[lug] laptop video card Q

kevin at kevinkempterllc.com kevin at kevinkempterllc.com
Tue May 23 16:49:35 MDT 2006

I've run Linux on several ofthe Sony Vaio laptops and they seemed solid 
plus Linux ran great on them. The one device I could never get to work was the
built-in memory stick reader although an external USB stick reader 
worked fine.
AFAIK the Vaio's are ATI as well. I've also run Linux on a new Thinkpad Z60m
and it runs great, plus it stays fairly cool for such a powerhouse of a laptop
(I got the 2Gzchip, 2G of memory & STAT 100G drive. Unfortunately it's an ATI
video as well.

CurrentlyIm using a client's laptop for security reasons - an hp model "compaq
nc6230" and it's very disappointing; flimsy, runs slower than mollasses, etc.
I've not seen a laptop built this poorly in a long long time.

> D. Stimits wrote:
>> Ken MacFerrin wrote:
>>>> Seems like nVidia is the way to go for cards, but that limits 
>>>> available 
>>>> non-monster-really-laptop-laptops-not-desktop-huge-replacements :P
>>>> So...the video card genre seems good. Does anyone here have any 
>>>> comment on the laptops themselves...the Sony VAIO series or ASUS 
>>>> or Toshiba Tecras? I found some reviews that complain the Sonys 
>>>> are a bit flimsy, that the ASUS is well-built. Not sure about the 
>>>> other peripherals on each of these, as to whether they are linux 
>>>> compatible or not. Assuming I get a laptop, it'll probably have to 
>>>> last me the rest of my life.
>>>> D. Stimits, stimits AT comcast DOT net
>>> I've had only one experience with a Toshiba laptop and it was not 
>>> good.   I picked it up on a great sale but the thing would lockup 
>>> regularly and it turned out there was a known motherboard defect 
>>> that would have required me to send the thing in for six weeks of 
>>> repair.  I was lucky enough to convince the retailer to return it 
>>> instead of having to warranty.
>> Do you happen to recall what chipset it had, or which video card? I 
>> wonder if that particular defect is still out in the wild, if it 
>> still gets sold on the VAIO's.
> The model was a Toshiba Satellite A75-S209.  I'd have to look up the 
> exact chipset again.
>>> I can't speak for any small form factors Sony's, but the desktop 
>>> replacement Vaio PCG-K35 runs linux just fine and has been 
>>> reasonably sturdy.  My three complaints are mainly due to the 
>>> Pentium4 chip: 1) it's hot, 2) battery doesn't last more than a 
>>> couple hours, 3) it's hot  :)
>> I once had a borrowed HP laptop for work, but never owned one, nor 
>> used others. I had noticed it was too hot to place on the lap 
>> without some sort of insulator (which had to allow ventilation). I 
>> just wonder how many of the laptops/notebooks available and 
>> considered moderately high performance would actually be cool enough 
>> to sit on the lap without any special insulation. For all I know, 
>> that's the way it is with all laptops.
> I've only really had a problem with the P4 "desktop replacement" style
> laptops.  The Pentium M based units I've used run substantially 
> cooler and are okay on your lap as long as it's not already a hot 
> day..
>>> I've never had any complaints with the T series IBM Thinkpads.  
>>> Most of the configurations are well supported under linux (except 
>>> the winmodems) and they are well made.  I've also been very happy 
>>> with Pentium M chips as far as heat and battery life..
>> I was looking at these, and really like them. Sadly, the ones with 
>> nvidia video cards all seem to cost a huge premium over other brands 
>> and even over its own line of laptops with regular integrated video.
> Yeah, the Thinkpads have never been the cheapest line to begin with.
>>> If you want to check out hardware configurations that are tested 
>>> with linux you can check out a linux laptop vendor like 
>>> www.emperorlinux.com.
>> Wow...those are some nice systems. I can't afford something like 
>> that, but geez, talk about drool power from a high end laptop :P One 
>> thing I noticed is that they only seem to sell nvidia cards on the 
>> really high end, and use the Quadro cards for most of them. Some of 
>> the very good performance cards which cost much less (like the 7400 
>> Go) do not seem to be available on many of their laptops. Even so, 
>> I'm inspired by what I see in terms of brands and models that seem 
>> to work with linux.
>> I wonder if anyone has a suggestion on different places to buy 
>> Thinkpads with higher end video cards? I've seen many places that 
>> sell them with only integrated video, or with ATI, but the above 
>> emperorlinux.com is the only place I've seen which has nvidia video 
>> on Thinkpads.
> Sorry, even taking a quick look at the internal purchase program it 
> seems they're all either ATI or Intel graphics based..
> -Ken
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