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Things to Consider when Buying a Laptop

 

Sometimes, buying a new personal computer is one of the complicated things for many of us to experience, especially when it’s your very first-time personal computer. There are quite a few of various aspects and considerations when picking an excellent one, sometime it might be a bit complicated for some of us.

There are many kinds of laptop users such as student, business, gamer, high-end user, and entry-level, that’s why plenty type of devices has produced today that is depends on our need. So, there is no simple answer on which laptop is the best when it comes to this matter.

The processor, storage, memory, sometimes the design and shape, and other factors can affect its cost. So in this article, I will share my view on what to consider before deciding and getting a brand new machine.

 

Design


In these days, somehow, laptop design or looks are important as or more than its performance for some people. It is not just because it looks fantastic, colorful, and attractive in visual, but it gives us different experiences when we use it (depends on its design).

There are many devices out there with a different type of built quality. For example, there is a device that design to improve your typing experience, optimize the notebook cooling system, and maybe the quality of resistant to dust and rain.

To that end, today, we also have the 2-in-1 and touchscreen laptop. So, this is also one of the crucial aspects of this day, which we can highlight when deciding to buy a new laptop.

 

Choosing the Relevant Screen Size


When buying a laptop, the screen size also plays an important role. Size usually depends on individual desires. For example, most people like to play games, view photos, and doing their assignment on large screen sizes, because it’ll give you satisfied with its higher resolution.

Usually, laptop size likely from 10 inches to 18 inches. For smaller scale, the Ultraportable and Netbook intended for a long battery life suited for traveling and basics productivity task, but less power and low screen resolution.

So basically, if you a gamer or high-end user, find a laptop with a bigger screen (from 14 inches categories or more) as a desktop replacement. However, larger screen size consumes more power and bulkier compared to the slim and smaller screen size.

 

Processor or CPU


A processor or CPU (Central Processing Unit) is the most crucial part of every PC. A CPU play as the central part in almost every aspect of performance, including how fast your computer runs, completing all the tasks, battery performance, and many others.

The speed rank can determine in MHz/GHz called clock speed, generally more clock speed, the faster the processor is. However, for some reason, with the model of modern CPU these days, you cannot measure its performance only with the clock cycle alone.

Besides, its core also plays an essential factor when it comes to processing and multitasking activities (more CPU’s Cores are better). However, how capable of a CPU you need, it depends on what activities you want your laptop to carry.

  • Basic & Minor System

For the entry-level system that is suited for basics productivity task, basic internet surfing and play some basic games, I think the Intel Core i3 and AMD Ryzen 3 CPU is more than enough.

  • Standard System

If you like playing games (with standard performance) and do some multi-tasking activities like browsing the web while runs a particular program at the same time, watch videos online, blogging, you need at least Intel Core i5 and AMD Ryzen 5.

Most laptop users choose this processor within their device, and I recommend this too. The Core i5 and Ryzen 5 CPU is applicable for the average user, mainly the student and office user.

  • Overclocking System

This one is for the heavy multitasker and the creative interactive media user. It allows users to operate almost all applications and programs.

Furthermore, it also gives an extended performance with more visual effects, that will enable you to experience more features of specific programs.

The Intel Core i7, Core i9, and Ryzen 7 are considered as overclock CPU. However, overclocking has a notably higher cost, increase heat that can progressively damaging laptop components, void warranties, and others.

The CPU is a notebook component that has a higher effect on performance and the price tag. Additionally, you cannot upgrade it, so you must do some little thinking before you decide.

 

GPU/Dedicated Graphics Card (Dedicated Graphics Memory)


Commonly, the integrated video card (with CPU) in your laptop is adequate (both display and games). Although, if you’re a serious gamer, fascinated playing with a standard to maximum resolution, higher graphics, and watching excessive definition videos, you might like to add in a GPU (Graphics Processing Unit).

Dedicated Graphics Card can help enhance your CPU in terms of smooth performance with higher quality 3D graphics. Graphics Card measured by MB/GB (megabytes/gigabytes), and it could be 512 MB, 1 GB, or higher (more memory, the better graphics performance you get).

When talking about gaming quality, I prefer the Nvidia GPU, but it will affect the laptop cost. Graphics cards cannot upgrade, so choose carefully.

Talking about computer graphics performance and its common issues, you may interest in this technology called external GPU. It’s a graphics power supply specifically for turning today’s notebook (which has adequate particular connectors and cables) into a gaming powerhouse.

 

Memory/RAM


RAM (Random Access Memory) measured in GB (gigabytes). More RAM let you run more application at the same time and access them immediately in sync because a computer uses this component to store data before you save them in computer storage impermanently.

As the technology rapidly evolves, I think a laptop with 4 GB RAM is at the minimum requirement in these present days (maybe someone will differ) for laptop users to do their standard day task. However, for gaming purposes, video, and photo editing, you need more than that.

Luckily, unlike CPU and GPU, you can upgrade RAM on a laptop computer, so if you have insufficient money, I think no need to rush, and you can go easy on this one.

