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Thread: Laptop Luddite needs help and advice please.

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2018

    Laptop Luddite needs help and advice please.

    Hi all first of all hope I am posting in right place.

    Have been using artrage for 3 years now and love it. However having dropped my laptop and being told it will cost more than worth to repair looking to buy a refurbished laptop.
    Been using Dell lattitude with windows 7 4.0GB Wish to keep away from windows 10

    Some people tell me for art work I should be looking at a Mac Laptop.

    What do most artists use. Windows or Mac and in simple terms please what spec should I be looking for.

    Thanks for reading and welcome replies.


  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Hello StewsArt,
    Once upon a time, long long ago, if you were doing art and graphics, Mac’s were omnipresent in studios.
    But now I honestly don’t think it makes any difference.
    I switched to Macs’ long ago and am now too set in my computing ways to relearn Windows!
    And it has to be said that sadly from a Mac user’s point of view you will get much more hardware bang for your buck with Windows based computers.
    But regardless of OS you will want;
    1, As fast a multicore processor as you can afford.
    2, As much fast RAM as you can afford.
    3, SSD drive
    4, As for GPU, well AR doesn’t use this much but in general I would look at something 2GB or more simply because I use other apps that do utilise GPUs.
    Maker Of Replica Macoys

    Techie Stuff:
    ArtRage Vitae 7.1.4 ~ 15" Macbook Pro
    ~ macOS 10.15.7 ~ 4 Core i7 3.1GHz CPU ~ 16GB RAM ~ Wacom Intuos4 M

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2018
    Thanks for a comprehensive reply also sorry for not responding sooner, problems with log in.

    Re your comments:
    Processor ? I see intel and Core 1.3 ect: and get very confused.
    Ram was working with 4 Ram and was OK until I worked on Artrage in close up or using pallet knife.
    Drive. Accept you recommend SDD what are the ones to avoid please.

    Thanks Stew

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2018

    Laptop specifications.

    Hi having read a reply to my original question have been looking at refurbished laptops with limited budget for use with Artrage.

    Please see spec below and comment please.

    Thanks StewsArt

    Model: Dell Latitude E4310 Hard Drive Capacity: Not Applicable
    Modified Item: No Manufacturer warranty: None
    Operating System Edition: Professional MPN: Does Not Apply
    Colour: Silver Storage Type: SSD (Solid State Drive)
    Operating System: Windows 10 RAM Size: 8 GB
    Graphics Processing Type: Integrated/On-Board Graphics Brand: Dell
    Custom Bundle: No Most Suitable For: Casual Computing
    Type: Notebook/Laptop Hardware Connectivity: USB 2.0
    Processor Speed: 2.40 GHz Processor: Intel Core i5 1st Gen.
    Manufacturer Colour: Silver SSD Capacity: 256GB
    Features: Built-in Microphone, Built-in Webcam Screen Size: 13 in

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2014
    This is what I use.

    Microsoft Windows 10 HOME
    Version 10.0.17134 Build 17134
    15"ASUS-NotebookSKU + 21" monitor (converted spare TV)
    Processor Intel(R) Core(TM) i7-5500U CPU @ 2.40GHz, 2397 Mhz, 2 Core(s), 4 Logical Processor(s)
    Installed Physical Memory (RAM) 8.00 GB
    HD 1 terabyte

    Graphic tablets - Wacom Bamboo One and Huion H610

    Bear in mind that support for Windows 7 will end after January 14, 2020. Which means Microsoft will no longer provide security updates or support for PCs running Windows 7.
    Last edited by Enug; 04-22-2019 at 05:38 PM.

    Oh God of homeless things, look down
    And try to ease the way
    Of all the little weary paws
    That walk the world

    [My setup: hp 15in laptop, 24in acer 2nd monitor, Huion QK11 wireless drawing tablet, Windows 11, ArtRage Vitae.]

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2018
    Thanks for your input. Have now accepted will have to use windows 10, learning curve but no doubt will master.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Rochester, New York
    You will be able to find a good refurbished computer at Amazon or New Egg, yet I would recommend a desktop over a laptop. Of course with such you will also need to buy a monitor and sometimes with used, refurbished computers a mouse and keyboard. Laptops do not last as long as a desktop, along with the fact that desktops have the ability to add and upgrade internal hardware much easier and often. Anyway my suggestion on specifications is to first consider GHZ speed of the computer you buy. Something equal to or greater than 3GHZ is best. For graphics I believe an Intel I7 or high end AMD. If you plan to use Windows 10 I would suggest a minimum of 8GB RAM. Something expandable to 16 or 32 is better for future use (this is where a desktop is a lot easier to update). An integrated graphics card will suffice, Intel is very good here, yet if you would prefer to improve performance especially for gaming intensive software or running 3D animation programs like Blender or Maya an add on graphics card is easier with a desktop. All depends on anything else you would like to use the computer for outside of painting programs such as Art Rage.

