Top 5 Tips for Buying a Laptop

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In today’s day Laptop plays a vital role in our life, whether you want to surf the internet, search a job, check your emails, edit photos-videos, play games or do your office work. But many of us don’t know what to look for in a laptop other then processor, RAM and storage and even those who know are also not aware of the technical details like the generation of processors and RAM, there variants, GPU/graphic card/video memory etc. So in this article,
I am going to tell you what points should be kept in mind before you decide which is the right laptop for you.

Image used for presentation purpose only

Processors

Let’s start with the processor, In this segment we will learn about the types, range and variants of Intel processors available in the lapotops.

1. Intel Atom – Intel Atom is the brand name for a line of ultra-low-voltage quad core processors by Intel Corporation. Atom is mainly used in netbooks.

In the below table you will see their variants and their clock speed.

Processor                  Clock Speed      Turbo Speed
Intel® Atom Z8350       1.44 GHz              No
Intel® Atom Z3735F      1.33 Ghz              No

These two variants are mostly available in all 10″ detachable laptops, and in general terms you can say that a laptop with an Intel Atom processor is for very basic use, ideal for school kids, If you have school going kids and you want to buy them a laptop then you can consider it.

2. Intel Celeron– Celeron is the low-end (and low cost) member of the family of microprocessors from Intel, Intel is marketing the processor as a chip for the basic PC.
Currently there are two variants available in the market and mostly people make a very common mistake while buying a laptop with an Intel Celeron processor, because they only know that the processor they are looking for is Celeron but what they don’t know is that the one they are buying is the higher version or the lower version. let’s learn about these two variants and the difference in there speed in the below table.

Processor                  Clock Speed     Turbo Speed
Inel Celeron N3350         1.1 Ghz             2.48 Ghz
Inel Celeron N3060         1.6 Ghz             2.40 Ghz

As shown in the table you can see there are two variants currently available in the market Celeron N3350(1.1Ghz) and Celeron N3060(1.6Ghz), so if you are looking for a
laptop with an Intel Celeron processor you should check its version and speed, a sales person or a brand merchandiser might not tell you these differences and you might
end up buying the lower version in almost the same price. Unlike Atom, Celeron has turbo boost capability also which accelerates processor and graphics performance for
peak loads, automatically allowing processor cores to run faster than the rated operating frequency if they’re operating below power, current, and temperature specification limits.

3. Intel Core i3, i5 and i7- Intel’s most popular processors in the PC world are the Core i3, i5, and i7 product lines. The Core i3 is entry level, and Core i5 & i7 8th generation
processors are the more powerful hyper-threaded quad-core options. Depending on your requirements, or if you need a faster and more capable CPU, you may want to go for an i5 or an i7.
If you’re on a budget, Core i3 may be your best option. In Core i3 6th generation there are two variants, i3-6100 and i3-6006. i3-6100 is a dual core processor with 2.3 Ghz of
speed(no turbo boost) and i3-6006 is a dual core processor with 2.0 Ghz of speed(no turbo boost). You will find these two variants available in all 15″ laptops
and All in One desktops. Now let’s move to 7th and 8th generation processors. First of all you should know how to determine the generation of a processor?

For example in the processor core i3-6100 the initial digit of the code 6100 is 6, which is the generation of this processor. similarly in core i3-7100, 7 is the generation.

Moving forward to i3- 7100U, available in Ultrabooks, 2in1 or convertibles which is a dual core processor and it has 2.4 Ghz of speed with no turbo boost. Core i5- 7200U is also a dual core processor with the 2.5 Ghz of speed and 3.10 Ghz of turbo boost which is ideal for multi-tasking. Core i7- 7500U is a dual core processor with 2.7 Ghz of speed and 3.5 Ghz of Turbo boost. Let me elaborate on Turbo boost for them who don’t know what it is, Turbo boost is a Intel’s trade name for a feature that automatically raises the performance and boost the speed when you start doing multi tasking like when you open multiple windows/browsers/tabs/applications etc.

