I've lowered my next laptop spec reqs

To a total price under $1000. But I want a 6xxx AMD chip, 16 GB RAM, 1 TB SSD, at least a 16" display with at least 1080x1920 res, 300 nits, and 120 Mhz refresh rate. This one is looking pretty much ideal right now:

https://www.lenovo.com/us/en/p/laptops/ideapad/ideapad-500/i…

$940 USD
AMD Ryzen™ 5 6600HS Processor (3.30 GHz up to 4.50 GHz)
NVIDIA® GeForce® RTX™ 3050 4GB GDDR6
16 GB LPDDR5-6400MHz (Soldered)
1 TB SSD M.2 2280 PCIe Gen4 TLC
16" WQXGA (2560 x 1600), IPS, Anti–Glare, Non-Touch, 100%sRGB, 350 nits, 120Hz, Narrow Bezel, Low Blue Light
FHD & IR Hybrid Camera, with 2 Mic

I don’t need a killer gaming graphics card since I don’t game, and I don’t need a 6800 either since I’m really not a “power user”. Nevertheless, it would be a HUGE upgrade from my 6 year old Dell Inspiron 15 7000 with a 2 core i5.

My one qualm is the soldered-on RAM, but I’m extremely unlikely to need more before the entire machine needs to be upgraded again.

What do you think? Too little for the price?

My one qualm is the soldered-on RAM, but I’m extremely unlikely to need more before the entire machine needs to be upgraded again.

What do you think? Too little for the price?

The soldered RAM is… SOOOO… annoying. Nearly all models except gaming systems and mobile workstations have adopted it. RAM limits have almost always been the driver for machine replacement for me…

I wouldn’t choose something that large or heavy, myself. Too BIG for the price :slight_smile: but I think in this market you won’t get an Ryzen 6000 series CPU much cheaper. I’d favor a 14" myself. ASUS had one that was nice… https://www.asus.com/Laptops/For-Home/Zenbook/Zenbook-S-13-O… I was looking but right now I’m holding off, some personal finance hiccups going on. I mostly find I can do my work stuff on just about anything that can handle a Chrome session with 60 tabs open :slight_smile: I can even squeak by on a Chromebook for my day job (although Zoom on ChromeOS absolutely sucks, people resort to running either the Android app with a little hacking, or the Linux Zoom app in a VM). My personal uses have largely died down at this point.

The soldered RAM is… SOOOO… annoying. Nearly all models except gaming systems and mobile workstations have adopted it.

My experience is limited (only 4 recent laptops) - but haven’t really run into that. I was looking at a chromebook that did that (didn’t purchase it though). That was a unit where they were really trying to keep it as cheap as possible I think.

The soldered RAM is… SOOOO… annoying.

How much does soldered RAM improve efficiency by reducing energy per bit of the interface?

I guess the trend is toward eventual integrated HBM on the package in mobile PC processors. With the sufficient capacity of today’s HBM stacks, it is just a matter of cost, I would think.

That ASUS is indeed pretty nice. B&H Photo has it for $1300, which is very reasonable, but it’s “coming soon”. The 13" display is just too small for me though.

How much does soldered RAM improve efficiency by reducing energy per bit of the interface?

No idea, but both the Lenovo I was considering and the ASUS that caromero1965 posted a link to use LPDDR5-6400MHz RAM. The “L” means Low power, but I notice that the 6400Mhz speed is faster than the DDR5-4800MHz RAM typically offered on higher speced 6xxx laptops with non-soldered RAM. Why is there a speed difference?

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How much does soldered RAM improve efficiency by reducing energy per bit of the interface?
I always figured it was mostly cost and weight, but you are right that there will also be a small improvement in battery life. For all three parameters it is going to be a small improvement.
Alan

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I always figured it was mostly cost and weight, but you are right that there will also be a small improvement in battery life.

I also figure it’s got something to do with market segmentation and planned obsolescence. Via memory upgrades, sometimes upgrades that go beyond what the manual says will be supported, I’ve been able to squeeze extra life out of a system-- for example, putting 16GB of RAM into a laptop advertised as supporting only 8GB, and finding it still worked. My current laptop is rated for 16GB but I’ve got 32GB in it, with a dual core 6th generation i7. It’s no speed demon when my kid wants to play games but it supports most things I’d want to do with it quite well.

The technical advantage of soldering chips in is to reduce the signal reflections at the join. There will still be some reflections from a soldered join, but much less than from a socketed one. In desktop systems, especially with two DIMM slots per channel, it is not only possible but common for the second socket to contain termination that cancels some or all of the reflection from the first DIMM slot. Obviously doing this requires two DIMMs per channel.

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