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Buying a laptop: 10 mistakes you must not make

Want to get 100% satisfaction on your laptop? Then do not make these mistakes.

Happy is the man who has never spent money in vain. Unfortunately, there are not many. Even if you had a dozen laptops and you have a good idea which functions are important and which are not, this will not insure against failures.

Every buyer risks being tempted to see a beautiful bright screen and a long list of advertised features. And now the purchase is made, money is written off from the card, you solemnly take out a box with a new laptop from the store. And then what? Then comes the understanding that the box is not quite what I wanted. More precisely, it is exactly what you saw in the advertisement and in the shop window, it just does not work as expected.

So, the purchase was unsuccessful, and at the stage of selecting the model, you lost sight of something important.

Mistake # 1: you buy the cheapest laptop

In the budget segment, there are really good devices. But their cheapness is already hinting, as it were: they are no match for the top offers and the expected expectations most likely will not justify.

Suppose you are used to keeping three or more programs running at the same time. When buying, you hesitated between models with a dual-core and quad-core processor, but because of financial considerations, you stopped at a dual-core version. As a result, you have a system that is not powerful enough for current tasks. It has become difficult to work, productivity is falling, and the feeling of annoyance will remain until you buy a more powerful computer.

Conclusion: instead of grabbing the cheapest laptop from the shelf, spend time looking for one that meets at least the minimum needs.

Mistake number 2: you buy the most expensive laptop

After reading the first paragraph, you could decide that it is easier to take the most expensive laptop: it certainly will cope with any task. But even with this approach, money can be wasted.

Top laptops are universal. They are equally easy to pull and heavy games, and simple office applications. However, getting on credit for the sake of expensive equipment, an ordinary user (of which most) will acquire a bunch of specific functions that can not be appreciated.

If the cost of a laptop goes beyond your budget, then it is almost certain there are some excesses. The latest top-end MacBook Pro costs $ 6,000 (almost 400 thousand rubles!), And very few people really need 4 TB of disk space. Laptop computers with exactly the same characteristics, but fewer ROMs can be found for half of this price, and for the remainder you can buy a dozen external drives, if you really need them.

The most expensive laptops belong to the gaming class. They are designed for fans of the latest parts of Final Fantasy, Tomb Raider, GTA and the like. Fans of indie games or online farms will not see the potential of a powerful gaming station - in primitive games, it simply will not have a chance to prove itself.

Therefore, the conclusion again : buy a laptop based on your real needs. Do not chase the top iron, especially if it is too expensive.

Mistake number 3: you buy a laptop without a reserve for the future

But still, picking up a laptop exclusively for current tasks will not be entirely correct. The technology is developing rapidly, and what we buy today will become obsolete in a few months. Therefore, the new computer must have some reserve of computing power with the expectation that you will use it for more than one year. Estimate what programs you plan to master in the near future, what professional tasks will face you in a year or two, and choose a device for these criteria.

Perhaps now you want to save money, and you are looking at the side of simple models with 4 GB of RAM and 128 GB SSD. Today, this configuration still looks acceptable, but for the long term it is unsuitable: the disk will quickly clog with applications, fresh versions of programs will require more and more resources, and due to lack of RAM, it will not work normally in multitasking mode.

Conclusion: Having decided on your current needs, look at a little more advanced models. Sometimes you have to postpone the purchase for a couple of months, in order to ultimately get a good laptop.

Mistake number 4: you do not pay attention to the number and types of connectors

Not all laptops have interfaces that you are used to using. For example, in the fresh Dell XPS 13 there is only Thunderbolt 3 and USB-C . The good old and very popular USB-A is not in sight.

Conclusion: if you need any specific connector or slot for reading SD-cards , make sure that it is in the selected laptop. Otherwise, you will have to use crutches in the form of adapters and hubs, which is not always convenient.

Mistake # 5: you're looking for a display with the highest resolution possible

4K screens are definitely worth a look. However, the human eye is not able to appreciate the benefits of huge resolution in a relatively small working area. Worse, the lion's share of the charge will go on powering such a display: many 4K laptops fail miserably with autonomy tests.

Conclusion: in most cases, 1080p is enough for both work and entertainment. Higher resolution is justified if you take a laptop with a diagonal of 15.6 ”or higher or for professional graphics.

