Construction/Blueprint Laptop for my dad

SentinelFPS

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Dec 10, 2013
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Hello. I was hoping to get some advice and recommendations on a good laptop for my Father who is a construction foreman and soon to be coordinator. He knows a bit about computers and how to work with them. He has an old Apple that’s shitty and slow filled with viruses. I would like this one to be on Windows OS and that’s what I use and deal with computers often. (Build, operate, etc.)

So like I stated, he is a construction foreman. Dealing with blueprints all day long. Scaling, numbers. Some preferred requirements would be a 15” screen, black or silver in color, square and not some weird shape lol, ability to run programs like Auto CAD, Sketch up, etc. and plenty of memory space.

As for brands, it doesn’t matter really. If you guys and girls could let me know your opinions I would greatly appreciate it!!

EDIT: Pricing. Under $1000 USD. also a 2 in 1 feature would be really nice. I was looking at Lenovo and the flex so maybe recommendations on those? For storage either an SSD with 500gb minimum or a HDD with 1tb
 

darkbreeze

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Sorry to say it, but for what your dad needs, based on your outline of what he does, and having worked in this field for more than 25 years, my advice is that for modern CAD and architectural applications, and general construction contractor use, he's going to really need something with 32GB of memory and an Nvidia Quadro CPU that is specifically meant for use with those professional CAD applications, not a gaming GPU.

And you're just not going to find that for under 1000 dollars, sorry.

This is probably the best unit that fits the bill, for the least amount of money and includes 32GB of RAM for those professional applications that ARE going to require it, if you don't want it to be just as slow as what he has now, and a Quadro workstation graphics GPU plus a workstation Xeon processor. This is the the least qualified unit you'd want for what he does, unless I am sorely mistaken about the requirements of his job, which I doubt.

https://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16834266590&nm_mc=AFC-C8Junction&cm_mmc=AFC-C8Junction-_-Notebooks-_-HP-_-34266590&cm_sp=&AID=10440897&PID=6361382&SID=trd-1223963846

 

darkbreeze

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No it doesn't. First of all, it's a remanufactured unit. That means it's already had some kind of problem for which it was returned. Not exactly what you want to get dad for his mission critical work laptop.

Secondly, a 250GB SSD isn't likely going to cut it for the massive programs and files he'll likely be using it for while working with CAD, architectural and trade applications.

Not to mention it has a gaming GPU, which is practically useless for CAD and other construction related applications. If you want to get something that's going to benefit him on the job, it really needs to be a workstation GPU equipped laptop.

Clearly, you are not well versed in this area, and should maybe not make recommendations for things you clearly don't grasp.

 

darkbreeze

Honorable
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Sorry to say it, but for what your dad needs, based on your outline of what he does, and having worked in this field for more than 25 years, my advice is that for modern CAD and architectural applications, and general construction contractor use, he's going to really need something with 32GB of memory and an Nvidia Quadro CPU that is specifically meant for use with those professional CAD applications, not a gaming GPU.

And you're just not going to find that for under 1000 dollars, sorry.

This is probably the best unit that fits the bill, for the least amount of money and includes 32GB of RAM for those professional applications that ARE going to require it, if you don't want it to be just as slow as what he has now, and a Quadro workstation graphics GPU plus a workstation Xeon processor. This is the the least qualified unit you'd want for what he does, unless I am sorely mistaken about the requirements of his job, which I doubt.

https://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16834266590&nm_mc=AFC-C8Junction&cm_mmc=AFC-C8Junction-_-Notebooks-_-HP-_-34266590&cm_sp=&AID=10440897&PID=6361382&SID=trd-1223963846

 

SentinelFPS

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Dec 10, 2013
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I will check it out thank you. What is best for the specified topic then do you think? As in processor? memory? etc
 

darkbreeze

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Actually, you know what, that product at that link does NOT have a Xeon processor, unlike what the review on that product says. It has an i5. That's not what you want for sure. Scratch that. Let me do a bit more looking around. That should have been the 4th product reviewed here:

http://www.techradar.com/news/mobile-computing/best-mobile-workstation-5-ideal-laptops-for-business-1271480


But clearly the specs of the unit at that link are wrong, OR the review is wrong. I'll find a good unit that fits the requirements though. It might actually BE necessary to reduce the hardware requirements somewhat, looks like the recent increases in the cost of memory and NAND have really boosted the base prices of laptops with SSDs and large amounts of memory.
 

darkbreeze

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See, that's the thing. For a general purpose of gaming system, you can somewhat decide where you can cut corners or what you can get by with as far as quality settings etc. With a workstation or professional use machine, you kind of have to have what you have to have, and if ANYTHING isn't up to spec, it's going to either lag or simply not work well enough to be useful. You've seen this already with what he has.

Apple used to rule the graphics market, which is why a lot of professional design and CAD/architectural guys tended to go with their products OR needed to have something with Quadro/Firewire graphics. Seems like maybe that's not really the case anymore and for certain Apple doesn't rule the pack when it comes to graphics anymore.

Finding a deal or sale might be the best way to do this, AND, he may have to skimp in one area or another. If anything I think I'd probably want either a 4core/8thread Xeon or a 6th, 7th or 8th gen i7, plus AT LEAST a GTX 1060 or higher and 16 or 32GB of RAM. So, technically, that unit that dude listed up above MIGHT work, but I certainly wouldn't trust making a purchase for a mission critical work machine on a refurbished unit.

I would only buy new with warranty because he's not going to be able to deal with the thing dying three months down the road and having to buy another one all over again because the refurbished warranty only covers it for 90 days.
 

darkbreeze

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Moderator
Another thing is, many applications have very SPECIFIC hardware requirements. I suppose the first thing you ought to do, although it might be hard if this is meant to be a gift, is to find out EXACTLY what applications he will primarily be running. AutoCAD, Solidworks, SkyCiv, MATLAB and TurboCAD are just a few of the applications that he MIGHT be using, but knowing exactly WHAT he used is important because most of these programs have very different, and very specific, hardware requirements. Without knowing that, everything else is just a guess.
 
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