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What's the highest spec laptop I can get for £500 / £600?

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Havent seen any deals around this price recently apart from those Yoga things, and dont really want to waste money on gimmicks when I could use it to get better spec. Basically I want a laptop wit… Read More
Feeble Avatar
5m, 6d agoPosted 5 months, 6 days ago
Havent seen any deals around this price recently apart from those Yoga things, and dont really want to waste money on gimmicks when I could use it to get better spec.

Basically I want a laptop with a decent sized screen, good battery life, and enough power to run various Windows Server operating systems as VMs so I can use this laptop as a mini lab for some Microsoft exams. If anyone can guide me I'd be much obliged. Thanks
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Feeble Avatar
5m, 6d agoPosted 5 months, 6 days ago
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Best Answer
liam_hird
It is i7 too, which is highest processor as far as I am concerned.

It's a 6500U so it's no more than mid-range for something like virtual machines that can use more than two cores. A 6300HQ which is available in several £600 laptops is around 40-50% faster.

A 6700HQ is the next big step up and you might just find one in a nearly new machine for £600 but you'd have to be lucky.

You can't have cheap, fast and long battery life though, you have to pick any two of those three.

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#1
I have an ASUS X556U. John Lewis are selling them for £499.95 with 2 years guarantee. The lowest you'd be paying for same specs is at least £630-£650. It is i7 too, which is highest processor as far as I am concerned. 1TB HDD with 8GB RAM, with optional upgrade to 16GB.

Full specs here:
http://www.johnlewis.com/asus-x556ua-laptop-intel-core-i7-8gb-ram-1tb-15-6-full-hd/p2803922?colour=Black

Hope this helps.

Edited By: liam_hird on Nov 17, 2016 15:15
#2
liam_hird
It is i7 too, which is highest processor as far as I am concerned.

It's a 6500U so it's no more than mid-range for something like virtual machines that can use more than two cores. A 6300HQ which is available in several £600 laptops is around 40-50% faster.

A 6700HQ is the next big step up and you might just find one in a nearly new machine for £600 but you'd have to be lucky.

You can't have cheap, fast and long battery life though, you have to pick any two of those three.
#3
If you want battery life, make sure you go for an intel core i5/i7 (i7 being best and fastest as they are hyperthreaded). AMD processors are still inefficient in comparison. Don't buy one with a graphics card unless it is integrated as that will cost extra unnecessarily. Try to get at least 6-8GB of RAM. As Liam says before ASUS make some excellent units, I have one for the daughter - really good quality.
#4
liam_hird
I have an ASUS X556U. John Lewis are selling them for £499.95 with 2 years guarantee. The lowest you'd be paying for same specs is at least £630-£650. It is i7 too, which is highest processor as far as I am concerned. 1TB HDD with 8GB RAM, with optional upgrade to 16GB.
Full specs here:http://www.johnlewis.com/asus-x556ua-laptop-intel-core-i7-8gb-ram-1tb-15-6-full-hd/p2803922?colour=Black
Hope this helps.
Yes, thanks. I saw that one about a month ago, but held fire as it is an end of the line laptop and I was not sure how its performance would be with several VM servers running Windows Server 2016. Will still keep it mind though.
#5
EndlessWaves
liam_hird
It is i7 too, which is highest processor as far as I am concerned.
It's a 6500U so it's no more than mid-range for something like virtual machines that can use more than two cores. A 6300HQ which is available in several £600 laptops is around 40-50% faster.

A 6700HQ is the next big step up and you might just find one in a nearly new machine for £600 but you'd have to be lucky.

You can't have cheap, fast and long battery life though, you have to pick any two of those three.

OK, I understand. Let me go for cheap and fast then. I did look for 6300HQ laptops but did not see any i7 ones around the £600 mark.
#6
Hypertension
If you want battery life, make sure you go for an intel core i5/i7 (i7 being best and fastest as they are hyperthreaded). AMD processors are still inefficient in comparison. Don't buy one with a graphics card unless it is integrated as that will cost extra unnecessarily. Try to get at least 6-8GB of RAM. As Liam says before ASUS make some excellent units, I have one for the daughter - really good quality.

I'm willing to ditch the long battery life if I can get a good deal on price and performance. Was thinking of waiting for Black Friday deals....
#7
Feeble
EndlessWaves
liam_hird
It is i7 too, which is highest processor as far as I am concerned.
It's a 6500U so it's no more than mid-range for something like virtual machines that can use more than two cores. A 6300HQ which is available in several £600 laptops is around 40-50% faster.
A 6700HQ is the next big step up and you might just find one in a nearly new machine for £600 but you'd have to be lucky.
You can't have cheap, fast and long battery life though, you have to pick any two of those three.
OK, I understand. Let me go for cheap and fast then. I did look for 6300HQ laptops but did not see any i7 ones around the £600 mark.

I think the 6300HQ carries the i5 branding. The i5/i7 etc. is not very meaningful unless you're looking at a specific heat output or for a specific feature.
#8
Feeble
liam_hird
I have an ASUS X556U. John Lewis are selling them for £499.95 with 2 years guarantee. The lowest you'd be paying for same specs is at least £630-£650. It is i7 too, which is highest processor as far as I am concerned. 1TB HDD with 8GB RAM, with optional upgrade to 16GB.
Full specs here:http://www.johnlewis.com/asus-x556ua-laptop-intel-core-i7-8gb-ram-1tb-15-6-full-hd/p2803922?colour=Black
Hope this helps.
Yes, thanks. I saw that one about a month ago, but held fire as it is an end of the line laptop and I was not sure how its performance would be with several VM servers running Windows Server 2016. Will still keep it mind though.

I've had mine for nearly two months now, couldn't be any happier with it. Very fast, have Dirt 3 on it and it runs pretty smooth with graphic option changes etc. Hope that helps a bit more
#10
This is substantially more expensive (possibly too much) but looks feature packed:

http://compadvance.co.uk/gaming/en/item/427748/HP-Pavilion-Gaming-15-ak113na?gclid=CjwKEAiAjcDBBRCJxouz9fWHynwSJADaJg9B9swoW-iAFbs7p3P_vLsLIJ5BhENamYc610J0LzPKmxoCKVvw_wcB

Edited By: Feeble on Nov 19, 2016 14:04
#11
Feeble
This is substantially more expensive (possibly too much) but looks feature packed

I'm not sure you've got the intended link there, they're both exactly the same ak113na model.

I've never heard of either seller, but if you're happy with them then you're not going to get anything faster in budget, although with only 1 8GB stick of memory you may end up adding a second one.
#12
This one looks good too - I like the screen size, although it is dear:

http://www.saveonlaptops.co.uk/9S7-179553-826-MSI-GP72-6QE(Leopard-Pro)-826UK_2002598.html
#13
I think any i7 at this price will be thrown together and so for the work you need to the processor today I would go for a well made i5 or almost certainty it's going to be a overhead expensive plastic box.
#14
This one looks good too - I like the screen size, although it is dear:

http://www.saveonlaptops.co.uk/9S7-179553-826-MSI-GP72-6QE(Leopard-Pro)-826UK_2002598.html
#15
Thanks chaps. Think I will just wait a few days for Black Friday.

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