• Now's your chance win big! Join our community and get entered to win a RTX 2060 GPU, plus more! Join here.

    Meet Stan Dmitriev of SurrogateTV on the Pi Cast TODAY! The show is live August 11th at 2:30 pm ET (7:30 PM BST). Watch live right here!

    Professional PC modder Mike Petereyns joins Scharon on the Tom's Hardware Show live on Thursday, August 13th at 3:00 pm ET (8:00 PM BST). Click here!

Question Laptop vs Desktop parts durability

thetechnoobguy

Distinguished
Nov 16, 2011
437
1
18,815
8
I've been using the same desktop for years now, and I'm thinking of switching to a laptop exclusively. Problem is a for a lot of laptops the GPU and or CPU temps will run at 90 degrees or higher, I'm wondering how this affects the long term durability/performance? Also, does the "boost clock" on a laptop CPU increase the voltage?

I'm thinking of using an aftermarket thermal paste but other than that I'm not sure what can be done to ensure it lasts.
 

boju

Polypheme
Ambassador
While there may be slight voltage variations to keep turbo stable, it is within spec and thermal regulated. Though, mid 80s to possibly 90c will still see full turbo without serious throttling, i would still feel uneasy at these temps which is pretty usual for 'gaming laptops' under heavy load. As for longevity, depending how much it's being used at full capacity, probably last it's warranty period. Beyond that is anyone's guess.

Re-applying paste might help if cooling solution isn't the greatest or lay the laptop on a cooling pad and block the under side edges with foam strips to focus more air through generated by the pad. Would want to research best laptop cooling designs. Often cpu & gpu share the same heatsink 🤔
 

kanewolf

Titan
Moderator
I've been using the same desktop for years now, and I'm thinking of switching to a laptop exclusively. Problem is a for a lot of laptops the GPU and or CPU temps will run at 90 degrees or higher, I'm wondering how this affects the long term durability/performance? Also, does the "boost clock" on a laptop CPU increase the voltage?

I'm thinking of using an aftermarket thermal paste but other than that I'm not sure what can be done to ensure it lasts.
I wouldn't recommend an aftermarket thermal paste on a new laptop. The risk of damaging the laptop during assembly/disassembly is too great compared to the benefits, IMO. A laptop cooling pad with USB powered fans under the laptop is a much safer alternative.
 
Reactions: Phaaze88

thetechnoobguy

Distinguished
Nov 16, 2011
437
1
18,815
8
While there may be slight voltage variations to keep turbo stable, it is within spec and thermal regulated. Though, mid 80s to possibly 90c will still see full turbo without serious throttling, i would still feel uneasy at these temps which is pretty usual for 'gaming laptops' under heavy load. As for longevity, depending how much it's being used at full capacity, probably last it's warranty period. Beyond that is anyone's guess.

Re-applying paste might help if cooling solution isn't the greatest or lay the laptop on a cooling pad and block the under side edges with foam strips to focus more air through generated by the pad. Would want to research best laptop cooling designs. Often cpu & gpu share the same heatsink 🤔
I'm interested in the MSI Bravo 15 and the Lenovo Legion 5. There is basically no info on the Bravo 15, except this video of the Bravo 17, and the cooling looks excellent, it has 7 copper pipes in total:
View: https://youtu.be/dv2zsFJ_kxg?t=223

Unfortunately this review did not mention the temps, which is pretty irritating. Nor did they talk about how loud it is. Also this is Bravo 17 not 15, the cooling on the 15 might be different since it's smaller.
For the Lenovo, this guy says the laptop is quiet and on Max settings GTA V the CPU reaches 82 degrees after 1 hour, seems to have great cooling, but it only has 3 heat pipes in total?
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=30fD7hycD24


Maybe the amount of heat pipes isn't as important as their placement, and the quality on the fan? But a fan is a fan and copper copper is it not? I find it hard to believe the Lenovo is quiet as well as cool with such a simple design.

