Laptop buying guide



Everything you need to find a laptop you’ll love.

In this guide we cover the most important things to consider before buying a new laptop, along with all the information you need to make sure your new laptop does exactly what you want it to do.

If you still have questions or want to see the latest features and tech for yourself, why not call into your nearest store and speak to one of our colleagues, who will happily help you find the perfect laptop.

 

Contents
Find the right laptop for you

The operating system of your PC determines the way it looks, how it works, and the type of software you can use. There are three main operating systems, each with their own benefits and drawbacks.

Light use
Everyday
All rounder
High performance

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Operating system

The operating system of your PC determines the way it looks, how it works, and the type of software you can use. There are three main operating systems, each with their own benefits and drawbacks.

Windows10
OS X
Chrome OS

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Types of laptops

There are different types of laptops to suit different people and uses - have a look at the varieties below to see which one suits you best.

Windows laptops
2 in 1
MacBooks
Gaming laptops
Chromebooks

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Processor

The processor is the brain of your laptop. Whenever you move the mouse, open a program, or load a file the processor makes it happen. On our product pages we give you all the information necessary to decide whether a processor is powerful enough for your needs.

How many cores do I need?
What is the clock speed?
What is the memory cache?

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Memory (RAM)

Random-access memory (RAM) is an important spec to consider if you're looking for a high-performance laptop. Memory (RAM) has nothing to do with the amount of documents you can save - this is what the storage is for.

What does memory (RAM) do?
How much memory (RAM) do I need?

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Storage

Storage refers to the amount of space your laptop has for software, documents and everything else you save. There are four main types of storage available in laptops; HDD, SSD, SSHD and eMMC drives.

What is a hard disc drive (HDD)?
What is a solid-state drive (SSD)?
What is a solid-state hybrid drive (SSHD)?
What is an embedded multi-media card (eMMC)?

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Screens

Screen size is a great way to quickly narrow down the huge amount of choice you have when looking for a new laptop. Until recently the most common laptop size was 15.6” - now smaller laptops are increasing in popularity as advances in technology mean you don’t need to sacrifice performance for a more portable device.

Which screen size will work for me?
What are the benefits of Full HD screens?
What are the benefits of 4K screens?
What are the benefits of 4K screens?

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Graphics

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Connectivity

Connectivity refers to the way your laptop connects to the things around it, including the internet, external storage, screens and other devices. There are a number of key features to look out for.

What is AC WiFi?
What is HDMI??
What is a USB port?
What is VGA?

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Extra features

Along with the main components and features, there are a few other things you might want to consider before choosing your laptop.

Do I need a laptop with a long batter life?
Do I need a lightweight laptop?
Is design important?
Do I need dedicated graphics?
Is my laptop optimised for Windows 10?
How do I get improved audio?

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You might also need...

Once you’ve decided on the main specs, there are a few other things you might want to think about.

Software
Office software
Creative & educational software
Can I save by buying all the software I need when I buy my PC?
How can I get my software?
Extra storage
Printers
Cases
Networking
Why should I add a Care Plan to my purchase?
How do I set up my new laptop?

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