Which laptop to buy?
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Types of laptop
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Laptops in depth
Still not sure what to go for? Our in-depth guide takes you through all the important bits, like screen size, operating systems, processors and graphics cards.
What screen size should I go for?
- 10" to 14" - Perfect for use on-the-go. They're light, easy to carry in a laptop bag and take up less space on a desk, train, or wherever you are. They can be less suited to gaming, editing and getting the best film or TV experience.
- 14" to 16" - The most common screen size. Portable enough to take with you, but also suitable for sitting on your desk at home or at work. The screen is big enough to enjoy games and movies, without feeling too big or chunky.
- 16"+ - The ideal compromise between a desktop monitor and portable device. They're perfect for creative types and gamers who don't want to be confined to one location, but a little too large and heavy to take on your commute.
With three main operating systems to choose from, discover which one will suit your computing needs.
What storage do I need?
What's the difference between SSD and HDD?
HDD (hard disk drive) and SSD (solid-state drive) are the main types of storage that come with a laptop. How much you need and what type depends on what and how much you plan to keep saved.
SSD is best if...
-You need to access your files quickly.
-You don't need more than 256GB storage.
-You don't mind paying extra for faster load up and file access.
HDD is best if...
-You need up to 1TB of storage.
-You want to save lots of TV shows, films or games.
-You want greater choice of laptop.
What is a processor?
The brain of your PC
The processor, or CPU, controls how your laptop runs and how well it performs. Most processors are produced by either Intel or AMD. A better processor means faster performance and greater multitasking.
- Intel: Celeron, Pentium.
- AMD: A4, A6, A9
- Intel: i3, i5.
- AMD: A10, Ryzen 3, Ryzen 5
- Intel: i7, i9
- AMD: Ryzen 7
CPU - all you need to know
Clock speed and turbo boost
The clock speed defines how fast a processor is. Clock speed is measured in GHZ and the more it has, the faster it will run. Processors with turbo boost have an extra advantage, as they can increase speed to meet the needs of more intense tasks.
Processors will either have 2 (Dual-core), 4 (Quad-core) or 8 (Octa-core) cores. Cores are essentially mini-processors and the more cores your laptop has, the better it is at multitasking, as it can assign more cores to different tasks.
RAM also affects the speed and performance of your laptop. Your options will be 2, 4, 8 and 16GB. Having more RAM makes it easier and quicker to access your files and programs.
Integrated or shared graphics cards run using a laptops RAM. This is better for people who like to watch films or play basic games. For high performance gaming a dedicated graphics card will offer far better visuals.
Staying safe online and looking after your laptop
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