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GRRRRRR Why did I have to lose my message???? Stupid timeout! Okay. It might be better for you all anyway. I want to know which is more important for a ...
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  1. #1
    Linux Newbie
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    Buying a new laptop


    GRRRRRR

    Why did I have to lose my message????

    Stupid timeout!

    Okay. It might be better for you all anyway.

    I want to know which is more important for a multiboot laptop used for distrohopping (cuz I like to play with them all), gaming, and Java programming.

    I have the choice of 64 bit or 32 bit CPUs. Some of the 64 bit CPUs have far less L2 cache than some of the 32 bit CPUs. Which example is better?

    64 bit dual core clocked at 1.83 GHz and an L2 cache of only 512 KB

    or

    32 bit dual core clocked at 2.0 GHz and an L2 cache of 1 MB

    or

    32 bit dual core clocked at 2.0 GHz and an L2 cache of 2 MB


    And most importantly, why?

    All of the systems have more than enough RAM and even dedicated video RAM with an additional supply of shared memory.

    Please see my attached spreadsheet with the only choices left in stock at the only store I can purchase my new laptop from, and help me determine which laptop I should buy in just 14 short hours.

  2. #2
    Linux Engineer valemon's Avatar
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    I don't think 64-bit system will do any better than the 32-bit ones. It is clocked lower anyway. I would suggest 32 bit dual core clocked at 2.0 GHz and an L2 cache of 2 MB. More cache memory is better for your system.
    cache used by the central processing unit of a computer to reduce the average time to access memory.
    Just my opinion though
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  3. #3
    Linux Guru techieMoe's Avatar
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    What do you consider cheap? Less than $2000USD? Less than $1500? You could look at a Dell Inspiron 1720. You can configure it with a 64-bit, 4MB cache chip for less than $2000. With some careful component choosing it should run Linux quite well. I configured one including a 3-year warranty and a few other extras for about $1600.
    Last edited by techieMoe; 01-17-2008 at 01:37 PM.
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  4. #4
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    Valemon,
    Thank you. I will go for the 32 bit CPU clocked highest, with 2MB L2, I suppose, unless I see a 64 bit CPU with 2MB.

    Techiemoe,
    I am limited to $1500 cash, and I must buy it in Korea tomorrow. Otherwise, I would probably go Dell simply because I can get them to ship it with Linux.


    So how much MHz is worth another 1MB of processor memory? (apples and oranges, I know)
    (32 bit CPU with 1.83 GHz with 2MB L2 Cache
    or
    32 bit CPU clocked at 2.0 GHz with only 1MB L2 Cache)

    So screw that spreadsheet. (LOL)

    1)
    Apple - MacBook - Technical Specifications -- is $103 under budget, video memory seems to SUCK but a 4MB L2??? I can't ID the WiFi chipset online...

    2)
    Laptop Computers - Satellite X205-S9800 -- This is $50 under budget. I still need to verify Linux 3D dirvers and wireless chipset.

    And then there's these:

    3)
    HP Pavilion
    DV6707US
    Turion 64 X2 TK-57 1.9 GHz (Dual Core) 512KB L2
    NVIDIA GeForce 7150M
    799 MB max video memory
    15.4" display
    2GB RAM (2 x 1 GB DDR II SDRAM SO DIMM 200-pin (expandable to 4GB))
    3DVD±RW (+R DL) / DVD-RAM
    160 GB - Serial ATA-150 - 5400 rpm
    Microsoft Windows Vista Home Premium
    $779.00

    4)
    HP Pavilion
    DV9720US
    Turion 64 X2 Mobile Technology 2 GHz 1MB L2
    NVIDIA GeForce 7150M
    799 MB max video memory
    17"
    2GB RAM (2 x 1 GB DDR II SDRAM SO DIMM 200-pin (expandable to 4GB))
    4DVD±RW (+R DL) / DVD-RAM
    160 GB - Serial ATA-150 - 5400 rpm
    Microsoft Windows Vista Home Premium
    $899.00

    5)
    HP Pavilion
    DV6755US
    Intel Core 2 Duo T5450 1.67 GHz 2MB L2
    Intel GMA X3100
    358MB max video memory
    15.4" display
    2GB RAM (2 x 1 GB DDR II SDRAM SO DIMM 200-pin (expandable to 4GB))
    3DVD±RW (+R DL) / DVD-RAM
    250 GB Serial ATA, 5400 RPM
    Microsoft Windows Vista Home Premium
    $949.00

    6)
    HP Pavilion
    TX1410US
    AMD Turion 64 X2 TL-64 2.2 GHz 1MB L2
    NVIDIA GeForce Go 6150
    559MB max video memory
    12.1" display
    2GB RAM (2 x 1 GB DDR II SDRAM SO DIMM 200-pin (expandable to 4GB)
    DVD±RW (+R DL) / DVD-RAM
    250 GB Serial ATA, 5400 RPM
    Microsoft Windows Vista Home Premium
    $1,199.00

