Laptop, decisions...

Discussion in 'Off Topic [BG]' started by Ziltoid, Jul 15, 2013.

  1. Ziltoid

    Ziltoid I don't play bass

    Apr 10, 2009
    My MBP is now 4 years old. It served me fine during my Ba. with nearly no problems. Except for the HD being (way) too small and a battery swap a few months ago. The physical shape is also a bit rough (few pucks, lots of scratches, aluminum chipping a bit (******* speck case), etc).

    It still works fine but I need to run some softwares that are not available on mac. I don't really feel like dual-booting or running a VM software. It just seems like pointless screwing around. Also, the laptop's a bit weak for what I run, I often "run-out" of ram or cpu space.

    I like my mbp but I think it's time I put the "cool factor" aside and go back to PC. The downside is my whole gettup at home is mac. Apple Tv, Time capsule, Iphone.

    For the record here's my mbp specs:

    2.53ghz Core2Duo
    4gb 1067mhz ddr3
    256mb 9400m
    250gb hdd

    I'm not too sure where I'm headed with this, thoughts?
  2. fisticuffs

    fisticuffs Commercial User

    May 3, 2011
    Madison, WI
    There's no better Windows laptop than a Macbook Pro. Just sayin'. Otherwise I hear good things about Acer and Asus. The Samsungs have the Apple sleekness down pretty well. I'd be tempted to buy a convertible Win 8 laptop/Tablet just for ***** and giggles.
  3. MJ5150

    MJ5150 Moderator Staff Member

    Apr 12, 2001
    Olympia, WA
    Lenovo. Check out the Carbon series. I have a Twist, which is great as well if you need a convertible laptop/tablet.

  4. fisticuffs

    fisticuffs Commercial User

    May 3, 2011
    Madison, WI
    Whatever you do stay away from this guy:
  5. What are you running that your MBP has trouble keeping up with? I'll second that the best Windows laptop is a MBP, after that I would check out the Lenovo's that Mike recommended.

  6. blastoff99

    blastoff99 Moderators Local A440 Staff Member Supporting Member

    Dec 17, 2011
    Under the flight path
    My Lenovo (bottom of the line) has been dead-nuts reliable, and didn't come loaded with bloatware. I ordered it directly from Lenovo, was able to customize it, and had it in four days.

    If you catch them at the right moment, their prices are pretty awesome, too.

    Another thought is to buy something at Costco, if that's an option available to you. Costco doubles the warranty on electronics, including computers.
  7. bmc


    Nov 15, 2003
    Hey Dom

    Since laptops have a shorter lifespan than desktops, buy cheap, recognizing that in three years it ma have the poop to run the latest software. My daughter that was in Paris picked up a Lenova for $350. She does no gaming. It was all for school and facebook. It still works. She backs everything up. When it packs it in, bin it.

    In my view, laptops have become like DVD players. We have two that we bought for $69 each three years ago and they still work.

    Spend your money on something worthwhile, like wine, or a used Mazda Miata. :D
  8. Mystic Michael

    Mystic Michael Hip No Ties

    Apr 1, 2004
    New York, NY
    I picked up a Macbook Pro a couple years ago - my very first Apple anything. I love it! I can't even conceive of going back to the world of PC dinosaurs. :meh:

  9. BassManMike73


    Apr 20, 2011
    Portage, MI
    I second the post about a MBP being the best windows laptop there is. Mine has been set to dual boot for the 3 years I've had it, and I seriously wouldn't change a thing. I'm upgrading to a newer iMac now and will have it setup the same way.
  10. Ziltoid

    Ziltoid I don't play bass

    Apr 10, 2009
    RTF softwares running big files (CPU), Photoshop running batches (CPU and RAM), streaming to my TV as a "second monitor" (CPU and maybe GPU?), heck even Word could use more ram (I work in documents of a few hundred pages with a as many "comments" as there are sentences.). The laptop is somehow slower than it used to be, I tried the usual "maintenance" I used to do on PCs (defrag, ccleaner, scan for various malwares, cleaning, etc.) but it didn't fix it. The thing also heats a lot but I hear that's pretty common with mbp's.

    Dual booting could of been an option if I had a bigger HDD. I barely keep anything on my laptop I have trouble keeping some of it empty (20~% to avoid speed issues). Part of this issue is apple's local backups I suspect.

