Personal computing discussed

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rascule
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Laptop for architect

Thu Aug 02, 2018 3:35 pm

New to the forum, and first-time poster.

I'd like to purchase a new laptop to replace a dinosaur at home. I need to run architectural/design software like AutoCAD & Revit, plus graphics programs like Photoshop/InDesign/Illustrator. My company is large enough to have a couple good employee purchase programs, one with HP and Lenovo. I am finding that HP's pricing is a bit more than Lenovos, so I am looking at the latter. I have a couple base specs that I am toying with, a ThinkPad P71 and a newer P52. For about the same price, I can spec the following:

P71: i7-7820HQ CPU w/ Quadro P4000 dedicated GPU
-or-
P52: i7-8850H CPU w/ Quadro P2000 dedicated GPU

Most other components are identical between the two, like memory, display, storage, etc.... I am having trouble deciding whether I should go for the faster processor/slightly less graphics or the better graphics/slightly slower processor, so I thought I'd ask some folks that are probably smarter than me with these things. TIA for the feedback.
 
chuckula
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Re: Laptop for architect

Thu Aug 02, 2018 3:45 pm

Thanks for posting. I'm a bit of a Frank Lloyd Wright geek myself although I lack architectural skills in large quantities.

Looking for a workstation-grade mobile GPU that's certified for AutoCad/etc. is clearly the right move if you want to use this system professionally.

Beyond basic CPU/GPU setup here are a few questions:
1. How mobile do you really need to be? If you really need to be away from a plug for a long time, push for whatever model gives the best battery life.
2. How important is the laptop's screen? If you need the built-in screen to really deliver accurate colors then you might want to shell out more money for the higher-end screens. It's not so much the resolution as the color reproduction that might be important here.
3. Related to 2, if you don't need to rely on your laptop's screen as heavily because you have an external monitor, make sure the display output options are convenient to let you use external displays with minimal hassle.
4. I love SSDs in notebooks, but make sure that if you get one it has plenty of capacity for whatever work it is that you expect to reside locally in the notebook. I guess that depends on if you are just working with linear CAD drawings or are doing crazy 3D modeling with textures and other huge data sets.
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DancinJack
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Re: Laptop for architect

Thu Aug 02, 2018 3:49 pm

I'm not really a fan of 17 inch "laptops" so my decision would be the P52 but that's just me. Hopefully you're plugging into an external display/keyboard/mouse most the time. It also appears the P71 has a 4K screen which I would not necessarily suggest. It's just not necessary IMO (I've done AutoCAD/Catia work too). Again, hopefully an external display more or less mitigates this issue.

Also looks like you can upgrade the graphics card in the P52 if you jump up to the higher CPU option. You're talking 212 (CPU) + 467 (P3200) for those options though.

I dunno. I think you'd be fine with either configuration to be honest. This choice, IMO, is more about personal feel.
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Usacomp2k3
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Re: Laptop for architect

Thu Aug 02, 2018 4:27 pm

I have a P51 (and the T540p before that) and would recommend them for professional use for anyone.
 
rascule
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Re: Laptop for architect

Thu Aug 02, 2018 4:39 pm

chuckula wrote:
Beyond basic CPU/GPU setup here are a few questions:
1. How mobile do you really need to be? If you really need to be away from a plug for a long time, push for whatever model gives the best battery life.
2. How important is the laptop's screen? If you need the built-in screen to really deliver accurate colors then you might want to shell out more money for the higher-end screens. It's not so much the resolution as the color reproduction that might be important here.
3. Related to 2, if you don't need to rely on your laptop's screen as heavily because you have an external monitor, make sure the display output options are convenient to let you use external displays with minimal hassle.
4. I love SSDs in notebooks, but make sure that if you get one it has plenty of capacity for whatever work it is that you expect to reside locally in the notebook. I guess that depends on if you are just working with linear CAD drawings or are doing crazy 3D modeling with textures and other huge data sets.


I'm generally not mobile with it for more than a few hours. I just want enough flexibility to be able to take the laptop to a client's house for a meeting and be able to make drawings changes, draft render, etc...

I am keeping the display fairly generic with regards to resolution. It seems 4K won't get me much on that screen size, so I can't justify spending extra $ there. I am, however, looking at color calibration where I can.

My storage setup for both options is a 512GB SSD & 500 GB spindle drive. I have an external drive at home for mass storage.

Also, being a fan or just having an appreciation is great! I admire FLW for the fact that he mostly designed everything that went into his projects, like light fixtures, furniture, tableware, etc.... It's quite impressive.
 
rascule
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Re: Laptop for architect

Thu Aug 02, 2018 4:41 pm

DancinJack wrote:
I'm not really a fan of 17 inch "laptops" so my decision would be the P52 but that's just me. Hopefully you're plugging into an external display/keyboard/mouse most the time. It also appears the P71 has a 4K screen which I would not necessarily suggest. It's just not necessary IMO (I've done AutoCAD/Catia work too). Again, hopefully an external display more or less mitigates this issue.

Also looks like you can upgrade the graphics card in the P52 if you jump up to the higher CPU option. You're talking 212 (CPU) + 467 (P3200) for those options though.

I dunno. I think you'd be fine with either configuration to be honest. This choice, IMO, is more about personal feel.


Me either. I'm probably leaning more towards the 15" model. I don't render that often to realistically need the higher end graphics card, and would probably benefit more from the processor speed. Just trying to get some opinions though.

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