Any experience running Rhino on Lenovo Thinkpads (p52s, p51s, p51, t580 etc)

I have a lot of problem finding a pc-laptop that is good for 3d work and also have good display with accurate color gamut.
Was really interested in p52s with quadro p500 graphic card but I am a little bit scared of buying it because of the lack of information about how it works in reality - graphic card and how the body handles the heat generated b the processor.
I am seriously thinking of giving up buying a pc-laptop and buying a mac again but I prefer Rhino (and AutoCad) on Windows and I also think the touch-bar is a nightmare but Macbook Pros seems to handle cooling better than pc-laptops. I don’t know anymore. Been close to buying a laptop many times the last 6 months but always give up.

Would really appreciate if any had any suggestions on what to buy.

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I can’t comment on the Thinkpads, never used one. I use Rhino on both Windows and Mac, a PC for the main day job, and on a MacBook Pro for my own design work, the MBP runs Rhino great, I also do some renders on it using Keyshot with no problems. Saying that, the Mac version of Rhino is still playing catch up to the windows version, my hope is that it fully catches up sooner rather than later, yes I prefer the MacOSX platform :slight_smile:

I’m a big fan of the Dell Precision Mobile Workstations, I have used the M3800 and 5510, both of which have been between 4-5 lbs of weight (big factor for me).

If you are truly concerned about the color gamut, you can go for the high end Precision 7520, which has a 100% color gamut screen option. As far as heat, the precision line is specifically designed for all day modelling in 2D/3D, so it has a good cooling system.

Before going into specifics, what is your budget and intended usage? You might be better off getting a tower workstation if cost is a driver (mobile workstations will easily be in excess of $2,000)

If the cost is not an issue, I would recommend the following hardware:
CPU: Fasted clocked Core i7 offered (e.g. i7-7820HQ)
Screen: 15.6" Touchscreen, 1080p resolution (no preference on color gamut for me)
Memory: 8GB to 16GB
GPU: The Nvidia Quadro M1200 is good enough for most Rhino modelling (unless you intend to work with 500MB+ Rhino files)
HDD: No platter hard drive
SSD: M.2 PCIe interface 256GB to 512GB

Best Regards,

I have had a few Thinkpads. They have been reliable machines. I now have the precursor to the P51, the W540. I think that the performance on many PC gaming laptops and workstations is better than Apple’s because performance outweighs slimness. Air does not like to make right-angle turns going through a thin laptop, and most Apple fans would not like carrying a 175 watt power brick around with them.

Still, very few laptop/notebooks cool themselves enough that they do not throttle while raytracing, exporting video, or gaming; this is very frustrating.

The GPU in my W540 has much better performance than the P52s, but I still wish it were more. I should think that the P52s is comparable to the Macbook Pros. I would avoid the “S” models for heavy graphics work. The GPUs just don’t make the grade. The P52 without the “S” is about due for release.

The Cycles preview engine in Rhino 6 likes a good GPU. When buying memory, I tend to get (for a notebook) a pair of dense memory sticks, so that I have the option of adding more, later, and still have dual channel. For processors, I almost never get the highest processor. The prices usually go along a exponential curve, and the last often one just doesn’t make sense.

You can now get GTX1070 and even GTX1080 class GPUs in a gaming laptop as well, which are comparable to the top end Quadro in either the Thinkpad or Dell Precision–except for drivers.

Notebookcheck’s comparison charts are great:

Both Apple and on the Windows laptop side, if you have Thunderbolt, you might be able to use an external GPU, depending on which version of TB. Read all the fine print. Read anecdotal posts for reliability and comparability.

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For Rhino performance numbers, you might check out the ever-popular Holobench, for some real world tests, as far as V5 is concerned.

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Ok maybe shouldnt be afraid of using Mac for Rhino then. But still those touch bars!

I run a mid 2014 MBP, so no touch bar, some people seem to like the touch bar, some don’t, :slight_smile:

Dell Precision has definitely been on my list but heard a lot bad things regarding their support and the longevity of their laptops. BUT it’s hard to paint oneself an honest picture, the same can be said about other brands as well.
Around 2500-2900 USD. It’s generally more expensive here in Sweden.
I actually bought an surface book a month ago but had to return it because of the overheating. A huge disappointment. Now I am pretty cautious just looking on the pure power.

Ok this is great!!

Really appreciate the information but also disappointing to hear that the P52s is not sufficient. Unfortunately P52 will be too expensive, p51 is already above my budget.

Apple computers are overpriced. You will not save money by buying cheap computer with fast specs because the cheap computer will overheat and it will fall apart quickly. If you cannot afford decent computer now, save money now and buy it later.

I have seen plenty of the Precision’s need warranty replacement parts (motherboard parts mostly), but when your work gets the ProSupport warranty, Dell reps will come out and replace the hardware very fast.

In general, mobile workstations can be difficult to maintain longevity due to the thermal envelope and associated cooling required fit within a tight space. Workstation towers do not suffer from the same problem, as there is plenty of space for the heat to dissipate.
I have not seen any problems with the Dell Precision Towers in terms of parts failing. If your budget is a big factor though, you might be better off just building your own tower out of parts.

Let us know if you’re interested in building your own tower, and we can point you to the right parts for building.

Best Regards,

I am buying for my studies and hoping that it will last a few years. Is buying a Precision laptop for personal use a risky project? Have never had a real workstation and are a little afraid of that it will steal alot of space. It is not an option actually because of my lame girlfriend. But it may be the best option. How long have your portable precisions lasted? I think it is my only option…

I have ordered a P52s and will receive it in a few days. I’m not concerned about the P500 as I rarely model large complex models. Generally I use Bricscad, Alibre Design and Rhino which I think the P52s will cope without a problem. The P500 is based on the MX150 card which I have used previously to run Autodesk Inventor, no problems, although I believe Inventor is not GPU reliant.
I will post my experiences with the P52s later next week, its replacing a MSI G60 which has not been a good laptop IMO.

looking forward to hear all about it! thanks!

The Precision M3800’s have lasted over 4 years now, well past their warranties. Part of the reason they have lasted so long is that they have SSD’s and not HDD’s.

If this purchase is for studies, you might be better off getting a gaming laptop or an entry market workstation. My laptop of choice while in school was the Samsung NP700Z7C (~$1400 at the time), which I have since replaced the HDD with a SSD, and replaced the original screen.

My advice to you is to get a gaming laptop/entry level workstation with a M.2 PCIe SSD as that will serve you well for longevity and is waaay faster than platter hard drives. A notebook cooler (Cooler Master Notepal U3 Plus is what I use) will also keep your machine cool if you plan to lots of heavy modelling.

Best Regards,

thank you for all the advice. Think I’ll wait a bit.