When New Laptop Models Arrive
The last thing you want to do is pay a high price for the latest and greatest laptop, only to see that a few weeks later the same laptop costs a few hundred dollars cheaper and is no longer the last or the last. the best. You can appreciate the endless exaggerated cycle of product launch events.
If you like Apple products and want to buy a MacBook, you will generally see pop-up deals around your special product event, which is still in September. This year, MacBook discounts took a bit longer, as the 16-inch Pro didnt ship until November, but its a good rule of thumb that for Apple products, September means savings.
On the other hand, if you expect to shave off a few dollar signs from this Microsoft Surface Pro, youll be in luck at the companys massive October event. This year, the latest model was announced on October 2, and offers started a few days in advance. Similarly, the Google Pixel 3a went on sale for $100 cheaper just after the announcement of the new Pixel 4 in mid-October.
If youre not sure when the manufacturer of your favorite electronics is hosting their live product launch events, at least be sure to check them out before you buy a laptop because if its only in a month a few weeks you will start to see discounts soon.
What Should You Look For When Buying A New Laptop
There are certain things you can look out for when buying a new laptop in 2021 that can ensure you get the best laptop for your money.
Make sure you take a look at the specifications of a laptop before buying. This is a good way of quickly seeing how powerful a laptop is, and what it is capable of as long as you know what youre looking for.
First of all is the processor. This is essentially the brain of the laptop, and a laptop will usually have a processor made by either Intel or AMD. Intel is by far the most popular CPU maker for laptops, though were seeing an increasing number of AMD-powered laptops as well.
As a general rule of thumb, Intel processors offer better performance, but AMD processors are better value.
To make things more simple, both Intel and AMD have numbered their processors to give you a rough idea of what sort of tasks a laptop with that processor can perform.
If youre after a budget laptop for simple tasks like browsing the web or watching Netflix, then a laptop with an Intel Pentium, Intel Core i3 or AMD Ryzen 3, processor will do that job without making the laptop too expensive.
If youre after something with a bit more oomph perhaps to do more complex task like editing your home videos or playing games then go for a laptop with an Intel Core i5 or AMD Ryzen 5 processor as a minimum.
A newer processor performs better and is more power efficient so battery life will last longer. They are more expensive, though.
Not Trying Before Buying
If you can, always give the laptop youre considering a proper test drive before buying. Many everyday laptops are available for testing at big brick-and-mortar stores such as Apple, Best Buy, and the Microsoft Store, allowing you to fiddle with the touchpad, keyboard, software interface, and other components that substantially differ from model to model.
Its easy to overlook the importance of features absent from the spec sheet, such as the touchpads responsiveness or the visibility of a glossy screen in daylight, and theres just no substitution for getting a real hands-on feel of what its like to use.
If thats not possible, buy from an online store with a strong return policy.
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Becoming Obsessed With One Specification
Tunnel vision is bad news when buying a laptop. While its fun to pit spec sheets against each other, avoid picking out one particular specification as your favorite and only looking at that factor. While you should have a baseline specification in mind to ensure that you get the performance you need dont obsess over maximizing any single specification.
Its easy to be excited about paying a little extra for double the RAM, for example, but most people dont need more than 8GB;unless you are using some serious software for work purposes.
Likewise, dont become obsessed with battery life, resolution, or processor speed. If youre on a budget and most people are youll need to learn to balance a variety of hardware. Ensure the laptop you want has the features and hardware you need anything else that comes in under budget is just a bonus.
What Are The Best Laptop Brands
The best brands for laptops include Apple, Dell, Lenovo and HP, and they all have their strengths. For example, Apple make brilliantly-designed slim and light laptops, while Dell does a great range of high-end ultrabooks, as well as affordable devices and Chromebooks as well. Lenovo’s well known for making solidly-built business laptops , and HPs also been making some gorgeous laptops recently that are some of the best laptops in the world.
When it comes to gaming, the best laptop brands include Alienware, Asus and Acer.
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Samsung Galaxy Book Go
The new is designed to keep you lightweight and up to speed in near-silence. It doesnt even rely on a fan, so you may never hear this new laptop coming.
While the lack of a fan might worry some power users, the Galaxy Book Go packs Qualcomms Snapdragon 7c Gen 2 processor for excellent performance management. Youll find a durable design with a 180-degree hinge to share your screen with the rest of your team. Samsungs 18-hours of battery life should be more than enough to get through even your longest of workdays.
As always, you can seamlessly pair your new Galaxy Book Go laptop with your other Samsung devices. Share texts from your or hook up your for some wireless playback.
Theres a 5G-ready version of the Samsung Galaxy Book Go somewhere down the pipeline, so stay tuned for the next powerful laptop.
Buying A New Laptop For 2021 Here Are 5 Essentials To Look For
Webcam positioning is crucial on today’s laptops
We are getting dangerously close to the holiday season, the time of year when you pretend the credit-card limit doesnt exist and splash out. If a new laptop is on your Christmas list, there are certain boxes that you should be looking to tick.
