Laptops (again!)

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Studybuddy17
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Laptops (again!)

Postby Studybuddy17 » Mon May 15, 2017 6:19 pm

OK, so here goes another laptop thread. I've used the search function and have not yielded substantial information that is inclusive and not limited to specific brands, as well as being up-to-date for 2017.

I am technologically ignorant but somewhat sceptical of the Apple herd-mentality. At the admitted students days that I attended it seemed like 90% of the current students were using some sort of MacBook. Is there a real reason for this?

I am open to any recommendations (even Apple) as to what would be the best and most functional laptop for law school, regardless of price; providing that the yielded benefits are somewhat justifiable.

My most important specifications are that it have a comfortable keyboard for typing, not be too heavy, and that it not be technologically dated.

Thanks so much!!

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it's allgood
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Re: Laptops (again!)

Postby it's allgood » Mon May 15, 2017 7:05 pm

I have a Yoga Lenovo with the most memory possible and I love it! It is a laptop but it can be a tablet, it has a touch screen, I can have two screens up at once which is helpful for reading and taking notes at the same time. I have never been a Mac person though, so I can not offer a comparison.

cavalier1138
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Re: Laptops (again!)

Postby cavalier1138 » Mon May 15, 2017 7:16 pm

I loathe Apple with every fiber of my being, so this comes from a place of bias. That said, a good chunk of my bias is based on your ability to get a PC with much, much, much better hardware than a Mac for a better price. The only things you miss out on are the aesthetics and the useless-in-any-other-situation chargers.

BigZuck
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Re: Laptops (again!)

Postby BigZuck » Mon May 15, 2017 7:20 pm

There's nothing special about law school laptops. You just need one that works. There has to be better computer reviewing websites than TLS.

Or, just buy a Mac like everyone else and call it a day. EZ game.

Studybuddy17
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Re: Laptops (again!)

Postby Studybuddy17 » Mon May 15, 2017 7:50 pm

BigZuck wrote: There has to be better computer reviewing websites than TLS


That is true, however I value the anecdotal experiences of actual law students over the plethora of contradictory information available on the computer-reviewing websites that are usually just paid for by the computer manufacturers as advertorials.

albanach
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Re: Laptops (again!)

Postby albanach » Mon May 15, 2017 9:11 pm

I see three approaches to law school computers.

1. Get a Mac. Lots of classmates will have them and can show you stuff if you're stuck.

2. Get a cheap Windows computer. All you need for school is a web browser and Word. The computer will be fine. If it dies, replace it.

3. Get a business class Windows computer. It's less likely to die because it had good components. They are designed to be replaceable and last three plus years. Get next day on-site repair coverage, including accidental damage cover. For this, you're looking at something like a Lenovo ThinkPad T series, or a Dell latitude.

Option 2 is probable the cheapest. The other two will cost about the same. Apple don't (I think) have on-site repair or accidental damage cover with their standard warranty plan.

lnsl123
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Re: Laptops (again!)

Postby lnsl123 » Mon May 15, 2017 9:53 pm

If you've never used a Mac, I would not suggest going that route. On the PC side, it seems that Lenovo and Dell make high-quality high-value machines. I would just stop by Best Buy and try one out.

Oh, but Microsoft just announced their new laptops, which look rather interesting. I think they come out in June, but not 100% sure.

Studybuddy17
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Re: Laptops (again!)

Postby Studybuddy17 » Mon May 15, 2017 10:12 pm

albanach wrote:I see three approaches to law school computers.

1. Get a Mac. Lots of classmates will have them and can show you stuff if you're stuck.

2. Get a cheap Windows computer. All you need for school is a web browser and Word. The computer will be fine. If it dies, replace it.

3. Get a business class Windows computer. It's less likely to die because it had good components. They are designed to be replaceable and last three plus years. Get next day on-site repair coverage, including accidental damage cover. For this, you're looking at something like a Lenovo ThinkPad T series, or a Dell latitude.

Option 2 is probable the cheapest. The other two will cost about the same. Apple don't (I think) have on-site repair or accidental damage cover with their standard warranty plan.

Thanks! Very helpful!

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melmelcoolj
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Re: Laptops (again!)

Postby melmelcoolj » Tue May 16, 2017 4:04 am

I have a related question: I have been using my macbook pro 2015 for two years now, for I got it in late 2015. But I am wondering if I should get another computer for law school? I am leaning towards no, but how hard is it to switch laptops during law school? Say after the second year?

cavalier1138
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Re: Laptops (again!)

Postby cavalier1138 » Tue May 16, 2017 6:16 am

Just to clarify an above statement (and because I hate Mac with the burning passion of a thousand fiery suns): a really, really nice Lenovo is the same price as the cheapest Macbook money can buy. To get a PC that costs the same amount as a high-end Macbook, you'd need to load it out for gaming.

albanach
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Re: Laptops (again!)

Postby albanach » Tue May 16, 2017 10:48 am

melmelcoolj wrote:I have a related question: I have been using my macbook pro 2015 for two years now, for I got it in late 2015. But I am wondering if I should get another computer for law school? I am leaning towards no, but how hard is it to switch laptops during law school? Say after the second year?


