12 Things You Must Consider before buying a Laptop
Are you planning to in buying a Laptop? Don’t get too excited! You have to know things first about laptops before buying one. It’s about knowing what kind of laptop you need.
Add to that, buying a laptop is not an expense, especially if you use it for a living or studies. This is an asset, which means it is your investment.
Your laptop depends on what work or field you’re into. There are different specifications for each laptop. And it’s quite overwhelming to choose one. To help you decide, this can be your guide in choosing and buying a laptop that best suits you!
Does size matter when You buy a Laptop?
Yes! Size does matter! We have different preferences as we work. Some people are effective in working outside their homes.
They will bring their laptop and do their work in a café or store shops/restaurants. If you’re one of them, choose a portable and usable laptop.
You might consider the following to choose from:
Laptop’s Display Size
- Sizes 11 inches to 12 inches – this is considered the thinnest and lightest laptop. Typically, they weigh around 2.5 to 3.5 pounds.
- Sizes 13 inches to 14 inches – these sizes provide a balance of portability and usability. They usually weigh around four (4) pounds. If this is your priority, you can have a Windows laptop that is smaller in size.
- Sizes 15 inches to 16 inches – most people choose this size. This usually weighs around four to 5.5 pounds. These sizes will give you a larger display of the screen. 16-inch laptops are rare, but Apple released its 16-inch MacBook Pro.
- Sizes 17 inches to 18 inches – if you’re going to work all day at your desk at home, a 17- or 18-inch laptop will be an option. These laptops can provide you a processing power to do workstation-level productivity. Also, you can play high-end games with these sizes.
Brands like Dell, ASUS, and Acer offer laptops with sizes 13.3-inch, 15.6-inch, and 17.3-inches.
But take note, smaller-sized laptops don’t have support the same as the high-end Intel Core i7 CPUs. Such features can only be found in bigger sizes like 15.6-inch.
If you are going to work that needs a larger display or in line with graphics, your option will be larger.
You have to be careful in choosing your laptop. It’s because you can rarely see a laptop that fits all. So it’s essential that you understand these tips for buying a laptop.
Will you buy a 2-in-1 Laptop?
Thinking of having a portable and very convenient one to use? You can opt to buy a hybrid laptop. It’s a 2-in-1 laptop. You can use it in different positions, like a tent or stand mode.
There were two different styles of 2-in-1: Detachable Laptops and Flexible Laptops.
The unique part of using a detachable laptop is that you can entirely come off the screen from its keyboard. You can use the screen, just like a tablet.
While flexible laptops have hinges, you can bend the laptop in 360 degrees to change modes.
Windows and Mac offer various laptops, including these 2-in-1 laptops. These are other factors on what to check when buying a laptop.
Buy a Laptop with a great Keyboard quality
Are you doing a writing job where you do long typing sessions?
If so, you have to look for a laptop with a keyboard that is very comfortable to type with. A keyboard with full-sized keys will be easier and more fun to type. Keys that have a snappy response when you let go.
You can opt to buy a laptop with a keyboard that has a backlit feature. This will help you do your work even in dimly lit places.
As you buy, one tip is to ask to try the unit before deciding. Stores do have displays of each unit. Use it to try if it is comfortable for you to use, especially in typing. Look into these things to consider when buying a laptop.
Why consider the CPU when you buy a laptop?
We always look for a laptop with the best performance, especially in multitasking and multimedia tasks. Intel Core Processor offers that kind of PC or laptop.
Core i3, i5, and i7 are their products with different functions. Meanwhile, Core i3 notebooks can be found in an entry-level system. On the other hand, Core i5 makes up the majority of mainstream computers.
For the best performance from a laptop, you can probably consider Core i7. But, an i7-based system can cause heat to come through the base of the laptop. Better not to use i7-based laptops on your lap for a long time.
Also, Intel does have Core i9-bases laptops. And it is more powerful, which can be a rival to desktops’ performance. But this system is expensive compared to Core i7, i5, and/or i3. These are the things to consider in buying a laptop.
Why consider the operating system (OS) when you buy a laptop?
Different platforms or operating systems (OS) exist – Windows, Mac, and/or Chrome OS.
To differentiate the three, let’s discuss each platform:
This platform is a far more open-ended one compared to macOS. What’s great about it is Windows updates frequently. And add to that, Windows also has software available.
Their standard OS (operating system) for game development and business-related programs is Windows. It does come in various shapes and sizes, which is very friendly to millions of users.
Windows do also have their laptops. Looking for a touchscreen laptop? Windows can offer you one, and it can be found even at the lower price brackets!
It has features such as elaborate designs, which include fold-back screens or even detachable tablet-keyboard combos.
This is an operating system of the Apple brand. It has its standards, which made its brand so consistent the top.
This platform is a user-friendly one like Windows. The unique part is that all Apple products come from the same ecosystem. With its resourceful support network, this makes the company provide help for users easily.
macOS does have a quality design that is built to look elegant. Aside from design, macOS does come preinstalled with proprietary software. It utilizes fast hardware, as well.
However, the Apple brand was never known to be a cheap one.
This platform powers “Chromebook” laptops. This system is based on Google’s Chrome browser.
The thing is, it can’t run PCs/desktops the same as the other two mentioned. But with Chrome OS, it is quick and more versatile compared to before.
This platform may be less capable compared to Windows and macOS. But if this platform provides and fits what you want to do, you can save more money with Chrome over the other two.
Review these features if you want to know what to consider when buying a laptop.
Why consider memory when buying a laptop?
Random-access memory, or the so-called RAM, is vital in all devices, from desktops to mobile or smartphones, to games consoles. Without RAM, whatever we do, the system will work so slow.
