Do you have already got a Gaming PC and need to understand if it’ll be suitable for programming tasks? or even you just want to acquire a machine on which you’ll indulge your two passions without compromise?
Of course, there’s no PC dedicated to programming, but the developer’s needs are such they’re very almost like those of the gamer in terms of processor power, storage capacity, RAM, etc. It remains to be seen whether gaming laptops are suitable for programming.
To know the criteria for choosing a laptop for computer code, it might be wise to consider the minimum resources necessary to run the tools essential to any developer.
Take the example of Python. This is programming software – quite substantial – intended for developing programs under Windows.
In terms of configuration, Python recommends:
Recommended System Requirements
- Processors:Intel® Core™ i5 processor 4300M at 2.60 GHz or 2.59 GHz (1 socket, 2 cores, 2 threads per core), 8 GB of DRAMIntel® Xeon® processor E5-2698 v3 at 2.30 GHz (2 sockets, 16 cores each, 1 thread per core), 64 GB of DRAMIntel® Xeon Phi™ processor 7210 at 1.30 GHz (1 socket, 64 cores, 4 threads per core), 32 GB of DRAM, 16 GB of MCDRAM (flat mode enabled)
- Disk space: 2 to 3 GB
- Operating systems: Windows® 10, macOS*, and Linux*
Minimum System Requirements
- Processors: Intel Atom® processor or Intel® Core™ i3 processor
- Disk space: 1 GB
- Operating systems: Windows* 7 or later, macOS, and Linux
- Python* versions: 2.7.X, 3.6.X
Thus, thanks to this detailed information, you have a concrete idea of the processor, RAM, memory and graphics card to favor when working with this or that software.
Besides, if you already know what software you want to use for coding, always take a look at the prerequisite hardware.
Necessary configuration for the programming and characteristics of a portable gaming PC
The computer is the essential working tool for the developer profession. While learning the basics of the programming language does not necessarily require a very powerful PC and can be done from a conventional computer, coding requires a comfortable and efficient working environment.
The gaming laptop computer favors power over autonomy and mobility. It’s not the thinnest in construction and components, but it is certainly one of the most powerful and comfortable.
Processor for programming
The important point for a developer is the power of the computer’s processor since this will determine the capacity and speed of information processing. Thus, working on the latest generation programming languages requires power and speed. An Intel Core i3 is not really suitable for most software. To code, you have to start with at least an Intel Core i5, or even an Intel Core i7.
However, the gamer’s laptop is equipped with at least an Intel Core i5, or even an Intel Core i7 Quad Core ideally. Indeed, the processor must be powerful enough to drive the entire system and meet the performance requirements of the heaviest games.
RAM for programming
Like the processor, RAM is another key criterion. Depending on the programming tools used, a minimum 8 GB RAM is required. 16 GB would not be too much.
Considering the power of a dedicated gaming laptop, 8 GB RAM is also a minimum. Some machines may have 16 GB or 32 GB of RAM to run the most demanding games.
With the amount of data gathered by programming work, the storage space of the developer’s laptop must be quite substantial. Even if the latter tends to save his work in an external hard drive, the use of an SSD is a plus to promote the speed of the machine. But it’s not a must-have either. Your best bet would be a 250 GB SSD dedicated to booting the system and an HDD of at least 350 GB for installing your software and backing up data.
Compared to the classic laptop for which thinness is essential, the portable gamer PC has the advantage, by virtue of its thickness, of being able to accommodate many large and powerful components. This is how in terms of storage, we generally find configurations specific to PC gamers including an SSD and an HDD hard drive, or an HDD coupled with a mini SSD.
The graphics card
In general, the characteristics of the graphics card are not of great importance in programming, unless you are working on video game code or 3D, in which case a high-performance graphics card is essential.
As graphics performance is the priority for gamers, the gaming-oriented laptop is usually equipped with a high-end GeForce GTX graphics card or a Radeon HD. So whatever your programming job, you’re good to go!
Computer coding does not require a specific screen at the optimum resolution, but simply involves a healthy workstation for a user willing to spend hours in front of their screen coding.
When you are a developer, you tend to work in multiscreen to increase your productivity, avoid wasting time going back and forth between windows and to have an overview of the work done. This is also the case for gamers who like to configure a multi-screen gaming station for better immersion, among other things. They also favor the largest diagonals supporting Full HD and Ultra Full HD (15.6 inches, 17 inches and more) for an optimal gaming experience.
The operating system
The choice of OS (Windows, Linux or MacOS) is inherent in the programming language used, so developing an application for iOS means having an Apple operating system, for example. Otherwise in general, the choice of OS does not matter.
Gaming laptops do not have a specific operating system, which OS can ultimately be adapted to the needs of programming work.
Regarding the mobility of the machine, it is not an essential criterion for programming and depends more on the profile of the developer, depending on whether he is a digital nomad or not.
To conclude, by comparing the criteria specific to programming and the characteristics specific to gaming laptops, it is obvious that the laptops dedicated to games are compatible for the computer code. What’s more, they have the best configurations for coding, because they best meet the power, speed and storage requirements inherent in programming work.
Are gaming laptops good for programming?
Overall, gaming laptops have been specifically designed to create smooth and immersive gameplay, so they will often have decent RAM and CPU—both things you would need for programming.
This means you can comfortably use gaming laptops for programming.
However, it may be beneficial to separate your gaming and work laptops in the long-term.