Computer Help

  1. #1

    Computer Help

    OK I am majoring in computer animation, and a few of my classes require a laptop. I know nothing about what makes a laptop good or anything. I am here hoping that those of you that DO animation (CGI etc...) can post some links to some good laptops that will enable me to do some cool animation but not cost hundreds of thousands of dollars. I know I'm gonna want lots of memory decent RAM and graphics card. I just not sure what's good, any help would be appreciated. Thanks.

  2. #2
    askywalker98's Avatar
    Member Since
    Jan 2004
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    Orlando, Florida
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    Re: Computer Help

    Depending on what you will be doing, and what software you will be using, will decide if you need a Mac or a PC. They both use the same hardware, so in either case, I would focus on RAM and Processor. anything with 4 GB of Ram or more should take care of you. As for processor, I would try for an Intel i7. That should render things for you about as quick as you can get in a laptop. Try and find out what they want you to get (Mac/PC), then make your decision. A powerful video card isn't as important as you may think, because a majority of the rendering will take place on the Processor. Anything better than "Intel Integrated Graphics" certainly would not hurt, so try and get something with either an nVidia or AMD video card.

    I do not work in animation at all. However, I have lent my home computer's processing power to friends so they could render some frames, and it's all on the CPU, or processor, not the video card.

    If you end up having to get a Mac, I'm sorry. You'll probably end up spending $1199+. Probably more (if you want some real horsepower).

    Does anyone here that actually does work in the industry have any help to offer?

  3. #3
    Triple-d's Avatar
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    Dec 2010
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    Roanoke, VA USA
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    Re: Computer Help

    askywalker98 is right. I would like to add that with the Operating system of Windows 7 the more memory the better. I just spec'ed out a laptop for a friend the other day and it was for occassional use at home and the minimum memory it came with was 6GB of RAM. If you are doing animation get at least 8GB of RAM, make sure that the video card is the more expensive of the options. A lot of video cards now-a-days have memory on the card as well. This would be a plus for you for animation. Processor is the next thing to look at, the bigger the better. Last is the Harddrive, most laptops have at least a 500GB harddrive in them now so not too much to worry about that anymore.

  4. #4

    Member Since
    Sep 2006
    From
    Spain
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    1,712

    Re: Computer Help

    The best option for something graphic design related such as using Photoshop or 3DSMax is buying a Mac Book Pro, there are cheaper versions but they will cost, as said previously, from 1200$ and up. If not, I've been using an HP from 1 year and half and it has worked for 3DSMax, Blender, Photoshop CS5, Autodek Inventor, and such with NO problems, and a good one will run about 1000-1500$. But I've heard about some HP getting to hot, not mi chase anyway.

    PS: Windows 7 if a PC, never Vista, and repeat, NEVER.

  5. #5

    Re: Computer Help

    Is RAM the same as Harddrive memory? I already have the photoshop they use, but it's not for mac, so I won't be going with a MAC. As far as MAC I don't think they care, as long as it's a laptop. Thanks a lot for this info it's really helping me out.
    I found 2 so far that I'm thi8nking about what do you think

    1. http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16834152230



    2.http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16834152203
    Last edited by mandosoldier; Mar 24, 2011 at 4:16 PM.

  6. #6

    Re: Computer Help

    no, ram and hard drive are unrelated.

    hard drive is how much file storage you have.

    ram is how much your computer can keep in its head at one time. the more ram it has, the more simultaneous programs you can run / bigger files you can work with easily / etc...

    i'm a mac person myself, so i can't make any real recommendations on that side. i've used macbook pros exclusively for 5-6 years now and have never had a complaint. i get a new one every 18 - 24 months or so.

  7. #7
    Triple-d's Avatar
    Member Since
    Dec 2010
    From
    Roanoke, VA USA
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    405

    Re: Computer Help

    Hey! Took a look at the specs. If I were choosing one I would use the specs of the first one. Resolution - good, the higher of the resolution the more clear the picture on the screen. Memory good probably need more RAM like 8GB if you can afford it. 6 would work though. Harddrive good. Video card good. 1 thing I would be worried about, the 1 year limited warranty. That makes me a little nervous. If a pc/laptop is going to break they usually break within the first year. (Don't ask but it does happen). One other thing, any reason you went with Newegg? I personnally like and have great experience with Dell. (I know some people don't like them but it is preference). Back to the warranty, You want at least 1 year full warranty if you don't work with computers or have a friend that knows how to fix them. Phew rambled on a bit haven't I?

    Hope this helps in your decision.

