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Calling Fellow Computer Nerds...

Discussion in 'Hangout' started by sledge, Aug 8, 2019.

  1. sledge
    Ideal_Rock

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    by sledge » Aug 8, 2019
    It's time for an upgrade of my laptop at work, and have narrowed it to 3 choices. Money is essentially the same for all 3 as they vary between $1,800 to $2,000. For the specs I am trying to achieve I believe this to be a fair price. If you know of something better, etc please let me know.

    One of my major concerns is I utilize a large 55" display when docked, running at 4k (3840x2160) resolution. I frequently need to utilize a second larger 80" display for private & confidential reviews & meetings. While I would like to run 4k on that display, most everyone else's eyes appreciates the larger scale of a HD (1920x1080) resolution. Still there might be a few times when I run 4k on it. In my new setup I will likely keep my laptop open and use that as 3rd monitor for emails as I like the privacy it offers.

    I'm all over the place on programs. Most deal with our special accounting software, estimating software, CAD programs, specialized PDF/drawing/takeoff software (Bluebeam), P6 scheduling software, earthwork modeling & takeoff software, GIMP/Photoshop, MS Office, various web applications and some engineering programs. Also Google Earth with very large KMZ files that brings my current machines to a crawl. Another pesky culprit being large format (36x48, etc) drawings & custom mega large drawings (120x36 and sometimes larger) in Bluebeam.

    Plus, I'm trying to future proof for the next 2-3 years.

    Would appreciate any feedback if you have any experience with any or all of these machines, specs, etc. Or maybe if I'm just being an idiot and missing the obvious.


    1. HP Spectre x360: 2.6ghz i7 9750H hexa core, 16gb DDR4, dedicated NVIDIA GeForce GTX1650 4gb video card, 512gb SSD and 15.6 4k IPS AMOLED-backlight touch screen. Poseidon Blue (as I can't stand copper/gold).

    Pros: 6 core processor, dedicated video card, touch screen that can go tablet but also remain a normal laptop.

    Cons: My IT guy is pitching a fit to go outside his normal realm of machines. No DVD reader/burner. Decent connections with a few USB-C ports, but not as healthy as a true business unit.


    2. HP Probook 650 G4: 2.6ghz i7 8850H hexa core, 16gb DDR4, integrated Intel UHD630 graphics, 512gb SSD and 15.6 1920x1080 display. Silver only -- looks a little like a Macbook.

    Pros: 6 core processor, DVD burner, more connections. Makes my IT guy happy -- our fleet is mainly Probooks & Surface Pro's for select people.

    Cons: No dedicated video card. No touch screen or ability to go into tablet mode. According to Benchmark, the processor is just a smidge slower than the Spectre, but not by a significant factor.


    3. Microsoft Surface Pro 6: 1.9ghz i7 8650U quad core, 16gb LPDDR3, integrated Intel UHD620 graphics, 512gb SSD and 12.3 touch screen. Would opt for the new black option, as that's my fave color.

    Pros: 4 core processor, killer touch screen & portability (I really prefer something around a 13" screen). I find it interesting and cool and want to try it.

    Cons: According to Benchmark, the slowest processor of the herd by about 40% -- probably because it's 4 cores as opposed to 6 cores and not as high of a clock speed. Ram is DDR3 as opposed to DDR4 (more power efficient, but less speed). No dedicated video card. Connections are very limited, as MS failed to even include a single USB-C. :wall:Have to buy a type cover (keyboard) separate. Most the time it will be docked, so the kick stand may not be problematic but I like the option of being able to just sit on my lap like normal during travel, etc.
     
    


    


  2. bludiva
    Brilliant_Rock

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    by bludiva » Aug 8, 2019
    ok i'm a marketer, but i work with tech companies a lot so have read my fair share of datasheets from the major computer OEMs.

    if it were me, i'd eliminate the surface. i just don't think it'll have the horsepower you need with the types of programs you run.

    between the other two it's kind of a toss up but spectre tends to be lighter, sleeker, and i like the nvidia cards. dvd reader/burner and usb c ports can be fixed with peripherals if you find you need them, i'd take the portability.

    may be worth investigating if any of your top contenders have had recurring complaints that may knock them out of consideration.

    whichever you choose can probably do the job, it's just a question of which one will cooperate the best with your needs =)
     
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  3. Karl_K
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    by Karl_K » Aug 8, 2019
    4k dedicated card period.
     
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  4. Karl_K
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    by Karl_K » Aug 8, 2019
    Further cad photoshop and google earth are all gpu assisted which is near nonexistent on Intel integrated.

    As far as cpu power with high end processors, the ability of the laptop to keep the cpu cool is a huge issue and not shown on benchmarks which dont load the system for long periods.
    Reality is your loads are better suited for a desktop so any laptop is going to be a compromise.

    edit: Bluebeam is also gpu accelerated.
     
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  5. bludiva
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    by bludiva » Aug 8, 2019

    A desktop will always givee you better / more stable performance but may not be feasible in a given workplace....i haven't had one in about 10 years and the only people i know that do are running loads that require workstations...

