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DT

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The Asus does look groovy, I wasn't sure which specific flavor of the G14 was getting the most hype, there's a few different options.

The thing is, this is for work first, I could just get a stout "business class" machine, but I thought having something to play some games would be fun as a secondary use, hahaha, and possible the most use in the near future :D
 

Renzatic

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The Asus does look groovy, I wasn't sure which specific flavor of the G14 was getting the most hype, there's a few different options.

The thing is, this is for work first, I could just get a stout "business class" machine, but I thought having something to play some games would be fun as a secondary use, hahaha, and possible the most use in the near future :D

Corsair's new laptop looks fairly interesting as well, and it has the added bonus of not having any gamer bling on it. The only downside to it is that it's expensive, up there with the Razers.


 
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Renzatic

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Something of an off the wall suggestion, since it's only technically a laptop, but I came across this a few days back, and thought it was interesting.


It's basically laptop hardware in a small desktop chasis. I watched a benchmark video, and even the lower end i5 is pretty stout on the gaming front. It looks like it provides a lot of bang for a (relatively) small price.

 

DT

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Yeah, that's kind of neat, heck, for the work related stuff a desktop would probably work, I can't really see myself traveling with this machine, er, though maybe[?] Kind of depends on the next year, things are nutty around here (in the best possible way :D)

I think I'm going to pull the trigger on the Lenovo I scoped above, it's ~$2400 delivered with a 2 year onsite + full accidental coverage, has 32GB RAM / 2TB storage (vs. the Razor which is $500 more for the size/chassis).
 

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Yeah, that's kind of neat, heck, for the work related stuff a desktop would probably work, I can't really see myself traveling with this machine, er, though maybe[?] Kind of depends on the next year, things are nutty around here (in the best possible way :D)

The only thing I don't like about it is that it's Intel based. I'd rather have AMD. Though for the price, and the performance it provides, that one downside doesn't really bother me all that much.
 

DT

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The only thing I don't like about it is that it's Intel based. I'd rather have AMD. Though for the price, and the performance it provides, that one downside doesn't really bother me all that much.

That's the one thing I've been going back and forth on. The Intel model gets 5-20% better performance across the board and has slightly lower thermals, the AMD has a solid 20% better battery life - that kind of gets into the discussion about how Intel, hardware partners, Windows, might improve their E-core utilization, since it's underperforming (i.e., there's room for improvement).

Also in the earlier AMD machines, the TB ports were 3 vs. 4, but I think these newer machines both have TB4 (though, again, I'm not sure that matters to me, I'm not a candidate for something like an eGPU where that extra bandwidth might come into use).
 

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Also in the earlier AMD machines, the TB ports were 3 vs. 4, but I think these newer machines both have TB4 (though, again, I'm not sure that matters to me, I'm not a candidate for something like an eGPU where that extra bandwidth might come into use).

Yeah, I can't think of a good use case for an eGPU attached to a laptop that already has a 3080 in it. Even if the 40xx's end up being 70% faster than their 30xx equivalents, you won't see that performance gain pumping through a TB port.

Most you can hope for is maybe 30% on the high end, and then you'll ask yourself if that's worth the extra $1500 you'll be paying for both the card, and the enclosure.
 

DT

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Oh yeah, the machine above / in my cart :D is a 3070 Ti (RTX).
 

DT

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Ahh, OK, the machine that hasn't been available for a while (it was when I last went through this exercise), is the Legion 7i (<-- tiny i), Gen 7, that's the newer 12th Gen Intel machine that has the option for an RTX 3070Ti and a 3080Ti. The Legion 7 is the slightly bigger chassis, all aluminium, better cooling, and now has a 16" 16:10 standard. The only Gen 7 flavor of that available is the Ryzen 7 6800H + RX 6700M (10GB GDDR6) and only in 16GB RAM (which is honestly, most likely OK).

I get that mix is probably slightly under the 3070 performance, a decent up under the Ti variant, and way slower than the 3080. Of course, this is a machine that's like $1900 OTD with a 2 year extended + accident warranty, which is pretty stout. I found some authorized resellers and the 32GB 3080 7i is like $3500.
 

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According to this, the 6700m is on par with the 3070, plus or minus a few frames depending on the game in question. It'll, of course, be slower than the 3070Ti and 3080, but really, do you NEED that much GPU?
 