    Everyone raves about SSD hard drives yet I like the older spinning drives better since they have more memory accessible and have longer life writing over the same memory space over and over again.
    Another reason I like older spinning drives with more memory is that I have expanded my desktops to 4 different operating systems. With larger size memory available on spinning hard drives you can allocate a more reasonable amount of memory to each partition, up to four primary or three primary and one extended logical. One of the operating systems I use is Linux Fedora Design Suite, with the entire repository loaded into the hard drive partition for Fedora in a directory, to do this a repository takes a minimum of over 80GB of memory space yet makes installation of open source software much easier, especially in my situation where there is no internet available for that computer. I can also run the Art Rage 4 or 5 program in Fedora using an application called WINE, works very well that way, yet you still need a separate partition on the computer with a Windows operating system that you have the Art Rage program installed on. All this stuff takes up a lot of memory and SSD drives are generally smaller with less memory available. Again in my situation I have three different hard drives attached to the motherboard of my desktop. One with the Windows 7 operating system (500gb) and Debian Stretch 9.4 (500gb), a second configured in a daisy chain bios boot with Fedora Design Suite and AV Linux 2016 (a Debian based custom designed Linux OS, can also run Art Rage on this operating system through WINE). My third hard drive is a back up for files and downloaded material such as operating system image files, program files for Windows .exe, and Linux packages either .rpm, .deb or .app. In the event one of the other two hard drives dies (have had that happen before) what I need for installation on a new hard drive is available on this back up hard drive. For a setup like this you need a motherboard that has 4 SATA connectors, unfortunately some of the cheaper new desktops have only two, one for the hard drive, the other for a DVD/RW, none to add additional hard drives. You could set up a system such as I have on a laptop with only one hard drive yet if your hard drive goes you need to reinstall everything over again. By separating operating systems onto different drives in a daisy chain configuration for the bios boot loader if one hard drive goes you can still access the operating systems on the other drive. I specifically try to keep Windows on a separate drive for this reason. You can add Linux to a hard drive with Windows on it, yet not the other way around, Windows boot loader will not recognize Linux operating systems. If you install Windows on a hard drive that is connected to the first SATA motherboard connector it will preserve the Windows boot loader, then switch the Windows hard drive to the second, third or forth SATA connector. Next install Linux on a second hard drive that is connected to the first SATA connector and it will create a multi operating system menu boot loader in a daisy chain configuration. If Linux gives you problems switch the hard drive with Windows on it back to the first connector and it will bring back the Windows boot loader without any Linux operating systems on it. You could also do this in a variety of different formats two operating systems on each with separate bios boot loaders set up within partitions on each hard drive.

    For Windows 10 I would definitely recommend 8GB of RAM or more. Right now I am at a local library (my way of getting on the internet) that has recently converted and upgraded all the older Windows 7 operating systems to 10. The computers here run on the minimum amount of RAM suggested for Windows 10, 4GB. These computers run like slugs, very slow, freezing all the time with memory intensive programs, they really need to slap an additional 4GB of RAM into these computers for better performance.
    If you do buy some computer and have this problem and cannot add any more RAM try a USB flash drive with at least 4GB or better and set it up for Ready Boost, you may get some performance and speed improvement allocating some memory on this flash drive to help with the cache. Of course to do this you will always need an open USB connector on your laptop.
    Last edited by Stephen Lo Piano; 04-24-2019 at 12:07 PM.
    I have a personally designed artwork gallery website at:
    There is one section full of pages there under the Digital Artwork category that is devoted entirely to paintings I have created with Art Rage.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2018
    Thank you for a very comprehensive response. Have to admit lot of the technical things you mention go over my head, however your comments are still helpful.

    Understand your reasons for preference to desk top but I prefer laptop as wish to use at exhibitions also take to meetings of stroke victims. Having suffered heart attacks and strokes is the main reason I turned my hand to digital work and wish to help others enjoy art, irrespective of skill level.


  9. #9
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Rochester, New York
    Preference for laptop is the right choice for someone with your situation. Glad to see you writing about your personal situation, the fact you made it through all the personal hardships of health problems suffered. You are still alive and with us today making it through heart attacks and strokes.

    I spent the last months of September through January in and out of the hospital for health problems myself, starting with Jaundice caused by Stones in the Bladder blocking off everything. They tried an endoscope to remove the stones and something internal lead to internal bleeding which lead to pancreatitis which lead to further complications of abscess, liver problems and for a few days there I thought I was a real goner. Went through all kinds of cat scans, ultra sound, fluid drainage procedures., etc., and several months on antibiotics. On my birthday some of the nice health service workers at the hospital came into my room to wish me a happy birthday. I interrupted them and returned a reply hooked up to all kinds of machines saying "Forget my birthday, I want to thank all you dedicated health workers for helping me out with my health problems. Thanks to your dedicated efforts many people get a chance to live longer lives. You have made it possible for humanity which in ancient times had an average life expectancy of the age 30 to live longer lives through advancements in health care and dedication. I am grateful for all you have done to help me." Today as I write this thread my life is near normal again, no more antibiotics needed, protonics to prevent internal bleeding, fluid collection bags hooked up to my internal organs or tubes hooked up to my major arteries for daily blood samples are no longer necessary. We both have something to be grateful for.
    I have a personally designed artwork gallery website at:
    There is one section full of pages there under the Digital Artwork category that is devoted entirely to paintings I have created with Art Rage.

  10. I'm an Extreme Luddite: I have been running Artrage 4 & 5 for some years on a 12-year old Thinkpad X61 tablet with a 1400x1050 screen. Although the original OS was Windows 7, I upgraded it to a completely functional Windows 10. This ancient tablet has a Wacom digitizer. With special memory DIMMs, I expanded the RAM to 8GB of DDR2. The freeware "Middleton BIOS" unlocks SATA2 speeds. Recently, I upgraded the hard drive to a Crucial MX500, 1TB capacity.

    The speed of the 1.6G dual core processor, combined with the RAM and SSD upgrade, make a canvas size up to 2800x 2100, 4X the screen pixel count, a reasonable size.

    This is extreme Ludditism, but I had my reasons. Modern tablets with detachable keyboards are difficult or impossible to use on commuter trains without tray tables. The X61 tablet is by comparison commuter friendly. It also has the famous IBM keyboard feel.

    While I'm not recommending my ancient solution to anybody else, it is worth noting that Artrage does not require the 3D graphics capabilities or OpenGL levels of modern hardware, and is quite compatible with older machines provided enough RAM is available.

    I just installed Artrage 6, with positive initial impression.

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