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Photography Question 
Jana Jones
BetterPhoto Member Since: 2/7/2007
 

Best Laptop


I am looking to buy a laptop that I can work from. Photoshop, display images, and download images to my web site. Do you have any suggestions to what is best for quickness, and best appearance for the photo? thanks, Jana


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12/27/2007 11:35:55 AM

 
John P. Sandstedt
BetterPhoto Member Since: 8/8/2001
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  This question has been aske and answered many times but, here goes -

If you're planning on a Apple, say Poweerbook or higher, it'll be expensive and it's possible that you'll not have that many folks around that you can use to seek help when/if you need it. Of course, Photoshop and other programs will work identically as they do in a Windows scenario.

Almost any laptop using Windows is fine, but buy from a respected manufacturer. Almost all are made in Japan, Hong Kong, China, etc. You do want to get the fastest processing chip you can afford. In fact, you probably don't need more than 1 GIG of RAM but you might like to get up to 2 GIG; minimum hard drive size 80-100 GIG. And yo'll want a unit that has a CD/DVD burner - that is a drive that can read and write CDs and DVDs. External or internal - your choice. If you're like me, be sure to get a wireless mouse.

But, do consider buying/using a replicator or docking station. This will allow you the ability to use a full size monitor and keyboard when you're at home.


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12/28/2007 6:07:02 AM

 
Richard Lynch
BetterPhoto Member Since: 6/12/2005
  Jana,
I wouldn't actually consider a laptop for working on images in Photoshop, unless you need one (for travel or whatever). Here's why:

You should always work on critical image corrections in standardized lighting conditions and at optimal screen viewing angles.

I discuss this in my From Monitor to Print: Photoshop Color Workflow course. Moving with your laptop to a chair in front of a window and then to a more shaded area in an office, or changing whether light strikes from behind or in front of the screen affects the calibration of the monitor and what you see -- sometimes significantly. It will affect your results.

I work at a desktop where I always have the same lighting conditions, the opportunity for backup with a RAID system (that laptops will not support), and where I have my choice of monitors (Apple 30" Cinema Display). I give a few more reasons in a recent blog:

Building the Ultimate Image-editing Computer

I would consider a laptop very much a secondary workstation...I use mine strictly for typing and temporary storage.

I hope that helps!

Richard Lynch


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12/28/2007 11:19:41 AM

 
Oliver Anderson
BetterPhoto Member Since: 11/16/2004
  hey Jana, since you're simply asking for the BEST Laptop you have 2 choices. Dell or MAC. You didn't mention price so I won't hold back. My Dell XPS M1710 4gb is AMAZING!! I use CS3 & Lightroom and it is blazing fast. Even when dealing with HUGE TIFF files. My business partner has the top of the line MAC and the Dell's monitor is better. I'll throw up my laptops performance against any desktop...it even has 6 USB ports so sometimes I have 3 externals in at once plus my mouse and the Sandisk card reader....My laptop with 3year complete care is about $4500-$6K.


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12/28/2007 8:56:21 PM

 
Richard Lynch
BetterPhoto Member Since: 6/12/2005
  "I'll throw up my laptops performance against any desktop..."

That would not be wise. Can it compete with 16GB RAM, isolated system drive, a dedicated scratch drive, dual-core processors, an internal RAID and a 30" screen (frankly for the same price as the low-end for your laptop)? I can boot to Mac or Windows, and boot "parallel" to both (run windows in Mac).

I don't doubt that the laptop is very good, but you will get better over-all performance with a properly configured desktop. There are simply limitations brought on by the limited space in the laptop case.

I agree, however, that the question was about laptops, and your suggestion makes sense.

Richard Lynch


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12/29/2007 5:15:11 AM

 
Oliver Anderson
BetterPhoto Member Since: 11/16/2004
  That would not be wise. Can it compete with 16GB RAM, isolated system drive, a dedicated scratch drive, dual-core processors, an internal RAID and a 30" screen (frankly for the same price as the low-end for your laptop)? I can boot to Mac or Windows, and boot "parallel" to both (run windows in Mac).
OK so I was getting a little excited...
1st if you get really close to the screen it seems A LOT larger.
2nd Geeeeeesh....I actually only use my computer to play PacMan and Donkey Kong anyways...


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12/29/2007 11:59:05 AM

 
Richard Lynch
BetterPhoto Member Since: 6/12/2005
  Try Bubble Trouble...Not as well known, but strangely addictive.


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12/29/2007 1:38:03 PM

 
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