mahalia2001's Laptop recommendation thread Watch

mahalia2001
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#1
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#1
Budget
£900

Subject being studied
Film

Software that will be used
Adobe Premier Pro CC 2017, Corel VideoStudio Ultimate X9, Lightworks Pro

Screen size
13.3 inches

Operating system preference
MacOS

Minimum amount of RAM
16GB

Minimum battery life
More than 12 hours

Minimum storage requirement
1 tb

Weight limit
8 pounds

Used for playing games?
No

If yes, what games?
-

Touchscreen needed?
No

Are there any specific ports you need?
-

What devices do you have currently?
iPhone

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Gofre
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#2
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#2
(Original post by mahalia2001)
Budget
£900

Subject being studied
Film

Software that will be used
Adobe Premier Pro CC 2017, Corel VideoStudio Ultimate X9, Lightworks Pro

Screen size
13.3 inches

Operating system preference
MacOS

Minimum amount of RAM
16GB

Minimum battery life
More than 12 hours

Minimum storage requirement
1 tb

Weight limit
8 pounds

Used for playing games?
No

If yes, what games?
-

Touchscreen needed?
No

Are there any specific ports you need?
-

What devices do you have currently?
iPhone
Does it have to be a Mac?
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Acsel
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#3
Report 3 weeks ago
#3
(Original post by mahalia2001)
Budget
£900

Subject being studied
Film

Software that will be used
Adobe Premier Pro CC 2017, Corel VideoStudio Ultimate X9, Lightworks Pro

Screen size
13.3 inches

Operating system preference
MacOS

Minimum amount of RAM
16GB

Minimum battery life
More than 12 hours

Minimum storage requirement
1 tb

Weight limit
8 pounds

Used for playing games?
No

If yes, what games?
-

Touchscreen needed?
No

Are there any specific ports you need?
-

What devices do you have currently?
iPhone
Your requirements are completely unreasonable. You're not getting a 16GB RAM, 1TB MacBook at £900. At best you'll get one with 8GB RAM, a 256GB SSD and a terrible dual core processor for this price.

The 8 pound weight requirement is also odd, that's almost 4Kg which is drastically heavier than most high end gaming laptops.

If you're willing to switch to a Windows based device, you'll be able to get these specs (although a 13.3 inch laptop might be a stretch). If you absolutely must have a MacBook you could double your budget and still not get what you want.
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amaraub
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#4
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#4
good luck getting 1tb 16gb ram mac for £900 lol
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mahalia2001
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#5
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#5
(Original post by Gofre)
Does it have to be a Mac?
No, I just put that for the sake of choosing an option and unsure about the needed specifications. I'm just looking for a laptop for uni that is good for my Film course.
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mahalia2001
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#6
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#6
(Original post by Acsel)
Your requirements are completely unreasonable. You're not getting a 16GB RAM, 1TB MacBook at £900. At best you'll get one with 8GB RAM, a 256GB SSD and a terrible dual core processor for this price.

The 8 pound weight requirement is also odd, that's almost 4Kg which is drastically heavier than most high end gaming laptops.

If you're willing to switch to a Windows based device, you'll be able to get these specs (although a 13.3 inch laptop might be a stretch). If you absolutely must have a MacBook you could double your budget and still not get what you want.
I'm not exactly sure of what specifications I need so went for some suggestions from searching about. I'm just looking for a laptop for uni that is good for my Film course. I've heard MacBooks are good but don't know if they'd be best for Film.
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Acsel
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(Original post by mahalia2001)
I'm not exactly sure of what specifications I need so went for some suggestions from searching about. I'm just looking for a laptop for uni that is good for my Film course. I've heard MacBooks are good but don't know if they'd be best for Film.
It is widely suggested that a MacBook is better since it has better compatibility with creative software, however to some extent that's outdated advice. A Windows machine will serve you just fine and is really your only option.

I wouldn't disagree with the 16GB of RAM and 1TB storage recommendations, although it is going to be difficult to get them in a 13.3 inch device athis price point. If you're willing to compromise on the size of the device, I'd recommend jumping up to 15.6 inches. It'll be a heavier, larger laptop but you're going to have a lot more options. At 13.3 inches, you'll get something really lightweight and portable, but it's going to be limited to 8GB of RAM and a 256GB SSD in all likelihood. Basically do you value portability over performance?

Are you only looking for a laptop? If a desktop is an option instead, that widens your options a lot.
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mahalia2001
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#8
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#8
(Original post by Acsel)
It is widely suggested that a MacBook is better since it has better compatibility with creative software, however to some extent that's outdated advice. A Windows machine will serve you just fine and is really your only option.

