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Which Mac Laptop Should I Buy For College

There's something for everyone in Apple's current MacBook lineup, whether for middle school, high school, college, or university. Whether the powerful MacBook Pro or hyper-portable MacBook Air, Apple's laptops will power you through any task, you'll meet.

which mac laptop should i buy for college

Welcome to the best MacBook for students, written specifically for those studying and looking for an ideal Mac laptop. If you're thinking of buying a new MacBook for school, college or university, this guide will help you choose the best one for you.

While this laptop can do more than the MacBook Air, as it's fan-cooled, you don't get the higher-end configuration options that you do on the bigger Pro models (the M2 Pro and M2 Max are serious powerhouses). However, you do get the Touch Bar touch interface, which has since been sacked off from all other MacBook models, so that's a unique sell point if that's your thing.

The key difference is the extra two inches of diagonal measure you get from the display, which means more pixels as well of course. It makes the laptop bigger, heavier and more expensive than the 14-inch equivalent. It's up to you whether you'd rather have a bigger screen or something more portable; many people will use this 16-incher as a desktop replacement.

Our choices are based on our reviewers' experiences with each device, taking note of specs and price. Look out for our full reviews, which are linked and will give you lots more information about each model (see how we test laptops for more). Looking to save? Check out how to grab an Apple student discount.

All the laptops on this list also pack powerful Apple M1 or M2 chips. And since even older MacBooks receive the latest macOS updates, the laptops we've listed should last you for the entirety of your college years.

The MacBook Air M1 is still one of our favorites despite being years old. Though it's been somewhat overshadowed by its latest iteration, it's still a fine laptop. This is especially true for college students since this notebook is the most affordable MacBook out there.

This laptop features a Liquid Retina XDR display with a 120Hz refresh rate, a still power M1 Pro chip, MagSafe charging, HDMI-out and an SD memory reader. This means you won't need to bring a USB-C dongle to connect to a display or use external memory. That said, there's still no USB-A, which is something we're starting to realize Apple has no plans of bringing back. This is a Pro-level laptop.

The beastly 16-inch MacBook Pro sports either M1 Pro or M1 Max chips, which still deliver shocking amounts of performance. An upgrade over the previous intel-based model, this laptop features thinner bezels to give more space to the gorgeous mini-LED Liquid Retina XDR displays. Once you get over the notch, you'll be wowed by its contrast and smoothness, especially with its 120Hz refresh rate.

As for storage, 1 TB would be way more than enough while 128 GB would not be sufficient. Mac users should also install Windows on their Macs through Oracle or VMware because some software works better on Windows (such as Visual Studio). With 512 GB, after splitting the storage by using two systems, there would be storage left for the system. It is also recommended that users buy an external hard drive, a USB flash drive, or use cloud storage to save backup copies of important files because you will need them if the computer crashes. Most files are archived so you can store them on an external hard drive, which is a lot cheaper than the built-in storage. The key to choosing storage is to find the optimal that is able to store all the files you need with you and then buy an external hard drive to store everything else.

If you have a computer right now, wait to buy a new one. A standard Windows or Mac laptop is good enough for the first two years of computer science classes. It may not have the best performance, but it will definitely be good enough. After your first two years of college, if you are well into the more advanced computer science coursework, then consider buying a really good Mac for heavier usage.

The Herbert Wertheim College of Engineering further requires that students have access to and on-going use of a laptop/mobile computer for engineering courses in order to be able to function in the current learning environment. Some courses offered by the college will require the use of mobile computers for coursework. Students are required to access electronic forms of information, submit assignments and communicate with other students and faculty electronically. In order to do so, the requirements documented below must be met.

Every student needs a laptop for college, but unlike inexpensive school supplies, such as pens and paper, laptops are long-term investments. Spending some time researching laptops can help you figure out what type of device will work best for your courses and what you can afford.

The average student spends close to 75% of their time engaging with technology, so it's important that you feel comfortable while working on your laptop. All students should consider the following eight factors before choosing a laptop for college.

