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Old 02-21-2011, 11:01 PM   #1
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Default College Laptop

So come this August/September/Whatever I will be attending either University of Michigan/Purdue University/Carnegie Mellon University/MIT to study Computer Engineering (and probably a double major in Applied Mathematics but that's irrelevant) and I need a laptop. Right now I have a junker so I am going to buy a new laptop. I am going for i3/i5, something that has some performance but is still decent on battery life (i.e. I do not want an atom or an i7) has 4gb (or more, but 4 seems to be pretty standard) of ram, whatever hard drive capacity, I don't really care, but I'm leaning towards 7200rpm preferably (although this laptop is a 5400rpm and it seems to be ok) and has a 14" or smaller screen and some good battery life. Of course I will not be doing any gaming on this laptop, I have a desktop for that, so an integrated intel graphics card will do fine for my requirements and for my battery. The hardest thing I would be doing is running an IDE, writing papers/internet/duh, and I guess running Matlab possibly, I'm not sure what the computing requirements of my engineering courses will bring. So I don't need 9001 cores at 9001 ghz each, but an 8bit 1mhz microcontroller will not do.

I have narrowed it down to a couple of HP's that I like the looks of. Dm4t, dm3t, dv5t (assume I customize them to the above specifications) I can't really find the differences between the dv5t and the dm4t, except the dm4t is a little more expensive. I like the looks of the dm3t but the only iX processor I can get is an i3 1.33GHZ UM, which seems kinda wussy compared to the i3/i5 I can get on the other 2 that isn't UM. My desktop runs a Athlon X2 Kuma 7850 at 3.1ghz, so that's what I'm used to as my 'fastest' processor, so anything faster than that would be great, and I don't know where the i3/i5 (UM or not) lands, so please inform me. Please give your insights on the i3/i5 speed I would encounter compared to my desktop. And is UM that bad? I mean it seems like that 13.3 would be slow as shit with that UM processor. Also, thoughts on the power requirements, the dm4t doesn't offer an i3 option, only i5. What do you think battery life on an i3 vs battery life on an i5 would be like? Also please compare speed and battery life prospects on a 5400rpm vs 7200rpm hard drive. And please just compare in general these 3 choice and please offer any other suggestions you might have NO FUCKING MACS. Thank You.

TL;DR Computer Engineer needs a small light good battery life laptop, suggestions and questions

Also post IIT if you got the >9k reference
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