There are many different laptop sizes, features and prices, which makes it a challenge to pick the appropriate one based on your needs. Follow these tips that can help you make the right decision when buying a laptop:
All-Purpose: to do a little bit of everything you can consider anything from an inexpensive 15-incher to a lightweight 11- or 13-inch system.
Business/Productivity: to write and edit texts, manipulate spreadsheets and create presentations, you’ll want a laptop with a good keyboard, durable design and sharp screen.
Gaming: to play high-end games, go for a laptop with a high-end Core i7 processor, discrete graphics, a high-res screen and strong speakers.
Creative Professional: to edit videos, photos or illustrations, you need a laptop with a powerful processor, discrete graphics, a Solid State Drive (SSD) and a large and high-res display.
11 to 12 inches: thinnest and lightest, weigh less than 3 lbs.
13 to 14 inches: provides the best balance of portability and usability; weigh between 3 and 4 lbs., fits easily on your lap.
15 inches: most affordable and weigh between 5 to 6 lbs. It’s a good option if you’re not planning to carry it around.
17 to 18 inches: biggest screen, and because of their width, these can pack high-voltage quad-core CPUs, powerful discrete graphics and multiple storage drives.
Does the keyboard have solid tactile feedback and enough space between the keys? Is the touchpad smooth to operate? Does the mouse buttons have a satisfying click? Can you zoom in and out with ease, and select text using the touchpad without the cursor skipping around?
CPU: the AMD E Series or Intel Pentium/Celeron CPUs can handle web surfing, email and social networks use. Power users and gamers should get a Core i7 system.
RAM: it should have minimum 4GB, but if you can get a system with 8GB, you’ll be better prepared for high-end applications and lots of multitasking.
Hard Drive/SSD: go with a Solid State Drive (SSD) over a hard drive, it provides twice the speed of their mechanical counterparts. However, SSDs are usually more expensive and come in much lower 128/256GB capacities.
Display: The more pixels you have, the more content you can fit on screen, and the sharper it will look. Choose a laptop with a pixel count of 1600 x 900, 1920 x 1080 or even higher.