Core i7 Laptops: List of All Clarksfield Laptops (Quad Core)
Desktop Core i7 CPUs have been available for quite some time now but unfortunately, Intel has been holding back on the mobile version of its latest CPU due to the current state of the economy. But now at long last, some laptops with the new platform are starting to pop up - and just in time for Windows 7. Most of the new Core i7 laptops are of the high-end, pricey kind, but some mainstream laptops like the Dell Studio 15 and 17 have also received an i7 makeover.
The Core i7 update amounts to the biggest performance boost for laptops since mobile processors went dual core, which was years ago . This first batch of i7 CPUs ups the core count to four (not counting the completely marginalized Core 2 Quad Extreme mobile CPU,) and thanks to Intel's "Hyperthreading" technology there's even more performance behind the number than just twice the number of cores. So it is a major update and I thought it might be a good idea to list the new laptops as they appear. Here are the alternatives so far:
The recent Alienware m15x refresh brought quad-core i7 performance to the 15-inch form factor. As usual when coming from Alienware, it's a very geeky-looking, fast and expensive laptop with a reasonably powerful gaming graphics card, an Nvidia GeForce GTX 260M. It's too bad that it's also extremely heavy for a 15-inch laptop at 9lbs, which is way above average.
HP Envy 15
always wanted a PC designed by Apple, have a look at HPs new Envy 15, which is
about as close as it gets. The Envy is both slim and light like the MacBook Pro
it shamelessly copies, but unlike the MacBook Pro it has a Core i7 CPU, a
powerful ATI 4830 GPU and dual hard drive slots.
The GT640 is a successor to the GT620 and GT630; a quite affordable gaming laptops that looks almost identical, in the same 15-inch chassis. Besides the i7 CPU, it has a gaming capable Nvidia GTS 250M graphics card.
Dell Studio 15
The Studio 15 is an all-round, "mainstream" laptop, which is why it was a surprise to see that it's been upgraded to the new platform already. On the other hand, Dell is usually pretty fast when it comes to refreshing their lineup, as they don't rely on retailers to empty their stock. Core 2 Duo variants of the Studio 15 are still the norm, but now there's also an i7 configuration to choose from.
"G" stands for Gaming in Asus' laptop lineup, and this is a pair of all-out gaming laptops with a 15.6 and 16-inch screen respectively. Strangely the 15-inch model is the one with the higher, 1080p resolution, whereas the G60J uses a more conventional 1366x768. Both have the Nvidia GTX 260M GPU and room for two hard drives.
The M60J has a decidedly more low-key design than the above and is likely aimed at business users not wanting to bring a spaced-out gaming laptop to office meetings. It also comes with a slower - but still fairly powerful - GT 240M graphics card and a 16-inch screen.
Dell Studio XPS 16
The latest Studio XPS series is unfortunately not half as good looking as the XPS laptops it replaced, but it's twice as powerful. Or at least the latest Studio XPS 16 is, with a new quad-core Core i7, a Radeon HD4670 graphics card, and optional RGBLED 1080p 16-inch screen.
Cyberpower Xplorer X7-Xtreme
This awkwardly named 17-inch monster laptop from Cyberpower may not have the looks, but it has a lot of geeky stuff inside (there's definitely room for it). It's a rough equivalent of the Alienware m17x, except for the i7 processor which the m17x lacks. The standard configuration also includes a GeForce GTX 280M GPU and 6GB of DDR3 RAM.
Just like the previously mentioned GT640, the MSI GT740 follows up on a tried and tested model although this is a 17-inch variant. The hardware is more or less the same as the 15-inch model though, with a range of Core i7 CPUs and a decent GTS 250M graphics card.
The 17-inch Sager NP8760 may be a bit larger than the Alienware m15x, but it actually weighs less and has a more powerful graphics card - the Nvidia GTX 280M. It also has room for two hard drives or SSDs in RAID-0 mode and up to 8GB of DDR3.
Dell Studio 17
The reasonably priced Studio 17 is also available in a Core i7 configuration that doesn't inflate the price tag as much as you'd expect. It's not as powerful as some of the gaming laptops listed here, but it still comes with the new platform and a reasonably gaming-friendly ATI 4650 GPU.
Toshiba Qosmio X505
Qosmio is Toshiba's oversized high-end lineup, and it would be a shame if there wasn't a new Qosmio available in time for Core i7 and the Windows 7 launch. The X505 is an 18.4-inch beast, and aside from the processor it's surprisingly underpowered. It only has a 320GB hard drive and a GTS 250M GPU in the basic configuration, but to its credit it comes with 6GB of RAM.
Lenovo's customizable 15-inch laptop, the Y550p, is soon to be available in a Core i7 configuration. It comes with Windows 7 of course, an Nvidia GT240M with 1GB of dedicated VRAM, and a 500GB hard drive.
I'll continue to add laptops to this hub as they show up, so stay tuned for more.