A few weeks ago my trusty old laptop died. It had been with me for a long time (five years give or take) so I had no idea what to look for in a new one.
I decided to be sensible and work out what I needed instead of what I wanted (very unlike me..)
I use my laptop to write emails, edit photos, facebook/twitter etc., read the papers/blogs, Skype, get lost for hours in Quora/Wikipedia and maybe do the odd MSOffice work type chore.
I also wanted a laptop I could keep for a few years.
I filtered my criteria down to 6.
My top 6 considerations:
1. Screen size – for my purposes (emailing, photo editing and reading) it had to be big enough to be practical, probably around 15 inches, 17 would be even better but I’d compromise portability.
2. RAM – I wanted enough grunt so I could run multiple applications smoothly, and I plan to upgrade to Windows 8 when it comes out. Windows 8 will need 4gb RAM so to future proof I reckoned I should get 8. RAM is cheap these days and many packages include a free RAM upgrade.
3. Processor – I needed power but I wasn’t going to be programming or playing online games. I got advice from my techie friend Paul who recommended I stick with Intel and aim for an i3 processor at a minimum.
4. Hard disk size – I wasn’t too bothered about hard disk space as I keep my data on external drives. Enough to hold a few movies for the kids would be sufficient.
5. Portability – it doesn’t need to fit in my handbag but must be light enough to easily carry one handed (with two toddlers I rarely have more than one hand free).
6. Cost – I wanted to go with a known reliable brand (assuming a warranty period and hoping this means it will last a few years) but not pay premium brand prices.
Next step was to find a good deal. After days spent scouring websites and newspapers I happened upon an ad for a great deal on the exact kind of laptop I was looking for – result!
So far so good..