Laptop Computers: How to buy a laptop

Laptop computers are becoming a very common purchase for people today. Laptops used to be just for businesses and computer nerds, but since the price for buying a laptop has dropped over the last few years anyone can own a laptop. When buying a laptop, you need to keep in mind many of the same things as when buying a desktop: processor, memory, disk space, graphics processor and price. This article will briefly cover these topics, then focus on some of the specifics of what to look for when buying a laptop.

For most people the biggest driving factor for buying a laptop is the price. Most people have a limited budget, that's why it's important to know what features are most important for your needs. Some people only use their computers for checking email and listening to music, while others demand more from their computers like video editing and 3D video games. Even though price is such an important factor, hopefully this will help you know how to best use your money.

One of the first things to decide with a laptop is size. The overall size of the laptop and more specifically the size of the screen are two important things to remember. If portability is important and you want your laptop to be light, then you will want a small screen and a laptop that weighs only a few pounds. If a more powerful laptop and larger screen are more important then you will need a "desktop replacement" laptop, but it may cost more and will weigh more as well.

For overall speed of your laptop, CPU (or processor) and memory will be the most important. If your needs are pretty basic, then most mid-range or even low end laptops will probably be OK. If you want to be able to do more things, like run lots of programs at the same time or if you like playing lots of high end computer games or editing video, then you will want more. Doubling the amount of memory and selecting a faster processor will not only help you get more done, but it will also give your laptop a longer life.

Disk space is an interesting topic. These days most computers have tons of disk space, in fact they have more than enough. Unless you know you have lots of files, or you need lots of space for music or videos, most laptops will come with enough hard disk space.

One more item to keep in mind is the graphics processor or GPU. If you just need to do a few basic things with your computer, then almost any graphics processor will be fine. Many laptops, especially the low end ones, come with built in graphics. These are generally pretty basic and will not handle games or other types of graphics very well. In many cases it will be worthwhile to upgrade to a separate GPU.

Finally, make sure you check at least a few stores and also online to compare prices and options. Most of the time you can buy laptops online cheaper than in stores. If your not pressed for time then it can be cheaper to wait for a few weeks and see what laptop deals you find in stores and online. can be a good place to check, even if they don't have the absolute lowest prices, it will give you a good idea of what is available and what is a good price, so you don't get taken advantage of.

Back to Computer Articles