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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Well after some research and price comparisons I've come down to this laptop. I know that desktops are better for gaming but I really wanted a laptop so I can take it anywhere in the house and so I can hook it up to my TV better. I'm getting it from compUsa for $1350 so if you guys know of somewhere else I could get it for cheaper I'm all ears. I heard that the athlon 64 bit processors are the best in terms of gaming and its the best bang for my buck. I'll prolly be gettin this computer sometime this week unless one of you can convince me otherwise.

Pavilion zv6015us Notebook

Processor Brand: AMD
Processor Class: Athlon 64
Processor Number: 3500+
Processor Speed: 2.2 GHz
Bus Speed: 2.2 GHz
Mobile Technology: Other
L2 Cache Size: 512 KB
Memory Speed: PC2700 (333MHz)
Memory Technology: DDR-SDRAM
Installed Memory: 1 GB
Maximum Memory: 2 GB
Hard Drive Capacity: 100 GB
Drive Controllers: IDE (Ultra ATA/DMA)
Rotational Speed: 4200 RPM
DVD Read Speed: Not specified by manufacturer
DVD Write Speed: Not specified by manufacturer
Additional Drives: DL DVD+/-RW
Sound Support: Digital Audio (16-bit)
Video Chipset: ATI RADEON XPRESS 200M IGP
Installed Video Memory: 128 MB
Resolution: 1280 x 800
Display Size: 15.4 in
Display Type: Active Matrix LCD (TFT)
Port Connectors: 4 Universal Serial Bus (USB) 2.0
1 Audio - Headphone-out
1 Audio - Microphone-in
1 Video - VGA (15-pin)
1 Video - TV-Out (S-Video)
1 RJ-11 (modem)
1 RJ-45 Ethernet (LAN)
1 IEEE 1394 (FireWire)
1 Expansion Port 2 connector
1 Consumer IR (Remote Receiver)

Card Slots: Memory Stick
Memory Stick Pro
SmartMedia Card
Secure Digital(SD)/MMC
xD-Picture Card
ExpressCard/34
ExpressCard/54
Type I CardBus
Type II CardBus
Network Support: Ethernet (10/100 Mbps)
Wireless Protocol: 802.11b
802.11g
Modem Speed: 56 Kbps
Input Devices: Keyboard
Touchpad
Number of Batteries: 1
Installed Operating System: Microsoft® Windows® XP Home Edition
Included Software: Security and Support:
Symantec™ Norton Antivirus™ 2005 (complementary 60 days Live Update)
Notebook Help & Support
Adobe Acrobat Reader
Productivity and Finance:
Microsoft® Works
Microsoft® Money
MSN® Encarta® Plus
Multimedia:
Sonic RecordNow
InterVideo WinDVD
InterVideo Home Theater
muvee™ autoProducer
HP Image Zone Plus photo and imaging
Apple iTunes and Apple iTunes Music Store

In the Box: HP Pavilion zv6015us Notebook
120W AC Adapter
8-cell Lithium-Ion battery

Height: 1.9 in
Width: 14.3 in
Depth: 11.2 in
Weight: 8.0 lbs
Limited Warranty: 1 Year (12 Months)
 

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As far as laptops go, this one should serve you well as a gaming machine. In most laptops, the video card is the weakest link for gaming purposes, and that's the case here as well. But a 128MB Radeon is still impressive, and will give an older desktop a run for its money :)

Even so, if there's anything you can do to upgrade that video card, you won't regret it.

-Ryan
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Are laptop video cards upgradeable?
I basically want to be able to play doom 3 and half life 2 and I figured 128mb would play them fairly well.
I'm also curious about how high video cards go I've seen one that was 256mb, do they go any higher then that?
 

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wituckius said:
Are laptop video cards upgradeable?
I basically want to be able to play doom 3 and half life 2 and I figured 128mb would play them fairly well.
I'm also curious about how high video cards go I've seen one that was 256mb, do they go any higher then that?
They are not upgradable

The amount of memory on the video card while important is nowhere near as important as which graphic processor is on the laptop. The particular graphics processor from my searching is very new but doesn't appear to be very fast.
Check out the following quote from a review I found.
http://hardware.earthweb.com/computers/ ... hp/3507521

"The graphics accelerator behind the screen is ATI's Radeon Xpress 200M integrated-graphics chipset with HyperMemory (ATI's term for using the PCI Express bus to tap some system memory for graphics). The 200M shares the 3D architecture of and generally performs like the entry-level Radeon X300 chip: It doesn't make the ZV6000 a threat to hardcore gaming laptops, but does a respectable job handling multimedia applications and playing the occasional previous-generation game.

