Computer Requirement

Fall 2021 / Spring & Summer 2022

Undergraduate and transfer students at the J. B. Speed School of Engineering are required to have a mobile computer with an active digital pen that meets the minimum tablet specification listed on this site. Graduate students should have a laptop with the capability to fulfill their program requirements with a functional camera, microphone and speakers. 

Students must provide their own device – Speed School will not provide one for you.

We provide recommendations for devices we’ve tested, which meet the requirements to help you succeed during your time at the J.B. Speed School of Engineering. You may easily purchase one of the recommended device bundles from our preferred technology partner by clicking the “How to Purchase” button. For students who are interested in picking out their own device, or determining if an existing device works, we provide detailed requirements below our recommendations.  

A Tablet for your Speed School Career

Please review the following short summaries of the Speed School recommended devices. More detailed information about them can be found on our tablet evaluation page. The recommendations below include a 4 year warranty with accidental protection; while not required, having a warranty provides students with an immediate backup plan if a failure does occur. Students with warrantied devices are eligible for one of our loaner laptops until the device is fixed.

Speed School Recommended Devices

The Standard – What do we think? A business class tablet that will meet all of the requirements of speed school. It easily runs all required engineering software, but won’t break the bank. An upgradable hard drive allows for increase storage when needed.

The StandardLenovo ThinkPad Yoga L13 Gen 2 i7
OSWindows 10 Professional 64-bit version
PC ProcessorIntel Core i7 11th gen
Memory (RAM)16 GB
Storage Drive512 GB Solid State Drive
A Lenovo Yoga L13 Tablet

The Overachiever – What do we think? With an upgraded processor and larger hard drive it will easily handle engineering applications for all majors, but bio and mechanical majors will appreciate the extra power during upper-level coursework. Comes with better quality audio and display options when compared to The Standard.

The OverachieverLenovo ThinkPad Yoga X13 Gen 1&2 i7
OSWindows 10 Professional 64-bit version
PC ProcessorIntel Core i7 11th gen
Memory (RAM)16 GB
Storage Drive512 GB Solid State Drive
A Lenovo Yoga X13 Tablet

The Surface – What do we think? While desirable for its stylish design and ultra-slim profile, we find the lack of a notebook mode, rigid keyboard, and external ports frustrating. The Yoga is a notebook that converts to a tablet, where the surface is a tablet that tries to be a laptop notebook. Beyond these limitations, this model has the power and features you need for Speed School. Please note that you must make sure to get the Microsoft Surface with the Intel Core i5 or i7 Processor. Some Surface models have an ARM-based processor that will NOT run the engineering software. By purchasing from our technology partner, Connection, they will ensure you get the proper tablet.

The SurfaceMicrosoft Surface Pro 7+ Bundle
OSWindows 10 Professional 64-bit version
PC ProcessorIntel Core i7
Memory (RAM)16 GB
Storage Drive512 GB Solid State Drive
Bundle IncludesExtended warranty,
Surface Pen and Pro Type Cover
A Microsoft Surface Pro 7

Want to build your own device?

Minimum tablet specifications

ComponentMinimum Requirement
OSWindows 10 (Pro preferred) 64-bit version
PC ProcessorIntel Core i5 or i7
Memory (RAM)16 GB or greater
Storage Drive512 GB or larger Hard Drive (Solid State Drive recommended)
Wireless802.11 ac dual band (WiFi certified recommended)
Input DeviceIntegrated Intel, Wacom, or Synaptics active stylus that supports digital inking
CommunicatonCamera, microphone and speakers
Detailed Tablet Requirements

In addition, the following are recommended:

  • 4-year warranty with Accident Damage Protection
  • A USB hard drive or cloud backup option
  • Purchase a business grade rather than consumer grade tablet  (ie. ThinkPad Yoga instead of the Yoga)

The following types of devices are not acceptable for use as your computer at Speed:

  • iPad, any Apple computer or device running an Apple Operating System
  • Chromebooks
  • Android tablets or any devices running an Android based operating system
  • Microsoft Surface devices with an ARM-based processor. This includes but is not limited to The Surface Pro X, devices running Windows RT, Windows 10 Home S Mode or mobile operating system
  • Devices running the Linux or Unix operating system