Before you go out and purchase a laptop computer, it is a good idea to understand the options that are at your disposal.
There are key questions that need to answered.
Most importantly, what will you be using the laptop for? What is the purpose of the laptop?
For example, are you a business professional? Are you a dedicated student? Are you a serious gamer? Do you have tech-savvy kids? Are you an avid movie watcher?
Knowing the answer to these types of questions will help you immensely when choosing the best affordable laptop computer because there are many options to choose from.
These options include budget, platform, style/ CPU processor, screen size/ touch pad/ touch screen, and brand.
You will want to consider each of these options in determining the best choice for your laptop computing needs.
Your budget for a new laptop computer is especially important.
How much money will you spend? How much money does it make sense to spend in your case?
A business professional would be more inclined to spend a larger sum than a college student. There may be more sophisticated needs for memory, processing speed, graphics, connect ability, etc.
Thus, it would make sense for the business professional to choose a more expensive laptop that is more suitable for that type of lifestyle.
Therefore, a serious gamer would be more inclined to spend thousands of dollars versus hundreds of dollars on their acquisition.
The budget for your laptop computer should be directly aligned with the intended use of your laptop computer.
The Lenovo ThinkPad P73 is a very high quality laptop that is perfect for any professional or serious gamer.
Your intended usability of the different computing platforms should be considered.
The three most widely used platforms are Windows, Mac, and Chrome OS. Depending upon your situation, it makes sense to choose the platform that is most suitable to your personal usability needs.
There are many pros and cons of each platform, which have been outlined below.
Microsoft Windows – Pros
- Most commonly used operating system ever since the early days of MS-DOS.
- Newer versions of Windows support older versions of both hardware and software.
- Ease of installation of new hardware.
- Superior gaming technology.
Microsoft Windows – Cons
- Higher resource requirement related to hardware, CPU, internal memory, and hard disk.
- Troubleshooting issues due to closed source.
- Weak security protocol and virus vulnerability.
- Additional expenses and higher cost of ownership.
Apple Mac – Pros
- Visually appealing and purchased for looks.
- Fewer viruses and bloatware installed on machines.
- Superior customer service.
- Compatibility to work with Windows software.
Apple Mac – Cons
- Mac’s are more expensive to purchase.
- Less upgradable and configurable.
- Newer versions of Macs does not always support older versions of both hardware and software.
- Poor gaming technology.
Google Chrome OS – Pros
- Extremely cheap to purchase.
- Cloud system backup several times every minute.
- Longer battery life and ease of portability due to smaller size and weight.
- Quick startup function.
Google Chrome OS – Cons
- Limited in terms to usage, functionality, and storage capacity.
- Internet connection is required to work.
- Lack of compatibility software compatibility.
- Poor gaming technology.
There are many different tiers of types of laptop computers. The Apple MacBook is medium tier with quality components.
STYLE/ CPU PROCESSOR
Your taste of style and CPU processor can make a profound difference.
The three most basic styles are laptop, tablet, or 2-in1 laptop/ tablet hybrid. A tablet is generally less expensive than a laptop, however, a 2-in-1 hybrid is generally less expensive than purchasing both a tablet and laptop individually.
The tablet could be a low-end Lenovo Chromebook with a Chrome OS operating system which is generally in the low-price range.
The laptop could be a high-end Lenovo ThinkPad P53 with a Microsoft Windows 10 operating system which is generally in the high price range.
The 2-in-1 hybrid could be a Lenovo ThinkPad T490 with a Windows 10 operating system which is generally in the mid – high price range.
Each style has it’s own unique shape and feel.
When it comes to CPU’s, Chromebooks, Macs, and laptops tend to run the Intel Core brand. Core i3, Core i5, Core i7, and Core i9 are used for everything from basic laptop computing to ultimate laptop gaming.
Intel Core CPU’s with ‘H’, ‘HQ’, or ‘HK’ contained in the name are the highest-performance laptop CPU’s. These are used for intensive activities such as data crunching, media production, and serious gaming.
Intel Core CPU’s with ‘U’ or ‘Y’ at the end are more geared towards mainstream projects that preserve power.
You will find high performance machines will have a larger CPU processor.
The Lenovo Chromebook is lower end with optimal capacity.
SCREEN SIZE/ TOUCH PAD/ TOUCH SCREEN
Specifications such as size, touch screen, and touch pad are key.
Laptop screen size will generally fall into 4 categories: 11”, 13”, 15”, and 17”. A bigger screen doesn’t necessarily mean better resolution. 4K resolution is becoming standard in all newer models of all sizes which is much more expensive than HD.
Portability comes into play when choosing the best screen size. Many users enjoy smaller size screens to tote around more easily while other users enjoy larger screens to be used more like a desktop PC. Every user tends to have their own personal preference based on personal needs.
Ideally, the 15” screen size tends to blend together the perfect mix of portability and optimal screen size.
Touchpads are a basic hardware tool that come with pretty much every laptop these days. They are extremely easy to use and do not require the use of a mouse.
Although touchpads tend to not be as efficient as a mouse, you will not have to worry about packing the additional hardware when in transit.
Touch screens are a fairly new technology that has become a growing trend in the industry. They tend to be more convenient than using a traditional mouse or touchpad. In addition, touch screens are excellent addition to the portability function when in transit.
Although touch screens tend to be more expensive than their analog counterparts, you can find this technology more easily than other parts.
The brand will determine the overall experience and level of support you will receive during the life of your machine.
There are many different brands to choose from which include Lenovo, Dell, HP, Acer, Apple MacBook, Google, etc. It’s important to choose a brand that will give you the optimal user experience while providing the best product support.
This determination can be highly subjective because every user is different.
Thus, I personally prefer the Lenovo brand. I have owned a 15” Lenovo Legion Y530 with an Intel Core i5 CPU processor and NVIDIA GEFORCE GTX video card for many years.
Lenovo laptops are more innovative than other laptops, are amazingly affordable from a value standpoint, are more reliable in terms of battery life, and are highly responsive when it comes to customer support.
BEFORE YOU BUY
All of this information can certainly seem daunting; however, I would highly suggest you take the time and do the research before you choose the best affordable laptop computer for your personal computing needs.
To your laptop purchasing victory,
Justin Ash, Founder/ Member
Budget Laptop Reviews