I wouldn't disagree with the 16GB of RAM and 1TB storage recommendations, although it is going to be difficult to get them in a 13.3 inch device athis price point. If you're willing to compromise on the size of the device, I'd recommend jumping up to 15.6 inches. It'll be a heavier, larger laptop but you're going to have a lot more options. At 13.3 inches, you'll get something really lightweight and portable, but it's going to be limited to 8GB of RAM and a 256GB SSD in all likelihood. Basically do you value portability over performance?

Are you only looking for a laptop? If a desktop is an option instead, that widens your options a lot.
That's helpful to know, thanks. I'm looking for a laptop however I could spend a higher amount if that will get me a good laptop and last some time. Is a Windows one still my best option, and if so which one? I would probably prefer portability but still good enough performance for my course.
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notdyls
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#9
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#9
(Original post by mahalia2001)
That's helpful to know, thanks. I'm looking for a laptop however I could spend a higher amount if that will get me a good laptop and last some time. Is a Windows one still my best option, and if so which one? I would probably prefer portability but still good enough performance for my course.
Since you're using Premiere, my understanding is that there isn't much difference in performance between MacOS and Windows. FCPX, however, is very well optimised for MacOS if you're interested in switching later on. If you do opt for a macbook, I would recommend buying a used pro model as the lower end new ones may struggle with the workload. If you're willing to go to 15", that may be better as they are available with discrete graphics which should help with the software that you'll be using.

On the Windows front, there are a lot more options and I do not know enough to be able to recommend a particular laptop. One thing to consider would be that a thinner/more portable laptop will have less powerful cooling which may impact performance if you use it for longer periods of time. You should also look out for ones with a G suffix on the CPU model, or one with dedicated graphics as they should come in useful for the things that you'll be using it for. You'll definitely be able to get a better machine on Windows, but its up to you whether you want that or to get a mac which will work well with your current iPhone.
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Acsel
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#10
(Original post by mahalia2001)
That's helpful to know, thanks. I'm looking for a laptop however I could spend a higher amount if that will get me a good laptop and last some time. Is a Windows one still my best option, and if so which one? I would probably prefer portability but still good enough performance for my course.
To put things in perspective financially, an entry level MacBook Pro (that costs £1250) is outperformed by a £500 Windows laptop, with the tradeoff being design and build quality. But you can get Windows laptops in the £900-1200 range that easily compete with the MacBook on things like weight, size, build quality and outperform it in the hardware department too. MacBook simply aren't good value right now.

Generally speaking, I think your best bet is to look at custom devices. I'm not a huge expert on the options available but I've picked this purely to check costs. Configuring it with an i7 8750H, 16GB of RAM, an MX150 GPU for GPU acceleration, a 256GB M.2 SSD for the OS and a 1TB HDD for large files comes out at £857. It's a 2.5Kg, 15.6 inch laptop so it's not super lightweight, but it covers everything you requested in the OP and comes in under budget. Odds are there are better options that may be cheaper, smaller and lighter, but it confirms you can get something very powerful that suits your needs within your budget. I think you'd struggle to find something similar in an off the shelf model.

I'd also say that's about the limit you're going to get in terms of portability, as going much smaller will start to impact cooling. 2-2.5Kg is a reasonable weight for a laptop. Looking at something lighter and better built, you could get something like an XPS 15. Spec wise it's fairly similar, but the price shoots up to £1500, even with student discount. The weight drops down to 1.8Kg and you'll get a really nice, well built machine but not everyone values that at an extra £600.

If you're happy to compromise on size and weight to get a more powerful device that'll last your course, going custom built is your best bet imo.
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mahalia2001
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#11
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(Original post by notdyls)
Since you're using Premiere, my understanding is that there isn't much difference in performance between MacOS and Windows. FCPX, however, is very well optimised for MacOS if you're interested in switching later on. If you do opt for a macbook, I would recommend buying a used pro model as the lower end new ones may struggle with the workload. If you're willing to go to 15", that may be better as they are available with discrete graphics which should help with the software that you'll be using.

On the Windows front, there are a lot more options and I do not know enough to be able to recommend a particular laptop. One thing to consider would be that a thinner/more portable laptop will have less powerful cooling which may impact performance if you use it for longer periods of time. You should also look out for ones with a G suffix on the CPU model, or one with dedicated graphics as they should come in useful for the things that you'll be using it for. You'll definitely be able to get a better machine on Windows, but its up to you whether you want that or to get a mac which will work well with your current iPhone.
Okay, this is all makes sense. Thank you for your help. I know what to look for now.
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Acsel
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(Original post by notdyls)
You should also look out for ones with a G suffix on the CPU model, or one with dedicated graphics as they should come in useful for the things that you'll be using it for.
Minor note on this. There aren't a ton of processors available right now with the G classification. Finding a H processor and getting a dedicated GPU for GPU accelerated tasks (even if it's just something like an MX150) will offer substantially more options than trying to find a G processor. Since we're on that subject U processors should generally be avoided, although the more recent 8th gen chips are fairly capable.
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