Recommended MacBook Pro Configuration to run Windows w SolidWorks in VM

Viktor Iskarin

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Jul 25, 2015
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Hi, entering computer engineering this fall, choosing a laptop.

I love Macs and always wanted one, but as my department points out there will be quite a bit of software that is exclusive to Windows, ie SolidWorks.

I want a 13 inch MacBook, on which I will be able to do all the programming, web surfing and running a Windows in VM with Solidworks.

What's your recommended configuration of a MacBook for my case?

Outside of Mac I consider models like Dell XPS 13 and ASUS Zenbook ux303ln

P.S I have a fetish with small and slim laptops, so new 12 inch MacBook got me all excited. Are there any chances that it would handle my needs as specified above?

Thank you! :)
 

velo3100

Distinguished
Moderator
First stay away from macs if you are doing 3d. Scaling is a nightmare on those things. Plus most of them struggle to do 3d graphics work.

Second I would really stay away from small laptops as it will be a pain when doing 3d and programming, trust me I did a game course and I am glad I have a 15 inch and not smaller.

Third. I will need to know your budget as this will let me know what laptops I can recommend.

Finally could you let me know what kind of programs you will be making and what complexity the 3d models are?
 

Viktor Iskarin

Estimable
Jul 25, 2015
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4,510
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Hi, thank you for your reply!
I did fear that I would at least need a dedicated GPU for that..

The main reason behind having a small and light laptop is that I will need to carry it through 4 hours of commuting every day. 15 inch is an absolute maximum for me, if possible I'd go with 13.

Budget is around $2000 CAD so around $1500-1600 USD.

It is difficult for me to say what kind of programs I'd be making since I am just starting my degree. I know for a fact that some courses are very MATLAB heavy, SolidWorks and AutoCAD are a must too (complexity may vary, I'd imagine anything from simple solid parts to circuit boards and entire machines?), CircuitMaker, some programming IDE's too for sure (don't really know which ones, something like VisualBasic and C/C++ IDE will be there by default).

Cheers
 
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