How to Buy a Laptop
, But if I say the HP ENVY 14 is sweet. Itll go from sweet to sold out in about 30 minutes., So instead you guys are getting something even better a start to finish laptop buyers guide. So you can make your own decision.. Also. It will include some honorable mentions like the aforementioned ENVY 14.. It really is pretty sweet.. So if you want one chuckles, move fast. And move fast to check out our sponsor. MSIs, CLUTCH GM41 LIGHTWEIGHT WIRELESS gaming, mouse is only 74 grams. Has a PixArt, 3370 sensor and features up to 80 hours of battery life. Check it out at the link down below. Right out of the gate. The Dell XPS 15 is the benchmark for Windows laptops.. It excels in performance, build quality and battery life.. The only small problem is that it costs over 2000 U.S. dollars.. Now I think Dell might have financing options available if you need them, but before you lock into an agreement like that, I should tell you that it is possible to find something with more power. A longer lasting battery or something much lighter for less than half the price.. The first and most important thing you need to decide is how much performance you actually need, as well as your budget., Because these two factors will determine what type of laptop youre looking at. Be honest with yourself.. If you dont really need that top of the line. Rtx 3080 GPU sacrificing some FPS could either save you a ton of money or get you a better built machine, thats more comfortable to daily drive.
. With that said, if performance is your top priority, youre – probably going to want a gaming laptop., Generally speaking, they have the best cooling, they feature the fastest processors and theyre cheaper than equally powerful laptops that are marketed at professional creators.. If you primarily want a laptop for school or work that has enough grunt to game on your brakes, youll be perfectly fine with either a GTX 1650 or an RTX 3050.. Here are a couple of budget friendly options.. Any of these should serve you very well.. So I would personally go with whatevers on sale and then return it and try again if I end up hating it., If youre looking for something powerful enough to really crank the details in AAA games at 1080p or if you wan na drive a high refresh rate Panel for smoother animations, the RTX 3060 Mobile, delivers nearly a 40 bump in FPS over the 3050 Ti and comes highly recommended, especially an ASUS Zephyrus, G14. And weve also seen some really nice fire sales on last gen, 2000 series, RTX models.. Above that, however, things start to get a little complicated, a lot complicated.. In many cases, the model of GPU that you choose and that you pay for can have less of an impact on real world performance than the cooling and the power delivery of the overall laptop. exhales strongly. There is honestly way too much to cover here., So instead we made a playlist that you can watch called Buying.
A Gaming Laptop in 2021 is Way More Complicated Than it Should Be. Also get subscribed because Im sure that the shenanigans are far from over. Moving on then, if gaming, for you means playing TextTwist in your browser or the occasional round of Rocket League, great news Integrated Or IGP use have gotten shockingly good., So you wan na avoid a laptop that has low end dedicated graphics like these ones.. In my opinion, they just arent enough of an upgrade over modern, integrated GPUs to be worth the extra power draw and heat output.. Your emulated, PlayStation 2 Classics are gon na run. Fine without them., As for CPUs AMD, keeps things pretty simple. The bigger the number, the more faster it goes. And I can easily recommend both the Ryzen 4000 and 5000 series processors on mobile.. They have exceptional efficiency, which means great performance in compact or lower priced machines that typically end up with smaller batteries.. I would hesitate, however, to go for a Ryzen 3000.. The name seems to suggest that these are based on AMD Zen, 2 cores, but theyre actually based on an older design that is significantly slower and less power efficient.. As for Intel whoa, if its got five numbers followed by an H like this, that means its a faster model with more cores. And if it ends in HK like this one, its a super fast boy and is generally capable of overclocking.. If, instead, its got four numbers followed by G4 or G7 like this, that means itll have at most four cores and is intended to be snappy and power efficient, rather than capable of handling heavy workloads.
. Now, for most people, only four CPU cores isnt gon na be a problem., But if you plan on running fluid simulations or editing 4K video, an H series, processor or ideally, an 8 Core from AMD – would be the better choice.. Something to note, though, is that for Intel their latest 11th Gen processors were a significant upgrade.. They finally switched from 14 nanometer to 10 nanometer.. So if the latest and greatest isnt within your budget, you cant assume that last years model will be same same but slightly worse.. The good news, however, is that in the few years prior to that, Intel was basically rehashing the same designs. So youd be hard pressed to tell the difference between an 8th Gen processor and a 10th Gen. One. Id only go 7th Gen and older, though, if the price was very compelling on a used device.. Fortunately, RAM is simple., Get 16 gigs. If you can., Windows and Chrome are gon na make quick work of 8 gigs. And if 8 gigs of RAM is all that meets your budget, make sure you choose a machine that can be upgraded down the line with slots that look like these ones., Even if Youre, not tech, savvy iFixit has excellent teardowns that can both help. You choose an appropriate model and perform the surgery. Framework by the way gets an honorable mention here for their outstanding attention to the upgradability of their machines.. They even go as far as making the integrated ports.
