please help me find the right laptop!



I realize this question is common but I have still not found a good answer from reading lots of posts. I am new to this forum and also purchasing computers. I recently finished undergrad in arch and started a job at an arch firm. The last two laptops I got were given to me as part of scholarships so I have NEVER purchased a laptop. My last laptop just crashed and won’t even turn on anymore, I really don’t think I can use it anymore anyways. I am completely new to this and not very good at the tech stuff. I would love to get some tips as to what I should purchase. I am planning to apply to grad school soon so I want to be able to use whatever I purchase now. I’m hoping it’ll run as good as new when I need to start on grad but I will also set up my own desktop when it comes to it. I did a lot of my work on my laptop but also used the lab on renders and such. I am really hoping to stay below $1,000, ideally $600-$800 so if you know of any good sites were they sell refurbished or I can get good deals please let me know. I would love to score a great laptop for a fraction of the actual cost. The reason why I really need a laptop now is that I want to learn Revit and Sketch up. I am also looking to use it to continue improving my AutoCAD, rhino and adobe skills (Photoshop). I have heard its best to build my own laptop and not buy from a manufacturer, don’t really know what that means though. I also watch lots of TV and movies on my laptop and use Skype, I don’t play games at all though. I would like to get options in different price ranges if that is possible. I do not want a mac computer, hence the price range(: also lots of my studio buddies with macs had their work lost, crashing programs before a deadline and that sort of thing, which I actually rarely if ever had with my crappy Sony.

Apr 21, 15 5:11 pm
Lian Chikako Chang

If you buy a computer now for sub-$1000 I think you'd be pushing your luck to expect it to get you through a future grad school degree.

Doesn't your employer provide you with a machine? I'd say, just use that for now, and buy a laptop when you go back to school.

Apr 21, 15 6:54 pm  · 

Lian, Thank for your response, do you have any suggestions for a laptop close to my price range that would last through grad school or at least most of it? I was looking at this one,

My employer does not provide us with our own laptops, I have my own desktop at work and I do get to use that if I have spare time and I have been coming in over the weekends to use it but I would like something I can use at home to learn Revit and Sketch up while using adobe(mainly photoshop), autocad and rhino.

Apr 21, 15 7:26 pm  · 

If you have time, wait until the back to school season.  Windows 10 is rumored to be coming out at the end of July, which might kick Win8.1 computer prices down - although W10 is rumored to be a free upgrade for 7+.  

But a computer around 600-800/sub $1000 will probably be underpowered and last a couple years with heavy use.  I'm heading back to grad school and I built a desktop and will be getting a sub 1000 ultrabookish portable laptop and just remote into my desktop if I need power and use it for stuff like MS Office, browsing the interwebs, and maybe light Adobe stuff like laying out boards in inDesign.    

If you want a powerful laptop, look into an Asus RoG, Razer Blade, MSI GE series, or a Lenovo Thinkpad W series.  The linked laptop doesn't look too shabby, although the hard drive is at 5400, 7200 or an SSD would be better but you could probably replace it yourself. 

Apr 21, 15 8:48 pm  · 

I bought an ASUS G74SX back in 2011. It served me exceedingly well during my thesis year, albeit being over 9.2 pounds (and making me look ridiculous in cafes). I still use it to this day, and it has been a great purchase. I named it "RenderBeast"

Apr 22, 15 11:11 pm  · 

Buy a used computer. SAGER and Asus G74/73/75 series are awesome.

Apr 23, 15 6:38 am  · 

I ended up getting this one but with a 1TB+8GB hybrid drive & 3 year Lenovo warranty. I am hoping I made the right decision since I spent up to my max. thanks to everyone who helped

Apr 23, 15 4:31 pm  · 

laptop is need of every student but budget is very important to buy a laptop. If you suspect you'll be holding onto your new laptop for a while, see if you can stretch your budget to buy a slightly more expensive laptop to accommodate a little more memory or a processor. If you haven't thought about it, look at AMD Ryzen processors as alternatives to Intel Core for Windows laptops or alternatives to Intel Celeron and Pentium for Chromebooks. 

Oct 13, 21 4:10 am  · 

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