laptop for matlab and photoshop
June 18, 2007 5:53 PM   Subscribe

stolen laptop/replacing said computer question: My old 17" Macbook G4 was stolen this moring :( I need a good laptop for running matlab. open to macs or PCs...

So pretty much I used this computer for running matlab and photoshop primarily. I'm fairly confident that my renters insurance will cover it and I will be able to replace it. What I'm wondering is what computer to get if I'm really only concerned with running these two programs. I would be all about getting another mac but matlab was such a pain to install on OS X and seems impossible to install on the newer intel macs. Have I been misled? Can we now run matlab on intel macs? Or should I find a good PC laptop that can crunch and store lots of numbers and images? Probably looking to spend under $3k on this new one. Any suggestions hive mind?
posted by garethspor to Computers & Internet (8 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Intel macs will run PPC software (OSX PPC software at least). It won't run at full speed though. But if you aren't hooked on macs then I can't see any reason to recommend one over something else.

A quick google shows that the 2007a pro release runs on intels though it doesn't say if that's native or not.

Photoshop, on the other hand, is native as of CS3.
posted by chairface at 6:13 PM on June 18, 2007

Getting Matlab to run (and SPSS, too) was one of the reasons I traded in my G4 and got a Gateway CX210. Well, that and the tablet function.

Any Core 2 duo machine with at least a gig of ram will do both Matlab and Photoshop very well. Whether it's a PC or a Mac depends entirely on your tastes. Personally, I'd go with a PC - it's much easier to get a machine built around what you think is important. But that's me.

Alternatively, you could get a Mac and run Windows via Bootcamp or Parallels/Vmware. it costs more (software + ms licenses, etc.) Also, I don't have the patience for it, but you might be a better person.
posted by Pogo_Fuzzybutt at 6:29 PM on June 18, 2007

Actually, matlab 2007a is intel native and runs just fine on the intel based macs. (I've got plenty of machines running 2007a without problems). Thankfully, The installation of matlab has gotten much easier in the past few releases so that should not be seen as a deterrent. I manage win, linux and macs and would be hard pressed to get any other type of machine especially since i have the capability of running all three OS's at once. hope that helps...
posted by johnbot at 6:30 PM on June 18, 2007

Sorry, that CX210 was supposed to be a link.
posted by Pogo_Fuzzybutt at 6:31 PM on June 18, 2007

Ditto johnbot. As long as you have X11 installed on your Mac, installing version 2007a is a breeze. Copy the license file to the clipboard and paste it in when it asks for it. I've done dozens of installs since the intel-native version was released and had no problems.
posted by pmbuko at 7:18 PM on June 18, 2007

I'm running Matlab just fine on my Intel mac.
posted by dmd at 7:18 PM on June 18, 2007

I'd get another Mac, particularly if you were happy with the older one. Just make sure, if you get a used/refurb unit, that you have the installation discs for it. Because first thing you'll want to do is pop in the Install disc and put X11 on there. (It's an optional install on the main disc.)
posted by Kadin2048 at 7:25 PM on June 18, 2007

Totally get another mac.

Most folks I know with Macbooks are running Windows Matlab with Parallels, and it works super great.

I don't pay attention, so I wasn't aware the intel native one had been released. The older PPC versions, however, will not run on Intel Macs (because it is a port of Unix matlab, and not a native OS X application which can be run with Rosetta or whatever) so don't try to install an older version.
posted by lastyearsfad at 9:42 PM on June 18, 2007

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