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How do you choose a Laptop for Architecture?
You often hear that desktops are a more practical purchase over laptops, but as architects, you’re usually on the move and need something more portable. In that case, it may be worth the extra dollars buying a laptop instead. But with so many options these days, how do you choose a laptop for architecture? Today I’m going to show you what you need to be looking for in a laptop, depending at what level you’re at. At the end of the video i’ll be going over some bonus tips that I look into when purchasing a laptop and these will help you making the best possible decision.
As Architects and students of architecture you are going to be using your laptop generally to create plans, diagrams, presentations and renders. What you plan to do with your laptop will allow you to decide which laptop you purchase.
There are 3 things you want to look at when choosing a laptop for architecture and that is RAM/ processor/ and Graphics card. Without getting too deep into details let’s go over each one.
RAM is your computer’s short term memory. Everything you have open on your computer at the time you are using it will use RAM; and a general rule of thumb is that the more ram the better. Most laptops come with 8/16/ or 32 gigabytes of ram. I usually try to stick between 16 or 32 when purchasing a laptop. Something important to remember is that RAM is upgradable in most cases so you have the option of adding more ram in the future. I’ve included a link in the description which helps you identify if the laptop you’re looking into is upgradable and how much ram you can add.
Speaking of upgrades, your computer’s Processor, is not something that is generally upgradable so you’re going to want to spend some time looking at the processors that are available. Every laptop I have owned in the past has come with an Intel processor these come in I3,I5,I7 and now I9. Put simply:
I3:good (great for basic tasks)
I5:better (good for multitasking/ editing)
I7:best (heavy multi talking)
I9:good for powering a small island
If you’re going to be using your laptop only for diagrams, massing studies, and plans. Then an I5 should be Ideal. I have an 11 inch Lenovo that I use for photoshop and rhino massing on the go and It works extremely well!
Once you get into Rendering you’re going to want to look into getting an I7. I’ve also included another link that will help you see which is the best overall processor for the money.
The final component you are going to be looking into will be the graphics card. This is part of your laptop that will focus solely on graphic related content.The better the graphics card, the faster your rendering times will be. If you’re going to spend a lot of time on renderings, especially really intense scenes with alot of materials and reflections, you are going to want to invest in a really good graphics card. Because there are so many graphics cards out there and they all have there pros and cons i’ve included a link that will help you decided which graphics card you should buy.
Keep in mind that if you are going to be using revit, you will have access to a cloud based rendering system which means you don’t need a powerful graphics card to create renders. If you are going to be using maya, 3ds max, vray, or lumion, then i recommend doing research on a good graphics card and a good place to start is on the lumion website. Link will be in the description
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