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Considering a new computer?Back  

Are you considering buying a new computer? If so, here is some advice that may help you in the decision making process.

Firstly, should you purchase a desktop or laptop? Laptops have come down substantially in price in the last few years and are now worth considering when looking for a new computer. The benefit of a laptop obviously is its portability. Because of their portability they don’t need to be permanently setup in a dedicated spot in your home and therefore space saving.

There are a few downsides to a laptop though. In the event of hardware failure they are generally more expensive to repair and once the laptop gets a little older sometimes not worth repairing. They are more difficult and more expensive to upgrade and as they are portable they are more prone to damaged due to knocks, drops, spillage or something being dropped on them.

With a desktop you will get more bang for your buck and generally you’d expect a longer life from a desktop compared to a laptop. If you have the room then having a computer permanently setup is less hassle while having a larger screen and external keyboard can make it easier to work with. Repairs and upgrades are usually easier and cheaper and they are less likely to be damaged.

If buying a laptop I suggest to my customers that they stick with one of the more well known brands like HP or Toshiba while with desktops you may get a better fit by having a computer custom built.

What are the main hardware specifications you should be looking for?

CPU: The main Intel processor families from fastest to slowest are i7, i5, i3 and generally the higher the MHz the better.

RAM: I usually suggest 4GB of RAM for 32bit Operating System and 8GB+ for 64bit. You may also note that RAM has a MHZ rating and again the higher the better.

HDD: Hard Disk Drive space is pretty cheap these days and again the bigger the better. For home use I wouldn’t go below 500GB and preferably 1TB to 2TB.
Solid State Drives (SSD) are now an option worth considering. They are getting cheaper and will give your computer an impressive performance boost. If you want the performance boost without loosing out on disk space then get a SSD as the main drive and a larger HDD for storage.

If you have any other specific requirements like a Blue Ray burner, an internal card reader or anything else you think may impact on the purchase then be sure to mention this when discussing with the reseller as they may not be included as standard.

Where should you purchase your new computer from? If you decide to go with a custom built system then you’ll need to talk with a computer builder. If you need finance then check out one of your local retail stores. 

Most importantly, invest in your local region and buy locally. When you spend locally, eventually it comes back around. But what you spend outside of the area stays out.

When buying a computer it is important that you get it right so have a chat to your computer technician who will be more than happy to point you in the right direction with your new purchase.



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