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Advice on notebook for 3D modelling/design/rendering work

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  • Laptops
  • Notebooks
Last response: in Laptop Tech Support
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April 20, 2014 7:55:26 AM

Hello everyone :)  I'm looking for a laptop for architecture school on a budget, but I'll need to meet some specifications. Thanks in advance!

1. What is your budget?
Around USD$1600.

2. What is the size of the notebook that you are considering?
Preferably 15", could consider 14".

3. What screen resolution do you want?
A decent display like HD for design work will satisfy me.

4. Do you need a portable or desktop replacement laptop?
As portable as possible!

5. How much battery life do you need?
Anything goes. At least 5 hours on high performance.

6. Do you want to play games with your laptop? If so then please list the games that you want to with the settings that you want for these games. (Low,Medium or High)?
I don't play any demanding games, this is mainly for school work.

7. What other tasks do you want to do with your laptop? (Photo/Video editing, Etc.)
Photoshop, illustrator, Autocad, Rhino, etc, rendering software in the future.

8. How much storage (Hard Drive capacity) do you need?
Minimally 500GB, good if I have 1TB for more space to partition and install a hackintosh.

9. If you are considering specific sites to buy from, please post their links.
I'm open to buying online or in-person. Though for the online part, I've seen sites sell exclusively for US region, and also there might be issues with warranty such as SquareTrade on Amazon.

10. How long do you want to keep your laptop?
Hopefully it'll last for 5 years.

11. What kind of Optical drive do you need? DVD ROM/Writer,Bluray ROM/Writer,Etc ?
With or without a DVD Rom/writer is fine.

12. Please tell us about the brands that you prefer to buy from them and the brands that you don't like and explain the reasons.
I love Apple for its sleek design coupled with portability and performance, less its hefty price tag (same for Razorblade, to a lesser extent the MSI G Series GS60 Ghost Pro-052. Gaming laptops suit my needs well heh).
I've also considered the Dell XPS15 though its quite pricey, and I've read some pretty unpleasant reviews about the machine acting cranky.

13. What country do you live in?
Singapore (Asia-Pacific region).

14. Please tell us any additional information if needed.
Graphics card at least NVIDIA GT720M 1GB.
Processor at least Intel i5 2.4GHz.
Memory at least 8GB, good to have upgrade option to 16GB.
I'm a big fan of sleek, thin designs, but I'll accept anything that suits my needs and budget. fat(thick) laptops put me off.

Additionally... you should also consider what support options are available in your area. If say you buy something abroad, will you be able to have it fixed near where you live? Does the warranty apply? How quickly do local accredited technicians fix laptops?
I'll look at warranty issues one step at a time, I'm hoping to find a suitable laptop model first before making further plans.

Thank you!

More about : advice notebook modelling design rendering work

Best solution

a b D Laptop
April 20, 2014 8:16:49 AM

Suggest you steer away from considering the GT720M as this is for Gaming / other performance then for your request. You need to focus on Workstation Laptops, these have Quadro or Fire GPUs, and normally Xeon or i7s to handle the demands of the applications. Further as a laptop your DOUBLE the cost normal for a Desktop because your trying to squeeze it all into a small, highly susceptible to heat, needs to be lightweight environment. And there be NO WAY to get "5 Hours" of battery life on "High Performance".

Honestly it sounds more like you spotted a high end Mac Workstation Laptop, and trying to find the PC 'cheap' equivalent, which isn't' possible there will be differences and you may be put off by them (some people are), so be warned.

Simple Google https://www.google.com/search?q=workstation+laptop&rlz=...

provides right off these:
http://shop.lenovo.com/us/en/laptops/thinkpad/w-series/...
http://www.dell.com/us/business/p/precision-laptops
and even a review for yoru consideration and some details to help you decide as well
http://www.notebookcheck.net/Top-10-Workstation-Laptops...
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April 20, 2014 4:34:12 PM

Tom Tancredi said:
Suggest you steer away from considering the GT720M as this is for Gaming / other performance then for your request. You need to focus on Workstation Laptops, these have Quadro or Fire GPUs, and normally Xeon or i7s to handle the demands of the applications. Further as a laptop your DOUBLE the cost normal for a Desktop because your trying to squeeze it all into a small, highly susceptible to heat, needs to be lightweight environment. And there be NO WAY to get "5 Hours" of battery life on "High Performance".

Honestly it sounds more like you spotted a high end Mac Workstation Laptop, and trying to find the PC 'cheap' equivalent, which isn't' possible there will be differences and you may be put off by them (some people are), so be warned.

Simple Google https://www.google.com/search?q=workstation+laptop&rlz=...

provides right off these:
http://shop.lenovo.com/us/en/laptops/thinkpad/w-series/...
http://www.dell.com/us/business/p/precision-laptops
and even a review for yoru consideration and some details to help you decide as well
http://www.notebookcheck.net/Top-10-Workstation-Laptops...


Thanks for the heads up and suggestions Tom, I'll take a look at them in a bit. I'll give up on the other areas if I have to. I set out with these criteria because I need a laptop that is both portable to move around home and school, and performs well. The specs such as for the graphics card, minimally GT720M, is a recommendation by my school, which I think its best to take up for the school work I'd be doing next time. Sadly the top-end 15" MacBook Pro with Retina has what I'm looking for with a hefty price tag.
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