[FoRK] Computer for College Student

Johnson, Casey Casey_Johnson at mentor.com
Fri Jul 30 11:02:36 PDT 2010

Initial writer: This is just my opinion.

That said, I have 5 kids. I buy each a laptop when they are a senior in high school as a Christmas present giving them a year to be sufficiently acquainted. Being a smart shopper, I always buy during back to school sales which is now. I bought a laptop for #3 two days ago. In the laptop space for my kids, I will only compare Sony, MAC and Lenovo which I consider the high end for large brand manufactures. My goal is to get a laptop that will get the kid through the first degree. Buying the right amount of power and RAM to start is key. Most other options are gravy and / or fun. Lenovo generally targets business which puts it at the bottom of the school list. Apples are good but like you, I am a PC and my kids are familiar with Windows and Windows based applications. Additionally, I have a 5 license pack for MS Office already. That leaves Sony.

Two days ago I purchased an EB series with an I3, 4 gig RAM and a 500 GB HD for just under $600. This is probably $150 to $200 under suggested. I will not consider an AMD in a laptop as they tend to run hotter (way bad in laptop) which also translates to battery life. Additional writer needed: Ex-InHell employee for years and consumed too much of the cool-aid. The I5 has minimal additional performance and Turbo Boost -- ooh, sounds so cool -- just doesn't justify the extra $100. An I3 is quite compatible to the early quads which are generally more than enough for college. The I3 will definitely process graphics well unless you get to power graphic user status (for instance, needing to flash / shock multiple files daily). In circumstances where more power is needed, go for the I7 quad.

If I was buying for myself, I would consider more options. For instance ASUS is interesting. However, I don’t think anyone rivals their ability to produce so many excellent computers with so many that are total shit. While I like their parts, my opinion is they are wreaking their brand. Other nice lesser knowns include Alienware (which are very cool) and Velocity. Both brands are geared at and more popular with the gamer types.

Finally, depending on how careful your kid is, definitely consider extended warranty (even though the entire idea totally pisses me off). 
Casey Johnson

-----Original Message-----
From: fork-bounces at xent.com [mailto:fork-bounces at xent.com] On Behalf Of Jeffrey Kay
Sent: Friday, July 30, 2010 10:06 AM
To: 'Friends of Rohit Khare'
Subject: Re: [FoRK] Computer for College Student

I appreciate the suggestions about a MacBook from both you and Steve, but I
don't foresee any Macs in the future in my household (I'm a PC, see my sig

I probably should have clarified that the real question is whether to go
with a 2 computer solution (netbook + desktop) or 1 computer solution
(laptop).  Mostly I'm curious to see if anyone else on the list has kids in
college and what they decided.  The netbook would be great for running
around campus (if the tablets were better at taking classroom notes, I'd
consider that) but suck for performance and would require syncing between
two computers to comfortably allow work to get done. Laptops with enough
power generally don't have a great battery life.  Thus the dilemma.  

Perhaps the real answer is that she needs a desktop to do Photoshop and a
medium power laptop to do most of her work (like an Asus, with long battery
life).  That way she could keep all of her schoolwork on the laptop and just
use the desktop (or her current laptop) for the heavy lifiting.

--- jeff | jeff at jeffreykay.com | www.jeffreykay.com (blog) |
www.kayslens.com (photos) | kosherhog (twitter) | i'm a pc | החזיר כשר

-----Original Message-----
From: fork-bounces at xent.com [mailto:fork-bounces at xent.com] On Behalf Of
Eugen Leitl
Sent: Friday, July 30, 2010 6:24 AM
To: fork at xent.com
Subject: Re: [FoRK] Computer for College Student

On Thu, Jul 29, 2010 at 10:05:46AM -0700, Jeffrey Kay wrote:

> 1)      Runs Photoshop well
> 2)      ~4 lbs or less
> 3)      ~6 hours battery life

Have you considered a http://www.apple.com/macbook/ ?
Eugen* Leitl <a href="http://leitl.org">leitl</a> http://leitl.org
ICBM: 48.07100, 11.36820 http://www.ativel.com http://postbiota.org
8B29F6BE: 099D 78BA 2FD3 B014 B08A  7779 75B0 2443 8B29 F6BE
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