Need a gaming laptop/desktop replacement. Help me choose!

Okay, I’ve never owned a laptop. I’ve had desktops for years. My last desktop was top of the line in 2004 and just died. I’m tired of the noise it made (sitting behind my large TV) and want something quiet, so I’m considering a laptop.

I had given up on gaming as that 2004 rig could not play anything beyond ‘Bioshock’.

I’m looking for desktop replacement, but with gaming options to play more recent games. These two laptops are priced at $1700 at future shop right now.

I have no idea if it’s worth buying anything with a quad core. From what I’ve read, they actually reduce performance in a lot of applications compared to a dual core. Which is better for gaming? One has a GTX 260, the other a 230. They sound fairly close.

I want a 17 "or larger screen, 1 tb drive and good speakers/sound. But I will also be getting an offboard soundcard to run the laptop to my main surround system to get 5.1.

I heard that the gateway has lousy speakers. Is there a big difference between 6 and 8 gigs ram? Should I avoid resolution of 1440x990?

  • blu ray is not a big deal
  • battery life not a big deal. Will be sitting on desk.
  • I want windows 7

Which is the more reliable brand? And if any of you have suggestions for something that might be better, please let me know. I hope to get something that will last at least 2 years.
I’m in Canada, but would be willing to order from the US if the price is right.

I’m planning coffee-table gaming using this monitor:

And a wireless keyboard and mouse with the PC box behind the couch. If you’re not planning on moving the gaming device much this could be a great cost saver and you’ll get better performance too!

The thing with laptops is, the more power you put in that tiny enclosure, the more noise you need to keep things cool. So a real top-of-the-line laptop could be noisier than you expect; and you’ll be sitting closer to it. You might prefer a desktop/HTPC built out of silent parts. Of course, with a laptop you gain some frreedom to move it around.

The 230 and 260 sound close because they are the same generation of graphics cards, but they’re miles apart in performance. The 260 is much faster.

And your links don’t work currently (the dots you see onscreen in pro… are in the URL). Other tan that, I’ve got no advice.