Originally Posted by fobishduck
The replies I've been getting is pushing me toward a heavier machine... I was hoping you guys would tell me "Dothan is just as fast!" so I won't be grow shorter by the time I can buy a lightning fast 1 pound laptop that can do it all...
But serously, I truly appreciate all the advice so far. What I'm hearing is either I go with:
1) P4 3.2 or 3.4GHz machine with 1GB RAM, 7200rpm HD, and pretty good video card;
2) AMD64 3200+ or 3400+ machine with likewise memory, HD and graphics card.
I think either Sager or Asus (L5G) will be my choice for option (1); however, I haven't found a matching laptop (at equivalent price) for option (2).
Can you guys help me?
Thanks in advance,
Well, this is exactly what I am going to tell you. The Dothan has a difefrent way of handling aplications and the 2.0 GHZ branding is just as misslieading as the Athlon names. Dothan processors are often associated with multipliers of around 1.7 in order to get the idea of Dothan speed in P4 terms i.e.
2.0x1.7~3.4GHz P4. The fastest Dothan is the 2.0 in question here. It is believed to be equalling the processing power of a 3.4Ghz P4 without the HT thing that you DO NOT need for gaming. The only P4 that is faster than the 2.0 Dothan is the 3.4GHz EE (Extreeme Edition).
If you go to www.pcworld.com
(or at least the last edition of PC World had them) there you will see benchmarks of Dothan powered laptops with the 2.0 Dothan beating in several categories the AMD 64 3200+ while in others (like Photoshop) the AMD 64 had the edge for obvious reasons. P4 powered laptops came only close to the 2.0 Dothan and the AMD64 3200+ (back then there were no 3400+ 64s) which were the clear winners.
The Dothan, however, is much more efficient than the AMD64 (even the low voltage one used in many laptops like eMachines M68** series) when it comes to power consumption and, as it became clear from the other posts, there is no place for comparison with the P4.
My advise is to go with Dothan 2.0 which will give you more than enough processing power (actually it is at least equal to that of 3.2-3.4 HT P4) and longer batery life that is just a dream for P4 users. You may even try an AMD 64 3200+ or 3400+ but make sure that they are the Mobile, low voltage version. An eMachines M6811 with AMD 64 Mobile 3400+ goes around 15-1600 bucks but they have had some cosmetic problems with cracking hinge covers (just the cover not the hinge itself) but news is eMachines and Arima have solved it on later models.
I would aso recommend the Sager NP 4750 at PC Torque (best Sager retailer I have found) where you can configure a AMD 64 3200+ with 1GB PC400 and 60Gb 7200 Hd for around 22-2300.I am not sure if the Sager uses the Mobile low-voltage AMD, though. You can also get the new 3400+ but for around 150-200 more.
An AMD 64 Mobile 3200+ eMachines M6809 lasts for 2.5-3 hours. The same usage with a Dothan 2.0 will give ~4hrs of batery life. With a 3.4 P4 you will end up getting basically the same process power as the Dothan, however inferior to the AMD 64 3200+, but at best 1.5 hrs even less of battery life.
Furthermore, P4 laptops are among the heaviest you could possibly find while Dothan are the lightest out there.
And you probably have wondered why those Dothan laptops are so expensive?
My advise is, if your budget allows it (cause 2.0 Dothans go for around 2500 and more), get a Dothan.
Don't buy a Firebird if you can afford a Porsche.