Getting a new laptop? Here are some tips!
Desk full of laptop computers (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
A lot of people may not understand the dilemma of someone who is not tech savvy and is planning to get a new laptop. Aside from wondering what to look for in a laptop, once she (sorry, but men have their way of bluffing through machines even if they are not that great with them) is in a computer shop already, the experience can be an overwhelming one. The machines all look so shiny! They all look the same! There are so many to choose from! I don’t even know where to start! If you think there is no salvation for you, hopeless tech ignoramus, don’t fret. Here are three simple-to-understand instructions on what to look for in a laptop, if you are looking or shopping around for one:
Size and weight will always be your number one priority. Remember, you are shopping for a laptop because you are looking for a computer that is portable and handy. Maybe you are looking for something that you can easily transport from the office to home for you to work on a report, or something that you can tag around in coffee shops when inspiration strikes for your new article ala Carrie Bradshaw. Having a desktop certainly won’t do that for you. You may want to look into network notebooks or notebooks that are so small they look like over-sized clutch bags. However, the smaller laptops are, the more they sacrifice a lot of features like less drives and slower performance.
The CPU or processor is certainly the main thing to look for in a laptop. Nowadays, laptop CPUs have greatly improved in performance, particularly in speed, so try to check with the computer salesman to find out which processors are the fastest and combine them with the perfect size and weight for you.
Lastly, RAM or memory is the third most important thing you should look for. The amount of memory a laptop has depends on two things: The amount of memory that the laptop’s system can handle and the memory that is in the computer, already installed. If you have found the first two components mentioned earlier and see that the laptop you’re eyeing has low memory, try to ask if a memory upgrade is possible.
See? That was not so hard. There are other factors to look for such as displays, drives, and battery life, but you will pick up on that as you go along and get the hang of shopping around for laptops. What is important is that you don’t hesitate to ask questions when needed. Don’t hold your silence when there is much to be discovered and learned!
Now that you know what to look for in a laptop, your next concern is if you have the finances to buy a brand new one. Refurbished laptops may be a good option as they are definitely priced significantly lower than brand new laptops. The “refurbished” term is actually loosely applied as an umbrella term that can be further dissected into two types: The real “refurbished” laptops and the “bare bones” or build-it-yourself laptop. Let’s look into these two kinds of refurbished laptops and see if they are really as good as they look.
When refurbished laptop computers are said to be “bare bones,” you only get a motherboard, power supply and CPU. That means that you would have to let the computer technician in the shop install such implements such as the screen and memory components. Computer shops will actually suggest some of these components to you. You can only take consolation in the fact that your unit is custom-made and there are some software features that ready-made units are built with that are not really necessary most of the time. Also, it goes without saying that there are no warranties for bare bones units.
Refurbished laptop computers that are commonly referred to as “refurbish” are old or display units that have been tweaked and are now sold in computer shops. As these are already old units, they can be bought with great savings. You actually need to do a lot of research to know if the price you are paying for a refurbished laptop really corresponds to the real value of the unit.
But then, if you really want to have a shiny new unit, why not sell an old one? You may have an old laptop that has been gathering lots of dust, unused. You can actually sell these laptops to websites like Cash for Laptops in the same way you can sell your iPhone at Cash For iPhones. Not only will you get some money that you can use to buy a new one, you will also be doing your share in protecting Mother Nature as you won’t be disposing of your old gadgets in a dump.