Technology forms an important part of the student creative tool kit right from the first day of class. Each student that attends PCA&D must invest in their own laptop and camera.

There are options when it comes to what kind of laptop and camera students can invest in to empower their coursework. Devices must be capable of running the latest editions of Adobe Creative Cloud and Microsoft Office Suite, both provided to all BFA students at PCA&D.

Below you will find the suggested base specifications and link for Apple and Windows laptops along with Camera recommendations.

Laptop Requirements

Laptop Base Specifications – Apple OS *
Name MacBook Pro
RAM 16GB DDR4 2666 MHz
Hard Drive SSD 1 TB
CPU Eight core Intel Core i9 2.3GHz
GPU 4GB GDDR6 AMD Radeon Pro 5500M
Screen Size 16”
Operating System 10.13 or newer
Warranty Apple Care Coverage
Approx. Cost $2,900


Laptop Base Specifications – Windows *
Name Windows Dell G7
RAM 16GB DDR4 2933MHz
Hard Drive SSD 512GB
CPU Six Core i7 2.6-5GHz
Screen Size 15”
Operating System Windows 10
Warranty Dell Warranty Coverage (3 years)
Approx. Cost $2000


*The requirements are updated once a year for the fall semester as software is updated and new hardware is released.

PCA&D recommends different laptop options based upon a students’s desired major. Below are the departmental recommendations.

Intended Major Suggested Laptop
Illustration MacBook Pro
Graphic Design MacBook Pro
Fine Art MacBook Pro or Windows
Photography & Video MacBook Pro
Animation & Game Art Windows


Additional Optional Purchases to Consider 

  • External hard drive (1 TB or greater)
  • A protective carrying bag
  • USB to USb-C Dongle
  • External mouse

Camera Requirements

Camera Base Specifications Suggested Cameras
  • Digital SLR
  • RAW capability
  • 10 megapixel
  • 18-55 mm lens (or similar)
  • Canon EOS T5
  • Nikon 3100
  • Any DSLR camera that meets the listed requirements

 Frequently Asked Questions

When should I purchase my laptop?

While a student can access the PCA&D Apple store at any time, most updates to hardware occur in late spring to early summer. To ensure that you are entering PCA&D with the most current technology, we advise waiting until June if you are entering PCA&D in a fall semester.

Where should I purchase my laptop?

The laptop can be purchased through any Apple Store (PCA&D has one close to our campus. The store is located at Park City Center Mall) or online through the PCA&D Apple store.

 How much will the laptop cost?

Currently our recommended system costs $2,500-3,500 (with Apple Care). Please note that information and prices are subject to change. If you have questions, please contact

When should I purchase my camera?

The camera can be purchased at anytime prior to the start of classes.

Where should I purchase my camera?

We suggest, or Good prices can often be found on these websites for refurbished and used equipment. Other deals can be found on sites like Ebay for both new and used. When purchasing used equipment, please make sure the camera comes with at least a 30-day warranty.

How much will the camera cost?

Cameras start at around $400 and could be less based upon where it is purchased and if it is new or used.

When should I purchase my software?

We suggest purchasing software in July or August when you have received your schedule. Students need their schedule as proof of enrollment to receive large discounts from vendors. Additional information can found at

Where should I purchase my software?

AICUP Student Select:

How much will the software cost?

Firefox – Free download from
Sophos AntiVirus – Free download from

We ask that all incoming students download and install Microsoft Office 365 as well as Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator, and InDesign software prior to orientation.

How will I get the Adobe Creative Cloud & Microsoft Office 365 software from PCA&D?

We will provide instructions on how to obtain Adobe Creative Cloud & Microsoft Office 365 from PCA&D as we get closer to the beginning of the fall semester. Watch out for emails from the College to your PCAD email account.

 Can I use financial aid to cover the cost of my hardware?

You can opt to borrow additional money though a Parent PLUS loan or a Private/Alternative loan above and beyond tuition costs. All funds owed to the College will be deducted from the first available source of financial aid. For instance, if tuition and fees are charged, and a student loan has been credited to the student’s account, these charges will be deducted from the total loan amount and the balance (refund) returned to the student. PCA&D’s Business Office will issue refund checks for any amount above and beyond tuition. Student’s can then use this money for any educational expense including, rent, supplies, transportation etc.

Generally, all cash payments from financial aid, including Federal Stafford Loans, Federal PLUS Loans and Alternative Loans received by the Business Office, will be disbursed to students roughly four to five weeks from the beginning of the term. If you have additional questions, please contact the PCA&D financial aid office.

I am a transfer student. Are the laptop and camera requirements the same for me?

You should follow the laptop requirements that are listed. You should also contact your admissions counselor after you have received your transfer evaluation from our Dean of Student Services to discuss the camera.

How can I insure my laptop?

While all students are required to purchase Apple Care, this covers issues that do not extend to damage or theft of the computer. To read the details of Apple Care for your laptop, visit:

Students should check with their family’s homeowner’s policy or their own renter’s insurance policy to determine coverage and deductibles. You may wish to cover the computer, camera and software by adding a rider to an existing policy to deal with issues of damage or theft.

 If I am having a problem with my laptop or software, where can I go for help?

Students can call or email the IT Department to setup an appointment to have one of our people assist them with computer needs or advice. The IT department can assist students with basic laptop difficulties (for example their Mac Book Pro will not boot or it will not connect to the wireless network). We are not able to do any computer repairs.

IT Department Assistance for Students
Hours: 8am to 5 pm, Monday – Friday
Phone: 717-396-7833 xt.1004

Repairs and warranty service through your Apple Care can be taken to the Apple Store. The closest Apple Store to PCA&D is located in the Park City Mall. You will need to use the Apple Store online system to make an appointment with their Genius Bar prior to your visit.