No matter the price category, there are simply too many different types of laptops to choose from. But what is the most important aspect to look from? There is a set of criteria that everyone should consider before splurging on a new device.
Size isn’t like the RAM of a laptop, you can’t upgrade it later. You’re locked into whatever you select up-front, so choose wisely. If portability is your priority, go for a smaller sized laptop. They tend to be thinner and lighter than their larger counterparts. Keep in mind that smaller-sized often don’t support the same high-end Core i7 or graphics cards. Most of the time, they’ll also feature a less selection of ports. If the kind of work requires a graphic power, you’ll probably need to look for larger size. Some users need something lighter and more portable. Other users need for things like video editing or running high end games. If you need a PC with an optical drive or long battery life, you certainly have to look for something larger.
Touchscreens are common now and they can make tasks easier. Unfortunately, they can also add glossiness to the display which is sometimes undesirable. Glossy screens lead to reflections, which are a definite negative if you’re gaming, editing images and video content. For these reasons, you might want to consider a laptop that doesn’t have a touchscreen. Be sure to look at the resolution on any laptop you’re thinking of buying. A full HD should be considered if you want plenty of space to line up windows. Laptops now offer 4K resolutions. This high-end display panels are generally a costly add-on. They’re only worth it for those who need them, like content creation professionals. Take time to go to a store and see the screen for yourself.
For long typing sessions, you want a keyboard that has a comfortable layout with full-sized keys and some space around the arrow keys. The keys should have adequate travel on the down-stroke and fast responsiveness when you let them go.
Core i3-based are generally found in entry-level systems, while Core i5 makes up the majority of mainstream laptops. Core i7-based systems are for those of you who want the best performance. Take note that with a Core i7-based system, heat coming through the base of the laptop must be concern, especially if you plan to actually use the laptop on your lap a lot of the time or travelling. Laptops running on i9 Core processors are new and even more powerful but surely higher in cost.
These days, you’ll probably want to think about 8GB as minimum. If you’re a power-user, 16GB is the way to go. Meanwhile, gamers should look at all the way to 32GB if they want the best experience. More RAM allows more applications to be run at the same time and for more data to be quickly accessible, which comes in handy for tasks such as editing photos or video content.
Hard drives used to be all the rage, but these days they’ve mostly out of favour, especially for thin and light laptops. This is because they can be slow, somewhat bulky, and produce heat and noise. A solid state drive (SSD) offers a lot more speed than a hard drive, runs silently and can be installed in a form factor that doesn’t add much to the weight of a laptop. The only problem is that SSDs don’t offer much capacity. And often more expensive than traditional hard drives. You’ll be stuck with a drive that’s either 128GB, 256GB or 512GB in size, but costs a lot more than one with a 1TB or 2TB hard drive would.
There are simply too many variables that affect battery life. Screen brightness, screen resolution, number of applications you have running in the background plus whether or not you actively remain connected to Wi-Fi networks or bluetooth devices. The operating system a laptop runs on also play a major role in determining battery life. If you run programs that need lots of processing, stream lots of online video, play graphics-intensive games or if you transfer lots of files over a wireless network, then your battery will drain a lot.
No matter how careful we are, most laptops are inevitably going to be dropped, thrown and knocked around by the everyday use. Some modern laptops are now can withstand rain and dust. Some are built with military-grade protection certifications.
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