* New laptop for photoshop

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Hello There:

I am going to learn Photoshop (Cs3 version) to be able to improve my family
photos as a hobby

and since I travel often, I am going to buy a newer laptop for this
purpose.(Windows environment)

My friend was telling me that Intel processor is better than Amd and make
sure it has a dedicated

video card rather than built-in. I could afford expending around $700 (maybe
$800). Would I be

able to get something nice for that amount? Any brand? Any advice?  I heard
that Dell are overpriced,

is that so?  Windows XP or Windows Vista?

Thank you in advance,


Re: * New laptop for photoshop

I agree that Intel processors are better than AMD.  So will many
(probably most) but not everyone.  We could argue religion or politics
as well.

You do not need advanced video; neither still photos nor video editing
nor DVD editing need that, it's really only necessary for certain
high-end games and 3D design applications like computer aided modeling &
design.  Any video solution is fine for either still image or video
editing (there is one exception to that, if you are doing video editing
that involves COMPUTER GENERATED 3D material, then you need a high end
graphics card).  But for your purposes, integrated chipset video will be
fine as long as it is powerful enough to run the "Aero" interface of
Vista (I am using this as a capabilities benchmark only, I am not
necessarily suggesting that you should get Vista, which is a separate
question).  In particular, Intel GMA950 or X3100 integrated chipset
video would both be fine.

You don't have to spend a lot of money.  In fact, I can make a specific
suggestion.  For some reason, a LOT of Toshiba A305-S6858 laptops have
shown up on E-Bay in the past 2 weeks, some being sold direct from
Toshiba, some being sold by Best Buy (and by "a lot", I mean about 200
of them).  BRAND NEW.  This is a $950 laptop, fairly high end, and they
have been going mostly in the mid $500's (a few have gone for less than
$500, a few have gone for as much as over $600 to even $700).  There are
still quite a few left, and they are a deal as long as you don't pay
more than low to mid $500's and you are sure that the seller is either
Toshiba itself or Best Buy.  This is a good deal, but if you are
PATIENT, you can find a good laptop at $700 or maybe less (if you look
for one with a Core 2 Duo processor, you will be doing a good job of
screening out the ones you don't want).

Vista or XP is your choice, but in general you usually won't have a
choice, XP is really no longer offered on new laptops.  I don't
necessarily agree that Dell is over priced.

Kathy wrote:
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Re: * New laptop for photoshop (Thank you)

Thank you for your reply.



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Re: * New laptop for photoshop

I teach computers in college, I am a degreed engineer, CompTIA and
Microsoft certified, and this subject comes up a lot, so I want to
clarify my earlier post:

Re: "You do not need advanced video; neither still photos nor video
editing nor DVD editing need that, it's really only necessary for
certain high-end games and 3D design applications like computer aided
modeling & design."

The critical issue in determining whether or not a high-end video
solution is needed, vs. a low-end solution (integrated chipset video) is
whether or not the images are being GENERATED IN (BY) THE COMPUTER.  In
ANY kind of still photography or video that was actually shot (with a
video camera), or in working with DVDs, the video is NOT generated by
the computer .... it was generated by an imaging chip shooting a live
scene through a lens (or, in the case of a DVD, the video scenes (and
all of their pixels) are stored on the DVD).

Contrast that with a game (World or Warcraft (WOW), or Flight
Simulator):  In Flight Simulator, for example (WOW is not much different
in principle) you are piloting an airplane in a 3D world.  That 3D world
has the ground (which is complex, complete with satellite realist actual
3D surface detail for those areas (cities) that are fully mapped as part
of the "game" (New York, Chicago, Paris, etc.).  And that 3D world has
simulated weather, other aircraft, etc.  And the aircraft has a full
instrument panel with a hundred or so gauges and instruments that react
realistically to what is going on.  Now consider that as the pilot of
the aircraft, and you are free to do anything you want; climb, descent,
turn right, turn left, roll, pitch, yaw, etc. .... and everything else,
both inside and outside the cockpit, has to respond realistically.  The
computer doesn't know in advance what you are going to do, and when you
do it, all of the consequences of that action must be COMPUTER GENERATED
FROM SCRATCH, and this creation must occur IN REAL TIME.