Mistake number 6: you do not test the laptop before buying

When reading technical specifications, some things are easy to overlook. Surveyors from YouTube may be silent about some features, for example, poor responsiveness of the touchpad or a glare screen.

In order to identify such nuances, the technique needs to be tried in action. That is why in large stores laptops are not under glass, but in open windows. So potential buyers can independently evaluate the touch panel, keyboard, software interface and other elements that vary depending on the model chosen.

Conclusion: a "confrontation" with a laptop will help determine whether you are ready to give money for it. But it may happen that in the local store the desired device will not be. If you decide to purchase it online, checkout with trusted sellers with a clear return policy.

Mistake # 7: you think size doesn't matter

A widescreen display is a plus to the user experience, but a minus to portability. The dimensions of the laptop also determine the size of the keyboard and touchpad. Choosing a device with a diagonal of 13 ”or less, you will quickly realize that typing on it long texts is not very convenient. A large (15 ”) is too heavy to carry it with you.

A compact ultrabook can be an acceptable option for travel and business trips. Those who are looking for a more or less universal laptop for a wide range of tasks, it is better to stay on the option of 13.3 "or 14". If you buy a laptop exclusively for home use, feel free to take a 15.6-inch or larger model.

Conclusion: choosing between portability and performance, you often have to compromise. The best way to determine the optimal size is to remember which laptops you already had and how comfortable it was to interact with them.

Mistake # 8: you are obsessed with one single criterion

Comparing models by characteristics is fascinating, but try not to single out one specification and look for its maximum manifestation everywhere. Obsession with one thing will not help you choose a good laptop.

For example, the question of RAM. Everyone has heard that the more RAM the computer has, the better. It is difficult to refuse when the store offers a little overpay and get twice as much RAM. But in practice, most people need no more than 8 GB . Only professionals with heavy software and gamers need more.

Similarly, do not focus on autonomy, display resolution and processor speed. First of all, make sure that the selected laptop contains the necessary functions and equipment. Everything else that does not get out of the budget is just a nice bonus, no more.

Conclusion: do not forget about important characteristics, but evaluate the device and its performance in general.

Mistake # 9: you put design ahead of productivity

Fashion dictates its own rules. Marketers assure that the exterior of the laptop is as important as its filling. And the truth: a good laptop can be both powerful and stylish. But reality is more complex, and beauty does not always go hand in hand with good performance.

A popular type of laptop computers are ultrabooks. Looking at their relevance, you can assume that it would be nice for you to get a thin stylish laptop: it is so modern, technologically advanced, lightweight, and it does not cost very much (especially if it's a chromebook ). In general, wrap two.

In truth, the ultrabook form factor is both an advantage and a huge minus. With the first, everything is clear, but the minus is this: a thin case is not able to accommodate a productive filling and provide good cooling. Therefore, the ultrabook has little power, it will suit only a part of users. Creative professionals will need a laptop computer with the power of a desktop station, in particular with a top-end video card. And most 13-inch ultrabooks work on the built-in and are not suitable for processing heavy graphics.

Conclusion: appearance is certainly important, but this is not the main thing. The main thing is inside.

Mistake number 10: you think that 2-in-1 laptops are no different from ordinary laptops

Tablets, 2-in-1 (hybrids) and laptops are three different categories! Each has its own specifics. Yes, you can work with a tablet and an external keyboard like on a standard laptop, but the similarities end there.

If the device has a display and keyboard (even if it is removable), it is not a fact that it can replace a full-fledged laptop. Hybrids often lose in multitasking, they are not able to digest graphically loaded programs, unsuitable for fast web surfing, and their keyboard is usually cramped.

Conclusion: each form factor has its own characteristics that affect performance. Ultimately, everything is determined by the filling. We have already said that it is not good to single out one criterion. So, ignoring all the features at once is even worse. So you will begin to make assumptions about the capabilities of the device, and these guesses will almost certainly fundamentally diverge from reality.


A laptop is definitely not a thing that you can buy spontaneously, just by coming to the store. You need to spend enough time on his choice. And you also need to understand a little bit about the characteristics. If you approach the matter wisely, you will get a device that you don’t want to get rid of after a month. Our articles will help you with this: here you will find collections of laptops according to various criteria, as well as detailed reviews of old and new models.