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Best Laptop for College Students

collegeboundJoncollegeboundJon Registered User Posts: 422 Member
edited May 2013 in College Computers

I am planning to major in History and minor in either political science, international studies, or a language.

Should I get a Mac or another PC?

I like the Mac and have become used to it, somewhat, but I grew up using a PC.

Does my major effect what type of laptop I purchase?

I want to use the laptop for all four years.
Post edited by collegeboundJon on

Replies to: Best Laptop for College Students

  • vonlostvonlost Super Moderator Posts: 29,969 Super Moderator
    The Air seems to be the favorite Mac, light, thin, long battery life, no moving parts except the keys. If you have CDs or DVDs you can get the external player. Wait til Fall for a possible Retina screen. It will last four years. It's fine for a writing major.
  • GenApoGenApo Registered User Posts: 169 Junior Member
    Macs tend to be moderately durable (and have good customer service as well), but I believe that the ThinkPad is one of the most durable laptops that I've ever seen. I've seen people who still have their ThinkPads from 8 years ago, working like they ran out of the box...they also have VERY strong build quality and can withstand falls, intense use, high/low temperatures and even some spills, although the last is somewhat dubious, in my opinion.

    However, I'd strongly recommend doing your research on the issue as a great deal of seemingly "respectable" brands from the PC spectrum (and some of the Mac computers as well) can end up in the garbage heap due to their shoddy build quality.

    Hope I helped!
  • EliKressesEliKresses Registered User Posts: 1,787 Senior Member
    For the money, a Thinkpad T530 can't be beat.
  • NightShadeQueenNightShadeQueen Registered User Posts: 268 Junior Member
    I would also take a Thinkpad over a Mac - Mac's don't usually break, but when they do, you're dead in the water until you can get it fixed (which is nontrival when there's no Mac store nearby :D). Thinkpads also usually don't break, but if anything happens, you can usually fix it yourself for a) cheaper and b) faster.
  • TheKillerrAnnaTheKillerrAnna Registered User Posts: 58 Junior Member
    Macs are overpriced. You can get a PC with better specs for the same price, sometimes cheaper. So it makes no sense to get a Mac. ThinkPads by Lenovo are very good computers for school and business, and they're very durable. Also, much cheaper than Macs.
  • vonlostvonlost Super Moderator Posts: 29,969 Super Moderator
    "Macs are overpriced."

    Those who want Macs for their features are obviously willing to pay for them. The price difference per day over four years is negligible. Consumers seem to agree:

    Gartner: PC Market posts 11.2 percent decline in Q113; Apple Mac sales up 7.4 percent in U.S.

    This even when iPad sales are cannibalizing Mac sales. The Macbook Air and iPad killed the NetBook.
  • GenApoGenApo Registered User Posts: 169 Junior Member
    By features, do you mean brand name?

    Very little to no difference in terms of performance when it comes to even the highest end Mac and a moderately high end PC laptop. The price difference is astounding between the two. I could see four years stretching it out, but examining the price differences over four years is a red herring.

    I could maybe see the argument for build quality (although it becomes moot when compared to brands like Lenovo w/ ThinkPad) and battery (Apple is one of the best battery manufacturers, hands down), the price difference really doesn't justify it.
  • vonlostvonlost Super Moderator Posts: 29,969 Super Moderator
    The mid-priced Air costs about the same as a comparable high-end PC; if you want a Mac you happily pay the premium. Most people are in one camp or the other, with just a few willing to switch to Mac.
  • Kennedy2010Kennedy2010 Registered User Posts: 665 Member
    Von - D just switched to Mac and the experience has been incomparable. Brand name didn't figure into the choice since she compared with Lenova and ASUS. Unless a student has legitimate "super processing needs" as an Engineering or CS major - it comes down to personal choice.
This discussion has been closed.