Laptop Prerequisites: Stuff You Need, Want & Love

Laptop Prerequisites: Stuff You Need, Want & Love

Range Govindan
Sep 20, 2010

I'm currently gearing myself up for my next laptop. It's been a while and I definitely need to upgrade. I've managed to use my desktop and older laptop for as long as possible. Now that I'm checking out the different stuff that's available, what is the stuff that you need, want, and love about your laptop?

1. Good Battery Life
The most that I've gotten out of a fresh, new battery, is about 3-4 hours on my 13.3-inch Asus. Two years later, and it's down to an hour, or something like that. One of the reasons why I like the MacBook Pro 17 is that the claimed battery charge is 8-9 hours. I've seen reports that getting about 5-6 hours is possible.

2. Integrated & Unobtrusive Webcam
In order to chat, Skype, and communicate properly, you need a small webcam. Most laptops come with one nowadays, but the ones that look the best are the ones in which the camera is almost invisible.

3. Nice, Big, Screen
I've worked on and off on a 13.3-inch screen, but even if the resolution was good, in my next laptop, I'd like something a lot bigger. 17-inches is not absolutely necessary, but 15" would be the minimum.

4. Good Keyboard
Some laptops are just poorly designed and put together. This means that some keyboards just don't work for me. I type a lot, just like a lot of people, and the keyboard needs to work well and be easy to use. From past experience, I'd want my next laptop to have a backlit keyboard, so that I can find the keys easily in the dark.

5. Not Too Heavy
While I'd like a big screen, I wouldn't like the laptop to be too heavy. A heavier laptop gets really hard to lug around everywhere, even if you've got a bag. I've learned that carrying a laptop and a DSLR everywhere is not always optimal, especially if you've got a few books in there as well. When I bought my first laptop in 2004, I made the mistake of getting a 17-inch Compaq. It's a heavy monster, and I've rarely taken it around.

[images by Rocket Silence, Cretouch, Doogleage]

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