Purchasing a laptop isnt as easy as purchasing a desktop computer.

Each feature has to trade off weight, cost, battery life, and performance. 
Thats a lot to balance, so its no surprise that so few laptops age well.

The following is a list of features and how to choose between them.

The top things to consider when buying a new laptop

Screen quality

You’ll be using your laptop for many hours every day, so you have to be sure you get a screen that is comfortable to look at. Many laptops also have touchscreens, which means they are glossy. Glossy screens lead to reflections, so consider a laptop that doesn’t have a touchscreen.
Look at the resolution - Full HD should be considered if you want plenty of space. Viewing angles are also important.

Graphics Chip

If you are playing PC games, a discrete graphics processor from AMD or Nvidia is essential. There are both high- and low-end graphics chips. Nvidia and AMD maintain a list of graphics chips from low to high end.

CPU - Processor

The "brain" of your computer, the processor has a huge influence on performance.

  • AMD A series or Intel Core i3 / i5: If youre looking for a mainstream laptop with the best combination of price and performance, get a Core i5. AMD A series CPUs are less common, but promise similar performance.
  • Intel Core i7: High-end performance for gaming rigs and workstations. Models with numbers that end in HQ or K use higher wattage and have four cores, allowing for even faster gaming and productivity.
  • AMD E Series or Intel Pentium/Celeron: Found on low-cost laptops.
  • Intel Atom:  found on low-cost laptops.


If youre buying large laptop that youll use only on a desk near an outlet, you dont have to worry about battery life. However, if you plan to use the laptop on your lap, youll want at least 6 hours of endurance, with 8+ hours being ideal. To determine a laptops expected battery life, dont take the manufacturers word for it. Read third-party reviews from authority sources.