    So which would you buy? Based laregely upon that first response, I think #2 is the best choice, with #4 coming in just a little behind. #6 is a tablet PC, and I have always wanted one of those...
    Last edited by wolfton; 01-17-2008 at 01:24 PM. Reason: lack of patience with spreadsheets and display errors

  5. #5
    Linux Engineer valemon's Avatar
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    I would go for the Toshiba. No clue about it's wireless though. I always prefer intel to amd. Also I don't like macs, in my opinion macs are expensive to what they offer. Toshiba has a descent processor, hard disk at 5400rpm, 250GB and the vga seems good enough. Toshiba has good after sales support, at least here.
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  6. #6
    Linux Guru techieMoe's Avatar
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    Integrated Intel video will work great in Linux, but you're not going to be able to do anything really 3D intensive like full-3D games. I would definitely stay away from a 12-inch screen. For me that's just not enough space to do anything useful. Nvidia is well supported in Linux, but you have to download the drivers yourself.

    DO NOT buy an Apple if you want to put Linux on it. It's a nightmare, trust me on this. As far as wireless goes, if you can get an Intel 3945 chipset, those work fine in Linux.
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  7. #7
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    Great.
    While I was waiting, I found that the Toshiba has the Intel 4965AGN chipset.
    AndI came across this site: Intel® Wireless WiFi Link drivers for Linux*
    It appears that theiwlwifi project should help me get wireless.

    As for the video, I can, though reluctantly, boot Windows to play unless AO works better through Cedega here. (The S3 Unichrome AKA K8M800 will NOT play (even) Anarchy Online in Linux.)
    The nVidia site tech specs: GeForce 8700M - Technical Specifications

    Still, of the five laptops left in my list after I removed the Mac, the Toshiba still has the second lowest clock speed. It is a 32 bit CPU while the others are mostly 64 bit. Sure, its the only Intel out of the bunch, but I have never had ant problems with either Intel or AMD.

    What the Satellite lacks here is clock speed and I cannot find the L2 cache size for the T5500 1.83 GHz CPU.

    I think that HP's DV9720US might be a better buy. Although I really like 6 USB ports on a laptop, I really like 250GB HDD, and I think I might actually prefer a 32 bit CPU to the 64 in terms of OS choices, I assigned a point value to each specification and I statted them as I felt each part was important.
    I even added "Cool-Factor" points for the Toshiba' case, the Tablet PC, and yes, even MAC OS.

    Still, the HP came out on top. The clock speed is higher enough that it might matter (1.83 dual vs. 2.0 dual) , and the cache is 1MB. Even if the cache on the Toshiba is 4MB like the Mac's CPU, it won't matter much on the 64 bit CPU with a higher clock speed.

    Additionally, they both have nVidia graphics with 512 MB discreet memory with the option to share another 256+ MB, 17" displays, and the HP is 40% cheaper. So I lose two USB ports and 90GB HDD. I now have $600 to play with to max the RAM at 4G and to buy an external HDD, and some software, perhaps. I think I won't though, and I'll just save the $600.

    Thank you both for helping me work through this. I will continue to monitor infrequently until my purchase.

  8. #8
    Penguin of trust elija's Avatar
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    Just to confuse things a bit more, these days clock speed isn't
    such a reliable indicator of relative performance.

    Bang for Buck Winner at the moment is the Intel Core Duo 2 unless
    something else has been released
    What do we want?
    Time machines!

    When do we want 'em?
    Doesn't really matter does it!?


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  9. #9
    Linux Guru techieMoe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by elija View Post
    Just to confuse things a bit more, these days clock speed isn't
    such a reliable indicator of relative performance.
    Agreed. When I bought my laptop just recently, I was more concerned with a good ratio of clock speed and FSB speed. You likely won't notice a difference of a couple hundred megahertz (1.83 to 2.0 or 2.0 to 2.1 for instance).

    Bang for Buck Winner at the moment is the Intel Core Duo 2 unless
    something else has been released
    I also agree here. I've had good performance from Intel's Core Duo (32-bit) and Core 2 Duo (64-bit). They tend to run a little hotter than AMD's dual-cores but that's kind of par for the course with Intel. Their chips are rated for a much higher max temperature anyway so it's not that big of a deal.
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  10. #10
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    I like AMD's desktop processors, but I really hate the Turion. My current laptop is a Turion 1.6 ghz 64 bit dual core. It seems to have about a minute out of every 5 or 6 where it forgets how fast it can go and pretends it's a 486 or something. Might just be the laptop, it's the only Turion I used, but I still hate it. The Core 2 Duos are good processors though.

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