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  • What laptop are/did you use for college?

    I been using a desktop but now that I'll be moving and can't bring it with me just yet, I think it's time to get a laptop.

    I need something powerful enough to render videos and would prefer not a brick.

    Apple vs PC for school? Note: I'm a communication major so I'll deal with a lot of media files.

  • #2
    Re: What laptop are/did you use for college?

    Personally, I love Macbooks and think they are great as long as you are able to find a compatible mac application for all your needs and you are ok with the price premium.
    "Looking for brahs to come fight crime with me" - Unload



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    • #3
      Re: What laptop are/did you use for college?

      If you've got the money, a Macbook Air could be the way to go. I've got a Dell Latitude E6420, and it's great, but it's really heavy to carry around and I have to bring an old rucksack because I can't fit the laptop and my textbooks in my nice satchel. Although if you want to play games, you might want to think about it carefully - see which games are Mac OS compatible, or consider putting a Windows partition on the hard drive.
      |TG-Irr| westyfield

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      • #4
        Re: What laptop are/did you use for college?

        I bought an HP 4530s for the two purposes of college use and running dungeons and dragons campaigns. It was the weakest thing I could stand having since i do not want to be able to play any video games that would distract me from working. Tvtropes and the TG forums still eat up a lot of my time.

        http://www.tigerdirect.com/applicati...784&TId=2&SF=1

        The HP Elitebook 8560 is the model that my college gives to the faculty, and since I work in the Central for Information and Technology here, i handle them all the time. They fairly powerful for the price, but don't expect to run any intensive new games off of it. If you're a tech savvy user, i recommend buy a copy of Windows 7 along with any PC laptop, so you can do a fresh install and get rid of all the bloatware manufacturers put on their PCs. HP is notorious for this.
        |TG-6th|SirNerd

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        • #5
          Re: What laptop are/did you use for college?

          I used a 17" Gateway laptop with the beefiest hardware I could find back in my first year of university (2008). Then a year later, I built a new desktop PC and used some of the proceeds from the sale of the laptop to buy a Samsung N120 netbook. Takes notes fine, can play simple games (which I almost never do) and is very light.

          If you are going to be dealing with a lot of media files, then I wouldn't be surprised if your college has you dealing with PC files most of the time. I would recommend a Windows-based laptop.

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          • #6
            Re: What laptop are/did you use for college?

            Originally posted by Lassiter View Post
            I been using a desktop but now that I'll be moving and can't bring it with me just yet, I think it's time to get a laptop.

            I need something powerful enough to render videos and would prefer not a brick.

            Apple vs PC for school? Note: I'm a communication major so I'll deal with a lot of media files.
            If your communications program is anything like where I received my degree and now do some teaching, it'll use Macs heavily. Most of your coursework will probably be done on Mac based applications. If they use Adobe suite, luckily, it runs on either platform.

            I have to disagree with FLIP that your college will have you working with mostly PC media files (sorry FLIP). The Windows media files that are difficult to use on Mac are the actual windows media video .wmv files. But there are programs that let you deal with them. But the only time you're really going to be dealing with windows media based architecture in a professional environment is if you're doing live streaming. And Flash is much preferred, anyway. The only time I ever have to use .wmv is if a client just doesn't know what they're doing and I have to attach a small .wmv file to an email for them to be able to watch it. But then it's easier to just upload to an unlisted Youtube video.

            On the other hand, Apple has some codecs that are used a lot that are used in your NLE that can be difficult, but still not impossible, on Windows architecture. I'd rather have to fiddle a bit to get the final encode right than have to do the fiddling and figure out codec compatibility at the beginning of a project for the files that you'll be working directly on.

            I'm not saying that PC's can't be used and aren't great to use for video work. Adobe's suite works great on them, just as they do on Macs. Plus PC's are cheaper. And I don't know where the heck Apple is going with their Final Cut software and if they'll ever have a professional usable NLE again (talking about FCP X here). But even if I make the switch to Adobe Premiere, et al, from FCP 7-- I still intend to stick with Mac for now.

            So really, the best thing to do is talk to some current students in the program or professors and ask them if a lot of their coursework is taught on Macs. That's the easiest thing to do.

            As far as which laptop to get-- if you have the money, go with the Macbook Pro with a dedicated gfx card. Anything else won't work as well at rendering and churning out media.

            If you have any questions, feel free to ask or PM me. :)

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            • #7
              Re: What laptop are/did you use for college?

              I just happened across this article:

              http://www.eoshd.com/content/5106/wh...re-pro-or-a-pc

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              • #8
                Re: What laptop are/did you use for college?

                I used just a general purpose Gateway laptop 15" with a Celeron D while in class. I did some general programming on it but as far as graphics design and more 3d intensive applications I just relied on school computers (mostly XPS's). I didn't really invest too much into a laptop since it loses it's worth so quickly and is really only needed to carry out basic tasks in college (e.g. presentations, note taking, email, research).

                Save money invest in a desktop and when you start your first real job after college then start investing into higher tier laptops.

                Also not that I don't like Apple products but stay away from MacBooks if you don't care for Windows there is a better way; Linux (not everyone's cup of tea but it is a choice). However if your class either requires one or is taught completely on Macs you may have to go this route but there are plenty of comparable applications on both sides of the fence.
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                • #9
                  Re: What laptop are/did you use for college?

                  Personally, I bought a beefy Asus ROG gaming desktop replacement laptop. I thought it was great until I tried sticking it in a backpack and taking it to class. I decided to use that at home in order to do more demanding things and later got a cheap little net book that has an AMD C-50 and a AMD 6250. I like it



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                  • #10
                    Re: What laptop are/did you use for college?

                    Originally posted by BeSiege82 View Post
                    Personally, I bought a beefy Asus ROG gaming desktop replacement laptop. I thought it was great until I tried sticking it in a backpack and taking it to class. I decided to use that at home in order to do more demanding things and later got a cheap little net book that has an AMD C-50 and a AMD 6250. I like it
                    Seen the same reaction with some of my classmates when they bought 17" and up mobile gaming behemoths. Then there are the people who go too far by pulling out cooling pads and large external drives; it just defeats the purpose. Laptops have always been about portable computing and I've never seen a sensible laptop that could effectively replace a desktop for me.
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