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Architect students need a laptop that is in the current realm of technology as the tools and technology for drafting have primarily moved to CAD (computer-aided design). If you are looking to compare the latest and greatest laptops with a student budget in mind then you are in the right place as we are about to compare the top laptops for 2015 architecture students. Consideration for what specifications colleges these days are requiring in laptops have impacted the list below of the overall best laptops.
When purchasing the tool of trade (laptop) you want to consider the following:
- RAM: minimum of 4GB to run AutoCAD programs
- Processor/CPU: Intel i5 or i7 (i7 is better), AMD quad-core or better (the more cores the better)
- Touch-screens are helpful sometimes and more useful for Windows 8 or 10 systems
- High-end graphics abilities (usually will be advertised with a focus on graphics) with at least 2GB of graphics dedicated RAM
- Keyboard with full number pad (very important for architecture programs) or you can purchase an separate unit number pad attached through usb for cheap from Amazon
- AutoCAD 2014 For Dummies will be a helpful preparation for what you will be learning
Best Overall Laptop: Apple MacBook Air (13-Inch, Early 2015) Review
Excellent battery life; Strong overall performance; Blazing flash storage; Comfortable keyboard
Design could use update
While we wish it had a better display, the 2015 MacBook Air is superfast and lasts longer on a charge than any other ultraportable today.
Most Common College Recommendations: Dell Precision M2800 Review
Fast performance; Crisp full HD display; Comfy soft-touch deck and keyboard; Durable exterior and solid security software
Heavy, bulky design
The Dell Precision M2800 is an affordable Windows 7 workstation with a durable chassis, sharp full HD display and zippy Core i7 performance.
Laptop for the Smart and Sleek Architecture student: Lenovo ThinkPad W540 Review
Bright, self-calibrating 3K screen. Incredible detail and color on display. Removable battery with 6 hours of life. Thunderbolt port. 802.11ac Wi-Fi and 4G LTE WWAN connectivity. Biometric security. ISV certification.
No touch-screen option.
The Lenovo ThinkPad W540 is a 15-inch mobile workstation with a self-calibrating In-Plane Switching (IPS) display and class-leading performance.
Best Budget Friendly Laptop: Toshiba Satellite L50-B-24U Review
- Sturdy chassis
- capable mid-range processor
- good keyboard
- very affordable
Best Touchscreen Laptop: Acer VN7-591G 15.6 inch Touchscreen Notebook
Summary: The Acer Aspire V 15 Nitro VN7-571G is one of the best thin and light all-round 15 inch laptops available right now. It can handle everyday tasks well, but also movies and games, it packs a good screen and keyboard, it lasts for quite a while on a charge and doesn’t leave a hole in your wallet. But it’s not without several minor quirks, as you’ll find from this article.
THE GOOD: looks and feels nice, simple design, good screen, decent keyboard and trackpad, solid hardware configuration, loud speakers, long battery life