Of course, for business applications, there is the option of a “desktop replacement” laptop, one that can be set up as a semi-permanent desktop, but has the advantage of saving space as you don’t have to worry about the extra room for the keyboard, tower and a large monitor. There’s also the consideration of what kind of work will you be doing on your laptop; will it be for personal use only or for work? Will you need specialized software and a crystal clear screen that you could use for demonstrations and presentations? These are all primary considerations when doing any laptop comparison.
Laptop Comparison Features – Those Important Specifications
Regardless of how you will use your laptop consider these key points:
The mini-laptop or netbook is sleek and just a fraction bigger than a portable DVD player. Sizes are as small as 8″ and offer everything a normal laptop has to offer, with the exception of a built-in optical drive. Some models even include touchscreen capabilities and GPS navigation systems. These usually weigh anywhere from a pound and a half to just under four pounds.
The subcompact (thin and light) laptops, are very portable, provide a full range of feature sets and are well suited to frequent travelers.
Next are your more conventional or standard laptops that provide full feature sets and are suitable for most anyone except power-users that spend a great deal of time editing video or using graphics intensive applications.
Finally, your multimedia models that are most frequently used for replacing your desktop computer without losing any of the functionality of a desktop. Depending on the configuration, these beautiful machines can do it all, but usually don’t offer much in the way of battery life. You need to stay close to an AC outlet.
It’s amazing how far our technology has come, because now screen sizes on laptops can start at 8″ on up to 18″. If you use your laptop for business these smaller laptops probably aren’t the best suited for presentations, but might be more suitable for long trips and personal use. If you are more apt to use your laptop for business, than the most popular screen size would be the larger screens, usually starting at around 15″.
Processors and Memory – The Need for Speed
But screen and size are only a small part in making a decision to purchase the right laptop for you. Remember what you are purchasing the computer for and the reasons you need it. Ever see those MAC and PC commercials? Well, think about the point of the commercial. Know what you need out of your laptop before you make your purchase.
There are many good deals out there and some give you more value for your dollar, so consider this: Intel Celeron is an adequate processor, if your computing needs are basic and you don’t require anything other than Internet access, email, and word processing. The Pentium Core Duo and Dual Core processors will handle your needs more than adequately for most any application. Intel also has a specialized notebook processor that was tailor-made for mobile technology, the Pentium M, and it’s useful for those on-the-go road warriors who travel a great deal and require extended battery life.
Look for a laptop system that has at least 2 GB of RAM as a minimum. When it comes to RAM, the more the better. This is also of paramount importance if you are a gamer and are running graphics intensive 3D games.
Hard Drives and Optical Drives
Hard drive capacities are unbelievable these days. A few years ago an 80GB was considered large. The largest one available today is 500GB. But keep in mind that the bigger the hard drive, the better off you will be when it comes loading additional software applications or for storing memory-hogging videos and music files. You may of course not have the money to purchase such a high priced laptop, so therefore go with what you afford. Consider though, the larger the hard drive, the longer it will be before you outgrow it.
If you like watching movies, copying CD’s for family photos or recording music files, an optical drive is a great feature. DVD optical drives come standard on most laptops now. (They are not standard on netbooks and you will need to purchase and external DVD drive that attaches to your netbook via a USB port.)
Mobile Technology, combines mobile processing power with built-in wireless networking capabilities. This is a valuable must have if you are a mobile Internet user. You can go to your favorite local hot spot and sit there surfing the net, video conference with your boss, or just sit at home on the couch checking email. I know it’s wonderful right? No more sitting at the desktop listening to dial-up noises. You can be virtually anywhere today and have a fast wireless connection.