To be clear, youre unlikely to find all five of the items listed here on $300 laptops – these are the kind of features that youd expect to find on laptops that are a closer to a four-figure price tag. These are the features for buyers who are prepared to spend a little extra to get a laptop that lasts.
Here, then, is what you should be looking for in a 2021-ready laptop.
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How To Choose The Best Gaming Laptop For You
Choosing the best gaming laptop is easy when youve got deep pockets or have a couple of thousand dollars to spare. Its when your budget is more limited that getting a great gaming laptop becomes trickier.
Lucky for us, were getting plenty of more affordably-priced CPUs and GPUs that dont compromise on power. The latest internals like the Intel Comet Lake, AMD Big Navi and the Nvidia RTX 3000 series are more capable yet also cheaper than ever. That means that gaming notebooks under $1000 can be just as capable as any gaming PC while keeping things portable and space-saving like the best Ultrabooks.;
Still, some components are more powerful or cheaper than others. While its no longer a hard and fast rule, AMDs offerings are generally more affordable, which means that AMD Ryzen-powered laptops tend to be slightly cheaper.;
In terms of graphics cards, Nvidia is still king when it comes to performance, although which RTX card you should go for depends on the type of gaming experience you want. The RTX 3060, for example, is a terrific mid-range contender with lots of power for 1080p gaming. However, if you want that 4K goodness, an RTX 3070 or higher is the way to go.
Consider the RAM as well. There are many gaming laptops that start you off with an 8GB ;DDR4 memory, which is the minimum these days. However, if you play a lot of demanding AAA titles, at least 16GB is recommended for the smoothest experience.
Razers Concept Mask: Project Hazel
Then theres the concept that by all indications has won the show: Razers concept N95 mask with RGB and voice projection.
I will admit, when I first saw that Razer had a concept mask with gamer-themed color lights I was not happy. My fear for this entire CES has been that a major company would try to take advantage of the pandemic to gather attention to itself with a gadget that isnt scientifically sound. CES is always awash in dubious health tech, but the risk of people believing in bad health tech seems even higher this year.
But then, well, it seems like Razer has thoughtfully considered a lot of the very real problems masks cause and tried to account for them. It looks like one of those actually-unsafe vented masks, but those vents have filters the company wants to make N95-grade. Its clear, so people can read your lips. It will have some sort of audio system that will solve for the muffled voices masks can cause. It should seal tightly against your nose to help with fogging glasses.
All that sounds neat neater than RGB lights anyway. But neat does not equal real, and this is very much like a concept car to my mind. In the press release, Razers language not only skirts the issue of a price and release date, it also skirts the issue of releasing a mask with this exact design at all:
Of course, no amount of engineering can solve the biggest mask problem in the US: too many people are refusing to wear them. Please: wear a mask.
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What Kind Of Laptop Screen Do I Need
Laptop screens have grown denser over the past decade, packing more pixels into the same area. That enables crisper text, sharper onscreen images, and, often, better-looking colors. Display density is sometimes measured in pixels per inch , but the main specification that defines a laptop screen is its native resolution, which is expressed in horizontal by vertical pixels.;
Most laptops that cost $500 or more have screens with at least full HD resolutions. Also known as 1080p displays, they sport a resolution of 1,920 by 1,080 pixels and typically employ LCD panels built on whats known as in-plane switching technology. IPS screens quality can vary, but they are best known for keeping the quality of the image high if you look at the screen from an oblique, or off-side, angle. Thin-film transistor , the other major screen type in modern laptops , tends to shift colors or look faded if not viewed straight-on. That matters if you often share the contents of your screen with otherssay, when giving impromptu presentations.
Cheap Windows- and Chrome OS-based laptops will usually have lower-resolution thin-film transistor displays , which means text wont appear as crisp and colors might not be as vivid as youve come to expect from your smartphone or TV. If youre not picky about image quality, though, a lower-resolution display might be an acceptable sacrifice in the quest to save money.
Should You Buy A New Windows Laptop Now Or Wait For Windows 11
A new operating system always means uncertainty for hardware shoppers.
