Picking the right Tablet/Laptop Computer
They call them PCs (Personal Computers) for a reason.
People often ask our advice before purchasing a portable computer. They often ask as if there is a right or wrong answer/ black and white, “What should I buy?”
The answer to that question varies in so many ways I do not dare answer it in any absolute fashion, but here are a few things that someone looking to buy a new laptop should consider.
1. Price vs. Value; the price of the device does not dictate the value, you may be purchasing features you do not need and will never use, so do your homework.
2. Will you use the computer on the road? Or will it be at home most of the time? Size and weight come into play here.
3. Is the device for a young person who may put it in harm’s way more often? If so, the ONLY warranties I recommend are “Accidental Damage” warranties. Most other warranties on computers are a waste of money. But kids, backpacks, spills and drops are a reality.
4. Will you be using programs which require quality graphics like Adobe Photoshop or illustrator? If so, a GPU embedded in the laptop is probably a good idea.
5. Do you have patience? No, neither do I, so a SSD (Solid State Drive) will make your laptop ten times faster. Consider purchasing the base model and swapping out the hard drive yourself, you will save hundreds of dollars doing this.
6. PC or Mac, hummmmmm well, that is a personal choice but the line is not black or white. Either OS will do just about everything you need. Be careful if you are a legacy Mac user, you NEED virus software now, believe me.
7. Tablet or Laptop? A tablet is cool, it will come apart and can be used without the keyboard, this usually adds a hefty premium to the device and the processor and memory are usually slower. So ask yourself, how often you will use the device without a keyboard. Most people will find that they never use the tablet in tablet mode. So think about it before you spend extra money to show people how your computer comes apart. If the “wow” factor is the extent of its use save the money buy the laptop.
8. Size matters. The least expensive laptops are usually 15.6 inch screens and are fully featured. This is a pretty big laptop. It is the most common size an display manufacturer will cut for sale to OEMs, To find a 14 inch device with the same features will add cost. There are many reasons for this but to focus on one important factor; heat kills computers. The smaller they are, the hotter they can get and the tougher it is to run a fan inside the device. If you need a portable computer for around the house, stick with the 15’6 size devices, they are always on sale and the price is often lower than you could imagine.
9. You can get a Windows 8.1 touch screen laptop with everything you need for less than 300.00. if you are the kind of person who prefers function over form if it means saving 800.00 you can find a laptop around this price range that will allow you to do your job. Be careful to stay clear of the devices with low end processors or devices that feel cheap when you type. The cheaper a laptop is, the tougher it is to replace parts like keyboards.
10. Lastly, and this may seem trivial, but it is a huge benefit to have a laptop with a back-lit keyboard. Among all the features like web cams and power saving modes, you will find that a back-lit keyboard will be the one feature you do not want to go without.
This list could go on for pages, but hopefully there is enough information here to get you to think about what is right for you. I will not point out name brands specifically but obviously some are better than others. Read the reviews but make sure you are not lead down the wrong path by a product rating that is manipulated by a single vendor. Shop around, all it takes is your search engine! A good place to start, (like this is not a sales pitch, who are we kidding) is with a company that can be there for you and assist you when something goes wrong. Also a trusted source to purchase from
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