    Desktop plus surface may be good if that's an option
     
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  6. Karl_K
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    by Karl_K » Aug 9, 2019
    I agree which is why I said its a compromise, portability for power..
    One of my clients when my consulting business was running wanted to switch over to laptops for everyone, I had him buy one and load up all the software they used.
    Even on a high end laptop productivity was cut by 25+%, he bought faster desktops with the money and a vpn gateway for rdp for when someone was working from home.
     
  7. TooPatient
    Ideal_Rock

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    by TooPatient » Aug 9, 2019
    Do all allow you to upgrade memory? Can you add more memory? Do any support an M.2 SSD? Those can be great especially as a system disk to run your programs at least. Are the drives replaceable? You can get a faster machine and longer life if you can replace disks as needed.
    DVD writer integrated seems to be less common now. Would a USB 3 attached writer work for what you need?
     
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  8. sledge
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    by sledge » Aug 15, 2019
    I just wanted to say thanks to @Karl_K, @bludiva and @TooPatient for the feedback and comments.

    Me and the IT guy had a talk. My Spectre x360 has been ordered. :cool2:

    You guys are probably right that a desktop or dual machine setup would have been more ideal. However, I prefer the hassle free option of simply undocking and having all my data with me. Also, less computer management is good as I have personal machines at the house than I can use to connect via RDP if caught in a pinch. Lastly, sometimes I truly need the portability of a laptop so there must be some compromise I suppose.

    Hopefully my super duper 6 core processor w/ dedicated graphic cards in a thin format laptop doesn't heat up and explode, or overheat the motherboard.

    To answer a few Q's....

    1. I've added RAM on prior machines and perfectly capable and comfortable with it. Unfortunately the machine doesn't allow for user upgrades from what I've read. Although I am buying the max available at 16gb so I am hoping to avoid this issue.

    2. Yes M.2 SSD. Replaceable and upgradeable. Getting 512gb to start with. Lots of data is stored on my company network, so I think this will be sufficient but have zero qualms upgrading if needed.

    3. Ordered an external USB-C dvd burner w/ the laptop so I'm covered. A whopping $49....I remember when the Apple SuperDrives were a $500 option and about 1/4 the speed or less. :lol: Agree they are nearly extinct as USB thumb drives are heaven. But reality is I need one for the 1 in 100 cases to READ and maybe the 1 in 1,000 to BURN.

    4. Agree there is productivity loss on different setups. I'm hoping that by being docked for heavy work loads and having a real keyboard, mouse and multiple displays it helps. My main concern is what was pointed out early -- the CPU overheats and lags out the system. Assuming that doesn't happen, I've learned multiple displays and real keyboards and mice increase MY productivity as I fight less to do what I need. When I travel I feel somewhat crippled from a performance standpoint.
     
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  9. Karl_K
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    by Karl_K » Aug 16, 2019 at 3:49 AM
    congrates.
    Let me know how it works out for you. Please.
    I am really interested in the thermals.
     
  10. sledge
    Ideal_Rock

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    by sledge » Aug 16, 2019 at 7:54 AM
    Thank you, and I definitely will. That particular combo is rather rare and a custom build from HP. Got an email saying it should ship out around the end of August with priority delivery.

    Any particular programs you'd recommend for monitoring thermals and performance?

    A few years back I had bought a Lenovo Yoga 910 with i7 dual, 16gb, 1tb SSD, 4k touch, etc to replace my old Macbook Pro at the house. Aside from having a short Shift key on the right side, which surprisingly is STILL annoying it was very fast -- until it heated up. I say it's a thermal issue, it would have physical heat and the fans would be annoyingly loud. Never ran actual diagnostic software on it -- because clearly it sucked as it wasn't a MBP, lol, yes I loved that laptop. I used to get so pissed I'm surprised it's still operable as plenty of times I wanted to smash it.

    It was a known problem experienced by several. I tried fix after fix. Finally applied an update and it hasn't done it since, although in fairness I don't use it even half as much as I did.

    I didn't see anything similar for Spectre so I'm hoping for a better experience. Although I fried a motherboard on an HP laptop before the MBP so I'm leery of HP anyhow as a result. That sucker used to get so hot I had to have a pillow on my lap or something otherwise it was uncomfortable.

    My current HP work laptop has been a work horse though. Its just old, has an integrated card and time to be replaced.

    More war stories than you bargained for this AM. :lol: Anyhow, fingers crossed. Will update once I have the new machine.
     
    


    


  11. Karl_K
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    by Karl_K » Aug 16, 2019 at 12:08 PM
    I dont use it but it has a good reputation https://openhardwaremonitor.org/
    Watch temps and cpu speed while doing something long and high resource usage when temps spike then cpu speed falls you hit the thermal limit.
    The feel of the laptop will also tell you how well it is dissipating the heat to the air.

    If you can not install 3rd party applications windows resource monitor can be used to monitor when it hits the limit by monitoring cpu usage and speed.
     

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