The best way to compare laptops is the windows 7 experience index score (also found in Vista).  It is part of the Microsoft Windows 7 operating system so it is available on new units and allows computers to be checked within the store.  For some reason it is hard to find these numbers posted so I went to Walmart and tested each of theirs. 

 After carefully writing down the stats I returned home only to discover I needed to verify a few things that didn’t make since.  The biggest problem was Walmart doesn’t clearly identify model numbers so I had to check boxes and look on bottom of some laptops.  So after 3 trips and a lot more research I created the chart above,  phew!

While this number does not include battery life, software, or other features like web cam or speaker quality it does let you know the ” hidden specs”.  I included some info such as price at the time and screen size in the chart but noticed substantial build and design differences between units that may effect choice. 

The 1st number on my graph is the Windows Experience Index Base Number it represents the lowest level component usually the gaming graphics number my 2nd number is the processor speed.

 I do recommend you verify for yourself  before making a decision solely on these numbers and relize that numbers vary between units even with same components due to hardware and software variations.  To get to the windows experience index score for yourself go to start>control panel>system and security>check the windows experience index.  This will give you a chart like the picture below.

What surprised me about the test is how well the two atom based units performed (the 10.1 inch hp and emachine) and I may just buy this one HP Mini 110-1115NR  .  Also, how well my older laptop did by comparison (Index picture shown above).

The HP DV6 1359 scored well with processor but low graphically so it would probably be better to get the HP Pavilion DV6-1360US (personal favorite for size/performance).  While not tested it uses the same graphics card as the dv7-3079 ( ATI Mobility Radeon HD 4650  instead of the 1359’s on board Intel Graphics Media Accelerator 4500MHD).  It would have scored well and Amazon has an excellant price.

I hope this Info helps you.  Please comment and let me know  your recommendations and their Windows index.