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A new laptop for university

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Hello everyone as the title stated, I would like to have a new laptop for y post secondary education. I have been browsing different models and puzzled by all the options. Right now, I am using ASUS S56C... and it only lasts for 4 hours (without internal browsing) .... 

So here's some specs I would like to have in my future laptop, and hopefully tech gurus can help me  :)

MUST HAVE:
1. Long lasting battery (at least 6 hours, the more the better , if possible)
2. Graphic Card
3. Intel i7
4. HDMI
5. DVD drive
6. Window Operation (I still don't know how to use Apple laptops)
7. At least 8 GB memory
8. 3+ USB Ports and 1+ USB-C port(s)
9. 256 GB+ Hard drive
10. 17" screen
11. Bluetooth

May have: 
1. Touchscreen
2. Good sound system
3. Glowing keyboard (cuz I think this is cool but it's not necessary at all)

Major usage:
1. Normal tasks (PowerPoint, Word, Publisher, Excel)
2. Video editing (Premiere Pro - it freezes when I use my current laptop)
3. Photoshop
4. Tons of internet browsing at the same time (can up to 100 pages at the same time)
5. Graphic Design (Inventor and AutoCAD)

Price: As long as it is under $3000

Thank you very much :)
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75 replies
 
A photo of Anonymous Anonymous
You can't get a powerful laptop with a long battery life. That's not how hardware works.
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My thoughts exactly.
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You can if you get an extended battery.
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but who really wants to carry that around all day? A 17" laptop is likely pretty heavy already
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pick something light. you do not want to carry a 6-7lb monster in your bag across campus.
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Cannot stress this enough ^
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razer blade prob your best option
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U know windows has a chat option where you can talk to experts over the computer. They provide honest advice, and more expert advice than any we can offer. I think you should try it and maybe narrow down a laptop and then ask us. 

I think the surface book looks like an amazing laptop but I'm not sure it fits all your requirements. 

My 0.02 cents! 
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thank you very much 
this is really helpful

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0.02 dollars = 2 cents

sorry i'm a massive bellend procrastinating studying for APs
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For sure a Surface Book. A little pricey but looks awesome and is IMO in all regards better than a MacBook. For $2800 CAD you could fulfill your requirements:

1. yes
2. Dedicated GPU while in laptop mode
 3. Intel i7 
4. None
5. None (I think you can get over it)
6. Windows
7. 8 GB memory 8, 2 USB 3.0 Ports
9. 256 GB
 10. 13.5" screen 
11. Bluetooth 4.0

 Also has both 1 and 3 on your "may haves"
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Boettger, is this you?
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So the tech person in window support suggested 4 laptops:
1. Dell Alienware Echo 15 R2 ANW15-8214SLV Signature Edition Gaming Laptop
2. MSI GT72 6QD Dominator Signature Edition Gaming Laptop
3. Acer Aspire V 17 Nitro VN7-792G-78VL Signature Edition Gaming Laptop
4. MSI GE72 6QD Apache Pro-029US Signature Edition Gaming Laptop
  
which one should i buy? any reviews?
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this isn't tom's hardware bro.
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Quite honestly you probably shouldn't buy a gaming laptop unless you will actually be doing moderate gaming. They're usually quite heavy, and quite pricey, and you don't NEED that.
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I dont play games  but i edit videos
My current laptop frozen whenever I try to edit video. this is why i want to upgrade my laptop
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you don't need even CLOSE to gaming specs to edit videos. Honestly you don't really need anything super special. Don't box yourself into an i7, either. The AMD A8/A10 are both really good.
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I have used the HP spectre and its absolutely amazing...so quick, battery life is great and it has the lit keyboard, i7 processor although the screen isnt 17 inches...but its super thin and light and i find the screen size to be perfect! I think mine was about 1000 (cheaper than a mac, but in my opinion, better)
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Is that USD pricing? Cheapest spectre at bestbuy is $1315.99 CDN and its only an i5.  How old is yours?
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why are you so set on one specific processor? Check specs on computers. processer speed and number of cores is what matters, not just the name. dual core i7 would still prob be worse than a quad core i5 or something. they're the same processors, just a newer version. Not a huge deal. Don't just look at the name, look at details.
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i just got mine this year! I got it in the summer so there are some deals going on around then

