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what's the best lap top for vector/render works?

Tim Rodier

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I thinking of getting the office out of the house, and I was curious as to what would be some recomended lap top's, ie, what are you using and how does it behave. Does the processor speed play an important role in the rendering process, or am I correct in assuming that one with plenty of RAM will do the job. Is there an advantage of the Piii over the celeron processor? Just curious, let me know what you prefere, it would aid in my decision making process.

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I have a Dell Inspiron 7000 266 MHz PII with 320 MB Ram and Windows 98 SE. I use VW with Renderworks and VA and have found the computer to work just fine. I believe that RAM is probably the most important factor in a laptop. I originally had 192 MB and upgraded that to 320. I have not come close to using all the ram since upgrading to 320 but I did encounter some difficulty at 192 MB, but only when running another program at the same time like Word or MathCAD.

My Dell has an ATI Rage LT Pro 2X with 8MB of RAM. I would guess that the better the display adapter, more memory, 4X vs 2x, etc. would enhance rendering with renderworks. I would suggest getting the best display adapter available for whatever computer you purchase as well as somewhere between 192 and 320 MB RAM.

The Dell Inspiron 7000 (now 7500) series is a bit heavy if you plan to take it with you everywhere you go. Dell even advertises it as a portable desktop.

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No question about it, RAM, RAM, RAM.

However, you inquired about the P3 vs. Celeron. My experience and research leads me to believe that the SSE (Streaming SIMD) Extensions capability of the Pentium significantly outperforms both the Celeron and most AMD devices.

But, don't hold me to it. I know a shop that relies heavily on rendering and they lover their 1GHz Athlon.

Jack Fulmer

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  • 8 months later...

Well... Let's see...

I have a Dell Inspiron 7000 PII 300, but I no longer use it since switching to Mac Powerbooks...

My first productive one was a PB G3 266 that I replaced (and currently use) with last years Powerbook G3 500...

Main thing is I only have 128mb of physical RAM but use Ram Doubler 9.0.1 to alleviate the need for Virtual Memory (thus speeding up app and processor speed since there is no need to access the hard drive).

This setup runs faster than any Windows setup, especially laptop setup, that I have ever used. I am a 10 year veteran of both AutoCAD and Intel machines, so being biased is pretty fair, as I still have the Dell laptop and one last Dell workstation since making the switch to G3 and G4 Macs...

Getting back to laptops... You can run VW faster than you are probably used to, for less than $2K, with an iBook SE G3 466, or incredibly fast for $2600 on the new Titanium G4 Powerbook. Compared to the $5000 that I spent for a the aforementioned "comparable" Dell laptop, one can see the advantages of the new G4.

Plus the Ti Powerbooks are 5.3 pounds (loaded) and only 1" thin... There's nothing like it available anywhere else - you are NOT going to be running much on a Sony VAIO Z-series (had one, sent it back...) or other so-called "sub-notebooks", nor are you going to have a 15.2" widescreen LCD like the one that comes on these new Powerbooks...

This justification being so much so, earlier this month, I ordered the same Titanium G4, but with the 500mhz processor and fairly maxed out, for over a thousand less than what I paid for my Dell...

If you have not heard much about these new Titanium laptops, they are without doubt, the fastest laptops available, at any price. Feature for feature, there is no comparison, especially when you take into account that the average Mac lifespan exceeds five years, more with affordable processor upgrades (I have a 10 year old Mac with a new G3 upgrade).

On the other hand, my Dell laptop "ran out of life" this past year, after only two years. The other limitation I ran into was that I am not able to upgrade this version of Dell's Inspiron 7000 past Windows NT 4 or Wndows 98 SE due to motherboard limitations - not too good of news for a machine that cost more than some vehicles...

ANYway, those are my views on Vectorworks and laptops... Oh yeah, another thing... Many times, I work on my Powerbook while accessing the internet, e-mail, my networks, printers and plotters - all without cables since Apple has the very affordable (comparative to Dell, Gateway, Intel, Compaq, Bluetooth and IBM's similar wireless solutions...) Airport and internal Airport card setup...


C M Harada

Perspectives Design

Group, ink

Denver, CO

[This message has been edited by NinjaZX7R (edited 02-25-2001).]

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  • 1 month later...

I have to agree with C M Harada (from my home town of Denver.) I work in a commercial architecture office which uses...well that other program, and I recently upgraded myself to a Titanium Powerbook and it renders very complex models much faster than the Pentium 700s in the back room of the office. Admittedly, I enjoy being the rogue designer of the office, but it's amazing how many mac users come out of the woodwork when they see a 5 lb.laptop like this in action.

My old desktop was a 7200 Powermac and it had some problems because of non-native accelerator drivers and such, but my Titanium is preconfigured for speed and works like a commercial for Vectorworks.

Word of advice-I did a little speed research and decided that the 500 Mhz machine wasn't worth $1000 more of my money, and I'm very happy with the 400mhz version.




Gamut Design

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