 

Computer Storage


Yesterday we only had one type of internal storage device for our laptop, the HDD (Hard Disk Drive). Well, today, we have a new, efficient, and more speed internal storage device, the SSD (Solid-State Drive or Solid-State Disk) type drive.

Also, unlike HDD, the SSD has no moving parts that make it less exposed to damage. Moreover, the Solid State Drive even a lot faster in booting and file access, but it is more expensive than Hard Disk Drive type drive.

So, in some case, it is not just the factors of performance, but also the capacity to store files in your notebook, which you should consider in the first place when it comes to storage, so HDD is the answer because it’s inexpensive and affordable.

Besides, if you want more reliable performance, fast booting, and loads of computer storage, you can upgrade the HDD to Solid State Drive on your laptop later on (if the laptop computer has extra slots). Unless, if you have extra money,  so I recommend the modern SSD type hard drive.

 

Audio Quality


If you are someone who likes watching movies, editing and listening to music, you may concern about audio system quality. There are laptops out there with high multimedia sound quality.

However, not all users bother about the audio quality, However, if you are interested, put this into your list.

 

Connectivity


If you have other gadgets like external storage, smartphone, Crypto wallet, and other external devices, you need a laptop at least have several USB ports and HDMI (High Definition Multimedia Interface), attached on its body.

We recommend you to look for a laptop that has at least the USB 3.0 port. It is faster in transferring, reading, and data access than the previous USB port, because of most the external drive and devices today use at least USB 3.0.

If you need a laptop more comprehensive in connectivity, I recommend finding a notebook featured with the latest Thunderbolt 3 USB Type-C.

Not only it is the fastest USB connectivity, but you will also see many benefits on it. For example, it fast enough to connect with multiple high definition video output and external graphics processing unit.

 

Online Research & Reviews


Buying a new laptop is not an easy task for most people, because you need to balance its cost and your needs, and you also need to gather information and compare views from others.

Before you buy a device, do some research first, check and read laptop reviews on the internet, especially how much the laptop cost.

Moreover, one thing you must keep in mind that modern laptop technology evolves rapidly, and it’s difficult to keeping pace with it. So, it is better for you to take your time and assess your needs, available budget, and do research.

Is there anything you want to add and questions that you want to ask? Leave your comment below, and I’m more than happy to read your thoughts.

Posted in Guides, PC Tips

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19 Comments

  1. John

    Roslan,
    I am in the market for a new laptop. I have been looking for a couple of months trying to make up my mind. You have a lot of helpful information in this post for me. What do you think about the new USB-C ports for data transfers or a Micro SD card port for more memory if you get a smaller hard drive. I already have a portable Optical Drive as most do not have this option.
    My choice at this time is a 2in1 touch screen I-7 with 16 gb of memory and a 512 SSD hard drive with a 15 inch screen. I write, surf and do a lot of picture and video editing. Do you think this would fit my needs or would you think I should back up to the I-5 for less heat and cost.
    John

    • Rsln

      John,

      As you describe, you do a lot of internet surf with multiple tabs, picture, and video editing, and use some productivity software or word processing. I think you came with the right decision. Laptop with Core i7 processor, 16 GB memory (good for editing 4k 8bit Projects with minimal programs running on background), and SSD type drive.

      And for external storage, I suggest the SSD external drive (whether it’s for Type C or A port) or Micro SD (most of Laptop computer has a built-in SD card slot) may help because these two can store more data & files.

  2. Matts Mom

    I have had the same laptop for, believe it or not, about 5 years. Which of course makes it very antiquated for sure. So I have been a bit rusty in what to look for in a new one. This is great information for me, and will now make it a LOT easier for me while I am shopping for a new business laptop. Any particular brands that stand out as the best right now?

    • Rsln

      Hi,

      Matts mom, laptop for business purpose I think Dell XPS 13, Huawei Matebook X Pro or Apple MacBook Pro should be okay. This is only my top 3 list, there are more out there. So, I suggest you make more research from other sites before deciding.

      Cheers.

  3. ghafur

    im not really good with these kind of stuff, but since i in the market now i have to do some reseach first. but your explainations on this article are simple and yet still i can unferstand it. so can you suggest any ultrabook under $1000?

  4. mike Lanning

    All my laptops are old…. 2 of which the screens don’t work so I have them hooked up to tv’s for monitors and the one with the working screen if more than 5 years old.
    Eventually I will be needing a newer , bigger, faster lap top especially for the one I dedicate to my home recording studio and believe the information on your site will help when it comes time for an upgrade..

  5. Todd P Matthews

    I always go with reviews first. Storage is a huge deal for me since I do a lot of writing, and I mean a lot of writing, so that combined with memory are two criteria I look upon as well. I have a fairly new laptop so I’m not in the market for a new one just yet, but when buying my current, these were the top attributes I sought.

    • Rsln

      Hi Todd,
      I agree with you, first of all go with the reviews, do some research, and compare the prices, so you can balance all your requirements and the budget. Thanks for stopping by and sharing your thought here.

  6. Andrey

    Dear Roslan
    Thank you very much for your fantastic website. It is amazing that you show people where to start and what steps to make towards their proper understanding on buying a laptop. I hope more people will know about your website and follow your guidance.
    Kind regards,
    Andrey

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