Top & Best Notebook: How to choose the best laptop in 2020?
Today we are going to talk about the notebook, a device as complete as the desktop (desktop computer) but, because it is portable, it can be carried wherever you want.
With the evolution of technology, notebooks became smaller, thinner, lighter, and even more powerful, especially when we analyze technical devices such as processor, memory, video card, operating system, image resolution, among others.
If you are thinking about buying a notebook, but are in doubt about which model is ideal to meet your needs and preferences, you have come to the right place. In this article, we will tell you which are the best models, how much they cost, where you can buy them, and what you should analyze at the time of purchase.
First, the most important
- There are several types of notebooks, from the standard model to the most modern ones such as the gamer notebook, two in one (works as a notebook and tablet), Ultrabook, and the mini-notebook (also called netbook).
- The best way to get your notebook right is to reflect on the uses you will make of the machine. The screen size, weight, and thickness must be taken into account if you are going to use the device outside the home, for example.
- Opt for a notebook of some brands already established in the market such as Dell, Samsung, Lenovo, Asus, Acer, and LG. All have excellent quality models, different price ranges, and offer a warranty of up to one year.
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The best notebook models: Our favorites
Many factors influence the choice of a notebook, such as a processor, video card, RAM, storage, connections, screen size, image resolution, and device design.
In addition, there are numerous models available for purchase and several brands vie for consumer preference. For this reason, we have selected some of the best notebooks for sale, both to help those who do not know much about computers and for those who want a purchase suggestion.
- The model with the best technical specifications
- The cool design option
- The best cost-benefit
- The notebook with an ultra-thin design
- The 2 in 1 option
Having a notebook can be very useful, after all, with it you can study, work, access social networks, watch movies and series, play games and much more. The best thing is that this device is portable, and can be taken anywhere in the bag or backpack.
In this Buying Guide we will tell you a little more about this device and give you some tips on how to choose the ideal model of notebook according to your profile, preferences, use of the equipment and budget available for purchase.
What is a notebook and where to use it?
The notebook is a portable computer with the same functions as a desktop (desktop computer). The advantage is that you can use it anywhere, inside and outside the home.
To choose the ideal model, you need to identify what your goals are with the device. It can be to go to college or post-graduate in EAD system, work in an office or at home in a home office regime or even to have fun (play, watch movies and series, etc.).
Notebooks have configurations that make them more or less powerful such as processor, video card, memory capacity (RAM and internal HD), image resolution, operating system, among others.
If you are going to use it for simpler tasks like surfing the internet, using social networks or checking e-mails, a notebook with a less powerful processor like Celeron, Pentium and Intel Core i3 are recommended.
n these notebooks you can install some more basic text editing programs, to set up tables, slide shows and read PDF files.
If you are going to use the notebook to work, the ideal is to choose a more powerful model, but it also depends on the activity you perform. If you want to work with simpler tools, an intermediate notebook already meets your needs.
If you are going to edit photos, videos or audios, or develop software, projects or games, you will need a better notebook, with more powerful processors like Intel Core i5, i7 or i9.
Now, if you are a gamer, know that some brands have their own lines of notebooks for this purpose, the main differences of these models are: fast processor, very high quality video card, sound system approved by Dolby, bigger screen, Full resolution HD or Ultra HD and modern design.
Check now what are the advantages and disadvantages of a notebook:
Notebook, Ultrabook, Netbook or 2 in 1: Which to choose?
In addition to conventional notebooks, there are some other similar models like the Ultrabook, netbook and the 2 in 1 notebook (also called a convertible). We’ll talk a little more about each of them in this section.
The ultrabook is a hybrid device, as it mixes characteristics of notebooks and tablets. As features of the tablet it has lightness, slimmer design, easy to turn on and off and high speed.
Despite the power, most Ultrabooks are not compatible with better-performing video cards like those used in notebooks and desktops.
Another feature similar to tablets is the ease of carrying the ultrabook in bags and backpacks, because of its size and weight. The battery of the ultrabook has an excellent durability as well as those of notebooks.
2 in 1 notebook
Also known as a convertible notebook, the 2 in 1 notebook is called that because it can be used in the conventional way, as a notebook, or as a tablet.
It is very easy to make this transition, as the screen of this notebook model has 360º mobility. Another advantage is that the screen of the 2 in 1 notebook is touchscreen, so it is much more practical to handle it (you can use the touchscreen command in both formats).
This type of notebook is usually a little more expensive than ordinary models (even those that have the same technical specifications), so consider whether you will use the tablet function. Otherwise, the extra expense is not justified.
