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Good laptop for a CS major?

#11DoramiPosted 8/4/2014 8:51:21 PM
The Costco one is bad because of the low screen real estate.

Best option would be something like a Latitude E6540 from the Dell outlet.
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#12DragnfyrPosted 8/4/2014 9:01:07 PM
Greendragon854 posted...
This is also great info to have! Yeah, I'm going to use the laptop mainly for the downtime I have on campus. I've got a 24" monitor and 32" TV that acts as a pretty decent monitor at home. If I have to do anything extremely serious, I can do it there. This is more for the 2 hour gap on classes MWF and the 4 hour gap on TTh. I live far enough away from campus that it'd be a waste of time to go home to do any homework then go back for other classes.


For that amount of time I think you should get a 13-14" laptop. They are way better value for college students because they are much more portable and have much better battery. A good portable 15" laptop with fantastic battery life will cost way more than $800.
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#13Greendragon854(Topic Creator)Posted 8/4/2014 9:14:36 PM
You guys have given me things to think about, and I'm grateful for the help.

Dorami posted...
The Costco one is bad because of the low screen real estate.

Best option would be something like a Latitude E6540 from the Dell outlet.


I couldn't find any in the outlet, and looking at the price of the lowest spec one, I'm doubting even it would fall into my price range if the outlet had it for 30% off. I'm pretty slanted against dells, however, that one looks pretty sweet. I have just known so many people who's dells crap out on them like a month after warranty is out.
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"Are you going to buy this time? Or are you still just curious?"
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#14Greendragon854(Topic Creator)Posted 8/4/2014 9:35:40 PM
Also forgot to mention, a full keyboard is kind of important to me, another reason I am going for a 15". It's pretty hard to find a 10-key on anything smaller
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"Are you going to buy this time? Or are you still just curious?"
"Well, I supposed you could say I'm Buy-Curious" ~PSN - greeniebeanie
#15Greendragon854(Topic Creator)Posted 8/4/2014 9:56:22 PM(edited)
One more shameless bump. I still like the idea of going through Costco. The SKUs they have seem to be a little nicer than others, and that return policy really makes me less nervous to drop some cash.

Between the original one I posted:
http://www.costco.com/.product.100116964.html?cm_sp=RichRelevance-_-itempageVerticalRight-_-CategorySiloedViewCP&cm_vc=itempageVerticalRight|CategorySiloedViewCP


and this guy:
http://www.costco.com/Dell-15-5000-Series-Touchscreen-Laptop-%7c-Intel-Core-i7-%7c-2GB-Graphics-%7c-Backlit-Keyboard-%7c-1080p.product.100120798.html

Which sounds better? The Dell has a higher resolution screen, dedicated GPU, an 8GB SSD (?) but only has a 3 cell battery. It's also a hundred dollars more, which I really don't want to spend.

The HP costs less, has a lower resolution (which would be annoying with coding/writing papers I suppose) but comes with Beats audio (I kid, I kid)

Is the upgrade worth going with a Dell and overcoming my prejudices? A screen upgrade is probably worth the 100 alone, but I worry about battery life. I shouldn't be far away from an outlet at any time, but...it seems like it could still be a problem.
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"Are you going to buy this time? Or are you still just curious?"
"Well, I supposed you could say I'm Buy-Curious" ~PSN - greeniebeanie
#16DragnfyrPosted 8/4/2014 10:00:07 PM
Greendragon854 posted...
Also forgot to mention, a full keyboard is kind of important to me, another reason I am going for a 15". It's pretty hard to find a 10-key on anything smaller


Do you know for sure you'll need a numpad? Other than for spreadsheets I don't really find it useful. There's a good reason even larger laptops don't have one. It's much nicer to have a centred keyboard.
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#17Greendragon854(Topic Creator)Posted 8/4/2014 10:10:28 PM(edited)
Dragnfyr posted...
Greendragon854 posted...
Also forgot to mention, a full keyboard is kind of important to me, another reason I am going for a 15". It's pretty hard to find a 10-key on anything smaller


Do you know for sure you'll need a numpad? Other than for spreadsheets I don't really find it useful. There's a good reason even larger laptops don't have one. It's much nicer to have a centred keyboard.


Yes, I use them for a few things. Entering numbers into calculators/wolfram/mymathlab is much simpler with a numpad than the number row. I'm quite good at touch typing, until I have to enter numbers. The numpad saves me from slowing to a crawl when I have to enter numbers.

*edit* thank you dragnfyr for your replies, by the way. You've been very helpful
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"Are you going to buy this time? Or are you still just curious?"
"Well, I supposed you could say I'm Buy-Curious" ~PSN - greeniebeanie
#18Garage_ManPosted 8/4/2014 10:14:54 PM
I use a numpad every day. I wouldn't trade that for ANYTHING.

Anyways you might wanna stay away from them but HPs Envy line is pretty decent. Go to their website and check it out. I've seen a few stores that stock them buy they are usually the meh versions.

Full keyboard, 15" OR 17", I7, Touch Screen, dGPU if you want...oh and beats audio!
#19Greendragon854(Topic Creator)Posted 8/4/2014 10:30:38 PM
Garage_Man posted...
I use a numpad every day. I wouldn't trade that for ANYTHING.

Anyways you might wanna stay away from them but HPs Envy line is pretty decent. Go to their website and check it out. I've seen a few stores that stock them buy they are usually the meh versions.

Full keyboard, 15" OR 17", I7, Touch Screen, dGPU if you want...oh and beats audio!


This man KNOWS the value of a numpad! But yes, I've looked at the total for the Envy, and with tax and shipping it's about 900. That's my upperest of all upper limits, so that's probably going to be what I get. And you know what? If I hate it, I can take it back to costco and just take a 30 dollar loss from shipping. 16 gigs of ram (important if I'm going to be listening to music while doing homework while having skype up while researching stuff while compiling while...well yeah. Also VMs) It will be a bummer to have a lower resolution screen, but eh.
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"Are you going to buy this time? Or are you still just curious?"
"Well, I supposed you could say I'm Buy-Curious" ~PSN - greeniebeanie
#20DragnfyrPosted 8/4/2014 11:09:37 PM
Honestly if you want to save some money you drop down down to 8GB of RAM and still do all the things you mentioned comfortably. That's assuming you only want to run one VM at a time or two VMs with relatively low system requirements. Sometimes I run a Windows VM + Fedora VM on my Mac at the same time and still runs very smoothly. Granted I wasn't using Skype at the same time but I did have Chrome with music playing.
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