What you should consider when buying a laptop
- Screens with size of 12.5 to 14-inch offer the best balance between usability and portability. Larger screens are fine if you don't travel much and smaller models are great for kids.
- With your budget over $600, check out following minimum requirement:
- Core i5 CPU
- 1920 x 1080 screen
- 8GB of RAM
- SSD Storage instead of a hard drive.
- Battery life having more than 8 hours is ideal if you plan to carry your laptop anywhere.
- If you want to use your laptop as a tablet, then consider a 2-in-1 laptop. If not, then a standard clam-shell notebook may be a better choice.
- Functionality of Chromebooks are expanding rapidly. This type of laptop is good for kids. Plenty of functionalities are available in Windows laptops and MacBooks. Based on your personal choice, you can choose one from them.
If you're looking for a conventional laptop with the best combination of price and performance, then you should think about get Intel Core i5 CPU. Most common models of this CPU that end with alphabet U (ex: Core i5-7200U). Those with the a Y in the name are low power and have worse performance while models with an HQ use more wattage and appear in thicker gaming and workstation systems. Intel's newest 10th Generation "Ice Lake" CPUs have four cores, and a number of useful features, including Wi-Fi 6 support, Thunderbolt 3 integration and better AI.
RAM (Random Access Memory): Some budget laptops have only 4GB of RAM, but ideally you need at least 8GB on even a budget system. If you can spend just a little more, you can get 16GB. For most folks, 32GB or more is more than enough while 64GB and above is reserved for power users.
Storage Drive (aka Hard Drive): The Performance of your storage drive is even more important than the speed of your CPU is the . If you can afford it and don't need huge internal storage, get a laptop with a Solid State Drive (SSD) rather than a hard drive which will provide you at least three times the speed and a much faster laptop overall. Among SSDs, the newer PCIe x4 (aka NVME) units offer triple the speed of traditional SATA drives. Budget laptops use eMMC memory, which is technically solid-state but not faster than a mechanical hard drive.
Display: Display with higher pixels can fit more content on your screen and it will contribute to look sharper. Typically, some budget laptops still have 1366 x 768 displays and so do a few business laptops, but if you can afford it and can pay some extra for a panel that runs at 1920 x 1080, also known as Full HD or 1080p. Higher-end laptops have screens that are 2560 x 1600, 3200 x 1800 or even 3840 x 2160 (4K), which all look sharp but it will consume more power which will decrease the battery life of laptop.