One thing you may want to check out are the specs on the hard drive provided with your new laptop, especially if you are planning on doing multi-track recording/looping. Up until the last few months, laptops typically shipped with 3200 RPM drives (not great), but now many have 5400 RPM drives (better). So I would check the detailed specs on your new laptop to make sure you are getting a good hard drive. Also, most of the new laptops have Firewire, but you might also look for USB 2.0 for flexibility. I just noticed the new Dell laptops now have USB 2.0, which is great.