What to look for when buying a new computer, laptop or hybrid

The choices can be overwhelming: PC vs laptop? Chromebook or Apple? Columnist Marc Saltzman guides clients through the IT purchasing process.

Buying a new computer, it’s like ordering a pizza: you think it’s a task simple enough until you realize how many choices you have to make.

But if your existing Computer is so old that it could hardly run the lonely, the good news is twofold: there are many exciting new developments in the computer space, and there are plenty of offers to make for Black Friday, Cyber ​​Monday and topping the list.

In addition to determining your budget, of course, here are some questions you might ask yourself to help you decide what’s right for you.

More: Best Apps to Save You Money on Black Friday and Beyond

What will I do with it?

The way you plan to use your new computer should dictate to you the type of purchase.

If you only want a computer for light tasks – such as browsing the web, reading emails and checking on social networks – then you can use modest specifications, which should also have a modest price. Something with an Intel Core i3 or i5 should be enough.

At the other end of the spectrum, if you’re looking for a computer that can handle high-end computer games, virtual reality or video editing, you’ll need to invest in a faster processor, better graphics capabilities and more RAM (system memory). An Intel Core i7, NVIDIA graphics cards and 16 GB or 32 GB of RAM (instead of 4 or 8 GB) is a good idea.

When it comes to storage, more and more laptops have a SSD) instead of a hard drive (HDD), which makes these laptops more Thin, lighter, faster and more energy efficient. Like the flash memory of your smartphone, SSDs are also less prone to damage because there are no moving parts.

That said, I like to say that buying a computer should be like buying children’s clothing: a little bigger than what you need today. So that you can develop your savings in the longer term. You do not want to have the “buyer’s remorse” by choosing something underperforming, only to replace it in a year from now

Stick with a brand with which you have had good experience, or those that your friends and family strongly recommend (and critics too).

What operating system should I use?

This question may also be related to the decision “What am I going to use it for?”, Especially if you want to run a software that only works? with a specific operating system. Otherwise, you have three main choices today: Windows, Mac and Chromebook. (Yes, there is also Linux, but not a traditional choice.)

Stick with the operating system with which you are most comfortable. If you are not sure If you want to change, be aware that each operating system has its advantages.

►Windows 10 is the most popular choice today. It is offered by almost all major computer brands – such as Dell, HP, ASUS, Lenovo, Acer, and more. – and Microsoft also manufactures its own Surface brand PCs. It is easy to use, works with the most software and hardware of all operating systems, and the Windows Hello feature means you can connect to your device by simply viewing the camera from your device. computer. Windows 10 offers several ways to interface your content, whether it’s a keyboard, a trackpad or a mouse. use a stylus on the screen for more precision (often called “digital inking”); fingertips on a touch screen; or using your voice with the Cortana Personal Assistant.

► The Mac family of Apple is also a popular choice. Since Apple is the only manufacturer of Macs – like the MacBook Air and MacBook Pro – there is usually better quality control and higher quality materials. Macs tend to last a long time (but not their chargers), although Macs cost more, on average, compared to Windows and Chromebooks with comparable specifications. Many find them easier to use than other operating systems (thought that boils down to personal preferences, of course). Apple includes several of its best free software (or a free download from the Mac App Store) and there is also a lot of software for Mac today .

► Powered by Chrome OS from Google, Chromebooks are generally more affordable than Windows and Mac, but some premium Chromebooks are available, such as the Pixelbook from Google ($ 999), which includes Google Voice Assistant Chromebooks typically come with pre-installed Google apps such as Gmail and Google Maps Chromebooks typically have modest features like low local storage but most Google apps are based on the e cloud. as a lean and fast operating system, designed for most basic tasks and with good value for money.

Related Posts