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Computer Engineering Laptop

futuretiger333futuretiger333 Posts: 11Registered User New Member
edited August 2011 in Engineering Majors
Hey guys! So I'm going off to college next year but I'm already thinking about what type of laptop I should get. I know I'll be majoring in computer engineering and I'll have about $2500 to $3000 saved up for a laptop....although I do not plan to spend that much obviously. I'm definitely not feeling Mac....let's stick to PC. I was thinking a Sony Vaio since that's what my brother is going with (although he isn't in computer engineering). So yea....any good suggestions? And any specs that I should definitely get when customizing? Thanks you all!
Post edited by futuretiger333 on

Replies to: Computer Engineering Laptop

  • TomServoTomServo Posts: 2,047Registered User Senior Member
    Jeepers, don't spend so much on a laptop. Spend your money on a good desktop that you build yourself (you're a computer engineering major darnit!). If you must have a laptop (I get along fine without one) get an inexpensive one.
  • ucbalumnusucbalumnus Posts: 31,919Registered User Senior Member
    It is unlikely that you will need any more computing power than what a low end laptop provides to do your CS assignments. Choose based on convenience like screen size, overall size and weight, etc.. You may want to use an OS that is the same as or most similar to the CS instructional computers so that you can do work on your own laptop when not connected to the CS instructional computers.
  • chaselychasely Posts: 144Registered User Junior Member
    I'll second TomServo. You can easily build a almost-top-of-the-line desktop for around $800 (tower only). You can likely get Windows 7 and Visual Studio for free through your engineering school's academic alliance w/ Microsoft (MSDN).

    Then, you can buy a cheap-o laptop and connect remotely to your home computer if you need to do any heavy computing. This also allows you to update your desktop throughout your academic career, if needed, at a fraction of the cost of buying a new computer.
  • jwxiejwxie Posts: 1,479Registered User Senior Member
    Lenovo - ThinkPad Back-to-School Sale


    Back to school sale. Best deal you can get. Pick 14" if you are away from home. Otherwise, x series is my choice.

    We really need to sticker this type of question. Been asked 100 times in the last two months.

    Computer - whatever you like, as long as you have 1GB memory running. You are not going to run NASA's database. i3 is enough, i5 is cool, i7 is unnecessary and too expensive. Save that money for other things. Just for now save the extra bucks. If default is 2GB, stick with 2GB is fine.
  • TomServoTomServo Posts: 2,047Registered User Senior Member
    I can't imagine wanting to spend so much money on something that I'd have to throw away if/when the monitor broke or a hinge tore or something. Laptops ought to be thought of as semi-disposable.

    And I second installing some kind of *nix on a second partition. In fact, I run Linux on my desktop PC and with Wine I can run my games and every piece of Windows software I want, and it comes with all the free, easy-to-use software for development. GCC, gnuplot, emacs, etc. You'd be surprised how much easier and faster it is to do certain things on *nix. On Windows, if I want to write a program and compile it under VC++, there are like ten mouse-clicks I have to go through just to start writing the file. On my current system I just type "xemacs source.cpp &" into the CLI and start writing, then I enter "g++ -o name source.cpp" and the program compiles, then "name" to execute. If I want to see the contents of a file I just use cat, if I want to search a file I just use grep, etc.

    You'll quickly realize that GUI's are great for consumer software but can actually be a hindrance to developers (and as a comp.eng major, you'll be writing a lot of software).
  • SilenthillnightSilenthillnight Posts: 345Registered User Member
    I bought a Vaio SA series and I love it so far. If you buy one now, they have a deal to get a PS3 for almost free.
  • silence_kitsilence_kit Posts: 1,826Registered User Senior Member
    You'll quickly realize that GUI's are great for consumer software but can actually be a hindrance to developers (and as a comp.eng major, you'll be writing a lot of software).

    I don't write software, but I consistently hear from the guys who do write software that IDEs like Visual Studio have features that vim and emacs lack that are super convenient when working with large codebases.
    I can't imagine wanting to spend so much money on something that I'd have to throw away if/when the monitor broke or a hinge tore or something. Laptops ought to be thought of as semi-disposable.

    If you buy a nicer and more sturdy laptop, it is a lot less likely that your hinge will break. Duh.
  • LEMike09LEMike09 Posts: 13Registered User New Member
    Then, you can buy a cheap-o laptop and connect remotely to your home computer if you need to do any heavy computing. This also allows you to update your desktop throughout your academic career, if needed, at a fraction of the cost of buying a new computer.

    So you can remote into your desktop from anywhere with your laptop and it will use the resources of the desktop to do all of the computing?
  • HowsitgoingHowsitgoing Posts: 112Registered User Junior Member
    Lenovo IdeaPad Y570 15.6 Notebook at CircuitCity.com

    This is a great deal for 900 dollars. Top of the line processor, lots of storage, not too bulky, and great video card. Also it has a multi-touch capable scroll pad who doesn't like those.
  • TomServoTomServo Posts: 2,047Registered User Senior Member
    Yes but you'd have to spend so much to get durability that you really ought to just get a desktop and get the power you're paying for. Unless you really *have* to have a laptop (IMO I think most people overrate how useful their portability is, I think 99% of that portability is used for restaurant web surfing).
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