View Full Version : Laptop for Modeling

09-06-2006, 10:19 AM
Hey all,

I have researched through the forums already and found some information, but I'm looking for more personal experience. I recently lost my dear friend, my Toshiba Satellite 5205-S503. This was my baby and did everything I asked of it. Motherboard has finally gone on it and it will be missed dearly. I am now in the market for a new laptop. Preferably something in the $500 to $1000 range. It will mostly just be used for higher detail modeling in lightwave and zbrush. I will also be doing quite a bit of flash stuff as well. I would prefer something with a dedicated video card, but I have found most of these are in the upper price range. It does have to have good graphics either way (dedicated or integrated). So, if anyone has any suggestions or links to anything it would be greatly appreciated. Even if you just have info on what video setup your laptop has and how it works I would appreciate that as well. I've been looking around for about a week now and i'm just burned out searching haha, so I leave it to you, the public of newtek.


09-06-2006, 10:26 AM
I had a Satellite, and it did a very good job indeed before it's untimely demise. The HP Pavillion range are pretty good - dunno what they are in dollars. I use a zd8124 for mobile animation, and it carries the task well. Even better now that I've got an active cooler for it.

09-07-2006, 07:26 AM
Thanks bog. I'm looking into the HP Pavilion dv2020us right now. Seems to be a pretty good deal for the hardware combo.

09-07-2006, 08:00 AM
I would pay special attention while buying HP laptops.. When I was searching one recently HP nx9420 (dual-core, 17") had the worst LCD that I have seen from higher priced models.. My eyes would not stand even 20 minutes with it, and modeling is rather long time consuming task, therefore good quality display is very important..

Toshiba Qosmio, especially models 3k+ usd (in usa it'll be at least 40% less than in Europe), had the best displays..

09-07-2006, 08:12 AM
good point Sensei. I know it is hard to tell from images on the net, but could you check out this particular model and at least see if you can tell if it has a glossy or matte display? I cannot really tell, and I cannot stand glossy screens haha.

09-07-2006, 08:15 AM
My dell xps 1710 is pretty nice...


09-07-2006, 08:54 AM
I don't own neither Toshiba Qosmio (unfortunately!) nor HP laptops, but Toshiba Satellite P100-219, that 17" with Centrino Duo 2.0 GHz dual-core, it has little better display than average.. Good but not the best.. I have seen nicer display in Fujitsu Siemens Amilo 1536, but that was 15,4" with Centrino Duo 1.66 GHz, that's the only reason I didn't take it (searched Duo 2.0 GHz but none shop had it; I am really recommending it at least from display quality POV).. P100-219 was 2,5k usd and FS 1536 was 1,9k usd, in May, obviously in usa much less.. so, FS 1536 in usa, might be even in your price range or just little above, check it out..

09-07-2006, 10:41 AM
I am using a Gateway MX6920. It has 1.6Ghz dual core and a gig of ram although the ram could have been upgraded to 2 gig. It was 899 base price at Circuit City.
Whatever laptop you get make sure to get dedicated video if you can (although I think you knew that already :D)

09-07-2006, 11:34 AM
I just ( yesterday) bought an HP Pavilion dv8396ea 2Ghz duo proc, widescreen 17" TFT, 240Gb HD, 2Mb RAM, GF 7600 vid, TV card etc. Have yet to install any 3d apps on it, but it seems to run quite smoothly, and I have to say that the monitor looks fine to me.

It does dim when on battery, presumably in order to save power, but that's all.

It isn't the fastest new machine for the price, but it certainly seems to be stacked out nicely with slots, ports & stuff that I may never find a use for.

