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need help finding budget laptop for wife and my 3d animation

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May 11, 2008 7:05:10 PM

My wife has been really wanting a laptop since I monopolize the computer doing 3D animation work for school. I thought it would be nice if I could also use the laptop for some animation if we are on the road or bring it to work. The laptop will mainly be for my wife, who would use it for iTunes, internet surfing, e-mail, and maybe playing bejeweled. I know the specs of these 2 laptops I am looking at would be fine for her but want to know if they will be at least "acceptable" for doing some 3D work. I will be using 3DS Max for some modeling and animation keyframing and Adobe Photoshop for some texturing. I am not going to render anything on the laptop. Would these specs be ok for these uses or am I asking for trouble? Are there any other suggestions on any laptops that would better suit my needs at about the $700 price range?

Laptops I am looking at:

HP 6180us
2 ghz AMD Turion X2
3GB RAM
Nvidia Geforce Go 7150 graphics

Gateway M-1625
2ghz AMD Turion X2
2GB RAM (I would upgrade to 3gb)
ATI X1270 graphics

More about : finding budget laptop wife animation

a b D Laptop
May 11, 2008 8:47:59 PM

Well, for $700 your options are limited, but niether of those chipsets will do you any good with 3d anything. They will probably barely run the aero glass interface for vista. I can't find anything better at those price points, but you'll be really dissapointed/frustrated if you buy a pc that low. I'd get some more cash. a $900 or so machine will serve you well.
May 11, 2008 9:30:06 PM

thanks for the feedback. I went onto HP.com and was able to configure a dv6700t laptop with almost the same specs but added a 256mb Nvidia Geforce 8400M GS dedicated graphics card for about $760. So would this graphics upgrade make it so it is at least usable for working some 3D animation or is this still not going to cut it? I don't know how this would compare but currently I am used to running my desktop pc which is a P4 3ghz, 2gb ram, nvidia 6600gt agp graphics.
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a b D Laptop
May 11, 2008 9:46:49 PM

Well, i don't know how you got away with modeling on a 6600, but alright. If that's all you need, the 8400 will do okay. Not great, but okay. You will find it slower than your desktop, but still. And FYI, photoshop doesn't require any powerful GPU, image editing is CPU power only. Your 6600gt is a bit faster than the Go6600m, the mobile version of the card for the PCI-e bus. The Go6600m is much faster than the 8400m gs. If you can afford it, I'd head for an 8600 of some type. If not, you'll be able to deal with the 8400.
May 11, 2008 10:51:36 PM

OK thanks. Its just one of those things where this will mostly be my wife's laptop so I don't want to spend too much. But if we have to go out to her parent's house or something I could bring the laptop and do some work while I am there. This won't be my primary pc, but if I'm gonna buy a laptop, I am willing to spend a little more to get something that I can use once in a while for 3D. But I'm not going to go overboard because I primarily work on my desktop.

I've actually gotten by just fine with the 6600 for 3D work. I am fully aware by today's standards anything PCI-E probably blows my graphics out of the water, but I'm stuck in the AGP world until I buy a new desktop. So if the speed of working on this laptop is anything around my 6 yr old desktop speed I'll be satisfied.
a b D Laptop
May 11, 2008 11:04:14 PM

Then you shall be, and the dual CPU will delight you.
!