Here are Some Great Laptop Buying Tips
These days, going to class without a laptop is almost as unthinkable as going without paper or pencils. Laptops for students have become valuable learning tools, and depending on your field of study, they may be an absolute necessity. But you don’t want to choose your computer at random. Whether you’re heading off to college, or shopping for someone who is, you need to find the right laptop for the job. Here are some simple yet critical laptop buying tips to follow.
Laptops with an extra-large display might be essential for art and graphic design students, but for just about everybody else, smaller, more portable laptops are the way to go. Look for an 11- to 14-inch screen and a total weight of less than 4 pounds.
Look for Long Battery Life
You don’t want to be tied to the nearest outlet when you’re hopping with your laptop from one class to the next. Look for a laptop with at least 8 hours of battery life. Plenty of portable, affordable laptops fall within this range, and some will last even longer with the right battery.
Check the Specs
It’s important to get a laptop that won’t be obsolete in a year’s time, so be sure to consider its key components and capabilities. Unless you have your eye on an ultra-budget laptop, look for one that has at least 1920 x 1080 (1080p) screen resolution, an SSD (solid-state drive), at least 4 GB of RAM, and 802.11ac wifi compatibility. You should also make sure your laptop has plenty of USB ports, including the newer USB Type-C ports as well as the classic USB Type-A ports.
A student laptop needs to be able to take a beating, because it probably will. Even if you’re on a budget, durability is one area where you’ll be glad you paid for a little extra. A spill-resistant keyboard is a big plus, and many laptops are designed to survive being dropped from a particular height. Look for a laptop made from aluminum, carbon fiber or magnesium alloy for extra sturdiness.
Try the Keyboard
Never buy a laptop without testing out the keyboard first. You’re going to be typing a lot on this thing, so you need to make sure the keyboard is responsive, comfortable and feels “springy” rather than soft and non-reactive.
Get the Right OS
At this point, Windows 10 is the most popular operating system and most versatile, making it a great choice for students. It supports an enormous variety of programs and applications. That said, Macs have their benefits as well, and macOS is a great system for art, design and music students.
Here are some more computer and laptop buying tips you may find useful: New Computer Guide: Buying a Laptop vs. Desktop