Electronic Engineering Laptop recommendations

Component Recommended Minimum spec for buying a new laptop Comments 
OS Windows 11 Pro  As a TCD student, you can install Windows Pro for free. See FAQs below for comments on Mac OSX
CPU 4 Core CPU 10th gen Intel i3, 8th gen Intel i5, or AMD equivalent 
RAM  8GB  
Storage  256 SSD SSDs are much faster than conventional HDDs
GPU Integrated   
Battery  At least 8 hours  Some tutorial spaces on Campus may not have power sockets for students 
Screen  At least 13” in size. Minimum 1920x1080 resolution  
Connectivity  USB-A ports required for external hardware Adaptors from USB-C to USB-A are available; factor this into the overall cost of the laptop purchase 


Given the current COVID-19 situation, all engineering students will be expected to have access to a laptop to engage with online lectures and to complete laboratory assignments & projects.

Probably not. In practice, the Engineering timetable requires many hours of contact time per day and sharing a laptop is unlikely to be suitable.

In short, no. A tablet may be suitable to engage with online lectures, however some of the engineering software packages required for labs will only run on a Windows based PC.

Any relatively modern laptop running Windows 10 should run all the required software. The recommended minimum spec is advice for purchasers of new laptops, to ensure what they buy will have a decent performance level. Laptops that don’t meet the above spec may provide a poorer/slower experience, but may well suffice.

While many engineering software packages do have versions for Mac OS X, there are some that will only run on Windows. As a result, we do not recommend or provide support for running engineering software on Apple Macs.

Some engineering software, as well as some external hardware, is not compatible with OS X or OS 11. You are welcome to try workarounds like installing Windows 10 on a Mac via bootcamp but this can be a tricky process and there is no guarantee of success. Some FPGA boards might not work with Windows 10 on a Mac. Macbooks containing Apple CPUs (M1) are likely to be less compatible with engineering tools than those with Intel CPUs.

Ideally you should have at least a 10Mb broadband connection per user.