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Looking to get a laptop for game dev, any ideas?

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Hey guys, I'm a laptop buying virgin, no seriously.

The last few laptops I was given, by Idigicon when I was working with them. The Windows 7 laptop I've been using has been going soso but now the 3,4 and r keys in the top left have stopped working. Well they've been broken for a while but I have been using a USB keyboard plugged in but I have only 2USB, one always have a mouse in it and I have to keep unplugging the keyboard to put USB sticks.

Not bad for a laptop from 2006 but I think it's time to move on. :)

Thing is, I have been looking at Amazon and have NO IDEA what is good, last time I bought a PC we were talking in 1GB of RAM and Pentium 3 MMX mebobbins. Does anyone have any tips.

Since I live in Japan I am going to get something off

I have been looking at this

Seems quite cheap but is it any good? Since I've been using a laptop a decade old I dare say even the oldest cheapest laptop is going to be better than this one. Although, 2GB doesn't sound like a lot.
Also a lot of the laptops, many have low ratings. So I'm really confused.

I plan on continuing my game dev in Unity which was going pretty decent even on this old laptop, my game in Unity is still running at 60fps so I don't think I will need a super computer or anything. And still use this laptop for Internet. I finally need a dedicated dev PC.

I probably need a laptop with more than 2USB slots and a USDMI slot to plug it into a separate monitor and it be 64bit.

So there we go, any advice would be greatly appreciated. :)

PS My current laptop specs are

Intel Core Duo CPU T5450 @1.66GHz, 1667 Mhz Core(s)
x64 based PC 4GB ram, Windows 7 Ultimate

This one

so I guess anything along these lines or slightly better. Right now I'm more into price than performance.

Quick question: why a laptop? Do you intend to do game dev on the go?

Personally I hate developing on a laptop without an external devices... monitor, keyboard and mouse.

Usb hubs cost 1-2 eur and allow to plug in input devices without a hassle (drives need more power so you better use the unextended usv slots of the laptop).

SSD and RAM prices are finally dropping so you should not pay that much more for a 4 (or more) GB RAM device.
RAM helps when running virtual machines (dev PC).
If you plan to upgrade RAM on your own then make sure that the original memory sticks only occupy one RAM slot and not both.

Opened up the Laptop and cleaned keyboard foils? Had done this when I threw a beer over it. Except one key all otgers were usable again after the cleaning.

@ laptop
If you only buy a laptop to save space in a room you might consider to buy a 17 inch laptop to not stare on a small screen.
Resolution: the higher the better (dev tools plus preview) but this also needs more ressources.


I had this dilema a while back and bought a laptop which was cheap but, I thought, not too cheap - and the specs seemed to be ok. I'm way behind on the old PC specs, however, as I've been a Mac user for the last three years. Even though I looked around and researched a bit, the machine I ended up with was around £300 and the biggest pile of shit I'd ever bought. It was an Lenovo Ideapad 110 and PC world don't even appear to even sell it any more. Here's a thread I later found where people were moaning about how slow the thing was after they turned it on.

The missus uses it now just for web browsing as it would have driven me nuts trying to use a dev system with it. I'd have taken it back to Argos but I left it too long before using it properly to realise no matter what i did it wasn't going to run any better.

Moral of this story: Take a friends recommendation if you can and don't always think you can get away with buying cheap. I've now got a desktop PC at home just for development stuff when I need to use programs like CBM prog studio for messing around with emulation that don't run on Mac's.

Problem I have is that I live in Japan, and I have very little space. Yeah, at work, I have two big wide screen monitors and at home I have a 13 inch laptop, the one I am typing on now. I would probably prefer to have a desktop, but I keep having to move around where I work due to lack of space. Sometimes it's on my desk, other times I am on the floor, I might even need to take the laptop with so I can do some work in other room or outside my apartment.

The fact that I developed two games on my other laptop since I moved here probably means that I can develop ok with a laptop.

Internet, e-mail, youtube etc none of that, I would be doing ONLY game on this a new laptop, just Unity and game dev, I'd probably have two laptops open on my desk for that reason.

But yeah I am indeed having second thoughts a bit after reading everyone's comments. It's cooled down a lot today, has been Japanese summer 35C and higher everyday for the past 6 weeks and today my laptop hasn't been overheating and the performance has been great, so erm I dunno. Might end up staying with the old and crusty and giving it some more thought.


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