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Laptop Requirements

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Spiderwebseb, Jul 5, 2020.

  1. Spiderwebseb

    Spiderwebseb New Member

    Jul 5, 2020
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    Hi all that read this. I’d like to start saving for a laptop to play ts2020 as the Mac I have doesn’t support it. I don’t know what to get though. I have my eye on the HP Pavilion 14 but I’m not sure if it meets the requirements to be able to run steam and ts2020, can anyone help?
  2. ntypeman

    ntypeman Active Member

    Jun 19, 2018
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    Hi Spider,

    Originally I started way back in the day on a PC when it was MSTS then over the years shifted towards laptops... Unfortunately as the game grew more "intensive" (or should that mean graphically demanding) which meant the laptops we had in our household could no longer keep up with the demands of the game resulting in a less than satisfactory gaming experience.

    Owing to other external factors, (such as children, jobs, houses, time etc...) I basically took a few years out as "we" just didn't have the money to splash out on a new computer. I still kept an eye on things and madly(?) still bought DLC when I saw stuff I wanted at the right price even though I had no way of playing it my thought was it'll still be sat there in my Steam library so WHEN the new computer comes along I'll at least have a good assortment of DLC to keep me going...

    Fast forward a few years and I'm here in the position now where I'm typing this on the said laptop... It plays TS just fine albeit the bugs and TS issues that everyone jokes(!!!???) about... When we were discussing (with the other half) about the requirements my only real request was that it had a DEDICATED graphics card and as a result we concentrated on looking at gaming laptops... When we were looking, the good lady fell in love with MSI laptops (mainly for the fact of the illuminated, multi-coloured, colour changing keyboards) & I was quite pleased that it was a reasonably specced gaming machine...

    When we first saw it in Currys PC World (don't know if you're from England?) it was £1200 and that was WAAAY out of our budget!!! So we waited and waited and waited, so much so that I'd taken my eye off the ball and Currys had discontinued it!!! I was devastated to say the least... Fortunately the other half is quite determined and did lots of "Googling" and this is the mad thing... We ended up at the Currys outlet store in Manchester and whilst they didn't have what we actually wanted (they did have similar) they were able to search for what we wanted and turns out there were 2 left in stock in the country, 1 of which was in a store 5 miles from our house...!!!

    The next day, off we went to Aintree in Liverpool and bought the said laptop!!! It was £800 but due to a discount scheme in the company the other half works for (NO it's not Currys!!!) we ended up paying about £700 for it!!! Our patience and determination had finally paid off...

    We ended up with a MSI GE63 8RE Raider which has an i7 8th gen processor, GTX1060 6 GB graphics card (I think) and 16GB RAM... It's good for what I need it to do, the only problem now is that I have to fight with the Mrs as she likes playing Fortnite on the laptop whilst our little boy plays it [Fortnite] on his xBox...!!! If only we had ANOTHER gaming laptop. (SIGH...)...


    PS: Apologies for the life story, I suppose I should have just cut to the chase and told you the specs on the laptop & said it runs ok!!! Off to run a Class 313 on the North London Line now... :)
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  3. JJTimothy

    JJTimothy Well-Known Member

    May 14, 2018
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    You don't mention what sort of Mac you have and I'm certainly not an expert (wouldn't give anything Apple house room... unless it was given away like the iPad I'm doing this on :|) but you can run TS on a Mac. I think you start with Winebottler and the Windows version of Steam but there's instructions available for the Googling. Anyway...

    The first thing to note is that you will always get more for your money buying a desktop system but presumably you have a good reason for wanting a laptop. "HP Pavilion 14" is no help- it's basically a 14" laptop (so I guess you want something you can put away when you're not using it) available to several specifications and there's no way to know which you mean. It might be worth mentioning that I bought a second hand laptop, an HP Pavilion model actually, with a modest GPU for £200 and it ran TS quite well enough for me. Of course when it died I didn't have a guarantee so that was a drawback.

    Look for a decent CPU but don't get carried away- TS has been updated over the years but is at heart quite an old program developed when dual core processors were a big deal so an i7 or Threadripper will be wasted. An i5/Ryzen5 or even an i3/Ryzen 3 with a higher clock speed would suit it better. This is specific to TS of course- if you want to run more modern games and software (TSW2 perhaps if you trust Dovetail to keep... let's not) aim to support that. That i7 will still make a fine job of TS.

    The same is broadly true when it comes to GPUs. TS doesn't make the best use of them so any discrete graphics hardware will do but more is better especially if newer games may be added. (In spite of Dovetail's dire warnings in the T&Cs TS will run on a system with integrated graphics and can be quite playable if you choose your routes wisely but since you're buying a new system anyway...)

    8GB RAM will do but 16 is better. TS gained a 64 bit version only a couple of years ago releasing it from the 4GB limit and still doesn't really need much more than that for itself but having plenty of headroom for background tasks won't hurt. There is much talk of TS crashing with OOM errors and, although this does seem to be a catch-all term for memory access errors rather than those caused by running Out Of Memory, anecdotally they do appear more common on systems with less RAM.

    Storage- the faster the better but don't overlook capacity. I have a 240GB system drive and with Windows, TS (with twenty or so routes- respectable but not a huge collection) and a few applications I wish I'd got a bigger one. When I bought TSW a few months ago (more fool me but let's not) it had to go on the secondary drive. A few more TS routes (there is a sale at the moment) and I'll have to do something about that.

    Hope this is helpful.
  4. Aryffordd

    Aryffordd Member

    Jun 2, 2020
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    As JJTimothy mentioned, it is possible to run TS on a Mac (especially if your Mac has a discrete graphics card like in newer iMacs, rather than relying on integrated graphics), and I do just that with varying degrees of success on a MacBook Pro 13" mid-2017. I don't use Wine or Crossover (though I did try) - instead, I use Boot Camp, which allows you to boot into Windows directly, rather than replying on emulation, virtual machines or Wine (which can be both complex to set up, and slow).

    If you'd like to know my experiences of how that works, let me know and I'll type it up here - you've not asked about it directly so I haven't, as that'd be a bit presumptuous of me!

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