DT

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According to this, the 6700m is on par with the 3070, plus or minus a few frames depending on the game in question. It'll, of course, be slower than the 3070Ti and 3080, but really, do you NEED that much GPU?

I do not. Hahaha, but I figured if I'm going to drop some decent money on this, I don't want to have any REGERTZ, and I feel like maybe the AMD setup is a touch of a compromise (due to availability of the other machine), but at the same time also don't need to go crazy.
 

DT

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So I was still kind of hesitant to pull the trigger on the 5 Pro Gen 7, that's the new 5 Pro model with the AMD Ryzen 7 6000H, 32GB, 2TB, 3070i.

I spent some time with other options, specifically what Best Buy had (where I could get an onsite extended warranty), Asus came up several times, seem like very good machines. They had a 12th Gen Intel/3070/32/1TB for ~$2150 (plus any additional warranty), could get it quick, but it had a few questionable design choices: rear vents blowing hot air on the display, no rear ports, and one that may be specific to the BB SKUs, the 16GB models (all they carry), have 8Gb soldered, so you can't swap out RAM in matching pairs.

Looked at the G-series from Dell, they have a new 16" lineup, look decent, same sort of availability on/off, went back to Lenovo since it's not a huge rush (though I'd like to move all my dev work over it for the rest of the year)

Anyway, I read a ton of stuff last night about the Legion 7 vs, 5i Pro, more on that later, but the big miss for me (on the former) was the extra LED stuff - did not want - the 5i Pro seemed to be the perfect mix of gaming + work (they even removed the goofy lit logo from the lid for '22).

The 5i Pro Gen 7 (and 7 Gen 7) are just unavailable all the time, though I did see the 5i Gen 7 (Pro and non-Pro) come into stock once in the last couple of weeks, but they were the 15" models, I was kind of sold on the 16" with the 16:10 ratio, 500-nit and the 165Hz option, but no luck.

Then late (I mean __late__) last night I was watching review videos, hit the Lenovo site from a search link directly to the 5i Pro info page, and it did through up the "NOT IN STOCK ... EVER :D" message the actual page said arriving soon.

Really?

Hahaha, so I stayed up continuing to watch videos, finally got a good comparison of the 2022 5 Pro vs. "regular" 5, I hit the site before calling it quits for the night/early morning, and *boom*, the 5i Pro is in stock.

... and ordered. :)

The discount was nuts, it was bigger than the 5i Pro 15.6 or the AMD 16" models for some reason, even though it seems to be one that people want. With all my discounts, stacked a few different things, I wound up saving (or getting cashback), $853.49, plus I scored $55 of reward points so picking up a new printer later.

So that's a 5i Pro Gen 7, 12th gen i7-12700H, RTX 3070i (8GB), 16GB RAM, 2TB storage (2x1TB SSD, tests show 10K-12K throughout), and I added a 2 year premium onsite service and a 2 year full accidental damage coverage, free expidited shipping, so my door for [an effective] $1,896.47

RAM is fully socketed, so I can easily go to 32GB (with even higher performance RAM vs. OEM) for ~$150 at any time.
 

DT

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When I got my 2018 Mac Mini (i7/32/512) I knew the graphic subsystem was pretty mediocre. My primary use was general computing/web/email, some light photo hacking, work related tasks (code, documents), and running a VM or two, so not a huge graphic burden, but I didn't want it to be sluggish, so I went with a pair of Dell 2518s, which are 25" QHD, with the slightly smaller display size and 2560x1440 the PPI was decent, they're terrific displays at the price point, plenty of features, connectivity, trim bezels matt screens (I'm in a bad glare area), good adjustments.

My intent was always to swap out to a pair of 4K when I had a machine that would drive them, wasn't sure if that would be the current machine + eGPU, a new Mac, or another Windows machine, so I guess that answers that (and who knows, in the not so distant future I may be done with Windows and have a Mac Studio pushing the new displays).

