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Laptops vs desktops

Laptops Vs Desktops

Laptops have always seemed a very desirable item to have. Not only do you look pretty good but you have the ability to take your computing anywhere. Up until recently thought I would have always advised against these.

Why would I do this? Well there were several factors – some are still applicable today. Laptops used to be very expensive. You would get much more power and reliability for spending half the money on a desktop PC than you would paying double the money for a laptop. What’s more, the laptops would often slow down dramatically when they heated up, not good considering that Laptops, with their minimal air circulation, heat up extremely quickly.

Another thing to consider is what happens if these laptops go wrong? On a desktop PC if your RAM fails you go and buy RAM from any manufacturer at the going rate and hey presto – you are back. Same applies to the motherboard and many other parts. All parts in a desktop PC can be chopped and changed, relatively easily and at a reasonable price.

Now if your RAM or motherboard fails in your laptop what happens here? Well basically the manufacturers have you by the short and curlies. You can generally only buy the parts from the manufacturer directly, they can charge what they like as there is minimal if not zero competition. Not only can they charge what they like, you can often wait weeks to get the necessary part.

People also have this idea with laptops that they can take their computers anywhere and play their games or surf the Internet with total freedom – This is partly true of a new laptop with a new battery. After what I think is quite a short time your battery will no longer hold its charge for the 2 hours it did when it was new. It will now only last half an hour – and of course, if you are doing something demanding, like game play or similar, you can expect this time to reduce by at least half again.

So your portable computer now has to be plugged into the mains – therefore not so portable after all!

So far I have put the laptop down, it’s expensive if it work, it’s very expensive if it breaks. It’s not as potable as you think and it’s performance is not going to be as good as you hoped.

This is all changing now as laptops have plummeted in cost. Whereas you used to have to pay a minimum of ?600 ($1200 approx.) for a low spec machine, you can now pick up a decent make, decent specced machine for about half that price. Now if you weigh up the fact that a desktop PC is going to cost you around ?200 for anything half usable, then you need a monitor – the laptop is already winning on cost. Also the technology regarding heat dissipation has improved dramatically so you can expect your laptop to stay cool for longer and perform better in the heat.

Yes the battery life has somewhat improved but still a lot of work to be done here to make them ultimately portable. However the new light compact machines can easily be transported from home, to the office, to your mates etc etc with ease and all your data comes with it.

You of course still have the issue if something goes wrong but there are now thousands of these machines being sold – this means, if you pick a decent brand, there are loads of spare parts around on Ebay or similar.

I now do all my work on a laptop. I plug in an external keyboard, as typing on a laptop keyboard is not comfortable. If I did want to play any games then I think I would still side with the desktop – but for day to day use the laptop is the winner. Easy to put away, minimal wires, minimal mess and ultimately a portable office.

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