See my comment above. All you need for school is Word and a browser. If you use a browser that syncs your history, then you should be able to sign in to a new computer and have everything still there (chrome and firefox can both do this - no idea about Safari). Keep all your law school work on Dropbox or Google drive. That way you have a backup in case things go bad.

Then the only issue with switching during school would be the potential need to adapt to a new keyboard.

galadriel3019
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Re: Laptops (again!)

Postby galadriel3019 » Tue May 16, 2017 10:51 am

I used a Macbook, but honestly what you choose does not matter. I've known people who have even switched mid semester to a new computer, so it's about what makes you comfortable.

What I will emphasize is the importance of the tech support package it comes with. Many of my classmates (all using different laptops) had tech fiascos during the semester, many lost their work. I had an issue right before a memo was due and got a replacement same day, for free. So I would say it's not even so much about the laptop you buy, but about what type of customer service, tech support it comes with. Because a problem will come up at some point, inevitably at the worst possible moment, and what matters is how the company will help you.

BigZuck
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Re: Laptops (again!)

Postby BigZuck » Tue May 16, 2017 10:54 am

melmelcoolj wrote:I have a related question: I have been using my macbook pro 2015 for two years now, for I got it in late 2015. But I am wondering if I should get another computer for law school? I am leaning towards no, but how hard is it to switch laptops during law school? Say after the second year?

As hard as it is to transfer files from one computer to another (if that). I got a new computer after 1L year, no big deal.

Seriously guys, it ain't rocket surgery. All you need is internet access, a word processor, and something that can run exam software. Any laptop that functions in a school setting (or really, basically any laptop that functions in 2017) will do the job.

BigZuck
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Re: Laptops (again!)

Postby BigZuck » Tue May 16, 2017 10:56 am

And real talk: Ultimately, you're gonna get a Mac just like you're gonna get black Park Aves. You're law students. Don't kid yourselves.

Employstats1
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Re: Laptops (again!)

Postby Employstats1 » Tue May 16, 2017 11:15 am

Anyone have any thoughts on the new Microsoft Surface Laptop?

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34iplaw
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Re: Laptops (again!)

Postby 34iplaw » Tue May 16, 2017 11:21 am

Employstats1 wrote:Anyone have any thoughts on the new Microsoft Surface Laptop?


TBH, I like them and am strongly considering one, but I think the pricing is a bit ridiculous (it's in line with Mac but that doesn't mean its reasonable) for something that I probably wouldn't use all that much. My concerns would be the hinge design being in a bag with heavy books and the key travel distance is a bit shallow.

That said, they have a really strong promotion going on now if you want one and have an old mac you do not use or would be replacing (but it still runs). You can get the student discount (they don't even check if you aren't currently enrolled and are OKAY with that), and they will give you up to $850 (I think; maybe $650 but fairly certain its $850) for your old Mac. According to the guy, the trade in values are exceedingly generous (but cannot confirm this) where something that used to be $60 is like $600.

(I just realized you might be referencing their Macbook Air competitor. Look at the Asus Zenbook 3 as well. I haven't compared their relative performance, but ASUS has typically had great value/power for the price in the past.)
Last edited by 34iplaw on Tue May 16, 2017 11:37 am, edited 1 time in total.

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34iplaw
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Re: Laptops (again!)

Postby 34iplaw » Tue May 16, 2017 11:34 am

For others, the most important thing (IMO) is the keyboard. Type a few paragraphs on any machine before you buy it (or at least one with the same case and keyboard) to make sure you can comfortably type relatively quickly on it.

The screen probably matters if you prefer glossy or matte (a reason I tend not to like Apple). In terms of guts, having an SSD is most important, IMO. Ram and processor matter but that's a bit more of an involve relationship. SSDs are far faster and less prone to breakage than an HDD, especially if you are carrying it around and forget to shut it off... SSDs cannot scratch. HDDs are cheaper and larger but you should be using cloud primary storage/backups by this point.

Hope that helps for anyone looking.

Employstats1
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Re: Laptops (again!)

Postby Employstats1 » Tue May 16, 2017 11:39 am

34iplaw wrote:
Employstats1 wrote:Anyone have any thoughts on the new Microsoft Surface Laptop?


TBH, I like them and am strongly considering one, but I think the pricing is a bit ridiculous (it's in line with Mac but that doesn't mean its reasonable) for something that I probably wouldn't use all that much. My concerns would be the hinge design being in a bag with heavy books and the key travel distance is a bit shallow.

That said, they have a really strong promotion going on now if you want one and have an old mac you do not use or would be replacing (but it still runs). You can get the student discount (they don't even check if you aren't currently enrolled and are OKAY with that), and they will give you up to $850 (I think; maybe $650 but fairly certain its $850) for your old Mac. According to the guy, the trade in values are exceedingly generous (but cannot confirm this) where something that used to be $60 is like $600.


