Best Laptops for Students?
Best Laptops for Students?
Buying a laptop as (or for) a student is not always the most straightforward thing. There are often a number of things to consider. We hope this blog gives you some ideas and helps you to avoid making mistakes or simply to help you to make a better choice than you would otherwise.
Do you need it?
When it comes to brand there can be a lot of misconceptions about which ones have higher quality than another. Apart from two brands, most brands need to, broadly, be thought of as having variable quality. It is not unusual to find people who will swear by HP, but not want to use Dell, or vice versa and the reason for this is because often people will have used one brand’s business machines and the other brand’s consumer machines. Typically the build quality and support for business machines are far superior to consumer and that accounts for the variation in experience. This applies to the three main laptop brands (Dell, HP & Lenovo) and to others as well. The exceptions to this are Apple and Microsoft, who only really do the end of mid-range to high-end laptops. If you prefer the design of one brand over another, that’s fine, but take account of the fact that the build quality will vary greatly across their product lines.
This has already been covered to an extent, but the durability, or build quality of laptops, is an important factor if you want it to last the duration of your studies and perhaps beyond. The best way to ensure this is to buy a business laptop rather than a consumer one. If this isn’t possible, the only thing that can be suggested is to study reviews of the laptops you are interested in to see what the build quality is like.
As mentioned previously, often students don’t actually bring their laptops on campus - if you know you are likely to be like this then portability may be less important. However you may still want to travel with your laptop, or just move around your home, so portability is likely to still prove useful. When I was doing my A Levels, for reasons I’ve now forgotten, I got a 17 inch HP laptop. I enjoyed using it and it was okay - definitely towards the cheap category, but it was a massive pain to take to school. It was heavy and clunky, fine for around the house but not for taking it around the school. 17 inch laptops can be great if your use requires them, but for general word processing and browsing it was definitely too much, I wouldn’t recommend it for a student and went with a much thinner 14 inch laptop when going to begin my undergraduate studies. Since then I have had laptops ranging from 13” to 15.6” and would say anything in that range is fine for portability for a student, although keep an eye on the weight and thickness of the laptop. If you want a high performance laptop which is also highly portable, you’ll certainly pay a premium for it.
Final choice: New or Refurbished
Final point: Design & Engineering Students
If you’re going to be doing a course which requires demanding software, such as CAD software then you’re going to need a powerful machine with good graphics. Again, your university will likely have computers which have these softwares but if you want to be able to do this on the move you’ll need a laptop with powerful dedicated graphics which can do that. These undoubtedly come at price, again, buying refurbished can help reduce your costs.