4 Things to Keep In Mind When Purchasing Your Next Laptop

Woman using laptop

Estimated reading time: 3 minutes

Buying a laptop is a major purchase, and you likely want to get something that will last you at least a few years. It can be easy to get confused with all the options out there, and you may lose sight of your end goals. Considering a few aspects can help you stay on track.

Understand Your Budget

Laptops vary significantly in price points, so it’s best to do some research so you can set a realistic budget. While you likely want the best you can afford, you might be constrained by the amount you can afford to pay. One way of expanding your potential budget is by getting a personal loan. If you’re thinking about getting one, you can shop for personalized rates in one location to find the best deal for you and your budget.

Determine Your Desired Style

Many laptops are 2-in-1, which means they can be used as either a tablet or a laptop. They can also be used in any position between that, like stand mode. If you do get a 2-in-1, you can find either detachable or flexible models. Detachable models have screens that can be removed from their keyboards, and flexible models simply bed back all the way so the keyboard would be on the back in tablet mode.

Flexible models are primarily laptops that can simply be used as tablets, although the keyboard can make it a little heavier. If you want a tablet that can be used as a laptop, you may want to go with a detachable model. Just keep in mind that detachable ones generally don’t give you as much performance.

Pick Your Preferred Size

Think about how you will be using your laptop. Will it primarily sit on your desk attached to a larger monitor? Are you buying a laptop for gaming specifically? Or will you be carrying it around for work or school? The intended use will determine the best display size. If you want something portable, you might go with about 11 to 12 inches. They usually weigh up to three and a half pounds.

For users looking for the best balance between portability and usability, you may want to go with a 13-to-14-inch screen. And if you want something to sit on your desk all the time but don’t want a monitor, you may want to go with a 17-to-18-inch screen. These larger models may give you the processing power you need to do things like play games or edit videos.

Check the Touchpad and Keyboard

If your laptop does not have a comfortable-to-use keyboard and touchpad, the rest of the specs don’t matter. While this is not important if you will be using an external keyboard and mouse, it is important if you plan on carrying your laptop around. Check that there is sufficient key travel, the keyboard offers enough feedback, and that there is sufficient space between each key. The touchpad should be accurate and should consistently respond to different gestures, such as one and two-finger browsing.