Are you in the process of buying a new laptop or netbook but when it all boils down to making a purchase decision you feel overwhelmed and unsure due all the technical bull sh*t being thrown at you by the Geek Squad. In reality, computers are like most new cars; the minute you drive it off the lot – it will reduce in value. By the time the month has changed their will be a newer/faster model with a few features conveniently missing from your current model. Don’t be a jackass, because your pretty new computer will soon become a polished terd! So, here are a few important features I look for when I want to buy a laptop or net-book.
Consumer guide to purchasing a reliable laptop or notebook
1. Research The computer model and manufacturer – “Dell, Acer, Toshiba, Emachine”
Before I buy I always check the Manufacturers website for product issues , warranty, and updates. I also research several Internet web sites for customer reviews. Never buy a product with more than 50% bad reviews; be weary of 1 year / limited warranty and poor customer/tech support. Its like buying a car with a 30 day warranty with no insurance – ” If you ever have an issue you’re screwed”! How about the car with a lifetime warranty, free oil changes, and routine maintenance . – get it? got it? good!
BTW- Emachines are like cheap hookers – u get what you pay for. Don’t ask
1. You should first decide what you require from a computer. If you just want to surf the net, watch online videos, and listen to music – I suggest a netbook or perhaps a tablet . If you desire something a bit more robust, meaning you’d like a computer that can handle a full load of applications , manage files, burn DVD’s, and more; you should look for a laptop with at least a dual core or a Core 2 duo processor. Keep in mind Core 2 processors are fast but outdated as of 2010. Intel I3 , I5 , and I7 processors are the new Norm. If you’re broke tell Norm to go f**K himself, and buy a laptop with a CORE 2 DUO.
Processors , both are theoretically the same ..Simply put, Core 2 is a faster, more powerful micro-architecture, but again outdated! Would you buy a 1st generation iphone when you can get a iphone 5 at close to the same price ? I doubt it. Why would you want to buy a turtle when you can have a rabbit, (bad example) . The new Intel family I3, I5,I7 processors are the latest and greatest processors you should consider for your machine.
Most new systems will come with I3, I5, or I7 processors unless you prefer AMD processors . All of these mentioned processors have various sub processors under their hierarchy with specific speeds. Remember, the higher the processor speed the higher the potential cost. In my opinion an I3 should be fine if you just want a simple computer not meant for gaming. These processors will more than likely be the norm for the next few years.
2. Screen Size should not be an issue if you’re if you’re on a budget. Most laptops have a basic back-lit wide screen lcd but if you’re picky – a high definition 17 wide screen is optimal but will cost at least $100 more. If you want and HD screen, be prepared to pay an extra 50 – 150.
3. Hard Drive and Memory (Ram) : There are several options for hard drives and memory. This is one part where size really matters! The greater the hard drive space means , (gigabyte vs terabyte), the more music, applications, files, and storage capabilities you can accomplish. Memory is also a huge part of how fast applications and programs respond and execute from the cache. I recommend 4gb of DDR3 or higher. Anything less than 2 gig of DDR3 isn’t worth the purchase! Solid State Hard drives provide faster read and write capabilities when compared to a traditional Hard Drive, however, the current price for a SSD is almost double the price of a standard Hard disk.
4. Wireless capabilities, Usb ports, expansion slots:
Make sure your future laptop has a built in dual band wireless radio that can pick up a good signal from at-least 600 feet. A baseline machine should have at the least: 4 usb 3.0 ports, Ethernet jack – alternate internet capabilities using a cable , multi card reader – to read mini sd cards from digital cameras , and a VGA Port DVI/ or HDMI port to output your video to tv, or and alternate lcd monitor, (just in case your LCD stops working and you want to troubleshoot your laptop).
5. Operating System:
Windows 7 or Windows 8 Professional or Ultimate. Don’t get tricked into purchasing Windows Starter !! – Windows Starter is actually an updated version of Windows Vista in my opinion. Do not waste your money on Windows starter, in my opinion it is a very basic operating system meant for old people who think computers are evil. Windows Starter is missing a ton of features when compared to the home and professional versions, don’t buy.
Here are my recommended features for a laptop for an average person with average requirements.
Operating System: Windows 8 Home edition, at least 4 gig of DDR4 Ram, Hard Drive : at least 300 gigabyte, Wireless: Dual band WIFI, Recovery CD/DVD , 4 usb 3.0 Ports; Ethernet Ports, Hd audio with a built in Microphone, Multimedia Card Reader, Graphics: ATI INTEL OR NVIDIA integrated Graphics, Touch Pad, CD/DVD/Blue ray Drive, VGA port, HDMI out, Large Keyboard , Long Battery Life , Free Norton or McAfee Anti-virus subscription.
Recommended sites to shop for a laptop or netbook:
Take my recommendations into consideration and compare your top 3 choices for a laptop, compare the prices and you cant go wrong. What do you think ?