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Purchase Template: HP Buying/Specs

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Posted 25 May 2014 - 07:10 PM

Template Questions:

My budget is sub 1000. 

I am hoping to use this computer for school, general use, some graphic design projects, and mostly music production.

I will be using Ableton Live 9, Chrome, Adobe Creative Suite, Office etc.

I'm not really worried about video games/movie editing/graphics intensive things. 

I usually have iTunes, Chrome, and Ableton always open. I tend to close things like word or adobe illustrator if I'm not using them. 

I don't really store photos but I do have a lot of music being stored. 


I'm coming from a history of macs. I currently have a 13 inch macbook pro from 2011. It has 8gb ram and i5. It tends to overheat and slow down often, so before I head back off to school I'm thinking of upgrading to a newer computer. Since I'm not really willing to spend 2k on a 15 inch macbook pro I figured I would head the PC route. I found the HP Envy and the following is what I'm thinking of changing on it. 




8gb ddr3 ram -> 16gb ddr3 ram 

1TB 5400 rpm HD -> 1TB 5400 rpm Hybrid HD


My main question is does this seem to be a good plan? Would any of you change anything? Should I upgrade anything else? Should I be looking at a different laptop all together? I'm new to the PC world and a little clueless so thanks for the help. 


The total cost is around $795 for a 15 inch laptop with i7, 16gb ram, and a hybrid HD. 


If this is at all relevant I plan on also getting a 27 inch monitor to be able to hook it up to when I'm not out and about. 



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#2 killerx525


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Posted 26 May 2014 - 12:45 AM

Hi, based from the template, the laptop you have chosen will perfectly meet your needs due to the high end CPU (Intel Core i7), 16GB of ram and the reasonablely large SSHD. I don't really see any issues with the proposed configuration and the price is quite astonishing despite it's lack of graphics card which is not needed for the software you will be using. Not sure whether if you have selected the default screen which has the resolution of 1366x768 but it would be worth to get the higher 1080p (1920x1080) screen to allow more working space.

System1: CPU- Intel Core i7-5820K @ 4.4GHz, CPU Cooler- Noctua NH-D14, RAM- G.Skill Ripjaws 16GB Kit(4Gx4) DDR3 2133MHz, SSD/HDD- Samsung 850 EVO 250GB/Western Digital Caviar Black 1TB/Seagate Barracuada 3TB, GPU- 2x EVGA GTX980 Superclocked @1360/MHz1900MHz, Motherboard- Asus X99 Deluxe, Case- Custom Mac G5, PSU- EVGA P2-1000W, Soundcard- Realtek High Definition Audio, OS- Windows 10 Pro 64-Bit
Games: APB: Reloaded, Hours played: 3100+  System2: Late 2011 Macbook Pro 15inch   OFw63FY.png

#3 Kilroy


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Posted 03 June 2014 - 09:26 AM

I know next to nothing about Macs, so I don't know their build quality.  The only issue I have with the HP consumer lines are that they don't seem to be built as well as their business lines.  However, once you start looking into the business lines the price increases as the least expensive 9470m ultrabook is over $1,000.  It does come with a three year warranty.


Being an old fart I have to disagree with killerx525 about going to a higher resolution screen.  More pixels on the same sized screen just makes everything smaller and harder to read.  Since you're looking at a 27" monitor that may be an issue for you.  There shouldn't be any issues going with an external monitor just make sure that the monitor has an output that will connect to the monitor you select.  You can get adapters for most of them, but it is much easier to make a straight connection.


You might want to wait on the RAM upgrade and see if 8GB will work for you.  If you are comfortable installing RAM at a later date you can save some money and you may not need it.  RAM is normally listed as a user replaceable part by HP, so you should be able to install it.  If you are not comfortable installing the RAM then by all means have it installed now.

#4 Mistersprinkles


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Posted 03 June 2014 - 09:16 PM

I would also make this upgrade :


15.6-inch diagonal Full HD BrightView LED-backlit Display (1920x1080) +$50.00
Very important to have a high resolution screen. 1080P is the standard these days. 
Instead of upgrading to 16GB from HP, the cheaper route is to take the laptop as is (1 DIMM @ 8GB), pull the specs of the RAM (off the sticker on the DIMM or from BIOS) and purchase another identical stick (make/line/timings). That'll only run you about $70-80
instead of $125.
Finally, instead of upgrading to the Hybrid HDD, I suggest you take the unit as is, pull the HDD and purchase a 480GB Crucial M500 SSD. Put the 1TB HDD in an external enclosure ($10, Amazon) and use it as needed. 
You will obviously need to image the OEM drive onto the new SSD.
This will bring your total cost over $1000, but the performance increase, especially with a fast CPU, will be very significant. 

Edited by Mistersprinkles, 03 June 2014 - 09:17 PM.

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