We get asked A LOT! There isn’t an answer as it all depends on your needs and requirements, but we will try to make this as general as possible. The first question you really should be asking yourself is:
What type of engineering do I want to do? What will I need my laptop for? As the answers change and depend on what exactly you want to use your laptop for.
Do I Need a Gaming Laptop or Just a Regular Laptop?
Engineers commonly need a computer that can process large amounts of data at once; therefore, we often require more computing power than the average person would. The gaming industry has seen such great demand for their products that they have begun to develop laptops that can withstand the need of the average gamer.
What’s Great About Gaming Laptops for Engineers?
The best thing about gaming laptops is that they are specifically designed to process demanding data types, such as large 3D files or CAD documents. Gaming laptops also come with higher-end components than regular laptops, allowing you to run many applications at once without any slowdown in performance, allowing you to multitask like a pro! These machines often come equipped with better screens and keyboards, making them more comfortable to use. Let’s face it, engineers don’t get paid nearly enough (in our opinion), so we like to make sure we’re getting what we pay for!
Gaming Laptop vs Regular Laptop:
A gaming laptop will offer many benefits and high performance capabilities, but you must remember that these machines are not cheap. If your work revolves around 3D rendering or CAD/CAM then a gaming laptop may be the best option to allow you to accomplish everything you need. If you’re just doing some light word processing and internet browsing every day, then there’s no reason to spend the extra money on a gaming laptop; instead, we recommend buying a mid-range laptop as it will do everything you need without breaking the bank! Just make sure it includes at least 4GB of RAM (more is better) and an i5 processor (or higher).
Note: The XoticPC Specials page offers excellent deals on laptops that meet the minimum specs for engineering software. Feel free to check it out for yourself!
What Specs Do I Need?
Ok, so you’ve decided that a gaming laptop may be the best option for you; but which one should you choose? Don’t worry, we’re here to fill you in on all of the details!
The main specifications that engineers require are A high quality processor (i5 or i7), 4GB+ RAM (more is better), and an NVIDIA graphics card (GeForce 8800 or higher). Keep in mind though this is very general, if your work requires you to run heavy 3D models, render large videos (such as for YouTube), or use other high performance software, then I would recommend buying a laptop with similar specs to the ones listed above; otherwise, go with something less powerful.
High Performance Processor
The processor is one of the most important parts of computing today. The processing power of your machine determines how many operations your computer can handle at any given moment. This means that it will affect how quickly you can perform tasks such as processing files or rendering video. Processors come in two main categories: Intels and AMDs. We recommend sticking with Intel processors since they are more stable than their AMD counterparts, but if you plan to overclock your machine you might want to consider an AMD machine.
4GB+ RAM (More is Better)
RAM offers your machine the short-term memory it needs to quickly process data. Therefore, the more RAM you have the more applications you can load at once without experiencing any slowdowns or hiccups. You should consider getting a laptop with 8GB of DDR3 RAM for optimal processing power; but if budget is an issue, 4GB will also do just fine.
NVIDIA GeForce Graphics Card
An NVIDIA graphics card allows you to display high quality 3D images on your screen that are rendered in real time. If your work requires you to run powerful 3D rendering software then look for a gaming laptop with at least an 8800GTX or higher graphics card. For CAD/CAM software a Quadro or higher is usually required.
We’ve gone over a lot of information about laptops and it’s probably a little overwhelming, to say the least. As we always say though, don’t let all the technical jargon scare you away!
There are many great laptops out there that can be used as engineering machines; you just have to know what specs they come equipped with to find the right machine for your work.