A notebook combines high-performance hardware, a monitor, keyboard, mouse, and speakers into one device. Laptops are used everywhere these days. So how to decide which model is right for you and get the most out of it?
The size of the laptop is directly related to the size of the screen. Depending on the diagonal size, laptops are divided into three types.
Notebooks are small in size with a diagonal of 7-12 inches. They differ in low productivity and are used mostly for Internet access, but even with them, you can bet at 22Bet or watch YouTube videos. In netbooks, there is no disk drive: you can read information from disks only with an external disk drive.
Laptops of medium size with the diagonal size of 13-14 inches. Their main difference is the light weight and minimal thickness. Ultrabooks don’t have a disk drive. They look stylish and are convenient for those who constantly carry a laptop.
The screen size can be from 12 to 21 inches. The most popular diagonal size is 15.6 inches. Such models can be used for different tasks and perform all necessary functions. In this segment, there is the largest choice of appearance, functions, etc.
Before buying, determine how you will use the laptop. Conventionally, you can allocate the following model variants by purpose.
This laptop is suitable for those who are going to use it to access the Internet and perform simple tasks (reading, listening to music, etc.). This is the most inexpensive model. Optimal characteristics would be: 1-2 cores processor, 2 GB of RAM, 250 GB hard drive, integrated graphics card.
This laptop is suitable for those who want to use it at home as the main computer. Watching movies, games of average quality, as well as the Internet, music and other functions. These are the most popular models of laptops. Optimal characteristics would be: 2-4 cores processor, 4-8 GB of RAM, 500-1000 GB hard drive, 512-1000 MB discrete graphics card.
This laptop will be an excellent assistant in business trips and travels, during meetings and presentations. The main characteristics in choosing will not be the performance elements, and the size, weight and battery life. The best option is ultrabooks, which have a light weight, attractive design and long battery life. You should also pay attention to the anti-glare properties of the screen.
This kind of laptop is bought for games and programs that require high performance. Optimal characteristics would be: 4-8 cores processor, 8 GB of RAM, 1000 GB hard drive, 2000 MB discrete graphics card.
Resolution and Type of Screen
The screen of any laptop consists of many cells – pixels. The total number of pixels is the screen resolution. The higher the resolution of the screen, the better the quality of the image. the screen can be of two kinds:
- This screen does not glare in the sun, and it has less noticeable scratches and stains.
- These screens show a brighter and juicier picture.
One of the most important features of a laptop that affects performance is the processor. This is the central computing device that performs the main calculations in the system and is the direct executor of all programs. When choosing a processor, it is worth paying attention to the clock frequency, the number of its cores and cache memory.
The clock frequency is the “speed” of the processor. It is measured in gigahertz and affects its processing power. This parameter was very important for single core processors. But nowadays almost all laptops are equipped with multi-core processors and the clock speed of the processors has even decreased and at the same time has ceased to be the main characteristic.
Laptop processors can contain from 1 to 8 cores. The more there are, the higher the performance. The most popular models are 2-core processors, they are quite able to cope with most tasks.
The cache memory of the processor also affects its speed and performance. It can be from 1 to 8 MB. The higher the better.
The main processor manufacturers are Intel and AMD. The first company’s products are better for calculations, the second – for games. However, there is not much difference between the manufacturers.
The RAM is a storage device, which is responsible for storing data and commands during the work of the processor. The more memory – the more programs you can run at the same time, and the faster they will work.
A large amount of RAM is important for laptop performance. You should consider models with memory from 2 GB to buy.
The graphics card is the device that generates the image and transmits it to the screen. An important part of the notebook’s hardware, affecting its performance. Graphics cards can be:
- Built-in video card is built into the motherboard of the laptop and for its work uses the resources of the processor and RAM. Such models are inexpensive and can cope with the basic functions of the laptop. However, they are not suitable for working in graphics editors, games and watching high definition movies.
- Discrete graphics card as a separate board with its own processor and memory. This model has high performance and speed, but costs more. Discrete graphics cards allow you to use the capabilities of laptops as much as possible.
The hard drive is the main storage for your laptop. The bigger the hard drive, the more files you can store on your computer. A hard drive is considered to be an optimal size of 500 GB.
In addition, hard drives are divided into two types:
- HDDs are the most common option and the very first to be created. These models are inexpensive, but they make noise during operation and are very sensitive to vibration, drops and bumps.
- SSD is a new development based on the principles of flash memory. These models work faster, they are quiet and resistant to mechanical damage. So far, their price is higher than the HDD and the maximum capacity is 512 GB, but this technology is actively developing and will become predominant in the future.
Most laptops have HDDs, some models use both types (HDDs and SSDs), which can significantly improve performance. SSDs can be found in ultrabooks. With an SSD, your laptop powers on almost instantly and you can be up and running in seconds.
A laptop is convenient for its compact size and the ability to work anywhere. That’s why its battery life is an important parameter. The average operating time of any laptop without charging – 3-4 hours. During this time you can watch 1-2 films and surf the Internet. For home use laptops, this is quite enough, but if you buy a laptop for travel, look at more “long-life” models.
Ultrabooks have long battery life, as they can work without recharging up to 10 hours, as well as netbooks where the average time is 6-8 hours.
A disk drive allows a laptop to play information from discs. Previously, this parameter was quite relevant, but with the development of flash memory (USB flash drives, external hard drives, etc.) and the Internet, it has lost its relevance.
If your laptop doesn’t have a disc drive and you need one, buy an external drive that connects to your device via a USB cable.