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Author Topic: Heavy duty laptop  (Read 2385 times)
andyptak
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« on: August 12, 2011, 02:11:51 PM »
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I'm looking for a heavy duty laptop, actually more of a portable workstation. Lenovo made a lovely one for photographers with a built-in Wacom tablet and color managed screen that actually showed full Adobe RGB, but alas not enough sales and now it's gone. Does anyone know a Windows machine that can double as a powerful workstation for an extended road trip?

I have a lovely Dell workstaion and a great Sony laptop but neither are suitable for heavy duty post processing while on the road and working out of hotels rooms and Starbucks etc.

I've checked all of the usual vendors and quite frankly, I'm just confused. I'm wondering if a "gaming" machine may be the answer? I need it to be fast - CPU and RAM, lots of ports, including USB 3.0, and a color correctable display. I don't care about storage because I'll have a bunch of external USB 3.0 drives for that. And because I'll be plugged in most of the time, battery life isn't an issue either.

I won't say that money is no object, but I know this won't be cheap.

Thanks.
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tastar
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« Reply #1 on: August 12, 2011, 09:38:03 PM »
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Check out an HP SMART BUY ELITEBOOK 8760W I7-2620M 2.7GHZ 8GB 500GB DVDRW 17.3IN W7P XU090UT at this link for about 2250.00. I'm not really sure why you would want something like this - but, it totally meets your criteria - even USB 3.0, can hold up to 32GB of memory, has a 7200 RPM hard drive, a fast video card with 2GB of memory, a 17 inch screen with 1920 x 1080 resolution, a 3 year warranty and it weighs in at about 8 lbs.
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Steve Weldon
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« Reply #2 on: August 13, 2011, 01:04:03 AM »
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I used to heavily promote Dell and their Precision Mobile Workstations.  They're ISV certified and their motherboard architecture combined with their Nvidia Quadro video cards (with DVI external) and superb build quality sounds like exactly what you're looking for.

But I no longer promote Dell.  My $3500 laptop rendered itself useless over 20 months ago and six months outside of warranty Dell wouldn't even discuss making good on it because there was a class action suit against Nivida for their defective video board (which was the problem with mine).  I'll never forget nor forgive them.  Despite letters, emails, and calls trying to find a manager/supervisor with common sense.. I never did find one.  Dell had set policy on this matter and their policy was to try to profit off the class action.  At the time I managed 9 Dell laptops in my Dell account, now I have three.  I replace them with Lenovo's as needed, and until Lenovo manages to "Dell me" I'll keep buying Lenovo's.

Interestingly enough.. about a month ago (20 months after it failed) the Class Action people contacted me and sent me a box/labels to send in my Dell Precisions Mobile Workstation, and a week later it was returned with a new Nvidia Quadro  video card installed.  I installed a fresh copy of Win7 and was instantly reminded why I always thought this laptop had the nicest display I've seen on any laptop bar none.  It's 1920x1200 matte, and it's beautiful.  But it's also attached to an outdated Core 2 Duo machine so it's of limited use.  I think my wife is using it to Skype.

I still think the Dell Mobile Precision Workstations are hard to beat.  But I will never deal with Dell again.   Well, unless Michael Dell himself knocks on my front door and explains themselves.
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wolfnowl
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« Reply #3 on: August 13, 2011, 01:06:29 AM »
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You could check out these guys: http://www.pugetsystems.com/

Mike.
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neile
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« Reply #4 on: August 13, 2011, 01:27:13 AM »
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I just bought a Dell XPS 17" for essentially this purpose. My friends call it a "shleptop" Smiley It's huge. But damn, it's fast. Did I mention it's fast? And a huge screen? Oh, and it was only $1300. Only downside is it maxes out at 8GB of RAM. The only way to get a 16GB model is to get the 3D display, which I didn't want and took the price (with mandatory extras) up to something like $1800. No, I don't have an IPS display, but honestly, I just finished calibrating it and it's good enough for on the road work. Heck, I don't even have an IPS display yet on my desktop.

If you are willing to spend more nothing beats Lenovos for rock solid reliability. But the price/performance tradeoff for me meant I went with the Dell.

Neil
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Neil Enns
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« Reply #5 on: August 26, 2011, 09:25:26 PM »
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Lenovo ditched the 17" model but still make the 15".  The W501 and 510 have been replaced by the W520.  

Aside from that, the Panasonic Toughbook is supposed to be built to withstand quite a bit of wear and tear.
« Last Edit: August 26, 2011, 09:29:01 PM by BobFisher » Logged
andyptak
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« Reply #6 on: August 29, 2011, 11:11:15 AM »
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@bobfisher

Looks like a serious contender, not sure how I missed it.

Thanks
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