I'm looking to buy a new laptop/mini workstation. I've priced a Lenovo T430, which I am close to buying, but have a couple of questions and am interested in your thoughts about the spec...
Laptop Spec - Lenovo Thinkpad T430
- Intel Core i7-3520M Processor (4M Cache, up to 3.60 GHz)
- Windows 7 Professional 64
- 14.0 HD+ (1600 x 900) LED Backlit Anti-Glare Display, Mobile Broadband Ready
- NVIDIA Optimus Graphics (NVS 5400M, 2GB)
- 8 GB DDR3 - 1600MHz (2 DIMM)
I'm in my final year of university, looking to invest in a quality laptop that will last a few years. My main requirement is portability, but it must have a good level of performance and must be able to take two storage drives (SSD for programs/HDD for general storage). The 2 storage bays rules most laptops out since I don't want a 17" and am reluctant (but could) go for a 15", its done on the 14" Lenovo using the "ultrabay". I don't need a full workstation since I have a desktop workstation running i7 3770k. The idea was is to use the desktop for CPU heavy applications, and the laptop for general use and model creation in solidworks/catia/simulaton/everything else. As I understand higher clock speed is more important than multiple cores for solidworks. Which is why I've chosen the i7 3520m processor with 2 cores and a respectable 3.6GHz clock speed.
- Am I better off going for a high clock speed dual core processor (like the i7 3520m), than I am going for a quad core processor with a slower clock speed (like the i7 3610qm - 6mb cache/3.3GHz)?
- There is the option of choosing an i5 3360m (dual core/3mb cache/3.5GHz) processor which is £82 less. Is it worth spending the extra £82 for the i7?
- I can't figure out if the graphics card is good, or crap. I'm not too worried as anything with heavy graphics requirements will be done on the desktop, but is this 5400m card suitable for solidworks?
- There is an option for a 1Gb 5400m graphics card for £10 less. Is it worth spending £10 for the 2Gb version - will it make any difference on solidworks/catia applications?
- What do you think/any reccomendations?
Any help is much appreciated!