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Customizing a laptop for architecture


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#1 mrgill

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Posted 18 June 2010 - 11:25 AM

I have to buy a laptop for an upcoming year of studio. I'm an architecture major. They sent us a list of minimum specs that the computer must meet. Of course, I want something that will grow with me and not lag behind, so I'd like to do more than the minimum. The only way I know how to do this is to customize one through a website like Dell. I'd like to spend between 2-3k and the closer to 2k the better of course. Money is always tight.

Here is what the school's minimums are:
Intel or equal 2 Duo 8700 (2.53GHz) Dual Core processor or faster
Windows 7
4 GB DDR3 - 1066 SDRAM 4 DIMMS
15" or bigger display, HD or WXGA Brightview wide screen
500GB 7200 RPM hard drive
1.0 GB Nvidia Quadpro FX graphics card... the faster the better
8x DVD +/-RW or better

Software we will be running:
Microsoft Office
Autocad
3Ds Max
Revit
Rhino 4.0
Adobe Creative Suite 4 Design Standard

I have hit a wall with understand the way processor speeds are listed and what the differences are. I also don't know enough to know what is comparable or better than the specifics listed here (ie. if Nvidia graphic cards are best). Descpritions on retail website are somewhat confusing.....
Intel® Core™ i7-820QM Quad Core Processor 1.73GHz (3.06GHz Turbo Mode, 8MB Cache)
Intel® Core™ i7-620M Dual Core 2.66GHz 4MB
... Why is Dual Core listed as 2.66 while a Quad core is 1.73? This may seem like a silly question, but why is that?

Okay. Hope this is enough information to get some advice... Thanks! :thumbsup:

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#2 Blaze413

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Posted 18 June 2010 - 05:36 PM

you can get a ton with 1-2k in a laptop....this one will fit all ure needs and then some :thumbsup:

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx...0-702-_-Product

it is also at the bottom of ure budget...so if u want more u can always get more....u dont always have to build ure own...some re-builts can save u money and have what u need

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx...N82E16834220695

this one is also one that would go above and beyond for u

hope this helped a little and gl...i hope more ppl that know more than me will also respond :huh:

#3 Baltboy

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Posted 19 June 2010 - 02:28 PM

What you want while technically being a laptop is called a mobile workstation. Do go for any old laptop or you will be sorely dissapointed. The Quadro series cards are specialist cards used just for rendering CAD and other 3D drawings and have way more power than the best consumer graphics solution. Be prepared to spend at least $2000.00 for a good machine. Specs you should be looking for are basically what they gave you.

Okay as for the processor thing here is the low down. they say Core 2 Duo 2.53 Ghz or faster. That is a proccessor with two cores each one running at 2.53 Ghz . The Quad cores are the same except there are four cores running at the designated clock speed. Not a lot of programs are written to take advantage of four cores yet but it is still a worth while investment. So what does all that mean? That the dual core at 2.53 will almost always spank the quad core at 1.73. Clock speed goes a long way. My advice is go for the best quad core machine you can afford.


Here is a link to Dell listing the products that would work for you.

http://www.dell.com/us/en/business/noteboo...s=04&~ck=mn
Get your facts first, then you can distort them as you please.
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#4 mrgill

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Posted 19 June 2010 - 11:23 PM

So it's still wiser to invest in a quad core even though you said a Duo would beat it?
How does 'turbo' factor into the comparsion between the two and their performance?

And I've done alot of looking around and havent' been able to locate many systems with a Nvidia Quadpro graphics card. Is that hard to find? Or just hard for me to find?
haha.

Thanks for all the tips!! :thumbsup:

#5 Baltboy

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Posted 20 June 2010 - 01:53 PM

I said a 2.53 GHz dual core would beat a 1.7 Ghz Quad core. It is the Ghz part that makes the difference. Go for the quad core and get the highest Ghz rating you can afford. The "turbo" just means on programs where all four cores are not being used it cranks the clock speed of the cores being used higher for better performance.

As far as finding them I did post link to some that would work for you. Search for mobie workstatios in google and I'm sure you cam find some more.
Get your facts first, then you can distort them as you please.
Mark Twain




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