Now when we are talking about the generations we must know that 8th generation is already out in the market and you may want to consider core i5 or core i7 with 8th generation processor as well. The main difference between i5-7200/i7-7500(7th Gen) and i5-8250/i7-8550(8th Gen) processor is that the 7th generation was a dual core processor whereas the 8th generation is a quad core processor. In the below table you can easily understand the difference.

Processor                                   Clock Speed    Turbo Speed
Intel Core i5-7200(Dual core)          2.5 Ghz            3.10 Ghz
Intel Core i5-8250(Quad core)         1.4 Ghz            3.6 Ghz
Intel Core i7-7500(Dual core)          2.7 Ghz            3.5 Ghz
Intel Core i7-8550(Quad core)         1.8 Ghz            4.0 Ghz

Image used for presentation purpose only

If your usage is limited to email, word processing, light gaming, communications and web browsing then core i3 is the right choice for you. If you are an architect, illustrator,
designer, engineer or a student who is studying or preparing for higher studies in one of these fields, you must choose minimum core i5 or core i7(Highly recommended).
The Core i5 family of processors is considered optimal for gaming and productivity. Core i7 series of processors is for enthusiasts or for users who will be handling
extreme applications, such as video and photo editing or high-end gaming.

4. RAM- Also known as Random Access memory, which plays a vital role in a PCs overall performace. Because RAM is the first point of contact or communication between your
CPU and the Storage. RAM is used by the central processing unit (CPU) when a computer is running to store information that it needs to be used very quickly, but it does
not store any information permanently. So having said that, what you need to know is just like the processors, their generation and variants RAM also has its version.
DDR3 RAM is an older version and it’s speed is 1600 Mhz. DDR4 is currently available version of RAM and that too has two variants and believe me only few people are aware of
it and that is the reason why most of the people end up buying wrong Laptop. DDR4 has 2133 Mhz & 2400 Mhz variants. And since 2400 Mhz is far more superior to 2133 Mhz in terms of speed, power and performance so needless to say that the laptops having DDR4(2400 Mhz) RAM are costly as compared to the one having DDR4(2133 Mhz). So if you are looking for a high performance laptop and if your budget allows you then go for DDR4(2400 Mhz) RAM.

I have seen many people who think or believe that having bigger RAM is the guarantee of the performance or speed, well it’s not 100 percent true, If you are a moderate user 4 GB or 6 GB RAM should be enough for you. If you use heavy software, download heavy files, you are a graphic designer, architect or an Autocad user then you should go for minimum 12 to 16 GB RAM.

5. Graphic card/GPU/Video memory- They call it dedicated graphic card, GPU(Graphics processing unit), video memory etc. What is it actually? Is it for Gaming or meant for engineers only?
The answer is simple, if you will be using Photo-video editing software, illustrator, Photoshop, you want to do Rendering then you need a laptop which has good graphics card, If you are a gamer or you just play games occasionally you need dedicated graphics, or even if you don’t do any of the above mentioned things but you like to watch high quality videos or movies in your laptop then also you need dedicated graphics. There are two brands who make graphic cards for the laptops and they are- NVIDIA and Radeon AMD.

Radeon AMD graphic card is usually available in budget laptops, and they are good enough for occasional gaming or photo-video editing or watching videos with graphich contents (Minimum 2GB recommended).
NVIDIA Geforce is a brand name and known for its 9 and 10 series graphic cards, and you will find it in all high end gaming laptops/PCs/machines. So as I said if you are a professional gamer, Engineer, architect, Rendering artist then you should go for the laptops with NVIDIA graphics (Minimum 4 GB recommended).

So friends, by keeping these factors in mind you can now buy a right laptop for yourself or help your friends or family members to buy one. So if you find the above article
informative then please right your comments below. Any feedback and comments are appreciated.

Note: The above given information is meant for general knowledge and general awareness only.

 

Author- Ayaan

2 COMMENTS

  1. thanks for such a useful information.

    • Thank you Anjan for your valuable comment.

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