Laptop vs Desktop 1200$


Jul 2, 2012
I need to get a laptop for school and I want to be able to play games at decent quality. I have 1200$ to spend. Should I get a good laptop or spend 700$ on a laptop and 500$ on a desktop. Games BF3, Mechwarrior Online, Mechwarrior 4, Doom 3, Rage, and Dues Ex: Human Revolution. 40+ fps at 1080p. Higher for Mechwarrior Online


Jun 5, 2012
if that is your bidget limit, it would be pointless to split it among both you would get mediocre gaming on each at low settings, I would just put it all in to a decent gaming laptop, either something with a A10 AMD APU or intel with dedicated nvidia graphics. but still with $1200 you wont get an amazing gaming laptop, just enough to be equal to maybe a $700-$800 desktop build


Jun 5, 2012
that is true. your recommendation is better than mine :p

I did recently pick up a toshiba laptop that was on sale here for around $450, has a A8 APU runs games decent enough on low - med settings.

so i guess you could look in to something like that for laptop so you could still play a couple games while traveling
The third one is very nice, but do you want to spend that much money on a laptop to game on a small screen? What about you get this laptop for school:

And spent rest $871 on a desktop?

PCPartPicker part list / Price breakdown by merchant / Benchmarks

CPU: Intel Core i3-2120 3.3GHz Dual-Core Processor ($113.49 @ NCIX US)
Motherboard: Asus P8Z68-V LX ATX LGA1155 Motherboard ($56.99 @ Compuvest)
Memory: Kingston HyperX 8GB (2 x 4GB) DDR3-1600 Memory ($39.99 @ Newegg)
Storage: Samsung Spinpoint F3 1TB 3.5" 7200RPM Internal Hard Drive ($69.99 @ Newegg)
Video Card: Gigabyte Radeon HD 7870 2GB Video Card ($247.55 @ Newegg)
Case: Thermaltake VL80001W2Z ATX Mid Tower Case ($33.99 @ SuperBiiz)
Power Supply: Corsair 500W ATX12V Power Supply ($41.98 @ NCIX US)
Optical Drive: Lite-On iHAS124-04 DVD/CD Writer ($16.99 @ SuperBiiz)
Monitor: Asus VH238H 23.0" Monitor ($168.99 @ SuperBiiz)
Operating System: Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 (64-bit) ($90.82 @ Amazon)
Total: $880.78
(Prices include shipping and discounts when available.)
(Generated by PCPartPicker 2012-08-29 06:53 EDT-0400)

It would be twice as fast as the fastest laptop you picked.

out of all these, go with sager, only bump the CPU from i5 to i7. It's still cheaper than the MSI at that point, but with better GPU than the MSI. xoticpc force is overpriced, it's basically the same thing as MSI only with GPU upgraded from 660 to 675.

With all that said, all 3 are solid laptops, but what Sunius is saying is true - a desktop will be able to run circles around the laptop, any day. Main reason is, all those laptops come with 1080p screens, unfortunately none of GPUs will be able to run the latest games at 1080p on high settings.

another thing to think about. Where are you going to school? Have you seen the dorms you'll be staying at? Not every room comes with AC, so in spring/fall you'll be running the risk of overheating, since laptops inherently run a lot hotter than desktops