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ES Designs
09-27-2011, 03:19 PM
I'm new to ROG notebooks, but I'm looking for a desktop replacement and over the years I've come to trust ASUS. The G series seems like the perfect desktop replacement for me that could then be taken on the road when traveling. Here are the two models I'm looking at. The only difference that I notice is the GPU. 2gb gtx 560m or 1.5gb gtx 460m.

http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/item-details.asp?EdpNo=637425&CatId=4938

http://www.tigerdirect.com/applications/SearchTools/item-details.asp?EdpNo=576146&CatId=4938

I prefer the 15" over the 17" for the times when I will want to travel with it. The rest of the time it will be plugged into my existing dual monitor set up in my office. I value your input. Thanks guys.

Chastity@ASUS
09-27-2011, 04:38 PM
the G53SW-XT1 would be the better choice, with the nice 1.5GB config 460M. The HDD they include is slow, so I would also get a Momentus XT 500GB, or a SDD to set as your boot drive.

ES Designs
09-27-2011, 04:58 PM
Thanks for the info, that's the direction I was headed, plus it costs slightly less! What capacity SSD is recommended for a boot drive. I'm not a gamer, I'm a graphic designer so I'm guessing it would make the most sense to also run Adobe CS5 from the SSD as well, and use the HDD for media storage? Ideally, I'd like to get a SSD for my boot drive and the 500gb Momentus XT for the secondary drive. How difficult is it to copy the factory HDD to the SSD boot drive?

ES Designs
09-27-2011, 06:01 PM
I'd also like to throw this one into the mix. Downside is no Blu Ray. Is it possible to upgrade the optical drive, and if so about how much $ are we talking? Thanks again for any info.

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16834230027

grungeboy2
09-27-2011, 06:47 PM
the g53sw-xt1 from tigerdirect is a better deal than the one from newegg.

2GB Ram, 140GB extra HDD space, and the blu-ray player.

the newegg version could have a blu-ray drive for about 80 extra, but then you have to swap it. considering the extras included in the tigerdirect version and the fact that it's about 150-200 more, i'd spend the extra and get a little bit nicer one.

just noticed that the tigerdirect is a XT1 and the newegg is a XN1. i'd get the XT1.

Chastity@ASUS
09-27-2011, 07:03 PM
I would get at least a 120GB SSD, and remember to leave it at least 20% free space, so that it can perform TRIM effectively. I also agree on the XT1.

ES Designs
09-27-2011, 08:48 PM
The reason I was considering the Newegg XN1 is the faster HDD (7200 rpm). Honestly I'll probably never use the additional 140gb, that the slower 640gb drive would offer. Also the price, just $792.99 after rebate, about $270 cheaper than TD. I can add more RAM relatively cheap at anytime. Not sure I'd want to be bothered by the Blu-Ray drive install though, any idea how involved that is? I figured I could add more RAM, Blu-Ray Drive and 120gb SSD to the XN1 and spend less than $100 more than either of the XT1 notebooks from TD. Maybe there is something I'm missing. Any thoughts? Just trying to make the best decision, I appreciate your input.

Chastity@ASUS
09-27-2011, 09:38 PM
Sounds like a plan. As for the ODD, you open the bottom, and unscrew the once screw holding it in place. Then, use your screwdriver to gently push it out. Swap the faceplate onto your new drive and install it.

ES Designs
09-27-2011, 11:59 PM
Ok, so I think this is what I'm going to go with.

ASUS G Series G53SW-XN1 (http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16834230027) 892.99 - 100.00 MIR = $792.99
G.SKILL 8GB (2 x 4GB) (http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820231342) $44.99
Corsair Force Series GT 120GB SATA III (http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820233191) 219.99 - 30.00 MIR = $189.99

So after rebates that's $1027.97
I will wait a little for the blu-ray drive, don't have one on my current desktop so not a big deal for now. If any one has better suggestions for RAM or SDD I'm open.

grungeboy2
09-28-2011, 12:38 AM
Ok, so I think this is what I'm going to go with.