Swappable. Storage is a similar story to RAM. Youre. Probably gon na want at least 500 gigs for your SSD, but if a 256 gig one is all that you can fit in your budget, just make sure that the laptop youre considering can be upgraded down the road. Something you might have realized by now, though, is That, since Intel didnt do a whole lot to improve their laptops between 8th and 10th generations, it is entirely possible that someone might think that their old laptop is slow, but it actually just needs a little bit more storage or RAM.. Neither of them is super expensive. These days., So chucking 16 gigs of Ram into a three year old, laptop, maybe with a battery refresh that can usually be found with a quick part. Number search on eBay could give it a whole new lease on life., While youre in there, by the way, make sure to blow out the cooling system, because overheating is the biggest cause of premature laptop failure.. Now to address the elephant in the room. AMD and Intel arent, the only options for CPUs anymore., Bringing us to the Apple M1., The MacBook Air and Pro M1s are in almost every way the best thin and lights on the market.. Theyre extremely snappy feel great to use, have excellent screens and the battery life is unmatched by anything that shows this logo on boot up., But they arent perfect.. The M1 chip has only been out for a year.
, So there are some growing pains.. For instance, our Mac guy Jonathan has to use Teams in a Chrome window since theres no native app, yet. And theres no way to install full x86 Windows.. As for us, the inability to run professional programs like SOLIDWORKS and Altium, not to mention games, makes the M1 Mac a complete, no go.. So a beautiful machine, much better keyboard than the old ones., Just make sure that everything youre gon na need will run on it. And Chromebooks are a similar story. If youre on a budget or you already have access to a powerful desktop 95 of the time. A Chromebook is going to do everything you need it to do., But if a Chromebook is your only computer, your professor or your boss could easily provide you with some mandatory piece of software that you either cant run or are going to have to install in a Hacky time consuming way. And at that point, youll probably wish that youd saved up another 100 bucks and got a Windows device or spent the same amount and gotten a used. Thinkpad, like this one. Having the fastest laptop around, though means nothing if the screen sucks.. How will you appreciate all the new T, shirt designs on theltgstore.com, But seriously the screen is the thing you will interact with most on your laptop., So it really makes sense to skimp on it.. There are three main panel types, your TN IPS type and OLED, and only one that you should choose.
TN, looks terrible by todays standards and should basically be avoided at all. Times. OLED panels. Look amazing with crisp blacks and vibrant colors and incredible saturation, but theyre normally not super bright, which kind of matters. If youre taking this thing into bright areas like outside., They struggle with reflections and theyre terrible for battery life, which leaves us with IPS. And IPS type. Panels. LG trademarked IPS., So other brands have to use different names for the same tech. Once you know, the panel type is okay. The color space is the next key thing.. This describes how many different colors your monitor can produce.. It can get a bit confusing since there are a bunch of different standards., But unless you know you need something else, aim for near 100 coverage of sRGB, pretty basic.. The vast majority of applications. Webpages and games are tuned for sRGB.. So, unless youre doing professional, color work going beyond that to Adobe RGB or a DCI, P3 is not a requirement.. More expensive machines may come factory calibrated to account for the slight differences from one panel to the next., But there are quick and dirty ways to calibrate it yourself using test patterns that are good enough. If youre not doing color critical work. Something you cannot change after the fact, is your panels brightness. Its tough to recommend a single brightness number since 250 nits might be fine on a matte display, while 400 nits might not feel like enough on a glossy one.
. But what I can say is that, if youre gon na be in a bright environment, lower is generally better.. Finally, if you plan on gaming, throw out most of what I just said, because the single most important thing for you is the refresh rate of your panel., A high refresh rate display paired with a good CPU and GPU, will allow you to see much smoother animations On the screen and make your gaming experience feel more responsive and immersive., We proved outright that going from 60 hertz to 144 hertz results in a real world competitive advantage and while 240 hertz and above definitely starts to succumb to the law of diminishing returns, its safe To say that more is more better, at least for competitive gamers.. If sightseeing games are more your thing, though, look at you with your three players: a 1440p 120 or 144 hertz IPS type, is the perfect sweet spot chefs, kiss., Speaking of which you might have noticed that Ive hardly touched on resolution. Thats, because, despite it being one Of the big highlights on a typical manufacturers webpage for the most part, it doesnt really matter., Unless the laptop is extremely cheap or small, it will have at least 1080p resolution. And since laptops are pretty small in general, 1080p is enough for the image to look pretty Darn good., In our opinion, pushing to a 4K display is basically just a waste of battery life unless the 1080p option is a really bad panel.
