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Suggest a Laptop for my post processing

Discussion in 'Image Processing' started by avesoriano, Sep 4, 2013.

  1. avesoriano

    avesoriano Mu-43 Rookie

    20
    Oct 20, 2012
    My old laptop hp mini is dying on me ( after 5 years) Since i am getting more serious with this hobby i am decided to learn photoshop and lightroom. Please help me decide what brand/model to get

    1. icore 3 or higher
    2. memory that can handle the photoshop/ lightroom/ video editing apps
    3. Screen/ videocard that can give accurate colors
    4. I like hp because its the only brand I've used. I am comfortable that its very durable. Hmm I think i can be open to other brands
    4. The smallest/ lightest one i can get for this specs

    Did i miss other things to consider?

    I am not much of a techie type of person but since buying a laptop is like an investment to me, i wish i can get the most of what i can afford for now (more or less $1000?)
     
  2. aidanw

    aidanw Mu-43 Regular

    116
    Nov 19, 2012
    Wellington, NZ
    Easy things to get:
    - i5 or i7, preferably Haswell gen as battery life is better. Unlike desktop i5 & i7s, almost all notebook processors are dual-core (4-threads), only the expensive ones marked 'Q' are actually quad-core.
    - 500GB+ SATA disk
    - 8GB RAM (I never noticed a difference going above 8GB personally).

    Harder to get as of writing:
    - A really decent screen. Like 1600x900 minimum res and covers most of sRGB gamut. Most are glossy with poor color rendition. Notebookcheck.net does a gamut coverage measurement with most of their laptop reviews.
    - 256GB SSDs are still only on the very newest models. Most ultrabooks are 128GB by default. Having upgraded to SSD myself I would say Lightroom wasn't *dramatically* quicker than on a fast SATA disk, and potentially having 500GB+ storage is more useful.
    - All that editing power with decent battery life.
     
  3. Replytoken

    Replytoken Mu-43 Hall of Famer

    May 7, 2012
    Puget Sound
    Ken
    I think that you are going to have to decide which of your listed criteria are most important, and which ones you can live without, because I do not see you meeting all of your listed criteria.

    Video editing required a good graphics card, something that Lightroom does not necessarily utilize. Most laptop screens are pretty marginal for color fidelity, and some are just plain awful. I believe that Apple's Retina screens, in addition to having very high resolution, also have reasonably good color fidelity for a laptop. I know that Lenovo has some IPS-panel laptops, but earlier versions of those screens did not get good reviews. Perhaps Lenovo has improved on them in subsequent generations?

    You will pay a premium for a powerful, small and light laptop, so I am not sure how easy it will be to find a 4th generation iCore (Haswell) chipped laptop with an i7 processor. You may be able to find a good deal on a third generation iCore machine now that the newer chips are making their way into newer models. Battery life, however, will not be as good.

    I would recommend saving some money to buy yourself a good external monitor if this arrangement works for you (assuming that you are not always away from your desk). You will truly appreciate a good screen. As far as brand choices, the two that I most prefer are Lenovo and Apple. Lenovo's Thinkpad series, of which I currently own two, are still reasonably well made, and will hold up well to abuse. Apple's machines are also well made and supported, but you do pay a premium for that.

    Good luck,

    --Ken
     
  4. nsd20463

    nsd20463 Mu-43 Regular

    116
    Apr 30, 2011
    Santa Cruz, CA
    A word about the current crop of HP laptops (since my work provides us with HP and I've had quite enoug): a few years back their designer(s) got his or her hands on the keyboard and mangled the arrow keys. The up and down arrows are split halves of a regular sized key, and the left and right arrows are also shrunken, though not nearly as much.

    This arrow key business makes editing text harder than it ought to be, and makes my fingers ache after a few hours. And I'm far from the only one at work who really dislikes this.

    So I would not buy myself an HP laptop until this straighten this out.

    My other advice is that backlit keyboards are really nice if you're the sort to work in the dark.
     
  5. yekimrd

    yekimrd Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jun 14, 2012
    Cincinnati, OH
    Mikey
    If you're not opposed to Mac, my 2013 11" MacBook Air does a fine job without any lag during brushing in LR4.
     
  6. Adstars

    Adstars Mu-43 Regular

    70
    Feb 7, 2012
    I have the 11" air but find the screen size just a little too small for edits.
     
  7. twalker294

    twalker294 Mu-43 Top Veteran

    543
    Aug 18, 2010
    Yeah I can't imagine trying to use a screen that small. I have a 13" Macbook Pro and it's too small for me. Whenever I'm editing, I hook it up to my 22" monitor both for the size and the color accuracy.

    Keep in mind you can't profile a laptop display because they don't have color controls like a monitor does, so whatever you get from the factory is what you get. If you want something for image editing, I HIGHLY recommend an external monitor.
     
  8. phoenixag

    phoenixag Mu-43 Rookie

    23
    Aug 1, 2013
    London
    I have a MacBook Pro Retina 15 inch and it's really fast with a beautiful screen. I use Lightroom often with no problems at all.

    It has an i7 quad core CPU, 16gb ram and a dedicated graphics card. Also a great screen and an ssd.

    Honestly if you can afford the MacBook Pro retina there is no reason to look elsewhere :)
     
  9. 43hk

    43hk Mu-43 Veteran

    241
    Dec 26, 2010
    HK
    I run an 11" Macbook Air when away from home. I also use Aperture which is fine on a small screen. Loupe and zoom allow for pixel checking. You can also maximise the screen area and run a small floating pallet.

    I would make sure that you max out the RAM, CPU and video options where you can.

    Small light and fast. Run Windows under Bootcamp or Parallels when you need to.

    The recently released 11" Airs have faster CPU and longer battery life.
     
  10. zap

    zap Mu-43 Veteran

    215
    Jul 23, 2012
    uk
    any suggestions for a cheaper but high quality monitor?
     
  11. twalker294

    twalker294 Mu-43 Top Veteran

    543
    Aug 18, 2010
    I've always heard great things about the Dell Ultrasharp line.
     
  12. zap

    zap Mu-43 Veteran

    215
    Jul 23, 2012
    uk

    thanks for the reply... will look into those... i also have an hp laptop and want to improve my editing... :biggrin:
     
  13. aidanw

    aidanw Mu-43 Regular

    116
    Nov 19, 2012
    Wellington, NZ
    I'm using a Dell Ultrasharp 2713H right now and it's a beautiful screen.

    Two things to note:
    - Lightroom is dramatically slower at 2560x1440 res than on my previous monitor which was 1680x1050.
    - This particular monitor (may apply to others) only does the full 1440p res over dual-link DVI or DisplayPort. HDMI is 1080p max. So you need a graphics card capable of doing this res on DVI or DP (most DP will, but not many do more than 1080p over DVI).