College students typically prioritize laptop portability. Whether opting for smaller or larger devices, consider the tradeoff in size, power, and performance. Light, small, and simple laptops should work fine if you only plan to perform basic tasks like word processing, but some students may prioritize screen size and faster processing power.

All students should consider battery life when choosing a laptop for college. Most batteries last 10-14 hours. Whereas smaller computers tend to offer longer battery lives and work more efficiently, higher-performing laptops use more power and may therefore perform less efficiently while offering shorter battery lives.

In terms of resolution, with so many recent technological advancements, even lower-priced laptop models now tend to feature high-resolution displays. A 1080p resolution should work for most students. Remember that higher resolutions generally come with higher price tags.

Random access memory (RAM) determines how many programs a computer can run at the same time. Most laptops and tablets start at 4 GB of RAM, which is sufficient for web browsing and word processing. Upgrading to 8 GB lets you comfortably run several programs at once.

Most laptops run on either Windows or Mac OS, both of which offer compatibility and full functionality. In general, Windows PCs cost less and offer more customization, while Macs are more expensive and feature proprietary software.

For students who need to perform just basic tasks, such as email and word processing, either operating system will work fine. That said, Macs are often considered better laptops for college students who need to perform specialized operations, like video editing.

Given the essential role technology plays in modern education, many colleges now provide inexpensive or free laptops for college students. Some schools may include laptops in the cost of tuition, while others may offer them completely free of charge. Certain colleges may also lease laptops to students for the duration of their program, with some allowing learners to keep their laptops after graduation.

College students can lease or rent laptops until they've paid their full value, at which point they assume ownership. These leases often resemble car or house payments, charging interest in addition to the property's value. Expect to pay off your laptop's full value within about two years.

The open market offers tons of opportunities for low-cost computers, and many college students conclude their searches by buying a laptop off sites like eBay and Craigslist. Learners should exercise caution in these situations, though, as most third-party sites conduct little to no policing of their vendors.

ALL NEW UNDERGRADUATE AND GRADUATE STUDENTS entering UNC Charlotte are required to have a personal laptop computer to support their college experience. Students can bring a laptop they already have or choose to buy a new laptop from any vendor. Please note: Chromebooks, iPads, tablets, and mobile devices do not meet this requirement.

These recommended hardware specs will ensure you have the power, speed, and memory to be Niner Ready. Be sure to see college-specific IT needs for additional guidance. Finally, if your laptop needs repair, you can take it into the NinerTech Store in the Popp Martin Student Union. See more about repairs.

Students majoring in engineering, mechanical engineering technology, and engineering management should plan to have a laptop for in-class instructional purposes in required Engineering Fundamentals courses. For engineering students:

Note: The above specifications apply to both Windows and MacOS machines. If students want to work seamlessly between the Humanities Digital Media Zone and their own computer, they should consider purchasing a Mac laptop.

All students are required to have a laptop or portable computing device meeting the minimum specifications recommended for your major. Students majoring in engineering, mechanical engineering technology, or engineering management should plan to have a laptop for in-class instructional purposes in required Engineering Fundamentals courses.

With slender bezels on two out of three sides of the display component, this device is reasonably compact. With that, this laptop also feels at least as slim and sleek as the likes of other laptops available in the market, such as the Lenovo Yoga 920, which is also included in this article.

Asus Chromebook weighs around 2.7 lbs, which is relatively a bargain. However, business majors might be ready to test a slightly different operating system with this laptop as well as be cautious when multi-tasking.

Most colleges and universities already have public workstations connected to a secure and fast Wi-Fi connection. These are readily available in the hallways, libraries, classrooms, and other common areas. All the programs/curricula are available online too. Students are recommended to make use of these while on the school premises but the majority of these academic institutions encourage students to bring their laptops. That way, they can access or check their lecture notes or complete any research while on the campus premises. They can also study from the comforts of their homes anytime they wants. 041b061a72


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