THAT is an example of when you need an advanced, powerful, $500 video
system.  (In WOW, similarly, you are in a virtual world and can do
anything you want .... and that same virtual world is populated, also,
by a dozen other players and all of them can do anything that they want,

But for simply looking at a photo (or editing it), the pixels exist in
the photo file (the TIFF or JPEG file) and even when you are doing some
really complex things (think really complex special effects scene
transitions when editing digital video), there is no requirement for the
transition to be generated in real time.  It's ok if it takes 20 seconds
to save a 5-second scene transition, because at that moment it's just
being written to a disk file on your hard drive anyway.

So, sorry for the long post, but these are the types of considerations
that differentiate those who need the really powerful $500 video card
from those (almost everyone) who will be fine with the integrated
chipset video solution.

And, also, FWIW, recent cheap, integrated chipset video solutions (in
particular Intel X3100 and GMA950) actually are as powerful as the $500
video cards from not all that long ago .... say 2003 or 2004.  As they
say, a rising tide (technology) lifts all boats.

Barry Watzman wrote:
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Re: * New laptop for photoshop

Barry Watzman typed on Wed, 04 Feb 2009 20:50:57 -0500:
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Odd, I am running Microsoft Flight Simulator 2004 on a Celeron M 370
(1.5GHZ) with a whimsy Intel(r) 910GML (64MB shared) video card. Getting
better than 20 frames per second too. I also run RealFlight G2 and I
believe that requires more than MS FS. As RealFlight is a radio control
simulator and they move like 20 times faster (graphic-wise) than FS2004.

2 Gateway MX6124 - Windows XP SP2
3 Asus EEE PC 701G4 ~ 2GB RAM ~ 16GB-SDHC
2 Asus EEE PC 702G8 ~ 1GB RAM ~ 16GB-SDHC
Windows XP SP2 ~ Xandros Linux - Puppy - Ubuntu

Re: * New laptop for photoshop

Kathy wrote:
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Hi Kathy,

Last year my roommate had to make the same decision. I had
him go with an HP with an AMD Turion 64b processor.

Dedicated VRAM is not necessary, but you need to make sure
that if you go with shared video RAM, that you have 'enough'
RAM. Photoshop CS3 requires 1GB of RAM (it will install with
less RAM but it will be extremely slow.

if you are running a lean WindowsXP system, figure you'll
need 180MB for needed and useful processes, 1GB of RAM for
Photoshop CS3 and at least 128MB of RAM for shared video.
That means that you'll need at least 1.3GB of RAM. So if you
went with 1.5GB of RAM or greater on the machine you would
be good to go.

Since you will be doing image editing what will be more
important to you is the type and resolution of your LCD. His
eyes are pretty bad, so we went with a WXGA Ultrabrite LCD

As to the OS to use. I run Vista inside of a VM when I need
to, but would never use it on one of my production machines
as a primary OS. Vista has 2 issues I dislike; 1) Because it
is big on eye-candy it is a resource hog. 2) in an attempt
to make Windows more secure the simple installation and
setup of 3rd party software for a lot of users is cumbersome
at best.

The other thing that you'll want to keep in mind is a
pointing device. Personally I actually prefer my Synaptics
touchpad for day-to-day use, but when I am doing image
editing, I use a Logitech wireless optical mouse and for
really precise work I use a Wacom pen/tablet.

Just as an aside, you might also note where the USB ports on
the laptop are. My primary laptop has 2 USB ports on each
side of the laptop which means that when I plug in the
dongle for the wireless mouse it always seemed to be in the
way. I ended up having to buy a rotating USB plug from Radio
  Shack so that I could get the dongle out of the way.

C.Joseph Drayton, Ph.D. AS&T

CSD Computer Services

Web site: http://csdcs.site90.net /
E-mail: cjoseph@csdcs.site90.net

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