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Laptop or Desktop for LAN gaming?


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So, I'm thinking of doing some of the game-con's and large LAN parties. My question is, my current system is a PITA to load and take along. So, I'm looking at 2 options...

1) Build a newer small form factor system....

2) Buy a good gaming laptop(recommendations here would be good, otherwise, I"m set on Alienware).

Now, keep in mind this isn't going to be my primary system. However, I have been thinking the laptop would be nice for when I just want to disappear for a few hours. I do have another laptop already for general use(low end Compaq).

So, what is the general idea? I'll be honest, I'm leaning towards the laptop, since a mouse and keyboard can be added and taken with. But, I have no idea how well the gaming laptops actually run, and what kind of issues they would have at a LAN party.

Thanks guys for any info!

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hmm im against both ideas sorry, if u wanna game, then its best to carry ur rig in, the issue is, Small form factor, is gonna be a shit PC, due to heat, and other requirments for small form.

The issue i have with the laptop is that, laptops are only now becoming customisable. and money plays a huge factor, a laptop costing around 6k$ wont even touch my PC that was built for 4k$. As well as mentioned, it is rather hard to upgrade a laptop, so pretty much with in a yr when Games start using Physic cards, ur stuffed.

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I'd say buy a MicroATX machine with a similarly small case, and srew a handle on top for easy transportation.

You'll probably have to fortify the area around the handle a bit, and you'll want to get an aluminium (yes, I european) case to keep the weight down.

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if money isn't an issue, then I'd say go with the laptop.  show up at the LAN party sportin' some high class bling bling.  I've heard mixed reviews about alienware, but don't have the money to test them out.  I've heard really good things about ASUS laptops, but again, I've never experienced one. 

however I'm just starting to play games with my HP laptop (DV6110ca), but I can't really say how great it is, as I'm running ubuntu linux on it and playing games through wine.  so far half-life 2, and goldeneye source work with scaled back video, on a lower resolution.  I did however natively install doom3 on a previous release of ubuntu and it worked surprisingly well.  One of these day's I'll run a dual-boot with it and see how well it holds up.  The kicker is portability, I can play online at work during slow night shifts...

...having said this, it doesn't nearly compare to my desktop system that was half the price and can do twice the performance. 

if I were to buy a new gaming system, portable or not, I'd stick to a lower priced desktop system that I carefully chose parts for. 

and like you stated, this won't be the primary system, so I don't see it being worth the money for a pimped out laptop.  I like the microATX idea..

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I agree with most of what's been said already. A laptop if budget isn't a concern, mATX desktop if you're after bang for buck.

I know of a few guys that run a high end card in their full sized desktop, use onboard/cheap video on their mATX lan box when it's at home, then swap the high end card in when they go to lans.

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Budget isn't a concern at all. I'll dump $4000 for something that works well, even if it isn't a primary system. But I am planning on doing a lot more LAN gaming out of town, and I just keep thinking that the laptop would be so much easier, and I could play it on the trips(get my airport frag on baby!). But, if the gaming laptops offered are a pile, then I would be wasting my money, and will just build an mATX system and load some lighter games on my daily laptop.

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unfortunatley, no one has yet changed the fact that with laptops you balance portability and performance. ie: if you go for one, you lose the other.

also ITX boards dont offer much in the way of pervformance if you like gaming. unless you get the i945GTt-VFA mobo from aopen that can use core2duo laptop chips and has pci express.

essentially, you cant get portability without sacraficing performance and / or price.

so heres my suggestion, its tried and true:

you take a large suitcase or attache.

get yourself a nice ATX or microATX mobo with all the other stuff you need.

slap it in the bottom half of the attache, with PSU, graphix, hard drive, cddrive, etc. (remember to add cooling)

cover with plexy, leave room.

put lcd monitor in top half of attache.

cover with plexi if desired, or not if not desired.

make sure case has sturdy latches.

and you should essentuall have a full connected pc in a suicase, just open, plug keyboard & mouse in, plug in power cord, plug in ethernet cable (or you coulda put wireless inside if you desired) and get your micro on.

essentially youve just built a really large laptop, except at 3/4s to 1/2 the price, and 2 to 3 times the performance.

also its upgradeable.

all the benefits of a desktop with portability.

all it requires is modding skillz.

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