Laptop buying guide: practical tips to choose the right notebook
By GB Blog Official 2017-09-22 4203 1
A laptop's screen pretty much determines the size of the whole device. And how big of a screen you need is a matter of practicality and personal preference.
For instance, a laptop with an expansive display (over 15 inches) will be great for enjoying your media or indulging in some gameplay. A large keyboard will also make typing easier — but for that you will need to trade in some portability.
A smaller laptop with, say a 13.3 or 7 inch screen, will be significantly lighter and much more carriable.
Screen size is important, but it all comes down to the resolution. With most laptops, you will typically get at least 1,366 x 768 pixels — which is enough for the majority of basic operations.
However, if you work a lot with video editing, game playing, movies watching, etc. — you might want to invest in a laptop offering a higher resolution and smoother image quality: like notebooks with 1920 x 1080 (FHD) displays.
Traditional one piece or convertible 2-in-1 laptop
Most modern laptops still come with the standard clam-type design — you have the screen that snaps down onto the keyboard and touchpad. However, 2-in-1 designs are also gaining popularity recently: these laptops have a detachable touch screen that can be used as tablets on their own.
Convertible laptops offer more portability and flexibility than traditional types, but are often less powerful than their traditional counterparts.
As modern laptops come in various shapes and sizes, the keyboards vary as well. Smaller models typically won't have enough space for a numeric keyboard. Some designs also have smaller arrow keys or move their backlash keys to the other side of the keyboard.
Smaller sized laptops may also be missing Home, End and Page Up and Page Down keys.
Basically, if you want to have a full-sized keyboard, you will probably need to get a larger laptop. If you can comfortably work on a small keyboard – you can choose from a whole range of sizes.
Now, let's get into the inner workings of the computer.
Think about how much RAM you will need — it is recommended to have at least 4GB of RAM. Today, with most laptops (even inexpensive ones), you will probably get a standard 8GB — this is enough for video editing and more advanced gaming. If you will need to do loads of multitasking and need a pro-level powerful computer, consider getting one with 16GB of RAM.
Choosing a processor is trickier. It is generally recommended to go with at least an Intel Core i3 processor — enough for basic office work, web browsing, etc.Core i5 processors are suitable for more intensive tasks: video editing, multitasking, gaming, etc. Laptops with Core i7 chipsets are pricier but offer a much quicker and smoother performance, especially for heftier projects. And there are Intel Celeron and Cherry Trail processor, which are suitable for budget models with low performance.
When it comes to graphics, most laptops will rely on the graphics chipsets integrated with their processors. This will be enough for gaming (even basic 3D games) — but if you are a pro gamer, consider getting a gaming laptop, which will have all the needed feature for a smooth immersive experience.
As for the OS, most of the models are powering on the Windows 10 OS, from a recovered Start Menu to improved multitasking tools, the platform offers you multiple new features.
Depending on how often you plan to move around, battery life will either be a primary consideration or a less important decision factor. Surprisingly, smaller and lighter laptops often offer longer battery life — mostly because they come with less powerful processors and lower resolution screens. If you often work outside of home, consider getting a smaller, more portable computer with a strong battery — for working long hours without the need for a re-charge.
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