RAM was thought of as the memory – short-term memory. Its function is the ability to store (remember) everything that runs on your device. The more RAM the device has, the more info it can store.
It can also do more at any time – run multiple applications simultaneously and quickly access them! That’d be best if you do editing photos or video content.
If you’ll ask, how much RAM you’ll be needing? Well, eight gigabytes will be great. If you do content creation or work on in-depth applications, you can jump up to 16GB or more. You can consider 32GB of RAM for the best experience if you’re a gamer.
Why consider storage when buying a laptop?
Years before, hard disk drives were used for storing information on a spinning metal disk. It’s inexpensive and is great at processing large files. However, with HDD, it makes noise, and it uses up lots of power.
For laptops, HDD is mostly out of favor. Talking about thin and light laptops, they can be slow and bulky. Aside from the noise, it produces heat since it uses more power.
Nowadays, solid-state drives or SSD have been used as standard storage for laptops. It offers more speed compared to HDD and runs quietly. It is not bulky to install, which will not add up too much weight on a laptop.
Many have benefited from SSD. And that’s why most organizational equipment manufacturers prefer SSD since it will be more convenient for the users.
SSD’s performance is so smooth that it can load programs, access data, and boot up the system quickly.
However, it doesn’t offer that much capacity. Its storage is expensive, costs dollars-to-gigabytes compared to that of HDD. SSD’s 128GB, 256GB costs more than the one or two terabytes of a hard drive.
What OEMs did, there are PCs or laptops with SSD paired with a larger hard drive. If you would pick a laptop with this kind of storage, you’ll benefit from speed benefits. While keeping the operating system on SSD storage, you’ll benefit from having enough storage space for other data.
For the latest SSD, NVMe solid-state drive was developed and installed to the fastest laptops. It is much faster than the traditional SSD, yet, it is more expensive.
If you work with photos, videos, and graphics, you’ll probably save a lot of files. That means you need a laptop that can save lots of files.
Should you consider the graphics if you buy a laptop?
Thrilled about using a laptop with great graphics? Aside from storage, memory, and processor, graphics are one thing that’ll pop up in your mind if you plan to buy a laptop.
It’s a graphics chip that generates the program’s images to display on the screen. Mostly on laptops, graphic chips are usually integrated into the motherboard.
Unlike desktops, upgrading a laptop’s graphics is very rare and difficult. That’s why before you go to the store, it’s important to know first what you need at the beginning.
The two primary merchants of mobile graphics are NVIDIA and AMD. Both are offering products that provide graphics that users may enjoy.
Considering the performance, NVIDIA’s latest series, like the 20-series, including RTX 2060, 2070, and 2080 are cool. It is a powerful gaming and business-class laptop, yet it’s expensive.
On the other hand, AMD, known as a champion, revealed Radeon VII. It is almost the same footing as RTX 2080. With its 16GB of HBM2 memory, for sure, it will shine for those aspiring creatives!
Why choose to buy a laptop with good screen quality?
Consider getting a laptop with a screen that is comfortable to look at. You can opt for a laptop with a touchscreen feature (it depends on your preference based on what you need).
It is now common nowadays because it is very useful to many. You can do tasks easier with the touchscreen.
However, touchscreens do have a glossy screen, which is very uncomfortable for gamers, content writers (s), photo, and video editors. With its glossiness, the screen will tend to reflect. With these clear reasons, you might prefer to get a non-touchscreen laptop.
You may look for those who have a great resolution. You might consider a 1920×1080-pixel resolution – full HD. With that resolution, you’ll have plenty of space to line up with windows. With that, you can keep things in view.
Some laptops offer a 4K resolution. But the price is quite costly. If you’re working as a content creation professional, this type of resolution will be best for you.
If you’re a photographer or videographer, you will choose a laptop that offers better color accuracy.
For gamers, they will get one that will surely give them the best experience. A laptop that has a faster refresh rate will enable a smooth and very responsive play experience.
Also, you’ll probably get one that has great viewing angles. A laptop with IPS (in-plane switching) technology will give you the widest viewing angle!
Choose to buy a laptop with a great build quality
Laptops are just like mobile phones, prone to drop down, thrown, and/or knocked around. That’s why it’s worth considering the laptop’s build quality.
To meet this concern, some brands manufactured PCs or laptops which are ruggedized.
These laptops are specifically designed for those who work in harsh environments and conditions. It can withstand rain and dust.
Add to that, you must check if the laptop has undergone several testing. That will prove that the laptop has a great build quality.
Should you buy a laptop with long battery life?
Using a laptop for home and/or work, you’ll probably want a laptop that is at least seven hours of endurance.
Well, that would help you do your work for a longer time, especially during a flight, long day meetings, or in multiple classes.
Seven or ten hours of endurance will be your best choice. You know, no matter what and how specs are assembled in a laptop, it is useless if they can’t outlast.
Whatever you do, for work, business, school, or even for gaming, long battery life could be anything!
Buy a Laptop with a bunch of Connectivity
Choosing a laptop that has a bunch of connectivity options is great! There will be a tendency that you’ll need an external display. To do that, you have to connect your laptop to something.
You opt to buy some adapters. But a laptop with lots of connectivity options will have less hassle.
Most recommended laptops are those with a couple of USB 3.0 ports. If you’re a photo editor, you might need an external hard drive. These USB ports will be more useful if you need to transfer files. Laptops with SD card slots are worth considering as well.
As mentioned, buying a laptop is not an expense. It would rather be your great asset. The important thing is, before you make a purchase, you have to consider the above mentioned before you come up with a decision.
Think of what laptop will fit your career path, your environment, and your available budget. Knowing and understanding such things will not let you regret it.
Need to buy a laptop for a freelancing career? This guide can be your simple guide in finding the laptop that fits your chosen career.