lots of different versions, differently priced)
Toshiba Satego X200 (This seems to have disappeared from Toshiba's site. I can't find it even in their discontinued section.)
Lenovo Thinkpad T61p (works out to $1300 with customization + S&H)

At first I was all for the Asus M51Sn, but reviews say that the worksmanship is bad, the touch pad is crap, and the battery life isn't too good. Plus for the same price, the Acer Aspire 5290-6574 gives you a much stronger processor, although the Asus' 9500M GS is slightly better than the Acer's 8600M GT.

Right now I'm leaning towards the Acer Aspire 5290-6574, specifications here:

And a store nearby is selling it for $1050, which seems really cheap. But the thing with the Acer is that it heats up a bit, and apparently the Acer laptops' screens are no good(???). And also the resolution for the Aspire and the Acer is only WXGA 1280x800.

Can anyone suggest a good laptop? I would like:

- 15.4" screen (WXGA+ 1440x900 resolution, trying to avoid WXGA 1280x800)
- Geforce 8600M GT (equivalent or better)
- Intel T8100 2.1 GHZ dual-core (equivalent or better)
- $1000 - $1400 (really can't go past $1400)

Any suggestions are appreciated. I don't know much about desktops, and even less about laptops.

Thanks a lot.

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Check with your university first

In reply to: Need Your Help Selecting a Laptop

See if they have a discount agreement with a laptop manufacturer. Lenovo has a large presence at colleges and universities and offers student discounts. I can't speak for the others but my son bought an IBM (just before Lenovo took over that part of the business) with such a discount and it was quite a bit less than the web price even with all the deals and e-coupons out there.

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In reply to: Need Your Help Selecting a Laptop

Look at the LENOVO and TOSHIBA L/T'S for functionality and reliability, either, with the right componentry would be a good choice.

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