  8. #8
    askywalker98's Avatar
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    Jan 2004
    From
    Orlando, Florida
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    Re: Computer Help

    I second the vote for the $1299 version. Larger hard drive, and more importantly, higher resolution screen. If screen resolution isn't something you've considered in the past, it's very important. It basically allows you to see more menu options on the screen at the same time, as well as more dense detail.

    Personally, I'm not a big fan on NewEgg for Laptops. I don't think they have a good return policy, from what I can remember. Amazon, or Best Buy are better places to look. Best Buy will have much fewer options, but they also offer some nice financing options if you can qualify.

    I know the warranty seems like an expensive thing, but trust us, it will pay off in the end. Are you set on buying a laptop from NewEgg?

    I'm not saying this is the best deal, but here is something that jumped out at me, if you have a Costco card, or know someone who does.

    Costco - ASUS G53JW-XA1 Core i7-740QM 1.73GHz Laptop 1.5GB NVIDIA GTX 460M DDR5 Graphics Bluetooth

    What does everyone think of that? I believe it has a second hard drive bay for future upgrades. 500GB should hold you off for the time being.

    As with a lot of things you buy from Costco, I believe you get a sweet warranty.

  9. #9

    Re: Computer Help

    not set, but I bought my tower from newegg and had no problems and got it within days of my order. I looked at the best buy selection, and the 1st link I have is going to run rings around the selection of best buy.

  10. #10
    askywalker98's Avatar
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    Jan 2004
    From
    Orlando, Florida
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    Re: Computer Help

    Ha ha yeah, I do all my desktop builds from newegg. I just know their laptop return policy isn't that great. So if you end up not being totally happy with it, you'll end up paying a bit to return it.

  11. #11

    Re: Computer Help

    Definitely don't skimp on the warranty.

    Also think about how important downtime is to you. If you have to ship your computer out somewhere for repairs, is that acceptable? I usually get next business day on site service for the PC laptops I buy for work. That way wherever the employee is, he/she can get repairs immediately. For the Macs in the office we have normal AppleCare, but since there is an Apple Store in most major metro areas we can get on site service that way.

  12. #12

    Member Since
    Aug 2010
    From
    Treasure Coast Florida
    Posts
    16

    Re: Computer Help

    I bought my MSI laptop from newegg and the only problem that I had was that it came with windows vista installed... A few weeks later I got the free upgrade to windows 7 and I haven't had a problem since. Years ago I had a mac and it was great, but like all things they get old and outdated. Plus having a mac I had a bunch of friends pestering me to change to a windows platform. My next decktop will be a mac though..

  13. #13

    Re: Computer Help

    It comes with windows 7 and even if it gets
    Mixed up I can get 7 thru my school for like
    $20

  14. #14
    askywalker98's Avatar
    Member Since
    Jan 2004
    From
    Orlando, Florida
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    Re: Computer Help

    Have you made a decision yet?

  15. #15

    Re: Computer Help

    yeah I went ahead and bought Newegg.com - MSI GT660R-494US NoteBook Intel Core i7 740QM(1.73GHz) 15.6" 6GB Memory 1TB HDD 7200rpm BD Combo NVIDIA GeForce GTX 285M from newegg. I got it in 2 days and it's working like a champ. It's running at least as fast and as well as my tower, I'm playing world of warcraft and DC universe on it already. I am greatly pleased with newegg and the laptop. I have also bought a 500GB external harddrive for it, so I have even more memory space. Cool thing is it has it's own fans i can turn on/off to keep it cool so I don't have to grab a cooling matt for it.

  16. #16
    Triple-d's Avatar
    Member Since
    Dec 2010
    From
    Roanoke, VA USA
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    405

    Re: Computer Help

    Good deal. Glad you are happy with it. One question though, "I'm playing world of warcraft and DC universe on it already". I thought you were going to use this for animation?

  17. #17
    askywalker98's Avatar
    Member Since
    Jan 2004
    From
    Orlando, Florida
    Posts
    1,673

    Re: Computer Help

    Yes! Pick up Steam from Welcome to Steam for all your PC Gaming needs. You'll find great deals every week, and extremely good deals on holidays.

  18. #18

    Re: Computer Help

    I am gonna use it for animation. I still have assloads of memory left, and the speed of the comp is great, I can do everything on it

  19. #19
    Triple-d's Avatar
    Member Since
    Dec 2010
    From
    Roanoke, VA USA
    Posts
    405

    Re: Computer Help

    Ha! Enjoy it!

  20. #20

    Re: Computer Help

    I just want to know what animation program is going to force you to do your work on a laptop? They don't have desktops in their classrooms?

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