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5 Specs to Look for in a New Laptop

Buying a new laptop for work, school or gaming? Then some research might be in order. If it has been a while since you bought your last laptop, you may be out of the loop with regards to which specs you need to ensure optimal performance. Here is a list of five basic specs you need to watch out for when buying a new laptop:

1.     Proven Processor

The foremost specification almost everyone looks for is what kind of a processor the laptop has. The faster the processor is, the faster the computer will be. Well, in a way, yes. A powerful processor will prevent your laptop from lagging, freezing or causing other performance issues. Currently, the processor battle wages between just two contenders, Intel and AMD. Users choose between the two based on budget and personal preference. AMD is known as the budget chip maker.

If you are looking for a laptop for basic professional needs, then an Intel Core i5 processor will be sufficient. However, if you are looking for a gaming laptop, it’s best to go with an Intel Core i7 processor. You can even find gaming laptops costing less than $1000 equipped with Core i7s. For the most basic needs, a dual or quad-core Intel Pentium will be sufficient as well. To future proof your computer, buy a multi-core Core i7 equipped one. Hardcore gamers should aim for a quad-core i7.

When buying a processor, do look at the number of cores available. The more cores there are, the more powerful the computer will be. For example, a quad-core Intel Pentium processor is better than a mono-core Intel Core i3 processor.

2.     Minimum RAM

The average budget computer comes with a minimum RAM of 4GB. While this amount is sufficient for most computing needs, it’s highly recommended to aim for 8GB of RAM to future proof your laptop. Also, if you decide to buy upgrades later, 8GB of RAM will be useful. For users with higher demands, like gamers and programmers, 16GB of RAM would be worth investing in.

3.     SSD Vs. HDD

SSDs are faster than HDDs. So, naturally you may inclined to choose SSD storage. However, SSDs on consumer computers do not offer more than about 128 or 256 GB of storage. HDDs, on the other hand, offer up to 1TB of storage. So it will come down to what you need. If you are a gamer, programmer or a graphic designer, it’s best to choose the faster SSD.

4.     Integrated Graphics Card

This is the basic form of the graphics card that enables you to play games. Integrated graphics cards are the minimum required GPU to play casual and least-demanding games on your computer like Minecraft and World of Warcraft. It is also easy to upgrade later. Therefore, non-gamers should go for one of these GPUs.

5.     Portability

Since you are buying a laptop, portability will be one of the big factors to consider. Portability of a computer is largely determined by the screen size. The bigger the screen is, the bulkier the laptop will be. Therefore, it’s recommended to buy a laptop with a screen size between 14 inches to 17 inches. If you require extreme portability, you can choose one of the ultra slim laptops. However, they may be lacking in some of the crucial specs mentioned above.

Look for the above specs when buying a new laptop. Consider your needs first, and then follow the advice provided above.

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