This model is also indicated if you want a device to carry everywhere but need a machine with an above average performance to work or study.
See a convertible notebook in action:
Although not very popular, the netbook also has its merits. This computer model is recommended for those who need portability above all, since netbooks are as small, light and easy to carry as tablets.
The screen of a netbook is between 5 and 11 inches (tablets have a 5-inch screen). This model is ideal for people who will perform simple tasks like surfing the internet, reading and writing e-mails, editing text files, among other functions.
The Netbook’s hard disk is of the SSD type, which makes the computer fast and reduces the chances of it failing due to swings and vibrations (as in computers that use HD technology, such as the notebook).
f you are in doubt about which device is best for you, check the table below, comparing the indications for use, advantages and disadvantages of the different versions of notebooks.
How much does a notebook cost?
Several factors influence the price of a notebook such as device type, technical devices and design. Conventional models start at R $ 900 and there are several models above R $ 1,000.
The intermediate models cost between R $ 2,000 and R $ 3,000 and the more powerful versions cost from R $ 4,000 and can exceed R $ 7,000.
Where to buy a notebook?
You can find notebooks in electronics stores like Fast Shop that sell electronics.
If you prefer, you can buy over the internet, on the brands’ own websites or in e-commerces such as Amazon.
Purchasing criteria: Factors to compare different notebook models
A number of factors must be taken into account when buying a notebook, but this can make life very difficult for a person who is a computer expert.
In short, you should know that the processor is the brain of the machine, RAM is the system’s working space, storage is where files are saved and the graphics card is responsible for everything that appears on the screen. When buying a notebook, check out the following features:
- RAM memory
- Video card
- Image quality
- Screen size
- Operational system
- Extra features
But rest assured, as we will explain each of these items, which should answer any questions you may have. This way you will be right in choosing your new notebook.
The processor is responsible for analyzing almost all the information that the computer receives and emits, that is why it is considered the “brain” of the machine and is the most important characteristic to be taken into account when purchasing.
The processor is formed by cores, the greater the quantity, the more heavy software the notebook will be able to run without crashing. For those who work with simpler programs and use the Internet a lot, a computer with two cores will be enough.
For users of simpler editing programs, there is a version with four cores that is very good. For gamers and people who work with very heavy editing software, a computer with eight cores or more is recommended.
The cache memory writes which programs you use often to help the processor to perform these actions more quickly. The larger the cache memory, the less battery drain.
You can find models with 4 MB on very basic computers, 6 or 8 MB on models considered intermediate and 10 MB or more on most modern devices.
The frequency, on the other hand, refers to the speed with which the computer performs the functions. It is measured in GHz and there are versions with 2, 3 or 4 GHz. Notebooks with 2 GHz are very basic, those of 3 GHz are intermediate and those of 4 GHz are the most advanced models.
The more powerful the processor components are, the faster the computer works.
When choosing a computer, you must take into consideration what use you will make of the machine, as it is not necessary to buy a model with a very powerful processor if you are going to use the PC just to write texts and watch videos.
However, if you use photo, video and / or sound editing software, it is essential that your machine has a processor that is capable of handling all the data it receives without crashing.
There are four types of processors very popular lately, the Core i3, i5, i7 and i9. The first two are indicated for ordinary and intermediate users. The i7 and i9 processors are recommended for those who use editing software and gamers.
Each type of processor has its versions (also called generations) that get better with each release. The most current generation of Intel processors (Core i3, i5, i7 and i9) is the eighth.
The processor is the most expensive part of the computer. If you don’t need a high-speed device, you can save money by buying a notebook with a more basic processor.
RAM is the memory used when you are browsing the internet and using computer applications. It is she who dictates if the device will be slow or if it will be fast.
In general, the most modern models have RAM type memories between 4, 8 and 16 GB. Computers with less than 4GB RAM are slow when you access multiple applications or windows at once.
The quality of the video card is directly linked to the speed of the machine and, again, the choice is tied to the use you will make of the notebook.
For those who use heavy programs like Autocad (software to develop architectural and engineering projects) or edit long, high-definition videos using Premier, it is better to choose a computer with NVidia GeForce or AMD Radeon graphics cards.
If using the device is a little simpler, you can choose a notebook with a built-in graphics card (which comes with the computer’s motherboard). This card satisfies simpler programs and actions satisfactorily.
Here’s what the notebook’s video card is for and how it works:
The storage of files and software is done on the computer’s hard disk, also called internal hard drive. Hard drive capacity ranges from 250 GB to 500 GB on the simplest models.
