For day to day work, technology has invented new devices for human ease, like smartphones, tablets, smartwatches, PC and laptops. Buying these devices is not an easy task for anyone. The user has to do a lot of research before choosing any one of them. If you are going to buy a laptop for your entertainment, school, college or business work, you have to know various things about it. So, here is the Laptop Buying Guide: How to Pick the Best Laptop to help even the beginner choose the best for him.
Before getting into the guide, the first thing you have to know is about your buying intent. For what reason and purpose are you going to buy a laptop? If you are clear in your mind, then choose the type of laptop according to your needs. Here the question arises; is a laptop of any type? If yes, then what and for whom.
- Entry Level or General-purpose Laptops: They are easily affordable laptops. Mostly for those people who don’t know much about digital devices. These laptops can carry multiple standard tasks. Although they have no top-of-the-line hardware and can’t be used for graphic and game designing purposes, their long-lasting battery makes them perfect for general use.
- Mainstream Laptops: These laptops are costly than Entry-level laptops because of premium features and high-powered graphics chips. These laptops have great displays and powerful processors, are lightweight and portable. Plus, they have great battery life.
- Premium: They are costly laptops. They have larger and higher-resolution displays. They offer longer battery life and more powerful internal hardware. Overall, they have better build quality.
- 2-in-1 and convertibles: These laptops brought a new trend to the laptop’s world. On the negative side, in addition to cost, they have many drawbacks. But still, if you like this trend, choose between its two designs:
- Convertible: To convert into a tablet, the keyboard folds back by 180 degrees.
- Detachable: You don’t need to fold back; only remove the keyboard and use it as a tablet. In combined form, they look like ultra-thin laptops.
- Ultrabooks: They are slim, extra-lightweight, and easy to carry laptops. Ultrabooks use SSDs (Solid-state drives) and power-efficient Intel Core processors. They have great battery life.
- Business laptops: These laptops are costly. They have slightly larger displays and colour accuracy. They offer better protective systems (security providing software packages and biometric validation) because of their greater emphasis on security and privacy. They have tough shells and extended battery life.
- Gaming Laptops: They are built especially for game lovers. They have high-end processors and graphics chips. Although their battery life is not great, they offer enough RAM so you can easily run modern games.
Things To Consider Before Buying A Laptop
Now you have decided which laptop suits you best. Then it’s time to know what points should be considered before buying a laptop. Let’s discuss it one by one.
The most important thing to check before buying a laptop is its operating system. The three major operating systems have their unique specs, for example:-
- macOS in APPLE devices is most compatible with the Apple hardware.
- Windows is the most common OS (operating system)used in most laptops. They are easy to use, straightforward, and efficient in doing work quickly. They are best to run Microsoft applications like MS Office, OneNote, OneDrive, Outlook etc.
- ChromeOS is best for searching the internet or for projects that need browsers to work. The laptops with Chrome OS are called Chromebooks. They are the least powerful, usually coming in low-end devices.
Laptop size is an exterior spec, but you need to determine your needs to select one. Different sizes of laptops are recommended to different users.
- 11 to 12 inches laptop having 2.5 to 3.5 lbs weight. Thinnest, smallest, and lightest in appearance.
- 13 to 14 inches laptop best for portability, a good display, having 4 lbs weight.
- 15 to 16 inches laptops, having probably 4 to 5.5 lbs of weight. They are the most common and popular size laptops, mostly used by businessmen.
- 17 inches laptop having 6.5 lbs approximate weight. These laptops are not portable, mostly used by gamers or graphic designers.
Display resolution is an exterior component of a laptop. For general use, most laptops offer 1920 x 1080p resolution. For gaming, editing (photo & video) or graphic designing, 4K display laptops are best.
Random Access Memory is a temporary storage device. The better the RAM, the system runs smoother and more efficiently. 4 GB RAM is good for general use, but for gaming laptops, 8 GB RAM is perfect for running the latest video games. Graphic Designers also need 8 GB of RAM for good and efficient work.
The hard drive is a place to store all your data. In this matter, preferable is the Solid State Drives (SSDs), but still, some people use spinning drives. SATA is an older version with less speed to move data in and out of your hardware. For better speed, combine the SSDs with NVMe; it functions faster.
Some laptops offer 256 GB and some 512 GB. This storage area is best for regular general users. If you want a great storage area, I think a 1 TB hard drive is the best for you.
What type of hardware do you want? Which software are you going to run on it? These questions must be answered before buying a laptop. For finding solutions, first, you need to check the processor, also referred to as the CPU or chip.
CPU helps to run the system quickly and smoothly. The main two companies offering CPUs are Intel Processors and AMD processors. For high-performance work, the Intel Core i5 processor is a good option. Now core i9 is the most powerful processor. For video editing or 3D modelling tasks, Core i7 and quad-core CPUs are considered best.
Graphics Processing Unit
GPU is one of the most important units for gaming laptops. It helps image, and video rendering (to play games & watch HD videos), especially discrete GPU is best to run a game or big software. However, Intel GPU is an acceptable option. For desktop PCs, the GPU is enclosed in a graphic card and then plugs it into the PC. But in laptops, the GPU is bundled into the laptop’s motherboard with the processor.
Although all other features need to be checked, battery life is crucial. Imagine your system has great features but has only a few hours long battery life. What advantage will you get from it? Portability is mostly affected at this point. Extended battery life saves you from charging your laptop frequently all day and night.
These are the points you have to keep in mind while buying a laptop for you. I hope this guide helps you to make up your mind. After checking all these specs, you are ready to buy the best laptop for yourself.