wats the best laptop for a student?

I will be joining my Product design course soon … and need to buy a laptop. Which r the best laptops available out there… and what kinda configurations should i look for? Also whats the cost like?

Also i need one of those Wacom things… which one do u recommend?

If you are using high end CAD programs then get something with a dedicated video card like an Nvidia based card. Dell’s Precision like is made for CAD.

Although they are rare now, Toshiba Tecra M4 and M7 tabletpcs allows you to sketch as well as take notes and had the dedicated video card to run CAD programs. I think the only one that still runs a dedicated card and 14" screens are Gateway tablets.

Anotehr idea is to get a good desktop for your high end CAD and CPU crunching apps and a typical tablet for class and sketching.

i have heard tablet PCs r bad as they get outdated soon and the pressure sensitivity is not so good… right now this laptop seems to be good …check it out http://h10010.www1.hp.com/wwpc/in/en/ho/WF06b/1090709-1116637-1116665-1116665-1116665-81136552-81696578.html?jumpid=reg_R1002_INEN#null
HP Pavilion dv9731TX Entertainment Notebook PC (KP156PA) specifications - HP Home & Home Office products

let me know what u think of it

I use my tablet PC both for CAD (solidworks) and sketching (sketchbook pro).

Pens sensitivity really does not change. At least that has been my experience.

hey can u send me the exact model no. of ur tablet pc

I am running the 14" Gateway right now with as much RAM as I could get when I ordered it.

blaster701, did your Gateway come with XP or Vista? They only offer Vista now.

Mine is about a year old…so I was able to get XP. I will not buy Vista until SolidWorks 09 comes out.

I’ve heard that Vista is RAM hungry, so I’m curious how bogged down the machine will get trying to run Rhino or SW? Is there a way to purchase the machine with Vista and reformat it back to XP? I’ve only ever reformatted my home desktop PC once with the help of a customer service tech, so it could be a challenge. Plus, isn’t there a certain edition of XP needed make the windows pen and touch enabled?

Ya, its XP Tablet Edition.

I am wondering the same thing about reformatting my Tablet right now. When I was desktop based I always went and reformatted everything every 2 years or so to give the system an enema. I need/want to do that with my Tablet b/c it is doing some weird things lately but I have no idea how to with a laptop.

Thanks IP,

I’ll look into the cost of the MS Windows XP Tablet PC Edition OS.

always go dell precision workstations

or for laptops

get that 17" inch precision bad boy.

that you might try to get refereb too! That will last you two years and you will be all the envy of every designer and engineer. And i did not just say that because we have dell industrial designers in for alias rendering workshop either.

M3design.com did the chassis for that BTW

I’m sorry guys but I’m macbook pro 15’’ all the way on this one. And it runs windows perfectly when you need to cad.

I agree that the 15" MacBook Pro is an excellent machine, but then you’ll need a Wacom product to go along with it to do digital sketching.

I (and most of the designers in my company) use the 15" MacBook Pro. I also have one as my home computer… it is “an excellent machine”.


what about the 17" macbook pro? Is it too slow or something. 15" seams so 2001 I would rather use a desktop than deal with a 15" screen. But then I notice the emulation slowness of the PC emulation ordeal.

Maybe you are suggesting the 15" to be conservative? Go big or not at all. And it’s not that much more expensive. And if your going to do anything 3d at all you need the 1920 resolution.

Currently, my work computer is a 17" PowerBook G4 hooked up to a 23" Apple Cinema display. Lugging around a 17" computer is a pain, but it does have its perks when you’re away on business and you need a larger screen. That’s the only reason I suggested the 15" MacBook Pro.


Are you running any 3d modeling applications on your 15" MacBook Pro?

That thing is so darn light… not much of a pain. Lets call it a pleasant pain.

Those extra 6.6 pounds hang on you and become heavy while you’re waiting in line for security at the airport, or even the dreaded customs line. As an avid backpacker I like to shed as much weight as possible to begin with, ounces feel like pounds at the end of the day.