. A far more important aspect of the display is the ratio of horizontal to vertical pixels. For professionals, in particular a 1610 or 32 display gives you more vertical space to work with for scrolling long documents or editing, complex video timelines.. Some laptops with great screens are the Surface Laptop HP, ENVY 14 Dell XPS ASUS, Zephyrus, M16 and G15, and the Lenovo Legion Pro theyre good., Oh yeah, we like touchscreens., You might not. So hey its up to you. Unless you buy a Mac, then its up to Apple. A really important part of a laptop that you cant, evaluate from the spec sheet alone, is the keyboard and track pad.. Given these are the bits that youll physically be touching every time you use it, youll want them to be really good.. The easiest way to figure out if a keyboard and trackpad are good is to watch some reviews. Find a host. Who has some overlapping experience with yours. See if you like, the same kind of things. Then find out their most recent opinion on whatever machine youre considering. Weve got heaps of unboxings around ShortCircuit like this one right here, and I think this one too.. So if youre lucky weve already taken a look at what you want. And if youre not so lucky well, I guess its time to head over to a local big box store like Best Buy or somewhere and just try. Some out. First thing to do is make sure your hands physically fit.
, If theyre falling off of the edge kinda like this, you need a bigger laptop. To type fast. Consistency is the key., The more confidence your fingers have, the better., So kinda just press around the keyboard.. If the whole thing flexes a bit that can be fine, but uneven squishiness can throw off your typing. Feel around the J and K keys specifically.. This tends to be a soft spot on some laptops.. If the deck flex is good, then you can evaluate the keys themselves. Press around the corners to check the stability.. If the corner kinda dips below the chassis before it, actuates dont, buy it. And finally give the keys a press to see how consistent the force required to push them is., If some of them take more effort than others keep looking unless youre a hunt and peck Typist., For you, you probably wouldnt notice the difference, but if you wan na improve your typing in the future, maybe you know invest in something thats good. Our keyboard. Standouts are the ASUS Zephyrus lineup, basically any Alienware laptop, but especially this one with the Cherry switches. Any Surface device Dells XPS 15 and pretty much anything from HPs ENVY or Spectre lineups., While youre tooling, around with the keyboard its a good time to evaluate the palm rejection of the trackpad.. If the mouse accidentally clicks or moves around while youre typing real bad.. If none of those things happened, try to use the keyboard and then slowly move to touching the trackpad.
. What youre looking for is to see if the trackpad doesnt immediately start working. OEMs will do this to make sure that your palms dont actually trigger it. But if its too aggressive it can make the trackpad feel unresponsive. After that check. If the trackpad uses Windows, Precision drivers., If it doesnt just dont, get the laptop. In 2021, no one needs snapdicks, drunken drivers. From there. I personally dont like trackpads with high latency, but depending on what panel you have and your personal sensitivity to it, you might not notice the difference., So it kind of just comes down to trying as many as possible in person, and hopefully you can figure out what You like. Our standout trackpad champs are, of course the MacBooks XPS 15, once again, and the Zephyrus G15 and M16.. The last big ones that we havent mentioned are weight and battery. Weight is pretty simple since its just a function of performance and how much you want to spend. This ones, real light made of magnesium., Not cheap. laughs, But the batterys a lot more complex.. I wish I could just say something like Get an 85 watt hour battery and youll be good., But like these two, both have 55 watt hour batteries., This ones four hours, this ones – 16.. It laughs, doesnt, really work like that., Because, depending on the CPU GPU display, and even the tuning of all of those things, the battery life is just willy nilly and will vary wildly.
. Your only real choice is to find a reviewer who has tested the config. You like, or something close to it in an industry standard test like the PCMark battery life test.. Anything over about 6.5 hours will be serviceable with anything over 11 being pretty darn solid for all day. Use. Big thanks to Drop for sponsoring this video. With drop. You can bring home the battle that changed the Marvel Cinematic Universe forever with their Infinity War, Keycaps that they made in collaboration with Marvel. Theyve, got purple alphas and modifiers representing the rain of fannels, while bright, blue legends and several heroic novelties add welcome contrast. Theyre sculpted. In Drops, Signature MT3 profile, which means the keys, are scooped and they feature Doubleshot ABS, construction. And the whole set includes 160 keycaps, including a fanon pad and extra modifiers for different layouts.. So why wait Turn your battle station into a battlefield and order your Infinity Work? Keycaps today, at the link in the video description., If you still want to know more check out our playlist Buying Game Laptops in 2021 is Way More Complicated Than it Should Be. Its so stupid..