Out of all the new Ryzen laptops coming out this Lenovo seems to be the quietest and coolest, but there's not enough information on some of the other ones particularly the Bravo 15. Most of them still aren't even released.

I don't intend to use it for gaming, actually, rather heavy video editing, in which it probably will be under full load the entire time.

I'd like something that would last at least 5 years. I'm completely new to laptops however, I don't know what brands to trust. ASUS apparently should be avoided, Lenovo seems high end and MSI seem solid budget friendly, not sure about DELL or HP etc.

I wouldn't recommend an aftermarket thermal paste on a new laptop. The risk of damaging the laptop during assembly/disassembly is too great compared to the benefits, IMO. A laptop cooling pad with USB powered fans under the laptop is a much safer alternative.
I'd be quite careful. I'd use the Kryonaut since it's the best paste you can get, it's cheaper than buying a laptop cooling pad.
 

boju

Polypheme
Ambassador
For your intended use case and if didn't need portability, i would avoid laptop and go a desktop. Money spent on a decent laptop can get a lot more performance in a desktop and be more productive. Not only for cooling wise but laptop components are never as fast as they could be because of thermal constraints and also limited in upgrades / additionals (more drives/SSDs etc) as you'd be aware.
 
Reactions: Phaaze88
If you need portability, buy a laptop.

Otherwise a desktop will be better.

Laptops have limited upgradeability.
Gaming laptops run hot due to the necessarily small cpu cooling system.
A desktop can use a larger/more immersive monitor.
If a desktop part fails, it is easier to replace parts.
 

thetechnoobguy

Distinguished
Nov 16, 2011
437
1
18,815
8
Yeah, I could make a compact Velka PC that has literally twice the power if not more for the same amount of money, although I don't need anything too powerful, and I need portability.

I'm satisfied with the performance of my current PC and it's quite old. It's an i7 3770k / R9 290 / 8GB DDR3 / 24" 1080p and it does the job, it's reliable. For video editing it works fine without lag, although exporting takes awhile. Multitasking is easy. The guy that did the Lenovo laptop review went in depth and it seems for that particular laptop, the 4800H is able to run most cores @ 4.1 in boost, max temps reaching 90, averaging mid 85 while exporting. This is concerning for long term durability but it seems it doesn't have throttling issues at least for Adobe Premier. This is also faster than my current processor, and the 1650 Ti can take advantage of hardware acceleration. It will also have 16GB of DDR4. Overall I think it will be faster than my current PC, although it isn't cheap.

One thing I'm worried about is how laptops handle external monitors. I'd like to hook it up to a 2k 24 or 27" display, how much would the GPU be strained? Should I just get a 24" 1080p monitor instead? My R9 290 is only like 20% more powerful than a (mobile) 1650 Ti, however that's on paper. In terms of real world performance I'm not sure. I'd be using it during the editing process.

The only thing I would be upset with is if I got a laptop and spent all that money, and it's actually slower than my PC.
 

boju

Polypheme
Ambassador
Im not into video editing scene so it's just a guess that you might have a choice in which resolution to edit? Besides editing, the resolution itself wouldn't be a drain, it's more or less what is done with it.

Regarding an external monitor and cable, if Hdmi doesn't give you high refresh rate (some cases it doesn't), you might have to use USBc to Displayport. The Lenovo Legion 5 has the ports but just check it can also be used for video. Often it does nowadays using Displayport alt mode - plug and play.
 
Last edited:
If you need an external monitor, you will lose some portability.
Best to find a laptop with the screen you want.
They vary considerably in brightness.
If, by portability, you mean luggable, then look for a laptop with a larger 17" display.

One way to compare processor capability is to look up the passmark performance ratings. There will be two numbers. the total rating applies when all threads are 100% utilized.
That may not be possible, depending on how well threaded your apps are.
The second number is the single thread performance rating.
That is probably what you will appreciate the most in everyday usage.

Do you need a laptop with greater than 1080P resolution?
A screen with higher brightness and an ips panel will look the best to you.
Do you need one with a discrete graphics card for gaming?

