How to Choose a Laptop that's Right for me: Short Guide to Picking a Laptop
A laptop provides you with the portability that is missing from a desktop and the ease of use and comfort that you wouldn’t find in a tablet. It is light enough for you to carry around wherever you’d like and powerful enough to run data-heavy applications. It is important to know your needs from a laptop before buying one as although you can replace and tweak it here and there, it doesn’t quite allow you the flexibility of changing hardware as a desktop would.
You don’t want to be stuck with an uncomfortable keyboard, substandard screen or a slow hard drive. Sure, you can set yourself a budget and then look at the options available to you within that budget from reputed manufacturers. However, this is not recommended. It is always better to do a little research beforehand and find yourself a laptop that meets your requirements. Below, we list certain pointers to help you decide which laptop is right for you.
What to consider when choosing a laptop?
Size – Laptops usually come in three screen sizes – 13in, 15in and 17in. Now, the 13in screen laptop is the lightest of the lot. It is super easy to carry around in your backpack without tiring yourself out. So, if you’re going to be moving around with your laptop a lot – this is the size you should buy. A 17in laptop is a good replacement for a desktop. It will most likely have a wide keyboard to make typing easy and be a performance powerhouse you can game on. However, it may weigh as much as 3kg and won’t fit most backpacks. A 15in screen laptop strikes a compromise between the two, providing portability and ease-of-use.
Connectivity – A laptop has fewer USB ports than a traditional computer due to the lack of space on its base. A larger laptop will have around 3 USB ports which will be sufficient. Most laptops don’t come with their DVD Drive. So if you want to play DVDs on it, you’ll have to ensure there is plug-in space for one.
Performance – It is recommended that you buy a laptop with at least 4GB RAM size so you don't have to face issues with your browser hanging after you've opened more than a couple windows. If you are using your laptop to edit videos, consider a minimum of 8GB RAM space. As for the processor, Intel Core i3 is the minimum you should aim for. Intel Core i5 will perform more intensive tasks such as photo-editing large files and working with videos easier. If you intend to use your laptop for extensive gaming and have the money to spare, invest in an Intel Core i7 and your life will never be the same again.
Graphics – Now, if you will mostly be completing your office work on the laptop, your laptop processor's integrated graphics chipset will suffice. It will give you low-to-medium detailing and low-resolution graphics. If you're a hardcore gamer, you must try out an Nvidia or AMD graphics chipset to enhance your gaming experience.
Battery life – A laptop user is expected to be on the move. They may not always be near a plug-point to charge their laptop when the battery drops. A small laptop usually offers a good 8-10hr battery life due to its small screen and low voltage processor. Bigger models exhaust easily.
When buying a laptop, carefully consider the above specification. The functionality of the touchpad and storage size are also key factors that should be considered. The budget for your laptop and find a model manufactured by an established company that suits your wants from a laptop.