Laptop Buying Guide: Choose The Best Laptop For Your Needs
Tips and tricks
08 March 2024


Laptop Buying Guide: Choose The Best Laptop For Your Needs

A bewildering array of laptops is available in today’s market. Here’s how to choose the right one for you. 

Let’s get to it immediately: The key decision when purchasing a laptop is to ask yourself its main purpose: Is it for work, gaming, content creation, or general productivity? 

What to look out for, by profession 

Data capturer: You’ll need a full-sized keyboard that’s smooth and quiet. Options are the Lenovo ThinkPad or HP Spectre. 

Creative: Look for a high-resolution display, storage and RAM, which also works for music producers, podcasters, or video editors. These types of laptops are built to be resource-intensive. A great option is an Asus Zenbook Pro. 

Writer: You’ll want reliability, with a long battery life so you can work from anywhere. If you have access to data or Wi-Fi, you don’t have to worry about storage; just save to the cloud. Option: A Lenovo Ideapad or even Surface Laptop Go. 

Accountant: Choose something reliable. But more importantly, it should be a Windows machine, since most accounting software is made for Windows. Look for options from HP, Lenovo, Asus, or Microsoft Surface. 

Student or on a budget: If you have daily Wi-Fi access, consider a cost-effective HP or Mecer computer. These have decent workable specs for a student's requirement at minimal cost.

What to consider, by specs 

Once you have an idea of what models suit your purpose, you can further narrow it down by checking minimum specs. Pay attention to things like: 

Performance: Look at processor, efficiency, and benchmark scores. Gaming laptops are powerful. 

Form factor and portability: If you’re working from different locations, travel, or do presentations, you may want something light with a 13-inch screen.  

Display: For graphics-intensive work, a high-resolution display is important. Check for screens that offer 2K or 4K support. IPS panels are better for colour reproduction and have wider viewing angles. 

Graphics: Integrated graphics are better for general use, while more intensive tasks like gaming, video editing or graphic design will require a dedicated GPU.  

Connectivity: Don’t underestimate connectivity options and ports. Check Wi-Fi speeds, Bluetooth versions, HDMI and USB-C and A ports, and consider what accessories you need. Or you could get a dongle. 

Durability: If you’re going to be mobile, work outdoors or travel to extreme temperatures, consider durability and spill-proof keyboards. 

Security: If you work in an environment with sensitive data, pay attention to security features like integrated biometrics, facial recognition, or a privacy webcam with built-in shutter. 

Price: Start with a budget. To get the best value for money, factor in any warranties, guarantees, repair options and after-sales support. 

To learn more about the laptop you’re considering, view as many online reviews as possible and watch instructional videos. If you're looking for a good deal on a laptop, check out the Vodacom Shop.