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U got a good deal Future Vet!
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I guess either the Dell Inspiron 17.3" Touchscreen Laptop -Silver (Intel Core i7-6500U 6th Gen/2TB HDD/16GB RAM/Win 10) @ 1399.99 or the HP Envy 17.3" Touchscreen Laptop - Silver (Intel Core i7-6700HQ 6th Gen/1TB HDD/16GB RAM/Windows 10) @ 1499.99. both i found in best buy. closest to what i find, and battery life is the only thing that is a problem, especially since you want a powerful laptop.
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I've heard that Mac laptops have compatibility problems with the software used in university... for engineering... is this true???
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Lenovo Y50-80?
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I wish I had $3000 to afford a laptop bruh good on you
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In my opinion (not fact), Macs have a good battery life, decent specs, nice aesthetics, a stunning display, and a great user experience. If you're into gaming though, I wouldn't get it. Otherwise, if its for school and everyday tasks  I would definitely recommend a Macbook Pro (15" or 13" really just comes down to preference). Up to you in the end though really. I suggest looking at some review videos online before making your final decision as well.
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don't get a macbook, unless you enjoy overpaying for a under powered laptop
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Is it good for engineering? In terms of software compatibility?
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You might need to dual boot a Mac in order to run certain programs but most universities have computer labs that have those programs installed. A PC will be more compatible but it's not a huge issue.
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it really depends on what you need it for. if its just for notes or drawing/creative stuff, u might as well buy a surface pro or ipad pro. anything else (coding, softwares) get either a macbook or lenovo yoga pro (any model @ maybe?)
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razer blade
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Lol no
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Any special laptop requirements for kinesiology (human kinetics)?
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If you know where you're taking the course, check online or ask current students. But I doubt that you'll need to run any intense programs so anything with a decent processor, lightweight, and long battery life (Macbook air/pro if you wanna splurge) is probably fine :)
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Microsoft Surface. Kin has a lot of diagrams and being able to draw them in your notes would benefit you greatly.
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two weeks into university and you'll be regretting your decision to lug around a 17" laptop js
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This is really true. I know a ton of guys who got big ass gaming laptops and immediately regretted it.
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I can tell you first hand. DO NOT BUY A 17 INCH LAPTOP. bought this piece of crap for highschool, worst mistake of my life.
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get the razer blade 2016. im definitely getting it, decent battery life 5:30 hours and weighs only 4.25 pounds
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Anna T: thanks for suggestion  of Surface....how good of a Surface would I need?  They start at about $900 and go up to really stupid. Are there minimum requirements u would suggest?
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Standard surface pro 4 ($1279) would not be good enough for you. The 256GB SSD i7 with 8 GBS of ram (but feels like 16) would probably be your best option. It's usually $2099 but on sale for 1899 at bestbuy right now until thursday
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Hey I just got the Asus K501U for school and I would highly recommend it. It's a powerful laptop which I know is important to you, it has a backlit keyboard, and it's very lightweight for the hardware it has. The biggest contributing factor to this is that it doesn't have a disk drive which takes up a lot of weight and space in a laptop. I have an external disk drive that I plug into it when I need to download games or whatever which works fine for me. Would recommend.
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Hi there, I actually work for Best Buy in the computer and tablets section and have learned a thing or two about laptops. 

First off, I would like to clarify the negative connotation attached to Macbooks. Yes, you are paying about an extra $100-200 just for the brand name and can find a windows laptop with the same specs or better for a lower price. With that being said, it is my laptop of choice for a simple reason; reliability. I was a windows guy my whole life until almost 2 years ago. I first got the original surface pro, it broke down on me 3 times within a year, traded it in for an asus gaming laptop, didn't like it, and finally  bartered for a good deal on a 13 inch macbook pro and I have yet to encounter a problem with it. I do light gaming on it as well as homework and multi-task with very little strain on the machine. 

It should also be noted on the money saved by a macbook pro. It can last you 4-10 years even with frequent use, you do not need to buy antivirus for it every year or Microsoft office. 

Also, if you are doing video editing, you do want a powerful processor such as an i7, an A8 will not do the trick, especially as video quality continues to improve. With that being said, be careful it is not a dual core i7, as a quad core i5 would be much more powerful. If you do go with an i5, make sure it is 6th generation i5 (not found in current 13" macbook pro), as that is significantly more powerful than the 5th generation. 

Likewise, look for a solid state drive (SSD) over your standard hard drive, as although it has less storage, it will be about 3 times faster and it means even if your laptop is trashed or shook around a lot, your files will still be safe. 

You do not want a 17" screen, not in university. Everyone else already touched on that it seems. 

Likewise, do not look for a laptop with a DVD drive, you will be very limited and they become quite heavy. Buy an external DVD drive for $40-50 or use digital files. 

My personal recommendation: Asus ZenBook Pro 15.6" Touchscreen Laptop-Silver. 
Asus is a very good brand as they make all the parts themselves and do not source from cheap manufactures for parts. 

It's i7, quadcore, 512 SSD, 16 GB of ram, touchscreen, 3840 x 2160 display, does not weigh you a whole lot at 2.26 KG and up to 6 hours of battery life all for $1000 under budget before taxes. 

Other options: 15" macbook pro. Similar specs, but an extra $450. Note though: you can run windows on a mac with ease, do not let that be the deciding factor against a mac please. 

Razer blade laptop. 

Dell XPS 15 is another option, and a beautiful machine, but $3250. 

Any questions, just ask. 
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So how do you get Microsoft office on a mac if you dont pay for it every year?
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You don't need it, Apple offers Pages, Keynote, Numbers as alternatives to Word, Powerpoint, Excel. Plus you can export the files from pages to a word document for example and likewise for keynote and numbers. And of course open a word doc in pages. However, if you do want microsoft office on your mac, you can pay $150 to get it forever, but I think it might be free office 365 depending on the university you go to
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Where have you seen the Zenbook pro for under 1k?
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I didn't say $1000, I said $1000 under their budget, which was $3000.
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Oh damn you got my hopes up for a second lol
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Thank you very much for such a great detailed info. I googled the zenbook you have mentioned, however, it is not available in best buy. Do you know when they will restock the product?
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No problem! We still do not have it in stock, however you can get it off amazon.ca. 

I anticipate they will be releasing a new model actually in a couple months, as they recently revamped their zenbooks. 
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Ok thanks Alexander
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No problem! Good luck in first year
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Is a surface pro 4 good for university? Or instead, should I just get a regular windows laptop or MacBook?
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I had the surface pro 1 and had a LOT of problems with it, however they have made a lot of headway since that and they're much more reliable now. It really depends on what you're doing, they have an amazing display and really portable, as well as extremely fast. However, they are not meant for hardcore use on a daily basis. If you intend to be using it all the time, or for vigorous use, I recommend getting either a macbook or asus/dell laptop.  

Macbook I described above, is easy to use, very reliable, consistent performance and carry a resale value. 

You can get windows laptops for the same price with better specs, it depends on how long you intend to keep it for. 
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