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Old 04-05-2007, 12:08 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Comp for engineering/design

Hi, Well My friend is majoring in civil engineering and she wants to buy a laptop to use for that kind of stuff, you know putting those design programs, designing crap,ectt...
I was telling her that a desktop is better for this since you can build one with double the specs for the same money you would use on a notebook. But she is a bit stubborn.

Anyways, I'm wondering what do you guys think? What would a comp/notebook need for the sort of stuff she will be doing. I'm thinking she will need alot of memory both, from ram and from hard drive. Also, graphic card since those programs for designing need some decent graphics(I think).?

Her budget is $2000 or less.
Could you guys direct me to some options of both laptops and desktops?
Some advice,ect..
thanks for your help in advance

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Old 04-05-2007, 12:18 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Comp for engineering/design

desktop........... the battery on a laptop would run down to quickly and i don't think you would be able get the performance to make it a viable alternative. If you want desktop specs I could tell you a great one and a graphics card isnt overly important the Quadro is specifically designed for design programs and 4gb of Ram would be good.


Edit: just went on the dell website and they want $1,500 just to upgrade the ram to 4gb

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Old 04-05-2007, 01:03 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Comp for engineering/design

eh..... not going to happen on a laptop, even a core 2 duo system with centrino duo mobile technology ur 3-4 hours will get drained quickly with ur designing and engineering.... May i suggest a Desktop?

Processor: Intel Core 2 Duo E6600 - $308.00
Motherboard: Gigabyte DS3 - $94.99
Memory: G Skill 2x1GB DDR2-800 - $144.00
Video Card: eVGA 8800GTS 320MB - $304.99 (an Nvidia Quadro FX 4600 or FX 5600)
Hard Drive: Western Digital 400GB - $99.99
Optical Drive: LG 18X DVD+/RW - $29.99
Monitor: HannsG 19" LCD - $174.99
Keyboard: Logitech Media Elite - $23.99
Mouse: Microsoft B7G 5-Buttons - $24.99
Speakers: Logitech X-230 - $40.99
Power Supply: Antec TruePower 650W - $109.99
Case: Antec 900 - $119.99

Total Comes to: $1476.89 (w/o shipping)
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Old 04-05-2007, 01:36 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Comp for engineering/design

for heavy CAD applications you are definitely looking at a Workstation not a gaming machine
Dual Xeons or opterons
quadros in SLi
4-8GB of RAM
RAID controller and multiple HDDs
£2000 is probably not going to cover it let alone $2000

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Old 04-05-2007, 03:14 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Comp for engineering/design

Its a multi-tasking computer, thats why she'd want a laptop.

but for CAD you really want a desktop. My E6400 with 2 gigs ram and 7900GTO runs any CAD program superbly - nothing lags or anything.

Dual Xeons or Dual opterons would be stupid to buy, 4gigs of ram is stupid and couldnt be many cad programs are 64 bit? None, SolidWorks is going to release a Vista version soon.
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Old 04-05-2007, 03:27 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Comp for engineering/design

Is she just gonna be using CAD? Some versions of CAD aren't that hard to run, trust me, if our school computers can run it, a 2000 dollar laptop can. But it all depends on how taxing of a program your gonna be using, she should talk to someone at the school or something, to see what all they'll be using. The computers at our school can even run Autodesk rivit and inventor. And just so you know, i think they're pentium 4's, maybe pentium d's(we may have recently gotten new ones), with like x600se's for graphics, and prolly no more than 512mb of ram, and they're dells by the way.
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Old 04-05-2007, 07:35 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Comp for engineering/design

well she told me she is going to be using a program called Auto cad 2007 or something like that.
I searched around and this are the requiriments
System Requirement Processor:Intel Pentium 4Operating Systems:Windows XP (Professional, Home Edition, or Tablet PC Edition with Service Pack 1 or 2)Windows 2000 Professional with Service Pack 3 or 4Hard Disk:550 MBMemory:512 MB RAMOptical Drive:CD-ROMOthers:1024 x 768 VGA display with true colorInternet Explorer 6.0 or higherMouse, trackball or compatible pointing device

I was wondering if this thing needs windows xp or can it run in vista?
Can you guys link me to soem notebooks that will work well with the program?
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Old 04-05-2007, 07:53 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: Comp for engineering/design

Too bad auto cad dosn't run on apple. if it did you might be able to squeak it out of a really powerful mac book pro. Windows side, your not really going to find a lappy that can do that. stick with the desktop
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Old 04-05-2007, 09:04 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: Comp for engineering/design

you will not find too many engineers using macs...less than 1% I bet.

A good laptop will run autocad 2007, it doesnt have to be a mac.

Autocad 2008 will run on Vista - I take back my last comment.

Laptops are overrated anyway, if she's doing heavy CAD work she should have a desktop with a big monitor - unless of course she buys all the peripherals and has it act as a workstation...
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Old 04-06-2007, 03:55 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: Comp for engineering/design

Wel can some1 link me to some laptops?

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