Rather than going into the usual technical details of how to buy a laptop, here are some important things to consider, including useful explanations. Firstly, there are three things to keep in mind before buying a laptop.
- Don’t Spend Much
When buying laptops for common usage or when you are not into any professional activities regarding software etc., you don’t need to buy computers more than $1000. Know your needs and know that you can enjoy much in even $1000 as you would in $1500 or above.
- How Much Do You Travel
It’s very important to consider how much days in a week you carry the laptop around with you. Then depending on that, you should decide to get a 13-inch laptop if you intend to travel 2-3 days a week but if you are to use your laptop on the desk, then go for 15-inch or more.
What you really need to know is that most of the laptops have a lot in common, like they have the same type of CPUs, hard drives and RAM etc, and what distinguishes them from each other is nothing but their design. So go for the laptop that goes with your personality while you carry it around, just like you’ll think before buying a jacket for yourself. A laptop is a big investment for your every day so choose well!
Though there are many ways laptops could be put into categories, we’ve segregated them here according to their screen size.
These have 11-12 inch display screen, and are less common now. They usually have Intel Core i3 CPUs, low voltage and cost around $400-$500.
This is a uniquely comfortable size for carrying around and to work on desk too, the best examples being Toshiba R835 and Apple’s MacBook Pro. These are gaining much popularity now and are replacing the ultraportable too.
Ranging from 14-16 inch display, these are best if they’ve to be kept at one place or moved around in a building. Mostly have dual core CPUs, 4 GB RAM, hard drives with 320 GB of storage space and price ranging from $500-$1000 or more.
With screen size from 17-inch and more, these laptops have replaced the desktops and keyboard combination. The common features include Quad-core CPUs, graphic cards from Nvidia, screen with 1920×1080 resolution. Such laptops are perfect for entertainment in a dorm, giving video, and computing and music devices all in one box.
The categories just covered will surely prove to be useful to you but you might get across the following categories as well:
This is Intel marketing term with the usual specifications of being 18mm thick, having at least 5 hours battery life and a primary or secondary SSD drive.
They remained popular till 2010 and are 9-11 inch laptops, with the price starting from $299. As consumers had many compromises to make, their usage has dwindled.
This ultra-mobile PC remained for a short time due to the high price and comprised of low power processors into devices of size Nintendo DS.
It usually refers to laptops with touch screens or screens that can be detached from the keyboard docks-known as convertibles or hybrids.
- Laptop For Gaming
A handful of companies like Origin etc. specialize in providing laptops for gaming specifically.
You will have to pay heed to the components as important as CPU.
This company refers to CPUs as AMD. With the newly launched 2nd generation of A-series (A4,6,8,10), these new processors for laptops declare to have doubled the performance as compared to the previous generation and with 12 hours of battery life. You’ll also come across E-series that’s basically for ultraportable laptops.
Most of the laptops have Intel CPU in them. Recently, new chips, named Ivy Bridge are introduced, with part number beginning with the number 3, making them easily distinguishable.
Some other processors from Intel include Core i3, i5, i7 and Pentium and Celeron.
Your laptop will either have a spinning splatter hard drive (HDD) or an SSD.
These produce less heat, are expensive with smaller capacities from 64GB to an upgrade of 256GB available, so aren’t much ideal for large video storage.
They are large and inexpensive, with at least 320GB capacity and useful for streaming data from hard drive when videos are to be edited or while playing games.
Some other options that you’ll have to select from while buying a laptop are given as below:
- Shall I go for a Mac or PC? That would depend on the use you intend to put it to.
- Whether I want a touchscreen or the traditional screen? Now mostly people have touchscreen in mind but be ready to exceed your budget then.
- Shall I buy a convertible or a non-convertible?
- If I am out of budget, how about a refurbished or used laptop instead of a new one? At times, the returned laptops are taken by the manufacturers and restored to factory settings. This is sold at about half the normal price. Sometimes, people happen to sell their new laptops only because they want some latest model so better avail the opportunity when you’ve little to lose.
Laptop, we repeat, is an expensive investment and you’re likely to use it every day so better to think on all the points just discussed!