Killing it with the deals today :D

Dell had a mid-tier 27" 4K (the next model up just had more ports and was glossy which is a no_can_do for me), same thing lots of connections, hub, adjustments, etc., but wow, I picked up two, they're normally $619 each, got them for for $371 each ($220 sale and another 10% stacked discount), also added an extended 2-year Advanced Exchange Service for both (a steal for only $23), and with the additional 10% cashback I also got, the two, with extended service will cost me about $762 :cool:
 

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Congratulations on your new purchase, @DT! I feel guilty for not contributing to this thread, because you were supportive throughout my Mac Pro adventure, but I'm purely a desktop user, so my opinion on laptops is basically worthless, even more so on the Windows PC side of the aisle. I like @Renzatic's post about the MinisForum NUCXi7, because I appreciate SFF computers. I know that sounds odd, coming from a dude who just purchased a ginormous Mac Pro, but I'm coming from a base model 2018 Mac mini, which would be my fourth mini since I switched in 2005. A tower case is the exception to my small computer addiction.

Before the Mac Pro opportunity arose, I had considered getting another Mac mini with Apple Silicon, along with a side NUC PC to use solely for PC gaming. I think Intel is going to have to significantly delay or cancel Serpent Canyon, the next enthusiast NUC, because it uses an Arc GPU, so I'd probably be looking toward MinisForum for such a device.

When I got my 2018 Mac Mini (i7/32/512) I knew the graphic subsystem was pretty mediocre.
That's an understatement, and comparatively, I got the original base model i3/8/128. If I had to do it over again, I would have gone with you configuration. Even maxed out, we're stuck with Intel integrated graphics, which is why I had to pick up a BlackMagic eGPU, hence another mismatch with my specs. Apple's Intel era Macs made it difficult to avoid some deficiency in performance or features. A lot of people complain about the Mac's lack of upgradeability and expandability with Apple Silicon, but the tradeoff is that Apple can properly balance system performance and features for a specific market segment or form factor. That's a tradeoff I can live with.

Relating to the actual topic about Windows PC laptops, I'd personally be looking at a AMD Ryzen 6000-series with integrated RDNA2, because it seems to have enough grunt to be able to handle basic 1080p gaming, which is absent from Intel's abysmal integrated graphics. As @DT and I both know after experiencing the raw unbridled GPU horsepower of Intel's 8th-gen 14nm++++++ integrated graphics inside the 2018 Mac mini, which is apparently now matched by Intel's equally crappy discrete GPUs, since they appear to be barely functional, assuming Arc ever gets released in consumer products. If you need more, then the machine that you selected is going to easily beat Ryzen integrated graphics, as impressive as AMD's offering is.
So that's a 5i Pro Gen 7, 12th gen i7-12700H, RTX 3070i (8GB), 16GB RAM, 2TB storage (2x1TB SSD, tests show 10K-12K throughout), and I added a 2 year premium onsite service and a 2 year full accidental damage coverage, free expidited shipping, so my door for [an effective] $1,896.47
This sounds like a killer machine, @DT, and should easily outshine any form of integrated graphics, no matter how much effort AMD put into it. Discrete Nvidia plus Alder Lake is an impressive combo for raw performance in a Windows laptop.

Again, I apologize for not having more to contribute, both when you started the thread and now that it is nearing a conclusion, but since you were good enough to lend a sympathetic ear during the weirdly stressful experience I had during my Mac Pro tribulations, I wanted to add my voice and congratulations on your new purchase. I hope it serves you well for many years to come!
 

DT

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@Colstan

Hahaha, no biggie, this was sort of my "thinking out loud" thread, and I got some great input from @Renzatic

Don't get me wrong, I prefer MacOS, and Macs in general (the daughters new M2 Air is spectacular). This was a mix of needing a more focused setup for some final Windows related work, my current VM(s) on my Mini getting a little clunky (it's a number of OS versions behind and I would need to update Parallels, not sure what will break, etc.)

And, without question, wanting something for a little fun. I've collected 60 games from Epic, I think 6 or 7 are available for MacOS. This is a machine we can easily move to the main TV, connect via HDMI, and have a big screen / killer audio, while sitting on a sofa :D

I've had plenty of Windows machines in the past, in fact, the last one (not including running Bootcamp on my '15 MBP ...), was a beastly Aorus "notebook", back when they were sticking desktop spec GPUs in huge 17" machines, it was LOUD and on battery, ran for about 45 minutes :ROFLMAO: Though it was specifically for some AR/VR work so I'd have something that was at least pretty portable.

I am going to hook up the new displays to the Mini, just to see it run one time in glorious 4K :D

Speaking of charging (by way of @Yoused's post), this machine has a massive power brick, but can also charge via USB-C. When using the former, it has some kind of fast charging tech, where you can get to like 40% in under 10 minutes (if I heard the spec correctly), which is pretty impressive.

