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Buying a netbook for LDD and Ldraw

jonboy2000jonboy2000 Member Posts: 255
edited October 2011 in Everything else LEGO
Apologies if this is a little off the lego topic. I am in the process of buying a netbook primerily to use the latest version of LDD and Ldraw as I currently own an old Mac which only supports the origional version of LDD. The one I am looking at has 1gb of ram and I'm wondering if this is going to be quick enough. If I have a design of say modular building size is it going run slowly? Should I upgrade it to 2gb ram? If any more computer literate LDD/L draw users have experience of this I would appreciate some advice.

Comments

  • Si_UKNZSi_UKNZ NZMember Posts: 4,179
    a netbook is unlikely to have a powerful enough graphics card to work with LDD comfortably.
  • jonboy2000jonboy2000 Member Posts: 255
    It has a Intel Graphics Media Accelerator 3150 graphics card which means nothing to a simpleton like me.
  • BustinBustin Member Posts: 286
    That means the graphics are integrated in to the chip set and shares the RAM that the CPU will use.
  • BustinBustin Member Posts: 286
    In comparison that graphics chip would be equivalent to a GeForce or ATI from 2001.
  • jonboy2000jonboy2000 Member Posts: 255
    ^ you're losing me, I'm guessing that's bad. I have used LDraw on my brother's netbook with no problem although the design was not that big.
  • jwsmartjwsmart Member Posts: 298
    I would recommend against a netbook because of the screen size. If you keep your eyes open, deals can be had for normal sized laptops that cost about the same as the netbook. Unless you need the small size or super long battery, look for a budget laptop instead.

    I would you suggest you start here: http://www.notebookcheck.net/Intel-Graphics-Media-Accelerator-3150.23264.0.html do a bit of research on the graphics chipset in the laptop you want.

    The GMA3150 is about a year old, and is very, very slow. I would look for something with a newer chipset at the least.
  • jwsmartjwsmart Member Posts: 298
    Oh, I forgot to mention, MLCad/LDView and the rest of the ldraw family will run just fine on just about any modern computer, it's LDD that starts to have trouble.
  • jonboy2000jonboy2000 Member Posts: 255
    ^ thanks for the info. I really wanted to keep it small as I was planning on plugging it into my tv(price is not the issue). I will have a shop around.
  • jwsmartjwsmart Member Posts: 298
    edited October 2011
    Plugging a laptop into a TV is probably not all that great either - In my experience it's a bit tricky to get the resolutions to match up properly using a VGA cable. HDMI is much better, but the experience is still not that great unless it's a 1080p set. I still prefer to use the laptop screen at 2 feet away than a big TV at 6 or 7 feet away.
  • Si_UKNZSi_UKNZ NZMember Posts: 4,179
    I'd recommend a small form factor PC rather than a desktop or laptop. Even with a good laptop with dedicated graphics, my laptop running 1080p through HDMI gets it mighty hot after an hour or so. It's really a job for something with better cooling i.e. which uses a full size graphics card. There are plenty of small form factor 'living room' PCs out there which will do a decent job.
  • jonboy2000jonboy2000 Member Posts: 255
    I think I am just going to get a netbook (as I don't want another large laptop or home PC) and use Ldraw. I didn't realy get on with it when I tried it but need to give it more of a chance (as I said I'm not the most computer literate). I like using LDD and would like to try out the new functions on the latest edition. I can't really justify buying a new Mac just to use this as the purpose of buying a PC was to use other free downloads that don't work on Macs.
    Thanks for all the advice guys
  • BustinBustin Member Posts: 286
    edited October 2011
    ^ you're losing me, I'm guessing that's bad. I have used LDraw on my brother's netbook with no problem although the design was not that big.
    What I meant is that even though it is a "newer" card the tech in it is ten years old.
  • Si_UKNZSi_UKNZ NZMember Posts: 4,179
    ^^ no-one said anything about buying a mac ........ (making no sense, I give up)
  • MCNwakeboardMCNwakeboard VirginiaMember Posts: 315
    My laptop with a Intel Graphics Media Accelerator doesn't handle LDD very well, but it mainly has problems (slowness and freezing) with large files (modular building size).

    If you think about what type of sets you are hoping to make and load a similar size file onto the netbook you are using, you'll be able to see what how it works. I think eurobricks has quite a few LDD models you where you can download the file to test it. Best of luck.
  • BustinBustin Member Posts: 286
    I didn't mention a mac, I am trying to get the original poster to understand that his intel graphics card that he wants in his netbook is a ten year old chipset.
  • Si_UKNZSi_UKNZ NZMember Posts: 4,179
    bustin... ^^ refers to the post 2 up in the thread, i.e. not yours
  • drdavewatforddrdavewatford Hertfordshire, UKAdministrator Posts: 6,686
    My new-ish Mac and Macbook pro both struggle with the large layout that I'm designing on LDD; the software is just incredibly processor-hungry I suspect, so unless you're going to restrict yourself to small designs, any netbook would struggle I suspect.
  • pantenkindpantenkind Member Posts: 258
    To the original poster, if you get a netbook you will kick yourself for not just buying something better in the first place. Or if you are a mac fanboy as it sounds you would be better served getting a decent Ipad. You said money wasnt an option but unless you have it to throw away I would steer clear of a netbook. For the record netbooks are for light surfing of the web, not for graphical applications like LDD.
  • jonboy2000jonboy2000 Member Posts: 255
    @Si_Dorking_Surrey_UK sorry for the confusion. I just wanted something small and portable that I could use the new version of LDD and to start getting use to Ldraw. If I had to buy a full size laptop to use LDD then I'd rather buy a Mac but then I would be losing the ability to use Ldraw.
    @bustin Ignore the comment just a light hearted way of saying technical computer stuff is lost on me.

    Consider this dicussion closed as I don't know if it's possible for me to close it.

    Thanks again for all the comments.
  • RavenhookRavenhook Member Posts: 70
    ^ Just throwing something in here to help: if required, modern Macs can run Windows just as well as a standalone PC.

    In fact, many Microsoft people - both employees and those who use Windows professionally - buy MacBook Pros for the express purpose of running their preferred OS, Windows.

    There are two options:

    1) Stay predominantly in the Mac environment and run Windows programs when required in a virtual machine, using either VMWare or Parallels.

    2) Dual-boot, where both OSes are installed on different partitions of the same hard drive and you restart in one or the other as required. This has the advantage of giving Windows native access to the hardware of the laptop.

    Not being partisan, just trying to bring you up to date. Look around any high tech conference and you'll see large swathes of MacBook Airs or MacBook Pros, many of which are actually running Windows programs.
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