Which laptop suits your use?

You usually use a laptop for various activities, but sometimes also for a very specific purpose. What can you do with a laptop? How do you find the laptop that best suits your use and what do you pay attention to?

Basic usage

Almost any laptop is suitable for surfing the internet, emailing and occasionally typing a document. Only the really cheap laptops  (from $200 to $450) are quite slow and not pleasant to use even for this.

SSD

So you don’t need a powerhouse, but there are a few parts that you should not skimp on. An SSD  (Solid State Disk) is without a doubt a part that you do not skimp on. With this fast and quiet type of storage, your laptop will start up much faster. You can also move files and open programs faster. It’s a world of difference compared to an old-fashioned hard drive and a much better choice than flash storage (eMMC).

Price range $450 – $550

The cheapest laptops often have flash memory (eMMC). But in the price range of $450 to $550, we only see laptops with an SSD. As far as we are concerned, these laptops are always preferred.

Chromebook

Do you only use a laptop for the internet and word processing? Then a Chromebook is a good option. These simple laptops look like many other laptops but run on Google’s Chrome OS operating system. While other laptops use Windows or macOS as the operating systems. Chromebooks are aimed at simple use.

Disadvantage Chromebook

The downside is that you can’t install any software on it, like Microsoft Word. You are therefore dependent on Google Drive and other Google services. On many Chromebooks, you can install programs from the Android store that you know from your tablet or smartphone.

Avoid a bad buy

With our test, you can see at a glance which laptops are good. But just as important: you also see which ones you should not buy.

Professional laptop use

Work and School: MS Office

Do you often sit behind your laptop and do you often use Microsoft Word and Excel? Then choose a laptop that can do a little more than a basic laptop, so that everything runs a little more smoothly. We then recommend a laptop with at least a Core i5 or Ryzen 5 processor (Excel in particular benefits from a faster processor), 8 GB of RAM and an SSD with at least 256 GB storage space.

Stick to these specs for business use or for a good student laptop.

Gaming & Video Editing

Laptops for gamers are a separate category. You need a lot of computing power to play the latest games. Some manufacturers offer special gaming laptops for this. These are often thicker and heavier. And they usually look a bit more playful than regular laptops.

These types of laptops are real beasts and often have a hefty price tag of at least $ 1100. Do you want to be able to run all graphic-intensive games completely, without giving up anything? Then even that is not enough for you.

video card

The most important thing about a gaming laptop is the video card. That part largely determines how smoothly you can game. Most laptop video cards are made by Nvidia, which introduced the RTX 30 series in 2020.

You can roughly see from the type numbers how powerful the cards are and compare them with each other. For example, the RTX 3080 is faster than the RTX 3060, and the RTX 3060 is faster than the GTX 16 series. For gaming on a tight budget, we recommend at least a GTX 1650 or an RTX 3050. If you have a little more to spend, and RTX 3060, 3060 Ti or 3070 is definitely worth the investment.

Video editing

A good video card is less important for video editing, the requirements are slightly different for that. A fast processor is the main focus for video editing. So choose an Intel Core i7, AMD Ryzen 7 or MacBook with M1 Pro/Max.

To travel

Staying in touch with home is fun for backpackers and anyone travelling for extended periods of time. For example via Skype or Facetime. Because you carry the laptop with you a lot, size,  weight and the battery play an important role.

Laptops are, of course, already made to be carried around. But a large 15- or 17-inch machine is not really suitable for that. It takes up too much space. It is not pleasant to work with a 15 “in your bag, but also in an aeroplane seat.

Check size and battery life

A compact laptop is easier to carry. So rather look at a screen size of 11 to 14 inches. The battery life is also very important. You don’t have sockets everywhere along the way, so it is useful if the battery lasts a long time.

On the road, your Wi-Fi should also work well. View the verdict we give

Advice

All in all, a compact, light laptop with good battery life is recommended for the traveller. Speed ​​and screen quality is less important. Although we do recommend a laptop with a matte screen. This means you have much less trouble with reflections on the screen. Fortunately, there are plenty of laptops that meet these criteria. 

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