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Sunday, February 19, 2017

Tips & Tricks: 10 things to consider while buying a new laptop

We all know that latest smartphones are capable of performing many computing activities however laptops are never out of work. You still need a laptop for more 'serious' computing capabilities at work, gaming or for leisure.



In case you are planning to buy or upgrade to a new Laptop, below are some key things you should consider.

Also Read: Detailed review on Xiaomi Laptop - Macbook Air look alike with Intel processor, 16GB RAM for $480


10 Key Things To Know When You Upgrade Your Laptop/Notebook

 

1) Screen Size:


This is one of the major selection criteria if you are planning to buy any laptop. Screen sizes may vary from lightweight 12 to 14-inch and even 15.6 / 17 inches. However with designs do come some trade-offs like – with smaller screen, the keyboard might be smaller or battery life and performance may be impacted. Most popular screen sized laptops are 15.6-inch which are suitable for graphics video editing, gaming and designing. The powerful laptops are typically of 15.6-inch or 17-inch sizes. For frequent travelers or mobile users, 12-14 inch laptop fits the bill due to light weight.


2) Design: Conventional or Hybrid


Many modern days laptops comes with flex mode, tablet convertibles/ hybrids, 360 rotatable and keyboard detachable (touch enabled). However these new laptops comes at a price tag – again if you need laptop for generic need – conventional laptops are good, however if you are too much into travel and presentations, reading on the go – than convertible laptop can be used.

3) Connectivity Options:


Many older laptops models comes with several ports like S-video, VGA, Firewire, multiple audio jacks, USB ports and so on. However, modern day laptops are so much smaller, you mostly get a very less USB ports, limited HDMI and a card reader slots. Some ultra-thin designs have even fewer USB ports and collapsible Ethernet ports. The latest tech fad is to dump Ethernet and video out entirely and go for USB type C ports (which will be universal and multipurpose).

Hence if you have connectivity issues at home or work and would need LAN cables, you may go for conventional Laptops. However if your home/ work place is fully WiFi enabled, 4G or Bluetooth compliant, you can go for ultra-thin laptops.

Also Read: Review of Lenovo Air 13 Pro

4) Drives:


Optical drives are bulky, so they've been dropped away within most models today. However, you'll still find 15.6-inch laptops with optical drives if you need one. The major trend is a shift to flash-based storage (SSDs) as compared to hard drives (HDDs). Flash storage is more costly but can be much smaller, lighter and offers better speed.

5) Touch Enabled Laptop:


These devices does reflect a lot of benefits especially for digital users who are more touch-savy, it will be easier to scroll through webpages, reading eBooks, large folders, photos and long documents. Windows 10 interface is optimized for touch and you can download many touch-optimized apps. However for traditional users, you can still opt for keyboard and mouse, you'll save money by dropping the touchscreen.

6) Battery Life:


This is one of the serious selection criteria. Old school Laptops had a battery life of 2 to 3 hours. However in today’s world, bare minimum battery life of 5 to 6 hours is desirable however for a full-workday without plugging in, you need 8 to 10 hours of battery life, for which you still have to pay a premium. Specially in India, where 24 hours electricity is still an issue, long battery life is always key consideration.

7) Graphic Cards:


Laptops can come with 3 kinds of graphics cards viz. Cohesive graphics chips, discrete graphics cards and some which have switchable graphics (to auto switch between internal and discrete graphics).

For regular use of documents, web, multimedia and basic games, integrated (cohesive)graphics are going to do just fine. If your main purpose is gaming or professional graphics video editing, then you should get a notebook with dedicated graphics card. Switchable graphics will conserve power if you're only doing basic use.

Also Read: Exclusive Review of  Hybrid Notebook - HP EliteBook Revolve 810 G2


8) Operating System: 


The OS impacts the overall cost of any laptop – You can buy a laptop without an operating system as it is a major cost saving – and run it on Linux or other open-source alternatives if you are familiar – Xubuntu, Ubuntu, Red Hat, Puppy Linux are few to name.

However for easy usage, Windows is still the most popular OS used by Corporate and Home users and is cheaper to buy a laptop bundled with an operating system rather than buying a standalone operating system later.

For niche users, you have an option to select Mac OS which comes at a premium and runs only on Mac Devices. These laptops are most expensive in today’s market.

10) Configuration (Processor - RAM - HDD):


Today, users can select from two processors – Intel and AMD. Intel still rules 90% of laptop world. For conventional users, they should go for Intel Core i5 or i7 processor (Dual or Quad core), with minimum 4GB/8GB RAM and 500 GB HDD. These laptops starts from Rs. 35,000 upto Rs. 1.5 Lacs.

We would not recommend, Intel Celeron M; i3 as they are slowly fading out.

However if you want very basic version, you can get a laptop on Atom Processor, 2/4 GB RAM and 256/500 GB HDD and is available from Rs. 15,000 to Rs. 30,000. You also have an option to buy a Chrome Laptop - which runs on Google's Chrome OS ( Cloudbased ) and is available for as little as Rs. 15,000.

Even Macbooks come in similar configuration but are very expensive due to hardware durability and UI. Macbooks are lightest of all laptops and comes with very long battery life.


Hope our post intrigued some questions and made you better informed today. Feel free to reach out should you have any questions and feedback on ReviewsToday.




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