When planning to purchase your next computer there are many things to consider such as your budget, what you plan to use it for and why you actually want a computer, maybe there’s a device better suited to your needs?
Check out my guide in the article below if you need help choosing the correct device…
This article focuses on descent laptop and desktop computers so without further ado, here are the things you should be looking out for…
There are many processors on the market which can make choosing a good device harder. Personally, I recommend using this CPU benchmarking website to help you make a decision. If going for an Intel Chip I wouldn’t recommend Atom, Pentium and Celeron chips as they are primarily designed for light use meaning that you’re not future proofing yourself. However, it’s still worth using the said tool as you might be surprised, especially when comparing older chips. In terms of AMD, I wouldn’t go for the A4 or A6. I also wouldn’t necessarily go for something with an “m” as that usually stands for mobile, and these processors can sometimes be limited. Hence the reason it’s good to research the processor first.
The RAM should be at least 8GB
This obviously depends on your needs but if you want to future-proof yourself 8GB is the way to go. That is not to say that PCs with less than 8GB are totally useless because it depends on your needs but if you don’t want your device to underperform, I would go for at least 8GB. This is because newer software usually requires more RAM to run smoothly, but once again that depends on the software.
The Storage Space
This is something that I noticed to be more important than the CPU and RAM for some users and I understand why. Yes! the Storage Space is also important but I wouldn’t say it’s as important as the CPU and RAM.
From my experience, I don’t recommend devices with 32GB or less. The reason for this is that Windows takes up a good amount of storage space. In fact, Windows now reserves 7GB of storage space for updates and that 7GB is essential on 32GB devices!
In terms of storage space, I recommend at least 240GB of storage space if the device has a Solid State Drive (SSD) and at least 1TB (1000GB) on a hard drive.
Solid State Drive
Physical hard drives are becoming outdated these days and replaced by Solid State Drives (SSD’s). The main reason for this is performance. SSD’s offer a lot more performance compared to a standard hard drive as there is no spinning disk inside.
A standard hard drive is almost like a record player, it has a spinning disk and a handle that reads the data. When the hard drive starts getting full the data will be written where ever there is space. This is known as fragmentation. It essentially means that the handle has to travel greater distances to read the data slowing down the performance. This is when you should defragment your drive.
SSD’s, on the other hand, don’t need to be defragmented as they don’t have that spinning disk inside, instead, you could say that they are chips.
There is one major drawback of SSD’s and that’s the storage space. Since SSD’s are usually more expensive than hard drives, you get less storage space.
The screen size
This one mainly refers to laptops as come in different shapes and sizes. It’s important to consider whether your laptop will be mainly used for travel or home use. If you plan to use it for home use, I recommend a desktop and if it’s for travelling, I don’t recommend anything above 14″.
The additional features
There are loads of additional features on devices, for example, my laptop has B&O audio and my previous one had JBL. Obviously, this is great if you’re an audio fanatic. An additional feature can also be a Sub-woofer and even a DVD drive these days.
The offers available and what’s included inside the box
It’s always nice to get additional goodies with your new computer. Manufacturers include all sorts of things inside the boxes. For example, I’ve seen computer towers and all in one PC’s come with a keyboard and mouse. My previous laptop had a Bulldog Internet Security Licence and my current laptop had a year worth of Dropbox storage, sure it was only 24 GB but still, it was a nice gesture.
It’s also worth looking at the offers the shop is offering along side the laptop. I’ve seen shops offer Microsoft Office, Antivirus and even accessories at discounted prices when you buy a certain product. This can save you a lot of money especially in the long term.
The services the shop or retailer offers alongside
You may not think that this is important when purchasing your device but actually services shops offer can sometimes be lifesavers. I’ve seen shops offer all sorts of services such as insurance which can particular be a good idea when you plan to take your laptop with you. I also have seen, tutorials, Tech Support, some of which include home visits. One computer shop I been to also offers a free check-up and service after a year and the following ones discounted.