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Best laptop for programming


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25 replies to this topic

#1 DominiqueFaryski

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Posted 25 November 2012 - 06:23 PM

Hi guys.
I'm starting my computer science degree in 2 weeks and I've not decided yet what laptop I should buy. I'm a little bit confused and overwhelmed. So if you can help me and give some advice etc. I would be very thankful. My budget is 400£-450£

Cheers

#2 BenW

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Posted 25 November 2012 - 09:38 PM

It depends a bit on what you're going to be developing when you program. A decent processor and plenty of RAM (at least 4gb, more if possible) are going to be essential, but if you're making programs with graphics (eg games) you'll also need a good enough GPU to run them.

Do you have any laptops in mind right now? We can always take a look and tell you if they're suitable :)

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#3 Orjan

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 12:01 AM

I'd actually say, get one with 8 GB ram if possible. This can get you the opportunity to different create development environments using virtual box or similar software.
It's a good thing to do a base installation on your PC and then add special software in a virtual desktop so it don't clutters the base install, also, you can run multiple operating systems without a reboot.

Maybe one environment for java programming in ubuntu, another for programming c# in Visual Studio 2012 with Windows 8, and so on, and when you're not using it, just shut it down and you can game on your usual install. Especially good if you program with for example databases or web programming, as they usually need a service started, this way you only have it started when you actually do your programming

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#4 DominiqueFaryski

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 03:18 AM

I'm considering asus laptops. I've done a research and what I've noticed that they have the most recommended laptops by users in good price. But still I do not know which one to choose. My budget is not so high so there are some limits for me and compromises.

#5 Orjan

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 03:20 AM

ASUS usually make good products, so that's not a bad choice. Link to a few specific computers you have in mind and we'll look at the specs to guide you!

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#6 DominiqueFaryski

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 05:13 AM

http://www.cnet.com/...7-35524944.html

http://www.cnet.com/...7-33970176.html

http://www.cnet.com/...7-35284607.html

I've found these. The only thing I'm not sure about is display size and resolution. Thanks for help

#7 Orjan

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 06:05 AM

To me, I find the http://www.cnet.com/...7-35284607.html one most appealing. Seems newer and more powerful than the others. 6 of 8 GB ram is good enough. upgradable if needed. Not the most expensive one either.

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Please DO NOT send mail or PM to me with programming questions, post them in the appropriate forum instead, where I and others can answer you.


#8 BlackRabbit

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 06:07 AM

Asus is good hardware, for your laptop i think you should consider memory and battery stamina.

this one looks best for me: U56E BAL7

Don't mind Disk, you can always, and preferably, use usb drives when you need heavy storage, HD are the the most sensible thing on laptops, it's better if you don't use heavy duty donwloaders on it.

#9 WingedPanther73

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 06:07 AM

RAM, hard drive, and screen size are the three factors I would look at.

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#10 BenW

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 06:13 AM

Screen size is nice but you can always plug in an external monitor if you need more space (though you may see a slight performance drop depending on the GPU).

Of the three you linked, the one Orjan and BlackRabbit already mentioned is easily the best :)

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#11 DominiqueFaryski

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 07:14 AM

Thank you so much for your time and advices. I really appreciate that.

Cheers :)

#12 wim DC

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Posted 26 November 2012 - 07:15 AM

RAM, hard drive, and screen size are the three factors I would look at.

I'd go for this too.

4 gygabytes of RAM will do. Don't ever go for less.

If you ever plan to run a virtual machine, you simply NEED more than 4GB. Or else be happy with your windows 7 running on 2gygs, and your virtual vista/whatever on 2gygs. (<-- not recommended, certainly if you plan to do the programming in the virtual machine). Giving the virtual machine 4gyg with a laptop of 4gyg internal ram makes it go bluescreen by the way. . .

(I'm now at 6,37GB used with 1 virtual vista open)

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No matter how much I'd love a bigger screen size than 1366 x 768, it simply won't happen without
  • bigger physical size (eg, 17inch and more)
  • more budget
​I'm not a huge fan of laptops of 17 inch and more, so the 1366 will have to suffice. It's pretty much the biggest you'll get for a 15,6inch laptop with the given budget.
I've just opened my browser next to my IDE in a 1366 space. I'm sure it's doable for some quick reading / copy pasting from 1 to the other.
I wouldn't be able to work with it continuously though, at approx 680px width - Or maybe I'm just spoiled, and not used to it.

So summary about resolution and screensize: go for 15,6 @ 1366x768 and look at the other stats since it won't get any bigger :)
(
unless you go for 17inch, then you can get bigger resolutions with the budget
When you do go for 17inch: beware that most laptop bags are made for 15, and your laptop won't fit. Make sure to specifically look for 17inch then.
)

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Hard drive is something you'll have to know personally. How much do you have in use on your current PC? How much do you download? Do you download and watch series?
I'm personally only at 261gyg used right now. And I have this one for 1,5 years. So I usually don't need the big amounts of space that's available in laptops now. The hd size is the least of my problems.
But you'll have to see for yourself.




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