$700 to $800 max.
Not a gamer laptop and a reasonable amount of money - it's a good start.
Consider portability and build quality of the laptop. Build quality especially isn't something that really gets conveyed. A benchmark is easy to communicate because it's numerical, but after all the crap I've bought and gone through, If it feels or looks cheap, I just don't want it. Given your budget, you can definitely get something that is portable and feels good taking it out to use.
Here's a decent list of macbook air alternatives - http://www.crunchgear.com/2010/10/26/th ... cbook-air/
It's not what you're asking for, but they're generally above average build, very portable, and have decent specs, if not a decent GPU.
You can also add acer timeline/timelinex laptops, toshiba's r705 (upper end of your budget, but beautiful led backlit screen, and very well built).
Whatever you choose, make sure you're well acquainted with it through reviews. Laptops are personal. A good laptop for one person would suck for another - e.g. I use a fujitsu u820. I bet most here would hate it. Some hate simple things like keyboard layout, and I know I can't stand glossy screens...