Your computer in college is almost certainly going to be the most precious and important thing that you own, and you definitely want it to last you all four years. That’s why you want to make sure that you get the most bang for your buck. This means you have to know how to find something that will be fast and reliable. Your aunt might be offering you her old company laptop that she originally got in 2005, but a free laptop isn’t always the safest choice. You want to make sure you have a machine that you can rely on day in and day out. Here is how to choose a new computer for college.
Know Your Ports and Drives
It’s important that you know what all the ports and drives are used for on your computer. These days you mostly see USB ports, lightning ports and sometimes you still see disk drives. You might also see DSL ports, but that all depends on what you need to be connecting to your computer. You can cut down a lot on the weight of your computer by getting something that doesn’t have a disk drive, but if you’re not planning on purchasing a TV, then you might want something you can watch all of your DVDs or Blue Rays on.
Consider How Often It Will Be Traveling
If you need a laptop that you can carry with you every day, then you probably want something that is pretty lightweight and small in dimensions. A computer might seem light enough when you carry it around the house, but when you start carrying it in a bag all day from class to class, it could really start to weigh on you. If you’re earning USC’s GIS degree online, then you might want something with a big screen to view your maps. In this case you can handle something large, because you won’t have a campus to carry it around. However, if you’re going to Northwestern University, you will need something small and portable.
What do You Want it to Do?
There are a lot of different types of laptops out there and each one of them is designed for a different type of work. If you plan to be editing photos or film, then you might want to pick a computer with a large screen and a lot of storage. Then again, if you just need to get on the web for research, write papers and graph data, then you might not even need a full laptop. You could probably get away with attaching a keyboard to a tablet or getting something more like a Chromebook.
Think About the Cost of Accessories
When you are budgeting for a computer, you also want to think about the cost of accessories. It’s always a good idea to purchase a laptop case – something with a hard shell that will stay on at all times. However, you also want to think about a laptop bag, keyboard protector, and things like speakers, a mouse, etc.
Find Something with a Warranty
If possible, you want to purchase a warranty with your computer. This will ensure that you can get professional help for any problems your computer may be experiencing. It’s essential that you can keep it up to date and functioning properly for as long as possible.