To get an idea of what is possible, visit the lenovo web site and look for those units which can be customized.
 

thetechnoobguy

Distinguished
Nov 16, 2011
437
1
18,815
8
Im not into video editing scene so it's just a guess that you might have a choice in which resolution to edit?
Looking on newegg it says the Legion 5 has "1 x USB 3.1 Type-C Gen 1 (with the function of DisplayPort 1.2)" and "1 x HDMI 2.0," I think HDMI 2.0 works with monitors does it not?

In Adobe Premier you can edit/render videos in whatever resolution you plan to export it in. So if you want to make a 1080p video everything that you're working on would be 1080p quality or scaled to work in that quality. Higher quality videos especially 4k are supposedly very taxing on a system, and exporting takes a long time. The appeal of a 2k monitor is I have more screen real estate to see more on my screen, that's it. I.e. if someone is producing music, a 2k or 4k display is very helpful because you can display more knobs and things on your screen. So the drain on the CPU should be very similar between a 1080p monitor and 2k monitor because I'm processing almost the same information, it's just the 2k monitor is showing me much more of the program so it should be more demanding on the GPU should it not?

I've been digging to try and find out how the laptop would handle an external monitor and I found this review of the ASUS Zephyrus G14 AMD, which is about $500 more than the Lenovo, has an 4900HS which is about 13%~ faster than the 4800H, and an RTX 2060 Max-Q, which is like 70%~ faster than the GTX 1650 Ti. Scroll to "Gaming on an external monitor"
When using an external monitor and closing the lid there is "limited CPU power allocation and full-power GPU" yet it is still able to produce impressive clock speeds: https://www.ultrabookreview.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/05/perf-temps-gaming-external-farcry5-turbo-1080p-onair.png

Obviously this is a different laptop but it seems to me that laptops can handle monitors fine and in fact it seems to reduce temperatures, and on some models, with the lid closed it reduces CPU power consumption as well, though increasing GPU demand. Of course, this is for playing demanding games, which I wont be doing. I will be editing videos, which should be less demanding, I would think. If there is a regular here that does use Adobe maybe you can tag them in the thread.

If you need an external monitor, you will lose some portability.
Best to find a laptop with the screen you want.
They vary considerably in brightness.
If, by portability, you mean luggable, then look for a laptop with a larger 17" display.

One way to compare processor capability is to look up the passmark performance ratings. There will be two numbers. the total rating applies when all threads are 100% utilized.
That may not be possible, depending on how well threaded your apps are.
The second number is the single thread performance rating.
That is probably what you will appreciate the most in everyday usage.

Do you need a laptop with greater than 1080P resolution?
A screen with higher brightness and an ips panel will look the best to you.
Do you need one with a discrete graphics card for gaming?

To get an idea of what is possible, visit the lenovo web site and look for those units which can be customized.
I mean compact + portable. I'm downsizing and need to maximize my space+performance. I could make a Velka PC and then get a cheap ultrabook but I'd rather just get a solid laptop and it would save space. The thing is I was thinking about a 17" screen but I'd rather get a smaller 15.6" or 14" making it more portable when I need it for basic tasks, then when I'm home I can connect it to an external 24" or 27" monitor to use for editing. So I don't even care too much about the display on the laptop itself, a 60hz 250 or 300nits display would be fine for me. Then I could connect it to a 2k 120hz 350cd/m2 IPS panel for movies or editing.

Most of the new AMD laptops interestingly have poor displays. The cheapest one the MSI Bravo 15 has a 120hz 240 nits 45% NTSC. The Lenovo 15.6" has a 60hz or 144hz 300nits 100% sRGB.

The 4800H has a "Avg CPU Mark 19017" and Single Thread Rating of 2, not sure if this is good. Compared to 3770k only 6360 Avg CPU Mark, Single Thread Rating of 2061.
 

ASK THE COMMUNITY

TRENDING THREADS