Mar 24, 2011

Best Laptop Under $1,000 - HP DV6T Quad Edition (March 2011)

If you have followed some of my previous posts you know that I sold some stuff... and now I'm spending it all on a new and much needed laptop.   I hate spending money in big quantity so I set a limit of no more than $1,000.  After looking through a lot of different companies and systems I stumbled upon HP and their HP DV6T Quad Edition.

Things that attracted me:
  • Core i7 CPU (2.0 Ghz, 6MB L3 Cache, TurboBoost up to 2.9 GHz) (2nd gen)
  • Powerful GPU AMD Radeon HD 6770M (1GB of DDR5)
  • Very good keyboard (I tried a laptop with similar keyboard before buying)
  • Best Windows based laptop touchpad (only Apple makes better ones)
  • Price under $1,000
  • 9 cell lithium-ion battery (up to 9.75 hours of goodness)
  • Looks good (no crazy colors here)

  • 1366 x 768 on a 15.6 inch screen?  (I'll work on a hack to up to try and up this)

What I changed from the Base model:
  • Switched GPU from 6490M to 6770M ( +$25 )
  • 7200 RPM instead of the 5400 RPM ( +$0 and adds a bit of speed )
  • 9 cell lithium-ion battery ( +$30 ) instead of 6 cell  (looks are secondary to functionality!)
  • Added bluetooth ( +25 )

  • Original price:  $1,229.99
  • Coupon:  -$369.00 ( code - NB4761 )
  • Price after coupon:  $860.99
  • Taxes:  $58.12  (so we get taxed on earned income... and then we must pay sales tax?? wtf)
  • Total paid:  $919.11

If you keep an eye on my blogs you might know that I love convertible tablets but I decided to go for a laptop this time.  Why?  because right now I need a powerful "developer" system that needs to handle some heavy 3d applications.  Convertible tablets have their place and I'm sure that within the year the tablet of my dreams will become a reality.  I'm also returning the Lenovo X201 Tablet that I have been "testing" and that leaves me with no computer.  The HP DV6T Quad Edition will be the first computer system that I have owned since the Lenovo S10-3T.

HP DV6T Quad Edition 2011 Promo Video

What laptop would you get if you had $1,000 to spare?



TeknoAnders said...

Sounds like you did a good deal. I'm trying to find a laptop with specs like that on a 12,1"-13,3" and having a hard time finding it. Got any tips?

Jesse B Andersen said...

If I could have found a system with the specs that I got at those sizes I would have bought one. Usually a bigger system can have bigger and cheaper components which bring the total price down. When you go below the 14 inch screens it becomes hard to find good "gaming" systems.

My bet is that Alienware M11X systems will be the best for price. The system has an 11 inch screen, but I bet battery life is not going to be great.

Anonymous said...

Thanks so much for your vid! Have you gotten your laptop yet? If so, how do you like it? =D

Jesse B Andersen said...

I have not gotten my HP laptop yet and won't get for a few more weeks. HP ran out of parts to make the system. I have two options:
1. Cancel the order and get my money back.
2. Accept the delay, get the system sometime in May (May 3rd is the ship date), and get a 10% discount.

What option would you choose?

Bobby Joe said...

I ordered mine after yours and my build date is may 2, no idea how that happens I just hope mine doesn't get delayed. but i wouldn't really mind, if they let me use that 10% to upgrade it. then that would be a total of 43% off! By the way, why did you switch the graphics card? They both have 1gb ddr5.

Anonymous said...

Hi Jesse!

Thanks for your quick response! This is SO frustrating! I keep reading HP dv6t forums and people keep getting their shipment delayed. I don't think anyone who ordered a custom made dv6t has gotten it yet. My laptop's build date is May 7th (ordered it on April 10th)... I really hope I get mine on time!
I definitely would not cancel if you can wait. You cannot get a better deal, especially considering the price that you paid. Plus you got an extra 10% discount, which is always nice =P

Anonymous said...

Just to give you an idea of the time-line for your order: I ordered my dv6 quad on March 21, and this morning (April 22) received confirmation that it has shipped out. Three delays later (original ship date was April 7th), it's finally coming. I, too, received the offer for extra 10 percent off. As it was already too good of a deal to pass up, I opted to stick with it and ride the delays out. I also was able to get out of HP that the delays were because of hardware shortages caused in part by the tsunami in Japan.

Anonymous said...

Jesse, don't fret too much about the screen resolution. At screen sizes as small as a laptop (even 15.9"), the difference between 720p and 1080p is pretty much undetectable to the human eye. Only on much larger screens (like over 40") is the difference in resolution really noticeable. Besides, the vast majority of games are 720p, and your optical drive isn't HD capable anyways.

Jesse B Andersen said...

There are several spec advantages on the 6770M.

6700M series - http://www.amd.com/us/products/notebook/graphics/amd-radeon-6000m/amd-radeon-6700m-6600m/Pages/amd-radeon-6700m-6600m.aspx#2

6400M series - http://www.amd.com/us/products/notebook/graphics/amd-radeon-6000m/amd-radeon-6400m/Pages/amd-radeon-6400m.aspx#2

Yes I'm keeping the 10% discount and hope that there won't be any more delays.

The resolution is fine enough. I do wish it was higher, but I can always hook it up to an external monitor. That 30 inch Dell monitor is starting to sound very tempting.

I don't really buy DVD/Blu-Ray movies anymore. I use Amazon and Hulu to watch movies so I don't need the drive.

Anonymous said...

Ordered that laptop on Feb 28. Received it Mid April. No usb 3.0 and no beats audio. Tried it out for 2 weeks, testing revealed a cpu Passmark of over 6800. That was with the 2630 and the 6570 ati graphics. Sent it back because I wanted usb 3.0 and the upgraded audio. They advertised it as including those features but delivered something else. I advise all tose waiting to take your part number off your order and plug it into the HP website. Make sure it comes up with a 6000 series laptop and not the older 4000 series.

Jesse B Andersen said...

For a while HP's website had the wrong info on the DV6T Quad Edition. The one that you got had an optional touch screen and backlit keyboard on the site right?

Another way to recognize it was the palm rest being silver. The new 2011 DV6T Quad Edition should have a dark palm rest.

Anonymous said...

Yes, your description is correct. As I wasn't sure what to expect from a performance increase the faster usb 3.0 and Beats audio are what sealed the deal for me. Either way that 2360 was a screamer and HP put it in a nice looking package.

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