How to buy laptop in 2017?
Whether you are engineer or a designer everybody needs a laptop, a laptop that daily meets every requirements of your computing needs for your college or for your office. If you are in search of good laptop for 2017 then this is the post you must read it will help you find a laptop with your personal demand.
(Note: This article will solely focus on Intel processors and NVIDIA graphics cards)
1) Identify Use-case scenarios
The very first step is to identify what things you would like to do with your rig. This will help narrow the search for the best laptop suitable for your needs.
Should I buy i3,i5 or an i7?
This is the first question which comes to our mind when we search for a laptop. But this debate is pretty simple to figure it out.
First thing not all i7s are same. If you see a laptop with an i7 not necessarily it means that other laptop having an i7 will have same performance. It totally depends on model of the processor. For eg. A i7 6700hq is faster than i7 6500U.
Not all i7s are powerful than i5s and i3s. For eg. a i7 6500U is slower than a 6300hq which is an i5.
This was all about processor naming conventions, but what about clock speed?
It depends on your use-case scenario, if you are a movie addict and use your laptop for spreadsheets and powerpoint presentations then a U series processor will also work, although they have lower clock speeds but they are enough for handling those tasks. Eg. 6500U or 7500U. This U-series processors come in ultrabooks and light-weight laptops which are great for people like these.
If you are a gamer then you need a processor such that it will not bottleneck graphics card.
If you are an computer or any other engineer who need to work with CAD softwares then an i7 6700hq (newer 7700hq) or i5 6300hq (newer 7300hq) paired with a decent graphics card will complete your requirement. You may think how can a computer engineer ever need a graphics card, but trust me a graphics does more than what you think.
For professional users who require advance workstation grade performance then they should go with an overclockable, unlocked i7 6820hk having a dynamic turbo boost of 4.0 GHz. Or even the latest kaby lake based 7820hk.
3) Graphics Card
Lets start with basics, what is a GPU anyway? A GPU is another processor in your pc which takes graphical load from processor. It is a common misconception that a graphics card is used for running games on your pc. This statement is half true. From casual movie watching to heavy stress a GPU is must have! First thing is that a game wont require dedicated graphics for just running. It will work on integrated graphics card also but your experience might not be immersive. And the second thing is that a graphics card is not just for a gamer.
What is the nomenclature in laptop graphics card industry?
Before the release of NVIDIA Pascal series the laptop graphics card used to have M in it. This M denotes Mobile. For eg. ASUS ROG G752VY has a NVIDIA GeForce GTX 970M or a 980M.
Now if you are familiar with desktop graphics card then you might know that 970M is not equal to 970. Although the numbers look same but there is a lot of difference in performance of both the cards. This was the case before PASCAL architecture. After release of PASCAL architecture the laptop graphics card have almost same perfomance as that of desktop, that why there is no M in the nomenclature of those laptops have 10-series graphics cards or PASCAL graphics cards.
4)RAM and Storage
A SSD is non-volatile storage option which is faster then conventional rotating disk HDD.
SSD is must in 2017 for anyone because of the faster OS and App loading times you can get because of it.
A gamer should have a minimum of 8 GB of RAM to run modern games and should have at least 128 GB SSD paired with 1 TB of hard drive for storing all games in it.
A person working with CAD and video editing should have a bigger SSD for fast loading of applications and operating system and also should have a HDD for archival storage and also they must have a minimum of 16 GB recommended RAM for overall performance gains.
The thing that is most important besides processor is a display, because it is what you are going to look at, everyday when you turn on your laptop. Now according to use-cases, A gamer should have a display with high refresh rate, lower screen response time and should also have a good resolution panel and a person which is going to do CAD work needs to have display with good resolution and good colours. And a person who is going to do design work and video editing need to have a display with high resolution like 4k or 2k, and should also cover wide band of colour space in sRGB.