It’s one of the biggest technology buying hangups: Is my new purchase going to be immediately obsolete? Or at least outdated? That kind of FOMO can lead to long delays in buying a laptop, phone or tablet, always waiting for the next update or upgrade. With the announcement of Windows 11, laptop and desktop shoppers are in this familiar situation.;
The Windows 11 announcement also comes just as we’re in the middle of the back-to-school shopping season, so this can throw a wrench into many students’ laptop shopping plans.;
Here’s what we know so far. Windows 11 is coming this holiday season, with a public beta available as soon as next week. The system requirements as outlined by Microsoft would seem to cover nearly any Windows PC sold today.;
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To make sure Windows 11 will work on your current computer, you can install Microsoft’s PC Health Check here. Must-haves for Windows 11 include at least 4 gigabytes of RAM, 64GB of storage and a 720p display measuring over 9 inches diagonally. The company also says, “Windows 11 Home edition requires internet connectivity and a Microsoft account to complete device setup on first use.”;
Here’s a full list of the system requirements for Windows 11.;
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Should I Get A Longer Laptop Warranty
Most laptop makers offer one-year warranties on parts and labor. These standard plans are limited, so they won’t cover accidents that stem from spilling a drink on the keyboard or dropping the system on the sidewalk. Fortunately, your credit-card issuer likely covers such mishaps for a short period of time after you buy a new product, and it also may extend the manufacturer’s warranty. Check your account benefits guide for details.
If your credit-card issuer doesnt cover you, some laptop makers will happily sell you extended warranties. Apple, Dell, HP, and Lenovo all offer wide ranges of extended warranties and coverage for accidental damage. Expect to spend $100 to $300 for these options. Our rule of thumb is that if a warranty costs more than 15 percent of the laptop’s purchase price, you’re better off spending the money on backup drives or services that minimize downtime.
Of course, you can’t put a price tag on peace of mind. There are instances when the logic board or the displaythe most expensive parts of a laptopfail, and while rare, such a catastrophe can cost you half of what the laptop is worth in repair costs.
Focusing Too Much On Storage Space
Most of the industry has jumped on SSD storage, but you can still find laptops with traditional hard drives kicking around your local Best Buy or Micro Center. Spinning hard drives are cheaper, so youll often find laptops with more storage space for less money. But an SSD with a lower capacity is almost always better.
Its important to remember that SSDs are much faster than spinning hard drives and can make a huge difference to your system boot times and how snappy and responsive they feel. Opting for less, faster storage will make sure you get a laptop that feels modern and wont hold you back, whatever youre doing.
If you need more space, external hard drives are a dime a dozen, and theres no shortage of excellent cloud storage options for storing videos, photos, and music. A 256GB or 512GB SSD should be enough for most people when combined with an external hard drive or cloud storage.
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Lenovo Thinkpad X1 Titanium Yoga
Lenovo is refreshing many of its existing ThinkPad models at CES 2021, but the ThinkPad X1 Titanium Yoga stands out as something new and impressive. The newest member of the Yoga family uses real titanium on the lid, magnesium for the chassis, and carbon for the lower portions. The result is a 2.54 pound convertible laptop thats just a bit over 11mm thin.
Aside from being astonishingly thin and light, the ThinkPad X1 Titanium Yoga offers an Intel 11th Gen Core i7 processor, 16GB of RAM, up to 1TB SDD space, touch and ink support via an included smartpen, and a 13.5-inch display with a 2256 x 1504 resolution and a 3:2 aspect ratio. Theres even an optional 5G model that falls back to LTE when 5G speeds arent available.
At $1,899 the X1 Titanium Yoga isnt cheap but it is stylish, thin and light, and has plenty of specs that make it a great choice for those looking for a high-end laptop perfect for productivity.
Check For A Warranty When Buying A Refurbished Laptop Or Mac
Most new laptops, like MacBooks, come with a one-year warranty, or have the option to purchase an extended warranty, like Apple Care. With refurbished laptops, the warranty becomes even more important because there is the possibility of a faulty repair or hidden issues that werent discovered. Look for sellers who offer a full-coverage warranty for at least 6 months to a year for all devices, like the warranty offered by Back Market. Back Market provides a minimum 1-year warranty with all refurbished products featured on the website, with some even coming with a 2-year warranty.
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Acer Chromebook Spin 514
Acer Chromebook Spin 514;has won Android Authoritys CES 2021 Top Picks Award for Best Affordable Laptop. Check out all the awards here.
AMD has been slowly eating away at Intels dominance recently with its Ryzen chips, especially in gaming. Now AMD has its sights on Chromebooks as well, as the new Acer Chromebook Spin 514 has AMD power inside.
The Spin 514 will come in your choice of an AMD Ryzen 7 3700C or the Ryzen 5 3500C. Both variants will use AMDs Radeon Vega mobile graphics chips. The other specs are pretty much what youd expect including up to 6GB of DDR4 RAM, up to 256GB of SSD storage, and a battery that offers up to 10 hours on a single charge. The display does manage to stand out a little, as the 14-inch 1,920 x 1,080 touchscreen can be rotated 360 degrees.
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The Chromebook Spin 514 has rather impressive specs for a Chromebook but it also looks great and should be fairly durable, at least judging by its MIL-STD-810H rating.;There will also be a Chromebook Enterprise Spin 514 model for businesses, with higher end security for IT workers.
The Acer Chromebook Spin 514 will go on sale in February in the US for a starting price of $479.99. The Enterprise model will go on sale in March, starting at $749.99. Its one of the best upcoming laptops at CES 2021.