More sophisticated computers have a storage capacity of 1 to 2 TB (terabytes). It is also common for these models to come with an SSD card, a fast and resistant internal storage unit.
The speed with which each HD opens files also changes from one model to the next. In the most basic notebooks or even in the intermediates this speed is 5,400 RPM (revolutions per minute) and in the most powerful devices this speed reaches 7,200 RPM.
The SSD card comes with a capacity of 128 or 256 GB, and you can buy such a device at any reliable electronics store. If you prefer you can also opt for external flash drives or hard drives.
The SSD memory unit is faster than the regular HD, so if you are looking for speed, it is better to choose an SSD. You can also choose a hybrid storage model that uses SSD and HD at the same time).
If you prefer, you can also save your files “in the cloud”, on free services (up to a certain memory limit) such as Google Drive, OneDrive, Dropbox and iCloud.
Modern notebooks have an LED screen with excellent image quality. The resolution varies between HD, Full HD (the most common type) and there are devices with Ultra HD (4K) technology.
HD resolution models are simpler and both brightness and sharpness are slightly lower. This is due to the screen resolution that is 1280 x 720 and the number of pixels that is one million.
The models with Full HD resolution have images rich in details, with a lot of brightness, sharpness and vibrant colors. The resolution of the Full HD screen is 1920 x 1080 and it has 2 million pixels, ideal for those who will watch movies using the computer.
If you are a gamer or work with graphic design, the best option is to choose a notebook with Ultra HD / 4K image quality, it is four times bigger (and better) than the previous type. The 4K screen has dimensions of 3840 x 2160 and has more than 8 million pixels.
Notebooks can have 11 to 15 inch screens. The 11 to 13 inch models are recommended for those who use the computer outside the home, as it is smaller and lighter, fitting in backpacks, briefcases and bags.
Devices with larger 14 or 15 inch screens are great for watching movies and playing games. This pattern is more suitable for keeping at home, but that does not mean that it cannot be used on the street.
There are backpacks adapted to carry notebooks, they are a little bigger, with reinforced and water resistant material and stitching.
The operating system is responsible for making the interface between the structures, files, programs, memory and devices of the notebook. It is the “intelligence” of the machine.
The Windows operating system is already in its tenth version and has several interesting features such as security systems by digital or facial recognition, exclusive Microsoft Edge browser and personal assistant (Cortana).
With so many devices with a Bluetooth connection, some people are no longer concerned with other connections like the USB port. But it is worth buying a computer with several inputs of this type.
USB connections can be your computer’s gateway to important devices such as a printer, flash drives, external hard drives, mouse, keyboard and smartphones.
Although most modern devices have a wireless connection, you can have a device without it.
It is also worth researching whether the notebook you are considering purchasing already has inputs that support USB 3.0 technology. It is 10 times faster than the USB 2.0 ports when exchanging files between the pen drive and the computer (and vice versa).
But it’s not just the USB port we’re talking about. If you don’t already have a Smart TV (or go somewhere that doesn’t), it is interesting to have an HDMI input to connect your notebook to your television and watch movies online.
Also look for support for SD cards (and micro SD adapters), in case you want to download photos from your smartphone or camera directly on the notebook screen.
The battery of a notebook is divided into cells, the greater the number of cells, the more the computer can save energy and consequently the battery will last longer.
A computer with a powerful battery is essential, especially for those who use the notebook outside the home and may not find an outlet to recharge the device so easily.
The four-cell battery lasts an average of three to five hours. Models with six cells can last up to 10 hours and computers with nine cells exceed 15 hours of operation without recharging.
Myths and truths about the battery:
- It is a myth that it is necessary to let the notebook battery drain completely before recharging it. On the contrary, this attitude can shorten the life of the equipment.
- It is also a myth that turning off the computer directly on the button damages the machine. However, you should only do this when your computer crashes, never as a routine procedure.
- Battery life is not measured for years but for cycles. After completing the cycle limit, the battery retains up to 80% of its capacity.
- It is true that intense heat and sun exposure impair the battery’s holding capacity.
- It is also true that using a charger that is not original to the device can damage the notebook battery.
Some extra features should also be taken into account when purchasing, mainly because they can optimize your navigation and usability.
If you usually do video conferences using Skype, it is worth buying a notebook with an integrated webcam and microphone (which also serves to use the personal assistant).
The touchpad (replacement for the mouse in notebooks) must also be easy to handle. Another interesting feature is the LED backlight that makes it possible to use the equipment even in the dark.
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