I need to replace my current laptop, an Asus K43U.
Because I’m on a budget, if I mostly use it for PHP coding (SublimeText with Laravel with MySQL and PostgreSQL using WAMP server & a little Photoshop CS3), is the type of processor really important? Do I have to use an Intel instead of AMD? And if I have to use Intel, is i3 processor enough at least for 4 years of using?
personally would go for an i5 over the i3. The cost will be pretty negligible. I bought an acer i5 6gb of ram for just under £400 a couple of years ago. I asked an advisor in PCworld and they said ‘all i5’s are quad core’. Looked it up myself and he was talking rubbish, only the desktop cpu’s are quad core the mobiles are hyperthreading dual cores. But they are still pretty fast.
I might be wrong but coding wise you don’t need much power. Processor comes into play when you start using things like animation programs and photoshop etc. I have an i3 for work which is about 5 years old and its fine with adobe cs5.5 suite, just had to add more ram so i think i now have 6gb. I could happily code websites on a pentium 3 with 512mb running XP if i needed to.
When i did some 3d animation using blender it would run the cpu at 100% for hours on end but there was always enough ram (8gb on my desktop).
My 2-year old Lenovo Yoga is perfectly capable of doing what you want with an i5, 8Gb of RAM, and 1Tb of storage (the latter two were an upgrade from original spec). Whilst the Yoga isn’t a budget option, the basic spec of i5 & the RAM should be possible to achieve on a budget with other makes/models. The storage, really depends on how much you want to store locally.
As for what it can do, well mine has CS5 Master Collection on it, an Ubuntu server running inside Hyper-V, I just updated it to Win10, most modern browsers, and all sorts of other utilities.
So for me, if you can run to a current version i5 based device, with the RAM, I’d think you were good to go for a long time.