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Simming Laptop for Around 600 bucks

My faithful HP Pavilion is on her last legs, and it's time to get a new multi-tasking laptop. I want a machine that can do all the standard stuff, but that can also handle some light gaming such as The Sims 3 or the like. Nothing too heavy Wink

I've got a budget of around $600, but with some cannibalisation of my old laptop, I'm sure I can go a hundred bucks or so higher. And yes, it *does* have to be a laptop :3

I'm looking at a Lenovo y560, but it's slightly out of my price range.

Any advice would be appreciated Wink

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The Sims 3 is not light gaming.

My wife uses a gaming laptop for that. It's a HP dv7 with the Intel i7 (quad core cpu) and some 1GB ATI video solution.

For The Sims 3 to play well you can't avoid the gaming laptop but if you can put up with sluggish performance, don't get the usual 1GB Video solution in the laptop.

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Previous laptop was weak

Thanks Bob, I just guess I never realised how potent my previous HP Pavilion dv6700 was. It had a low-end nVidia GPU, a 1.6G GHz processor and only 2 GB of RAM, but it handled most every game pretty okay. All I really want is something with similar capabilities, because my budget isn't that large.

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That helped.

I have a dv6910us here and it does much better at games than our Intel 4500MHD GMA solutions. Why? because it has a much better graphics solution.

Try this. Use the laptop pickers at the top of this forum but avoid all shared memory video solutions. You'll likely get a laptop that is better than your dv6700 unit.

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Thanks a bunch, Bob. I never actually thought to look in the most obvious place (/facepalm).
I'll get back here with a little list of options, see if you can't help me narrow it down Wink

Thanks again,


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I think I've found it

Wow, I can't believe how quick and easy it was with the laptop picker ;D

I think I've found something that is in my price range, from a reputable name (I think :/) and it seems to have higher specs than my current machine. Would you recommend I buy the Sony VAIO EE Series VPC-EE31FX/BJ, or are there better options out there? It has ATI Radeon graphics, and an AMD Processor, but I've always been a member of the churches of Intel and nVidia, so I'm not entirely sure about the VAIO :/

Thanks again and sorry to be a bother,


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I'm unsure if this is much of an upgrade from that HP
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I don't want an upgrade

As I said before, all I really need is a replacement; my current HP can run The Sims 3 and Source games (Pretty much the only things I play) practically maxed out. As long as my new machine has the same performance as my current one, I'm satisfied, although the two notebooks I'm interested in offer a natural boost in RAM and the CPU, thanks to the changing of the times.

I read around, and I think I'm pretty much dead set on the HP Pavilion dv6-2112sa, as it's got more RAM, and, The Sims 3 being RAM intensive, is probably better suited for me.

Thanks again for all your help,


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Is this the dv6 under consideration?
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Above my budget

As enticing as the dv6 is, it's a little too expensive for me to consider. The 2112sa is actually discontinued, but it's full specs are up on Amazon. The GPU is a "ATI Radeon HD 4200 Graphics card with up to 512 MB dedicated graphics memory", which is in a totally foreign language to me :/ The CPU is a 2.5 GHz AMD Turion II Ultra Dual-Core Mobile Processor M520, which is more than enough for me. When it comes to GPUs, however, I just lose what little techno-savvy I have.

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Keep it simple.

Ranked in general order of gaming effectiveness.

1. Intel GMA solutions. Ok for video play, not much more. However big marks for power efficiency. Pick these for longest battery times and lower heat.

2. Entry level dedicated GPUs with 512MB to 1_GB RAM. Little more cost but great for Windows effects and low end games. Ok for other than "gamers." Also tend to outlast gaming laptops.

3. Gamer territory. Always 1 and 1+GB Video RAM. Not usually more than a hour on battery, can be uncomfortable on your lap and usually a 2 year affair.

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Entry Level should work for me

My present laptop only has 256mb of dedicated VRAM, and it plays all my games very well on medium to high settings, and, seeing as how the GPU on the notebooks I've got my eye on has 512mb of dedicated memory, I think I'll go with the dv6. Thanks again for all your help Wink


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Sorry, looked further into it :/

I found a very similar machine, but, according to Amazon, with a higher quality in terms of construction, and an additional 1GB of RAM. It's just out of my price range, but I'm sure that, with some cannibalization, I can make it work. It's an HP Pavilion dv6-2112sa, so I'm now unsure about whether it's worth the price increase.


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