Computer help for engineering student

Discussion in 'Tech Discussion' started by yomav, Sep 18, 2023.

  1. yomav

    yomav New Member

    May 31, 2023
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    I am looking for some advice and hopefully I can get it here.

    I need to buy a new laptop that I can use IN ADDITION TO my desktop for school next year. All recommendations that I have found for Engineering students are for laptops that will be primary computers. I want to get a laptop that will supplement my desktop, powerful enough to take into a lab and be able to mostly complete many of the same functions but I dont want to be spending 1200-1500 on something that wont be an everyday computer.

    I have an XPS that will be three years old around the time classes begin in the fall and runs Windows 7 home with an Intel i7-3770 @ 3.40 GHZ and 12.0 GB RAM. In addition to papers and reports, I expect to use this with more demanding operations like design modeling in Autocad and running simulations.

    Computers have never been a strong suit of mine (I can get through a short conversation) and the questions I have are about specs and some may not even be all that important. Is the difference between a 5th gen i5 vs. 4th gen i7 vs. 5th gen i7 all that noticeable and needed for a student? Is 8.0 GB RAM enough to handle the work load i micht expect or should I push for 12.0? Wanting Windows 7 Pro is pretty much the only requirement I have. I've been issued Lenovo Thinkpads in jobs before and they seem to top most of the lists I have come across. For me I found them reliable but their price is very high, as is also the price for the HP ZBooks. Im leaning towards the HP Envy 15t or Dell Inspiron 15 5000 (though Im not crazy about this Dell)

    So any thoughts, suggestions, comments would be greatly appreciated. Thank you
  2. gangbuntu

    gangbuntu Well-Known Member

    Jul 9, 2016
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    this is the key requirement.
    i would recommend something else:
    - use ur existing laptop. it should be good enough for general use-case
    - upgrade ur desktop with a powerful gpu - set it to be on 24/7
    - setup remote-desktop app between ur laptop n ur desktop.

    cmiiw, but training/generating a model takes much more juice than consuming/using said model. a laptop is not the right tool for that job.
  3. xiazixin

    xiazixin Well-Known Member

    Dec 7, 2017
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    Engineering student or any engineering person are the worst person to ask for a recommendation if they don't specify what software they use. Or what type of engineer they are, though definitely not a software engineer. Though Amd gpu is the way to go unless you deal with AI and anything related.

    What type of engineering you do.
    Do you use CAD, or CAE. If you do, pease specify. This will make the deal if you need a Amd or a quadro gpu for a laptop.
    those includes Solid Edge, Abaqus, and other nonsense software that any sane normal people will never touch them once in their life time. It have great impact on desktop too.

    Also even if you have a those software supported there is still plugins, plugins and plugins. My dad is an engineer, he use auto cad, with 钢铁cad. Basically nvidia is a no.

    Also, are you going to take it to the field, like a shipyard or something. Dammit I really dislike engineers.

    Also if you use auto cad to draw 3D or 2D.
    I have only use autocad to draw simple 2D so yeah. Since you are using autocad, did you design toy or you need to calculate to the 0.01mm or you need to take in steel strength.

    Also do you need a portable pen displays for drawing.

    Also please do not buy your PC straight away. Take some times to think what you need. And please check with your CAD plugins providers for compatability issues.
    Also please ask your senior on the performance of the specs.

    I have autocad with me on one of my laptop. And no it didn't run smoothly. I set it to only run integers and it still lags the hell on me in 2D. Although its from 2017. But there is no way to spent another thousands of dollars on another copy of software and another thousand dollars on plugins.

    Also try to spent more on PC and less on software. If you are paying 2-3K usd on software, why not spent like 6-7K on a laptop.
    Although if your buying quadro you laptop, you probably looking at 10k usd plus.

    Also please note that spec page on autocad recommend specs means nothing if you do big project, or 3D (though I have only drawn 2D) or you have plugins. Especially if you have many and many of them.

    Omg I just look out online that autocad became a subscription based model. I guess it's impossible to upgrade my autocad 2017 now.