Thanks for the info. For trade ins, are you reffering to the Microsoft retail stores? Also I'm not sure if you're reffering to the Surface Book or the Surface laptop, but from what I have seen the Laptop's hinge design seems fairly standard.

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34iplaw
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Re: Laptops (again!)

Postby 34iplaw » Tue May 16, 2017 11:43 am

Employstats1 wrote:.


It's Microsoft retail stores, but, IIRC, it only applies to the Surface Book and the Surface pro - not the new surface laptop / macbook clone.

I was referring to the Surface Book which can be seen closed here.
[+] Spoiler
[img]
http://cdn.images.express.co.uk/img/dyn ... 361141.jpg[/img]


I haven't looked at the Surface Laptop / MacBook clone, but the Asus Zenbook 3 is probably worth looking at if you want that premium laptop appearance.

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dbalkaran
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Re: Laptops (again!)

Postby dbalkaran » Tue May 16, 2017 11:46 am

Employstats1 wrote:Anyone have any thoughts on the new Microsoft Surface Laptop?


The entry level options are a little overpriced, but you're paying for the design. Also keep in mind you need to pay an extra $50 to upgrade to the normal Windows OS. I think it's free for the first year though.

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MrJD2020
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Re: Laptops (again!)

Postby MrJD2020 » Tue May 16, 2017 12:02 pm

dbalkaran wrote:
Employstats1 wrote:Anyone have any thoughts on the new Microsoft Surface Laptop?


The entry level options are a little overpriced, but you're paying for the design. Also keep in mind you need to pay an extra $50 to upgrade to the normal Windows OS. I think it's free for the first year though.


If you're gonna get the surface pro, don't.

Get THIS, the *gold* TabPro S which I just got a few months ago. Only $600 right now!! A full-powered, full-Windows device, the keyboard comes with it (unlike the Surface keyboard which costs extra), has a *beautiful* AMOLED screen (basically the best out there right now). It's gorgeous.

http://www.bestbuy.com/site/samsung-gal ... Id=5507808

$600!!!

Used to be $1,000. The specs are DEFINITELY good -- I have one and it's amazing.

Get it before the new model (called the Galaxy Book) comes out. You'll read online that the Book is an improvement on the TabPro S, but that's mostly a comparison between the Book and the original version (black or white body) of the TabPro S, not a comparison of the TabPro S gold and the Book, which are mostly the same. This gold version sold only through Best Buy has more space than the black or white model (256GB SSD vs 128GB SSD; 8GB ram vs 4GB ram). Those are the same stats as the Galaxy Book's highest-end version, which is MORE THAN TWICE THE PRICE at $1,329 (http://www.samsung.com/us/mobile/tablet ... 20nzkaxar/).

I think the Galaxy Book has slightly faster processing speed (but I have noticed zero issues with the gold TabPro S), an additional USB-C port, and a microSD slot for additional space (up to an additional 256GB, but I don't know how seamlessly that works). I don't think that's worth the cost.

Studybuddy17
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Re: Laptops (again!)

Postby Studybuddy17 » Tue May 16, 2017 12:35 pm

Anyone have any thoughts regarding 13 inch vs. 15 inch laptop sizes for law school usage?

13 inch is obviously somewhat cheaper and lighter, so I'm curious if the smaller screen size would pose any sort of obstacle for note-taking or research purposes

KME89
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Re: Laptops (again!)

Postby KME89 » Fri May 19, 2017 9:34 am

Studybuddy17 wrote:Anyone have any thoughts regarding 13 inch vs. 15 inch laptop sizes for law school usage?

13 inch is obviously somewhat cheaper and lighter, so I'm curious if the smaller screen size would pose any sort of obstacle for note-taking or research purposes


I have a smaller laptop that, while old, works pretty well. I'm giving it to my mom and upgrading to a larger laptop. In my experience, if you're trying to look at two documents on the same screen at once, it's ridiculous to do it on that size of a screen.

albanach
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Re: Laptops (again!)

Postby albanach » Fri May 19, 2017 10:21 am

KME89 wrote:
Studybuddy17 wrote:Anyone have any thoughts regarding 13 inch vs. 15 inch laptop sizes for law school usage?

13 inch is obviously somewhat cheaper and lighter, so I'm curious if the smaller screen size would pose any sort of obstacle for note-taking or research purposes


I have a smaller laptop that, while old, works pretty well. I'm giving it to my mom and upgrading to a larger laptop. In my experience, if you're trying to look at two documents on the same screen at once, it's ridiculous to do it on that size of a screen.


Get an external monitor and keep it at your apartment. If you buy a Dell, Lenovo or other business class machine, pick up a cheap docking station on eBay and a nice external keyboard and mouse. You can use the monitor for all your Netflix/Prime/Hulu stuff when you're not studying.

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Kali the Annihilator
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Re: Laptops (again!)

Postby Kali the Annihilator » Fri May 19, 2017 10:27 am

You are going to want a power house so you can run neural networks over class notes in order to make test question predictions based on keywords from your prof. Id recommend something with a xeon for multithread support and perhaps and 1080ti for cuda processing.




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