So you’re looking to purchase a new computer? Well, this computer buying guide is just for you!
Build one or buy pre-built? Get an i3 or an i5? Let us make the choice easy for you.
Let’s get started!
Which CPU is Right for Me?
Before you buy a computer, the first thing you need to ask yourself is what do you need it for?
Is it going to be a gaming laptop? Or are you going to use it for serious video editing?
Is it more a general use computer for school, work, etc.?
Once you have defined the purpose, you can pick the right CPU for your needs.
The CPU is the brain of your computer. You may have heard terms such as i5, i7, or i9. Well, these are various CPU options. The “i” refers to Intel, however, if you are looking at an AMD CPU, the numbers will still correspond to the Intel CPU’s.
Even for general purpose, i3 CPU’s are rarely sufficient. If you can, for general purpose, purchase an i5 or AMD Ryzen 5 at least.
Now, if you are doing serious gaming or work, such as editing, an i7, at minimum is necessary.
The generation does matter. An 8th generation i7 may handle editing 4k video well while a 5
The short of it is, buy the most recent gen of whichever chipset you choose. Avoid getting an i3 of any generation.
Ram, Ram, Ram..
This section will be short and sweet. Ram is an important but simple consideration. Ram is computer memory that can be accessed at any one time or random access memory.
When it comes to ram, the more, the better! At a bare minimum, get a computer with 8gb of ram. This is true for even a general purpose computer.
Our video editing laptop is equipped with 16 gb of ram and it desperately needs another 16.
For gaming, we recommend 16-32 gb of ram. For basic photo and video editing, 16 should be sufficient. Just make sure you purchase a computer that isn’t maxed out on ram and you can always upgrade later.
Note: If one computer is offering ‘better’ ram for a higher price point, get the cheaper ram.
SSD or HDD?
The next consideration in our computer buying guide is storage. This is a no brainer. Always get an SSD! Less moving parts equal less chance of breaking. Less breaking means more happiness and peace of mind.
The day of HDD is over. If you need to save money in this department, get a lower
Not to mention a SSD is just faster.
Which Graphics Card (GPU) is right for me?
Another simple consideration unless you are a gamer. Get the best you can afford.
For any general purpose use, this is where you can save a few bucks. However, if you are a gamer, spare no expense here!
Also of note, Adobe programs like premiere pro are not compatible with Intel GPU’s. If you plan on editing photos or videos with Adobe apps, opt for a computer with an AMD or Nvidia graphics card.
Now that we’ve covered the core considerations, let’s look at some other options.
A disc drive may be nice but should not be a deal breaker unless you NEED one for some reason. Most new computers are not equipped with CD drives.
This is definitely just a user preference. If you don’t know what you need in this category, then it probably doesn’t matter. In general, stay away from Windows 10 S.
Our video editing laptop is equipped with a 4k monitor. If you are a gamer, edit 4k video, or even just enjoy 4k movies a 4k monitor is necessary. However, you can always purchase a stand alone 4k monitor later, if you need to save money up front.
We highly recommend buying a computer that allows for upgrades. A computer that allows you to upgrade ram or change GPU would help in future proofing your computer.
Wrapping Up Our Computer Buying Guide
If you follow this guide, and buy a computer you think will suit you not just for now, but also a year from now, you can’t go wrong.
Hope we helped you with your computer purchase with our computer buying guide for 2019.
Let us know if we forgot something. If you have any comments or questions, please comment below!