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Old 10-15-2012, 06:50 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Looking for a lightweight graphics laptop

Hello folks!

Im an illustration student who prefers working digitally. As such, im looking for a laptop i could bring with me to the uni and back, to use for drawing while in class.

What i want:

1) NOT A MAC. I dont care if they are faster, better, same, cheaper, whatever. I am not getting a mac, period. Sorry, mac lovers.

2) Lightweight. I will be bringing it with me every day for next ~3 years or so, so i want it to weigh less than a large brick Preferably around 1.5-2kg

3) Performance - the laptop will be used 99.9% for digital drawing. Im talking 2d Photoshop and Paint Tool Sai sketching, painting and editing. No games whatsoever are planned, and very mild internet browsing. However i would prefer my PS / PTS running properly and relatively smoothly, without delays or other "slow" things. There will be no 3d, just 2d art.

I already have a powerful desktop, so i do not need any "additional" functions - this laptop will be used only for drawing in class.
My price range is under ~1200 or so.

There are 2 reasons im asking about it in this thread.
1) Im terrible when it comes to laptop hardware. I have no idea what's available / how much it costs / how it performs / etc.

2) I have no idea what specs i need for digital art. I mean, i always used my main "powerful gaming" pc for it, meaning i always had more than enough CPU / GPU / RAM / etc for it. However when it comes down to what specifically (and how much of it) i need for my laptop, im kinda clueless.

After browsing around the web etc, the one laptop that attracted my attention was Lenovo T430 - like this configuration here:

Intel i7-3520M (4m cache)
Win 7 64 pro
14.0 HD+ (1600x900) LED Backjlit Anti-Glare Display
Nvidia Optimus Graphics (NVS 5400M, 2GB)
8GB RAM (DDR3 1600 MHz 2 DIMM)
128gb SSD, SATA3
extra 500GB HDD 7200RPM
9Cell Li-Ion 70++
~2kg weight

Total cost is... 1265 not including VAT.

There are 2 problems i have with the above omdel, however.
1) Im not sure of the dis[play quality
2) 1.3k not including vat (so around 1.6k total) - which is a lot of money... so i would much rather go for something cheaper if possible.

Given what i have told you, would it be at all possible for you to help me out with finding the laptop i need? Please keep in mind that i am based in London, UK, and as such would prefer a UK-available product.

Thanks in advance!

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Old 10-16-2012, 12:19 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Looking for a lightweight graphics laptop

The T430 screen isn't the best, if you are doing graphics work you will probably want something better. The smaller x230 can be configured with an optional IPS panel that is considerably better but it's only available with dual core processors which may not be as powerful as you would want.


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Old 10-29-2012, 01:48 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Looking for a lightweight graphics laptop

Sadly i do want enough processing power to actually make the laptop worth using for graphics. Anyone else got any more thoughts?
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