Buying a laptop? Don’t listen to laptop makers, read this

Laptop buying guide

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Buying a laptop is trickier in today’s market than it should be. Reason? There are hundreds of laptops in the market. And there are tens of issues that make it all very confusing for readers. The worst offenders in this whole saga are the laptop makers, who use jargons and confusing language to describe their products. At the same time, they hide the information that is crucial — such as the screen panel or the actual capacity of battery.

This makes it difficult for consumers to choose the right laptop. We have a laptop buying guide ready for you today, but here we want to highlight some of the jargons, the nonsense that laptop makers say while talking about their products, and why you should ignore it.

Ignore features like True Color, HD display, HD BrightView

These are the terms that laptop makers use to describe the screen in their machines. But they mean nothing. You should always remember that old saying about a duck while buying a laptop. So “if it looks like a duck, swims like a duck, and quacks like a duck, it is a duck” even though laptop makers may like to call it an eagle.

Instead, you should focus on the quality of a laptop screen and that is not determined by tags like BrightView attached to them. It is determined by the resolution and quality of panel. Always remember that a laptop with an IPS panel screen is always going to be better than the TN panel screens.

Ignore terms like Dolby Advanced Audio, DTS Studio Sound, Waves MaxxAudi

All mainstream laptops, more or less sound same, nowadays  because they all use the same $1 or $2 speakers bought from China.

Instead, ask the laptop seller for actual specifications of the speaker (output) and seek details of the sound card or sound chip in the computer. Better still, plug in a pen drive with your music in it and play your favourite songs. Then decide.

Ignore TrueVision HD Webcam etc

Almost all laptops have 720p (VGA) web cams, irrespective of however laptop makers describe it. Most likely your Rs 10,000 phone has a better front camera.

Ignore 4GB graphics RAM etc

If you are buying a laptop on which you can play the latest games, keep in mind that graphics RAM is not as important as it has been made out to. It’s actual very cheap to heap more and more graphics RAM into the laptop.

Instead, find out if the graphics RAM is GDDR3, GDDR4 or GDDR5. Most likely this RAM is going to be the DDR3 — without the G that denotes graphics —¬† and that is not as good as the proper graphics RAM like the GDDR5. Also, it is important that you go for the fastest graphics card available, even if the dedicated graphics RAM is less in it.

Ignore the battery life figures

All laptop makers, except Apple, report inflated battery life figures. Totally ignore them. Assume that you won’t know the battery life of a laptop unless you use it.

Ignore bundled software even if it is named Super Guardian On SteroidS

All those free virus scanner, free utilities and other free program are actually junk preloaded into your laptop because the company making this laptop has a deal in place with the developers of that particular software. In most cases, this bundled software is more problem than a solution. Recently for example, Lenovo virtually begged consumers to uninstall a program that it had earlier preloaded after it was discovered that the program made the computer vulnerable to data breach.