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Web Directory  - Article Details

What to look for when buying a laptop

Date Added: April 02, 2010 12:30:51 PM
Author: Krist
Category: Computer web Directory: Hardware

These days laptops seem to grow on trees, so getting hold of one is incredibly easy. However if you're not a technology expert or have simply fallen out of the loop as to the latest developments, choosing the right laptop and getting the most bang for your buck can be a bit tricky. It doesn't help that tech specs can be like jibberish if you're not familiar with the lingo, and that pretty much every manufacturer is shouting about a new development or feature on their notebooks. Clearly then an overview of the basics wouldn't go amiss, so read on and all will become clear. The components are pretty much the most important parts of a laptop if you want decent performance. The most integral to consider are the processor, hard disc, RAM (or memory) and graphics card. One could write whole essays on each of the ones mentioned, but you'll just get an overview here. In terms of processors, the most popular and best to look for are Intel and AMD. For a netbook, you'll want to consider the new Intel Atom processors as they are able to run on lower power and therefore use less battery. For a mid range laptop, consider an Intel Core 2 Duo or the new Intel i series (i3, i5 and i7). If you're after a monster to game with, the i7 will do you proud. There's not much to say about hard discs apart from it's a game of numbers- the bigger the number the better it will generally be. A good starting amount is 160GB, but you can get big boys of up to 600GB. In terms of speed, a standard hard disc will run at 5200 rpm and that's fine for everyday tasks. But as mentioned, the number game rings true with a 7200 rpm being much faster, and better for heavy work and gaming. RAM is also pretty simple- the more you get the faster your computer will run. Look for 1-4 GB for netbooks and mid range laptops. 8 GB will destroy even the newest of games and is great for animators and music editing applications. In terms of speed, the faster the better, for example 800mhz will run faster than 533mhz. For a standard everyday laptop, integrated graphics will be more than sufficient, and Intel offer their own, as do NVIDIA and ATI. At this level there's not much difference between them and you'll be able to run a DVD with no issues. For more graphic heavy applications you should consider any dedicated cards by ATI or NVIDIA, playing the numbers game with graphic card RAM again and clock speeds. The graphics on the top end cards these days are truly stunning! The functions offered are also worth thinking about. These days a good laptop should have a DVD rewriter, plenty of USB ports, HDMI port, SD card reader and audio ports. If you've gone for an expensive model with a good graphics card, you should expect some VGA ports too. Also consider WIFI and Bluetooth connectivity, these can be hugely important if you're always on the go, so make sure these are included. In terms of design, that's just up to you- personal preference is the ruler here. You can get pretty much all colours under the rainbow, however pink laptops are currently the most popular around. Girls and ladies want nothing but pink as it's stylish and friendly. If you're really set on personalising a laptop, some manufacturers even offer the opportunity to create your own designs! So hopefully this short guide will take some of the headache out of choosing a new laptop. Once you know what you're looking for, all will become clear, and to let you in on a trade secret- they all use similar parts anyway, so just pick one!

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