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Gaming Performance

As I mentioned in the HP EliteBook 8460p review, 3DMark isn't often a good indicator of how well graphics hardware will perform compared to actual gaming. AMD has years of experience producing gaming hardware and drivers while the Intel HD 3000 is still relatively young, and hopefully that difference will bear itself out in our gaming tests. We've highlighted the K53E with its slightly slower i5-2520M CPU and HD 3000 graphics as a point of reference.

Unfortunately, in our "low" preset testing it seems like the AMD Radeon HD 6450M in the Tecra R850 has a hard time distancing itself from the Intel HD 3000 graphics. It's important to note here that Toshiba's rationale for including the 6450M was the triple-monitor EyeFinity support that comes with it (hence the included DisplayPort), but we do have to wonder how relevant that will wind up being for many users. StarCraft II is the sole title where the 6450M has a commanding lead over the HD 3000, while Intel ekes out small leads in Metro 2033 and Mass Effect 2.

Instead of being vindicated by bumping up to our "medium" preset, the Radeon HD 6450M is ultimately damned by the increase in demands. This is a low-power, low-performance part, and we have to wonder how many users might have been better served by the Intel HD 3000 graphics hardware. The discrete AMD GPU simply isn't enough of a performance increase to really come out as meaningful (other than in SC2). How many will want to run three displays off of a notebook, and will the 6450M be fast enough to handle such a workload? Either way, something like the 6630M would have been a far more interesting dGPU.

Application and Futuremark Performance Battery, Noise, and Heat
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  • GotThumbs - Monday, June 06, 2011 - link

    I look forward to the day when SSD drives will be more of a mainstream option.

    Nice Review as always.
    Reply
  • dananski - Monday, June 06, 2011 - link

    I've been thinking the same thing recently since I looked for a laptop for a friend on Dell's website and found she couldn't have an SSD without spending nearly £1000 (~$1650) for an Alienware gaming laptop she doesn't need (she has a desktop for gaming). Even then, Dell's only "SSD" option for non-business customers is actually a hybrid drive.

    A decent SSD makes even a low end system much more usable. It's not a feature that should be limited to the high end.
    Reply
  • Stuka87 - Monday, June 06, 2011 - link

    You can get SSD's on Latitudes, which cost less than an alienware box.

    The issue is Dell SSD's suck. So its far better to go with a base HD, and then buy an SSD from NewEgg or something. Its both MUCH cheaper, and you get a better drive.
    Reply
  • Shinobi_III - Monday, June 06, 2011 - link

    SSD would be more mainstream if general people understood why they would buy a laptop with 64gb instead of THREE THOUSAND!!!

    People are dumb, never underestimate the general public... :(
    Reply
  • chrnochime - Monday, June 06, 2011 - link

    I might be behind on the latest status of SSDs but last time I checked they still die much faster than HDs do with repeated read/writes, because of them being NAND(or NOR) cells and not discs. I'd jump on SSD if that's not the case anymore. Reply
  • JarredWalton - Monday, June 06, 2011 - link

    General use with current wear leveling algorithms means the NAND should last upwards of 10 years on all current drives. The bigger problem is something else going wrong (i.e. faulty firmware, or some other glitch), so if you have critical data stored on an SSD I'd recommend a real backup strategy rather than just hoping for the best. If an HDD dies and you really need the data, you can pay data recovery firms a couple thousand dollars and usually get everything back. If you SSD dies, you're pretty much SOL. Reply
  • Roland00 - Monday, June 06, 2011 - link

    13.3 inch
    i5 2410m
    Nvidia Geforce GT540m with Nvidia Optimus (it uses 2gb of ddr3 though instead of gddr5)
    It gets rid of the crappy acer island keyboard, but keeps the glossy screen and has the resolution at 1366x768.
    No Optical Drive.
    4lbs 1 ounce.

    It is $779 at frys, I don't know what the other places are going to have since this is a new product and hasn't made much news yet.
    Reply
  • warisz00r - Monday, June 06, 2011 - link

    the also-new ASUS U41SV? It has pretty much the similar specs as the Acer above except it comes with a 14.1 inch screen, an optical drive, about 1" thick and comes in at about 2kg with an 8-cell batt. I'm hoping to get one of these as my new laptop. Reply
  • ppeterka - Monday, June 06, 2011 - link

    Agreed with both of you! 15.6" AND HD resolution, AND business class? Oh my god, when will this end?

    And there is the absolutely redundant, never used keypad. Why?

    Acers have a bad reputation regarding build quality (Me, and ym colleagues were having display problems in the Penryn era 57xxG notebooks), but I wouldn't buy this over the Acer 3830 series even if I was forced to. Big. Crap. And not THAT cheap! Even here in Hungary, Acer prices are quite reasonable, and they pack quite a punch for the money.
    Reply
  • aylafan - Monday, June 06, 2011 - link

    I just saw your title and it is incorrect. Make sure you are buying the 3830TG and not the 3830T.

    3830T = ONLY has Intel Integrated Graphics
    3830TG = NVIDIA GeForce GT540M with Optimus Technology
    Reply

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