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I'm currently in the market as well with a similar budget. I'm very close to going with the new MacBook Pro, which seems totally solid for my needs. I feel a bit locked into the MacOS ecosystem with my workflow, or else I'd maybe venture elsewhere. Apple hardware really is well-designed too and I spend a lot of time with my machine, so this counts for a lot.

 

I'm partial to Lenovo Thinkpads for their build quality and that they can accommodate basic upgrades. You have an ample budget, perhaps look at the T-series, or the X-series if portability is really important.

I have a Thinkpad T520 which is still going strong after 5+ years. I opted for the best processor and screen resolution that I could afford then, as time went on, I maxed out the RAM, swapped the HD for an SSD, added a micro-SSD to split the OS boot and data drives, and lastly picked up a docking station.

 

I'm still pretty happy with my Thinkpad T430, so I can only second that.

 

I got a Lenovo Yoga 2 three years ago to do prog/math course, still good but look at the Pro type. If poss work out/ask what the course OS and software to be used is as using the same makes the process easier.

 

Thinkpad X1 Carbon is an amazing laptop. It has a great keyboard and is very mobile. You'll get a good one for less than $2K

 
 

Disclaimer: I have a 2016 Macbook Pro 13. It's nice.

The answer is: depends. What kind of load are you planning to handle on this laptop? Web development is possible on almost any device (more RAM is good, though). For Java and JVM in general you'd want somewhat beefier machine.

Thinkpads are great, and they are available used in good conditionβ€”take advantage of it.

If Macbooks are not your thing, but Thinkpad looks ugly, then take a look at Dell XPS 13 (especially if you'd be able to find 'Developer' edition).

 

Doing windows development my whole life, a couple of years ago switched to MacBook Pro and never looked back. Before that owned couple of ThinkPad's, EliteBook's etc.

Classic DEV Post from Nov 2 '18

From homelessness to making six figures: On learning how to code.

A reflection of my life post High School.

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