[edit]

Meant to add:

I'm going to leave the Mini running, setup an RD solution of some sort and use that for my Mac needs (which during the day, mostly come down to Messages ...). Once I get my work swapped over, I'll finally update the Mini to a current MacOS.
 
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DT

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Everything came yesterday :D

I have very little hands on as of yet. Doing lots of installs (mostly work related), setting up the new displays, I've got the Mini running on one 4K (it looks great!), and Lenovo running on the other, sharing some desk space, so it's a bit of a mess right now.

The machine is fast, beefy, the 16" display is pretty stunning, they KB is excellent, the TP very good, hahaha, Windows 11 == MacOS, pretty neat while the massive 300w power brick might be needed for extreme use cases (and fast charging), the rear USB-C/TB port supports charging and display, and the new Dells have the same, so the single display cable is also providing power. Lots of ports: 3X USB-C/TB/DP (one is TB4), 4 USB-A (new spec), 1 of these can be set for "always on" where you might use it to charge a device, even if the machine is off, 1x HDMI 2.1, "dual mode" 3.5mm, a physical camera shutter on/off switch.

Got a Logitech G305, just a basic productivity/gaming mouse, long battery life from a single AA, can work BT or comes with a USB dongle (what I'm currently using), lots of different DPI modes, etc. Pretty happy with it, might try a couple of others, but I didn't want LED, short charging life, etc., so that eliminates a lot of choices. Right now, I'm using the integrated KB and an inexpensive "gaming keyboard" the daughter bought a while back, it's very colorful :D It's OK for now, I'll almost definitely go mechanical, heck, I'd buy another Das Pro 4 (like my Mac KB), but no backlight, and their PC backlit options are missing the media wheel - I've grown to really like the ability to dial in the volume (including quickly turning it all the way down). I see a lot of the higher end KBs have a media roller type thing, which seems like what I want, but they're all a little spendy because they're gaming focused.

OK, I think I need to move the Mini to the other desk, get this new machine in its full production setup, I can just bounce between desks till things are sorted out.
 

DT

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OK, tried two KBs, wanted mechanical, my KB for my Mac Mini for the last few years has been a Das 4 Pro (for Mac). Terrific, solid, often bummed it's not backlit, USB hub is handy, love the media/volume wheel (side note: they just released brand new keyboard for Mac, its' not backlit again).

I figured I'd look at some "gamer" options just because they're full featured, and have some neat options. Most of these are also RGB/LED, which can be cool for just general backlighting (and having endless color configs). I was pretty sure I wasn't going to go wireless, it would be easier with the notebook (i.e., no issue if you're wireless KB doesn't connect, since you have a backup :D)

After reading about the Corsair products, I was pretty set on trying one out. Went with the K70 RGB, it's full size, fully programmable, wired, has a volume "wheel" (most of these are really what I'd call a "roller"), millions of colors with discrete control (the pretty nice iCue app), metal frame, and big huge Cherry switched keys.

Keys were great, nice heavy clunks, they were just a little tall, in fact the whole KB is high, between the base and the Cherry switches sitting on LEDs, it was sort of nutty high.

A real problem was with the volume wheel, it's sort of sits flush with the deck, and the cutout where it comes out of the KB is actually sharp! The edges are the metal top plate, and they kind of pinch, and the roller has a weird rasp feel.

As I ruminated over my next purchase, I was thinking: when I use the Mac notebooks around here, the new machine's KB, or my Magic KB with the iPad, 've gotten used to a more low profile key, and I knew there was a product that might give me that plus clicky mechanicals, plus all the other bells and whistles.

So today I picked up a Logitech G815, wired full size pretty much the same stuff as the K70, but it's super low profile, so are the keys, 3 switch options like many of these higher end "gaming" KBs, I went clicky (love it), an the wheel is so much better, slightly raised, wraps around to the back, and also won't cause blood loss :D

It also has slick dedicated macros gets (G1-G5) and has a USB passthrough cable, while not a hub, still locates a USB port in a very convenient place on the KB. Bonus: the unified Logitech G Hub software controls both the mouse and KB (the latter allowing for all sorts of light configs, macro assignment, etc.)

It also seemed like the K70 didn't wake up the machine quickly like the G815 does, not 100% that was a legit issue, might have been a recent config change on my part.

Anyway, I think this may be the winner :D
 
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