Finding a Laptop

Like I said before, I am looking for a laptop. I used to have a 15.6″ laptop before, which is pretty easy to carry with me. But the increase in price is not that much when I go for 17.3″ this time round. Especially when I look at the performance increase.

I have been noticing a lot of laptops with desktop CPUs. I guess that is nice, but squeezing those into a laptop does mean the temperature will go up easily. That will start throttling and it will help the life span of the machine.

The i7-7820HK should be plenty of performance anyway. I am not looking at overclocking, but it should survive more of a beating than chips that are not built for overclocks.

When I look at 15.6″ machines, I am looking at a GTX 1070 max. A resolution of more than FHD (1920*1080) is not necessary on a screen this size. And with the games becoming more and more demanding, I do not think I would want a 1070 do feed the screen. A GTX 1080, yes.

So a 1080 is possible when we look at 17.3″. More space for cooling and upgrades. Here, a 2560*1440 resolution should be nice. I have seen some at 2880*1620 too. Neither resolutions should bring a 1080 to its knees any time soon. Even 4K could be nice, but that would mean many games will lose lots of FPS. And come on…it’s only 17.3″ we are talking about here.

For RAM, all the CPU wants is two sticks. So 2*8GB will work here. 2400MHz is the spec, just find the ones with low latency.

Then I would go for an SSD of 250GB for the system. Like I said in my desktop post before, the laptop is less busy with start up than it is actually doing things. A Samsung 850 EVO drive is a cheap and solid option I reckon. For the extra speed, I would look at an NVMe drive. These 17.3″ laptops normally have space for two drives of this type. I would just install the one first. It is possible to add another one later. Over time, the cost of these drives will drop anyway. No need to over-spend here. The 500GB Samsung 960 EVO looks good here.

And then I would say the same thing applies for the HDD options. There should be space for two, but I would stick with one for now. If space really does become an issue, you can always add more later. And I would definitely add external storage in the mix. So far, we have included 1750GB of space in the machine. I would have at least that s external space. Probably more. We need it for back ups of the system, things like save games, lots of pictures and video. And for work-related files, obviously.

In both cases, I will also add a chill mat and a new gaming mouse. Then it’s an option to add a 3440*1440 screen with the GTX 1080 laptop. And a keyboard.

The difference between the two options is about $400, which is not major…considering the fact that we are looking at $3000~4000 anyway.

It will be interesting to have a look at laptop CPUs that Ryzen will bring us soon. And if it takes long enough, the next generation. Cannon Lake and Volta are going to come as well. All things will only be definitive when the money is there and the order is made.

Until next time !

Advertisements

Gaming Rig 20170508

So back to a rig !

Good news guys :  AMD is actually doing something for us again ! The little compatibility issues with RAM sticks will be sorted out as we go along. It is certainly a good way to shave something off the cost of building a rig now. I would very much like to see how their laptop CPU’s are going to pan out.

Another thing is :  Kaby Lake X is doing Quad Channel DDR4 ! So I reckon it is time for 4*4GB instead of 2*8GB. And if Intel is going to throw some price drops in the mix, a 6-core instead of a quad-core. I am looking at latency rather than MHz and it seems like G.Skill is a good choice. Bit expensive, but are we really looking at budget here ? If you really need the MHz, G.Skill is also your man. Grab what you need. Just remember to grab a set of four sticks, Not two.

So it will have to be 299-series motherboard this time around. We are going to have to wait until the NDAs are lifted and the whole thing is officially released, but it is a nice jump forward if you ask me.

The way things are right now, I would go for a 250GB Samsung 850 EVO SATA SSD for  the system. The machine spends less time booting than it does actually running things. Just stash the applications you need on there, it should be enough. For the real speed, we will be having a 500GB Samsung 960 EVO NVMe SSD in there anyway. Push the textures to the limit. The Skylake X is going to have loads of loads of lanes, so I am not worrying about my GPUs to suffer if I add another NVMe SSD later on.

So here we have it :  GTX 1080 Ti ! Times two – because fu*k you, that is why. If I had an unlimited budget, I would have a custom liquid cooling set up throughout the whole machine. But that is a serious upgrade when it comes to cost. The FPS will be spectacular running even one of these cards, so if the flow is good – save your money (you can buy more games).

I am into ASUS right now. Not really sure why. I think I would be grabbing a motherboard off them. They come with some nice automatic tuning applications. They will be built for it, but it is not even necessary to do so on this level.

I think we do need to throw in some HDD drives with a proven track record. No need to spend lots on it. And no need for fancy RAID setups, unless you need the RAID1. The SSDs have plenty of speed, we just need to stash media and documents on there that will not need hyperspeed.

Now what about Intel Optane ? I have seen it around. It will keep the tempo up a lot longer than the NVMe SSDs will. But do I really want to be an early adopter for this now ? We are only talking about RAM-sized bits of it. Okay, it is definitely cheaper than adding another 16GB or 32GB of DDR4. But I have not had the pleasure of trying it out. I wonder if it will make that much of a difference for the things I like doing on a PC. Still a budget issue though – if the budget does not matter, might as well stick it in.

Then I will be going for curved screen this time around. 21:9 3440*1440 should do it. A computer is not like a TV, where you will be sharing it many times. A curved ultra wide is nice for work too. Just visual editing is better on a flat one. If you need to, 4K screens are looking cheaper now. Do that. Or both. And add a 4K beamer while you are at it haha (I would love one) !

Right. Enjoy people !