09-07-2006, 02:47 PM
I recently bought a Dell Lattitude D820

1.67ghz core duo
15.4 WXGA
1gig ram
512mb Nvidia Quadro NVS 120
80g sata
Windows Xp
8x DVD burner


there are a few more features but those are the ones most relevant to LW. The Precision line offers more powerful features but you start getting into the $2000 range. I couldn't swing that at this time. The D820 has been great though, especially at that price. Having the dedicated graphics card is obviously a huge plus for LW. So far it has handled LW9 just fine. Though I haven't really pushed it yet. I have a parallel dongle so I can only run the discovery edition until I get a usb dongle. It will be nice to ultimately be able to work on the road. I didn't go with higher screen resolution, because when Im in my office I just plug a seperate monitor into the Quadro vga connector and run the laptop in dual view mode :thumbsup:

09-07-2006, 03:44 PM
well, after many exhausting hours of more research haha I think I have found a replacement for my baby.

TOSHIBA Qosmio F25-AV205

After all of the reviews and everything all I hear about is how great the display is, which, to me, is numero uno. Also, the dedicated graphics are a plus. The only thing that I would lose upon receiving it would be the Windows Media Center for regular XP Pro. My plan was to order through Newegg, but the only one they have is "Recertified" (refurbed from the factory). Has anyone ever ordered a product like this? Any horror stories?


09-07-2006, 04:37 PM
Ah, yeah the Qosmios look like the next-gen Sats. Should be a nice peice of kit.

09-07-2006, 04:51 PM
Good luck with it Seduceandrob :)

Is it one of the Tosh's with the waterproof insert between the keyboard and the motherboard? There was an ad on UK TV earlier this year for Toshiba notebooks and I remember thinking that was a corking idea. Friend of mine bought a laptop for his daughter recently which lasted right up to the point where her friend spilt her coke into it :bangwall:

Your doing the right thing going for a decent brand. Nother friend bought a high powered notebook a couple of years ago only to find two weeks after he had it delevered, the company went bankrupt. A week after that the graphics card burnt out taking most of the motherboard, the processor and the memory with it :bangwall:

To add insult to injury he'd paid a whopping premium for an insurance policy. The insurers stated he wasn't covered because all of the components were still covered by warranty and he should persue the manufacturers for new parts, the manufacturers weren't interested because he wasn't the one who bought the original items, the company that was in liquidation was and he should therefore persue them. He tried taking the insurance company to trading standards but all the insurance company came back with was a refund minus their initial call out charge for sending a guy out to tell him they wouldn't fix it :bangwall::bangwall::bangwall:

In the end, his bank came through as the laptop was bought on loan and they covered him for a new machine, it wasn't as high spec, but it did the job.

Moral of the story is buy a decent brand, or get in with a decent bank :thumbsup:

My own aging baby...
Compaq nx7000 DG706A
(near $4000 mark, although you could no doubt have bought it a good $1000-$1500 cheaper in the States)
1.6Ghz Centrino
1Gig Ram
60 Gig HD
ATI 9200 Pro 64MB
Win XP Pro
JBL Pro Speakers
Beautifull screen 15.4" widescreen, 1680*1050 native res
5hr battery life (Genuine, not a lie for the press release)
3.5 kg

Not the fastest kid on the block these days by any stretch of the imagination but still capable of kicking some LW botty.

09-07-2006, 05:27 PM
I now have to share an embarassing story. T'other half and I were watching a Stargate DVD off the old Satellite P10-804 a few years back. She'd gone to make coffees and stuff (it was a Sunday morning), and she came in with a tray of two coffees and two glasses of orange juice.

For reasons which will go unexplained, the tray got knocked. One huge very strong black coffee, one smaller white coffee and two glasses of OJ coursed into the vents on the laptop, which Got Unhappy Fast.

Cables were yanked, battery pulled, and in tears I poured the coffee/OJ mix out of the machine, and put it into the airing cupboard to try to dry it out.

Twelve hours later, I re-introduced the battery.

Zwing. Booted first time. No problems. She's still running fine to this day, her and her 1920x1200 panel. Even with a coffee-stain in the corner.

Fine machine. Her name, for the record, is Serenity ;)

09-07-2006, 05:54 PM
Bog -

Fine machine. Her name, for the record, is Serenity
My friends machine however is dubbed 'Debbie did Dallas' :D