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I5 versus I7 thoughts

Wayne Orwig

Active Member
I suppose that this is very subjective, but I'll ask for opinions anyway.

In years gone by, I used to do a lot of hardware and software development for manufacturing tests. I preferred to work on laptops, so I would need a new laptop often, just to be able to run the current tools at a reasonable speed.
Well, manufacturing has left the US, and job changes have left me now mostly working on documentation, and an occasional spreadsheet. I don't need a lot of horsepower, just a good screen.
I have an original Surface Pro. More than enough power, and it is a great secondary portable machine. Other than the mediocre battery life when portable, it is great.
My main machine is a 9 year old HP laptop with a 32 bit AMD CPU, and a 15" display. It is never moved, and always on AC. The battery would only last about 4 minutes if unplugged. :). I have been wanting to replace this slow poke for a long time. I suspect the 3GB memory is the main reason for it running slow since I have a LOT of background things running. I did upgrade it to an SSD about a year ago, which helped a lot.

So basically, I want to replace that old HP. I was hoping for a 14" display, but I think the 13.5" Book, and that tall aspect ratio, will actually be a good thing for me. I want something that is built well, like my Surface Pro. Everything else that I see when I get my hands on it, is too 'plastic'.

I still occasionally do some software development, schematic capture, CAD and Spice emulation. I also occasionally play with a flight simulator. So that leaves me with the question, which processor? I'm not sure the i7 and GPU will mean much to me. But then, if I am still using it 6 years from now, I don't want to be staring at a slow machine wishing I had gotten the faster model. Does anyone have any thoughts on i5 versus i7?
 

GreyFox7

Super Moderator
Staff member
Best bang for the buck in this is assuming you wanted the GPU the i5 256 dGPU @ 1900 or i5 128 dGPU @ 1700 although this was there for a few days it's now gone again, IDK what the story is with it.

Maybe you'd squeeze a little more time out of the i7 but not a lot. If you need more storage you have to go i7 or you can hang an external SSD off a USB 3.0 port, not quite as fast as an internal SSD but still blows the doors off an HDD.
 

malberttoo

Super Moderator
Staff member
I suppose that this is very subjective, but I'll ask for opinions anyway.

In years gone by, I used to do a lot of hardware and software development for manufacturing tests. I preferred to work on laptops, so I would need a new laptop often, just to be able to run the current tools at a reasonable speed.
Well, manufacturing has left the US, and job changes have left me now mostly working on documentation, and an occasional spreadsheet. I don't need a lot of horsepower, just a good screen.
I have an original Surface Pro. More than enough power, and it is a great secondary portable machine. Other than the mediocre battery life when portable, it is great.
My main machine is a 9 year old HP laptop with a 32 bit AMD CPU, and a 15" display. It is never moved, and always on AC. The battery would only last about 4 minutes if unplugged. :). I have been wanting to replace this slow poke for a long time. I suspect the 3GB memory is the main reason for it running slow since I have a LOT of background things running. I did upgrade it to an SSD about a year ago, which helped a lot.

So basically, I want to replace that old HP. I was hoping for a 14" display, but I think the 13.5" Book, and that tall aspect ratio, will actually be a good thing for me. I want something that is built well, like my Surface Pro. Everything else that I see when I get my hands on it, is too 'plastic'.

I still occasionally do some software development, schematic capture, CAD and Spice emulation. I also occasionally play with a flight simulator. So that leaves me with the question, which processor? I'm not sure the i7 and GPU will mean much to me. But then, if I am still using it 6 years from now, I don't want to be staring at a slow machine wishing I had gotten the faster model. Does anyone have any thoughts on i5 versus i7?
Just out of curiosity, and maybe I missed something, but why are you replacing your old HP with a Surface? I'm just thinking you could get a similarly spec'd laptop for a lot less than a Book.
 
OP
Wayne Orwig

Wayne Orwig

Active Member
Just out of curiosity, and maybe I missed something, but why are you replacing your old HP with a Surface? I'm just thinking you could get a similarly spec'd laptop for a lot less than a Book.
Well the old guy is just very slow. I really like Win 10, and it is a bit much for it. Plus the Win 10 drivers on the old thing have issue. I want a touch screen device to easily zoom in on web pages and documents. I will use the pen, but not really often enough to say it is needed.

And I often work outside on a porch swing, with the laptop in my laptop. So desktops, or external displays, don't interest me. I prefer a 'lapable' (is that a word) device.

Looking around, the only thing that slightly interests me is the HP Spectre X360. It appears to be a well made machine. I know I could probably be fine with a cheap Asus, but I want something a bit more durable
 
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