ASUS G Series G53SW-XN1 (http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16834230027) 892.99 - 100.00 MIR = $792.99
G.SKILL 8GB (2 x 4GB) (http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820231342) $44.99
Corsair Force Series GT 120GB SATA III (http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820233191) 219.99 - 30.00 MIR = $189.99

So after rebates that's $1027.97
I will wait a little for the blu-ray drive, don't have one on my current desktop so not a big deal for now. If any one has better suggestions for RAM or SDD I'm open.

honestly, i'd just get everything together, have it under warranty, and have the peace of mind of not having to open the notebook up and possibly damage something.

if you're comfortable taking apart or working on laptops, go for it.

ES Designs
09-28-2011, 01:35 AM
honestly, i'd just get everything together, have it under warranty, and have the peace of mind of not having to open the notebook up and possibly damage something.

if you're comfortable taking apart or working on laptops, go for it.

I would do that if I could find one configured like this for a similar price. What can you do under warranty and what can you definitely not do?

Kipper
09-28-2011, 05:58 AM
Only thing I would add is on the SSD; for now do not get any of the SATA III drives that are using the SandForce 2000 series controllers. Doesn't really matter from which manufacturer but for now avoid those with this latest controller.

You will never notice the real world speed difference between SATA II or III with an SSD so go for one that has the earlier and more stable sandforce controller on it.

My recommendation is to go with a Crucial M4 or one of the Intel drives for the most reliability.

Ayemageyene
09-28-2011, 09:18 AM
I would get at least a 120GB SSD, and remember to leave it at least 20% free space, so that it can perform TRIM effectively. I also agree on the XT1.

Is there a sticky about SSD, TRIM, and the suggested free space? ;D I'm kind of new to the SSD's and the process of garbage data.

ES Designs
09-28-2011, 10:55 AM
Only thing I would add is on the SSD; for now do not get any of the SATA III drives that are using the SandForce 2000 series controllers. Doesn't really matter from which manufacturer but for now avoid those with this latest controller.

You will never notice the real world speed difference between SATA II or III with an SSD so go for one that has the earlier and more stable sandforce controller on it.

My recommendation is to go with a Crucial M4 or one of the Intel drives for the most reliability.

What do you think about these drives? Is it worth it to spend a little extra to get the M4 that comes with the transfer kit?
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820167050
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820148448

grungeboy2
09-28-2011, 12:11 PM
the reason i bring up the warranty is simple. if you buy ram, and six months down the road that goes out, it's not covered.

also most companies tend to frown on you opening up the laptop. i don't think that'll be the case here. to upgrade the ram you might have to get at the other side of the board, by removing the keyboard.

ES Designs
09-28-2011, 02:00 PM
the reason i bring up the warranty is simple. if you buy ram, and six months down the road that goes out, it's not covered.

also most companies tend to frown on you opening up the laptop. i don't think that'll be the case here. to upgrade the ram you might have to get at the other side of the board, by removing the keyboard.

I appreciate the heads up, and your point of view...but I think I'm up for the challenge. I rarely leave my PCs as they come from the factory, so really nothing new there, just the challenge of working with a notebook configuration instead of desktop, but this one seems fairly friendly, and there are a lot of knowledgeable people on this forum in case I run into a problem.

ES Designs
09-28-2011, 02:26 PM
Before I order the G53SW-XN1 from newegg I wanted to double check and make sure that this notebook can run dual monitors right out of the box. I will be using this to replace my desktop pc, and need a notebook that can run my current dual monitor setup. I'm pretty certain that this notebook with the GTX 460M GPU should be able to do this with no problems. Just looking for some concrete confirmation. Thanks guys!

Kipper
09-28-2011, 03:02 PM
What do you think about these drives? Is it worth it to spend a little extra to get the M4 that comes with the transfer kit?
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820167050
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16820148448


Personally I would not bother with the transfer kit. There are several free and very good Imaging programs.

Here is the best deal at the moment on the Crucial M4, 128 SSD (http://www.amazon.com/Crucial-2-5-Inch-Solid-State-CT128M4SSD2/dp/B004W2JKZI/ref=br_lf_m_1000715511_1_4_img?ie=UTF8&m=ATVPDKIKX0DER&s=electronics&pf_rd_p=1317681422&pf_rd_s=center-2&pf_rd_t=1401&pf_rd_i=1000715511&pf_rd_m=ATVPDKIKX0DER&pf_rd_r=0JJ1413798GCY0RDHFB6):

ES Designs
09-28-2011, 03:47 PM
Personally I would not bother with the transfer kit. There are several free and very good Imaging programs.