Sticking to XGA resolution, we managed 29 frames per second in Wolfenstein: Enemy Territory and 86 fps in the older, less demanding Quake III Arena; the Pavilion averaged an almost-adequate 13 fps in AquaMark3 and posted Futuremark 3DMark03 and 3DMark05 scores of 1,454 and 674, respectively. But while it rendered complex DirectX 9.0 scenes without a hitch, it took some time to do so -- the Gun Metal 2 benchmark with 4X antialiasing at 1,200 by 800 resolution plodded along at 5 fps."

I'd do some digging around for the graphics cards names that you find on sites to purchase laptops folllowed with review in some searches, make sure it preforms well first before you decide to buy.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Doom 3 doesnt have to run perfectly for me to be happy and most of the time I don't really notice the differences in quality. I'm mostly just wondering if doom 3 would run alright on that computer. If I can't run doom 3 on it then could I run Half life 2 on it? I'm not a huge computer gamer but I would like to be able to play some newer games on it.
 

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I don't know if you know the games mentioned in the review but most of them are a few years old and the preformance is nothing speical. The card will probably run doom 3 at around 5-10fps making it so choppy that I pretty sure you'll be highly disapointed. You probably only have to spend $100-200 more for a much better graphics card. You can offest this price by for instance getting a cpu that is 100-200mhz slower. You won't notice that different but at the same time get yourself around the $100+ off the computers price. (doom3 / half life2 are both the same in that they require a very fast graphics card).
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
what if its has ATI RADEON XPRESS 200M IGP graphics with 128MB DDR dedicated video memory. Would being a dedicated graphics card bring it up to par with other 128mb graphic cards?
 

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wituckius said:
what if its has ATI RADEON XPRESS 200M IGP graphics with 128MB DDR dedicated video memory. Would being a dedicated graphics card bring it up to par with other 128mb graphic cards?
Dedicated memory is always the way to go. If you're designing this system on a website, you should pick the video card drop-down and pick the most expensive one on there. As radfaraf said, the card is not upgradable... after the system is built, that is.

Some companies (Alienware comes to mind) do offer upgradeable video cards for laptops, but they're the only vendor I know that offers this.

-Ryan
 

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wituckius said:
what if its has ATI RADEON XPRESS 200M IGP graphics with 128MB DDR dedicated video memory. Would being a dedicated graphics card bring it up to par with other 128mb graphic cards?
NON-Dedicated just means that it uses system memory as graphics card memory. Very cheapo cards (we are talking the cheapest of the cheap) will use non-dedicated memory as a way to save money and are only good for non-gamers or those who play very non-resource intensive games. Since the card you are talking about has dedicated memory it has it own seperate memory just for video. However, basically what you told me doesn't change my recommendation.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Thanks for you suggestions everyone.I went to a local laptop store and they wanted a crapload of money(2500-3000) for a laptop with less then the specs that the computer I listed above.What was good about thier commputers was that the video cards were upgradable but I figured I could just buy this computer(1050 dollars) and instead of buying a computer that could upgrade for 6 years I thought that wiht the money I saved from buying this one I can just buy a whole new one when this one is outdated. I'm typing on it right now by the way. I very happy with the purchase and I'm downloading the doom 3 demo right now. I'll let you all know how it runs.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Good news!! Doom 3 is playing well. It's even playing well on medium quality so far and I can play it with the shadows turned on and the advanced graphics thingy is on. I was playing it last night at 2am and it had me jumping. :banana
 

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wituckius said:
Good news!! Doom 3 is playing well. It's even playing well on medium quality so far and I can play it with the shadows turned on and the advanced graphics thingy is on. I was playing it last night at 2am and it had me jumping. :banana
yay :banana you got the one I told you not to and it works good :shock ?
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
yay you got the one I told you not to and it works good ?
My guess on that study you showed me is that they got those frame rates from running it on the highest quality possible which would take a high end 256mb vid card or a 512 vid card.
 
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