    If I go PC I'm definitely getting a Lenovo or an Asus. Thing is I'm not sure I want to take that route. I guess I could get a bigger hard-drive or simply run my mbp "pc only". Decisions...
  11. Dual boot a new MBP, stick a 1TB drive in it. No more problems with space.

  12. Ziltoid

    Ziltoid I don't play bass

    Apr 10, 2009
    There's a problem however with the getting a new mbp part: I have to make rent! :D

    I have the 500MB version of this HDD in my macbook, it has been solid, but it isn't going to be super fast. Your other choice would be to grab a SSD in the 256MB range and a large external hard drive and toss another 4 gigs of RAM into it; which would be my choice. Dual boot.


    Edit: get this hybrid drive
  14. BioDriver

    BioDriver A Cinderella story

    Aug 29, 2008
    Austin, TX
    Why not just build a tower for work and keep the MBP for play? Or do you need to travel a lot and run your programs on the go?

    If that's the case, Asus > Lenovo > Samsung, IMHO.
  15. Pilgrim

    Pilgrim Supporting Member

    I've used Dell, HP and Sony, but I am really impressed by the Lenovo I picked up last fall. The keyboard feel and overall quality of the laptop can really be felt. It's worth a few extra bucks.
  16. Ziltoid

    Ziltoid I don't play bass

    Apr 10, 2009
    I figured I'd give dual-booting a try. I'll make a small partition (40-50gb), slam 7 on it and see how that goes. I'll get around doing that this weekend probably. If I end up digging dual booting I might just get a bigger drive and maybe some ram. If not, I'll see.
  17. uOpt


    Jul 21, 2008
    Boston, MA, USA
    Honestly? Rethink that software that is still windows-only.

    Decent software these days is either multi-platform or on the line as they say.
  18. Ziltoid

    Ziltoid I don't play bass

    Apr 10, 2009
    Provalis Research doesn't. And I need wordstat and qda miner for research.
  19. Jeff Bonny

    Jeff Bonny Inactive

    Nov 20, 2000
    Harrison Mills
    I've been on a MBP for the last five years. It was my first Mac and before that it was Windows starting with Windows 3.1. through XP Pro. There were always a lot of things I felt I missed about the hackability of Windows so last week needing a new laptop in a big hurry for work and knowing the piece of software that had handcuffed me to the Mac was now ported to Windows I bought a PC with Windows 8. I took it back the next day and got one of these.

    I was thinking the same as you on every count but when confronted with the brutally dumbed-down pretense of Windows 8 and the toylike feel of the machine itself I went running back to the Mac. I sometimes use an Asus PC laptop at work that's running Windows 7 Pro and is a great feeling very robustly built machine but it prices at about the same as the MBP and it's about twice the thickness and weight.

    The moral of the story for me is that yes you can probably get a PC that will perform as well as a MBP but not for any less money. Macs are far from perfect (although with some knowledge of the unix command lines you can actually tweak the things) but if you're set up peripherally for the Mac and are used to it you may wanna give a new PC a real world test drive before switching back.
  20. fdeck

    fdeck Supporting Member Commercial User

    Mar 20, 2004
    Madison WI
    HPF Technology LLC
    I use Zemax and TracePro at my day job. There are no multi-platform or cloud alternatives for either program.

    Almost all serious engineering apps are single platform. Users of these apps will typically buy a computer based on the needs of the app, and not the other way around.

    Granted, the world is changing. Some fields have been multiplatform for a long time, such as math. The Internet is a giant distributed Linux box.

    I suspect that all of the makers of high end apps have their eyes on multiplatform targets. For extreme computational needs, folks are starting to use GPU boxes such as nVidia Cuda. A friend of mine uses one of those for mathematical modeling. And of course almost all of the software that I use at home and for my business is multiplatform, even Microsoft Office running under emulation. I recently switched from Linux to Win7 without even a hiccup. An exciting new area that's opening up are the little boards such as Raspberry Pi and their ilk, which mostly run Linux or Android and don't even support Intel object code.

    jeffbonny may be right about cost comparisons. The real value of Windows computers is in the low end of the market where Apple simply doesn't compete, and where I happen to buy all of my computer gear.