Here is the best deal at the moment on the Crucial M4, 128 SSD (http://www.amazon.com/Crucial-2-5-Inch-Solid-State-CT128M4SSD2/dp/B004W2JKZI/ref=br_lf_m_1000715511_1_4_img?ie=UTF8&m=ATVPDKIKX0DER&s=electronics&pf_rd_p=1317681422&pf_rd_s=center-2&pf_rd_t=1401&pf_rd_i=1000715511&pf_rd_m=ATVPDKIKX0DER&pf_rd_r=0JJ1413798GCY0RDHFB6):

Thanks for the link Kipper. What imaging program do you recommend to clone the drive? I waited too long for the Newegg deal, it's sold out. So I think I'll go with the G53SW-XT1 from TigerDirect and then add the Crucial M4 128gb SSD.

grungeboy2
09-28-2011, 07:09 PM
g-series are very tech friendly. the g51 was a breeze to work on, due to the one panel, access everything philosophy.

have fun, be careful, and ask if you're unsure. there's tons of solid disassemble videos out there. check those out.

another cool one to check is the guy who added led lights to his cooling system (similar to xotic's afterburner lights). that's something i might do when i get mine.

Kipper
09-28-2011, 09:03 PM
Thanks for the link Kipper. What imaging program do you recommend to clone the drive? I waited too long for the Newegg deal, it's sold out. So I think I'll go with the G53SW-XT1 from TigerDirect and then add the Crucial M4 128gb SSD.

I use Paragon Hard Drive Manager suite 2011 but it will cost you around 40.00; It has a great program to migrate from HHD to SSD and ensure proper alignment to the SSD.

I have used ToDo Backup's free edition for migration to SSD and it did a good job so there are two choices, free and paid. Some folks will swear by Acronis, and many other image programs but it will always boil down to what works best for you.

Paragon (http://www.paragon-software.com/home/hdm-personal/)

ToDo Backup (http://www.todo-backup.com/products/home/free-backup-software.htm)

ES Designs
09-29-2011, 01:54 PM
I kept an eye out on newegg and the G53SW-XN1 was available for purchase again early this morning. So I made sure I didn't miss it again (rebate expires on the 30th!). I should have it Saturday or next Monday. I ordered the additional 8gb RAM with it.

Does the G53SW-XN1 come with the hard drive caddy and everything needed to install a second hard drive? Seeing as I'll be getting the SSD right away, would it make more sense to do a fresh install of Windows 7 or clone/migrate from the factory installed HDD? Pros/Cons???

Can anyone point me to good "How To" guides for the RAM install and for SSD boot drive install? I would really appreciate it. Thanks!

ES Designs
10-04-2011, 05:07 PM
I use Paragon Hard Drive Manager suite 2011 but it will cost you around 40.00; It has a great program to migrate from HHD to SSD and ensure proper alignment to the SSD.

I have used ToDo Backup's free edition for migration to SSD and it did a good job so there are two choices, free and paid. Some folks will swear by Acronis, and many other image programs but it will always boil down to what works best for you.

Paragon (http://www.paragon-software.com/home/hdm-personal/)

ToDo Backup (http://www.todo-backup.com/products/home/free-backup-software.htm)

Will ToDo be able to wipe the data and format the secondary hdd (previously the primary factory installed hdd) once I have the OS up and running on my SSD? I think I might just install windows onto the SSD using the repair disk and backup image DVDs I created right after I got my G53 into windows, rather than cloning/migrating from HDD to SSD. So since I'm new to this, I just want to know how to clean the OS and everything off the HDD and format it to be used as my data drive. Any help is much appreciated.

Kipper
10-04-2011, 08:09 PM
Will ToDo be able to wipe the data and format the secondary hdd (previously the primary factory installed hdd) once I have the OS up and running on my SSD? I think I might just install windows onto the SSD using the repair disk and backup image DVDs I created right after I got my G53 into windows, rather than cloning/migrating from HDD to SSD. So since I'm new to this, I just want to know how to clean the OS and everything off the HDD and format it to be used as my data drive. Any help is much appreciated.

I prep my SSDs for fresh installs by using Parted Magic (http://digitalincursion.net/parted-magic/). This software has the tools to handle most everything related to hard drives.