Black Friday Laptop Deals Buying Guide
BLACK FRIDAY LAPTOP DEALS BUYING GUIDE
This is a guide on how to purchase the best Black Friday Laptop deal that best suits you. The first thing you need to figure out is what you plan on using your notebook for, and more specifically, what apps or games you want to run. You will often find that you won’t need as powerful a machine as you thought you did. If you are a student or going to college for engineering, or architecture, speak to students in older years and ask them what programs they are running on their computers. If you’re into like something like music production, try to figure out what production suite you are going to be working with. Once you figure out what apps or games you want to be running, it is a lot easier to figure out what things you need to focus on, and what features you can cut out.
Most people don’t need particularly powerful notebooks. They use them for school, and work, and media consumption like YouTube, or Netflix, and maybe some light photo editing and gaming. I would classify this as normal use. Most programmers actually fit in here as well. You can code most apps or 2D games with very light hardware. Any notebook purchased now, can play some light games using the integrated graphics. And memory, it depends on how many programs and tabs you want open at a time. Anything from two to four gigs is sufficient. You can comfortably get by with four gigs, even in Windows 10, and it is actually pretty hard to make use of 8 gigs, even in app or game development. If you are on a tight budget as a normal user, the one area I would still focus on is the drive.
PHOTO EDITERS AND DIGITAL ILLUSTRATERS
If you do some heavy photo editing, or if you do a lot of digital illustration, or you are an amateur video editor, hardware is important. The type of footage you work will affect the calibre of hardware that you need. At the most basic level, you want to pick as much RAM as you can fit into your budget. If it fits your budget, go for a quad-core. Integrated graphics chips are pretty respectable for video editing. For video or heavy photo editing on a budget, focus more on CPU cores, RAM, and an SSD if you can afford it. Don’t put too much thought into the video card. It may seem counter-intuitive to skimp out on a video card for video editing, but really, it’s not that important.
The last group of users are gamers. If you plan on playing a lot of games on your notebook then you are in this group. And depending on games you want to play, your requirements will vary, but in general, the GPU is king here. The better your GPU, the better your performance. Now the bad news is, a lot companies charge premiums for dedicated video cards. Apple comes to mind. But the good news is, you can still find some great deals on gaming notebooks. You just need to do a little digging and be patient. Now for RAM, when you’re on a budget, try not to get more than 8 gigs of RAM. Anything more than that, you are not using in most games. SSD’s are awesome for system snappiness, and load times for apps and games, but it has almost no effect on frame rates in games. If you can get yourself a better graphics card by sticking with 8 gigs of RAM and using a regular hard drive, I recommend you do it. A better graphics card is invariably going to make your games run better. And you can always upgrade the drive later down the road.
PRICING AND BRANDS
The big volume brands, once in a while, have some real sales, like 30, 40, 50% off. Figure out exactly what you want your notebook to do, determine what features you need to focus on, and what features you can get rid of, and then purchase your notebook from a big volume seller like Dell, or HP, or Lenovo, when there is a really big sale like right now!