Looking for a gaming laptop and are wondering whether the 17 inch one if a good bet? You couldn’t be more right. While at one time these laptops weren’t meant to be suitable for gaming, only because, at 17 inches, it would have been bulky, things are a lot different today.
Even these massive machines can weigh less than a couple of kilos, with all the modern advancement in the gaming and tech world.
What Makes Choosing 17 Inch Laptops a Good Bet?
17” Laptops are quite popular now, as compared to a decade ago. They used to be somewhat of a status symbol at the time. However, they are much more useful than they were before.
What gives them the added advantage?
Firstly, the technology has advanced enough to cram an incredible amount of processing power in a very compact space.
Secondly, this rapid advance in technological prowess has made it possible to do a lot of tasks on a 17” laptop, which was but a privilege amongst PC users.
But how do you decide which one to buy? There are some tips which will help you make the right choice. Read on…
Know the Purpose
Agent Smith was befuddled about Neo having no purpose for existence in the Matrix. But you are the human being, are you not? Your mission could be as simple as the desire to possess a magnificent piece of technology.
However, you need to decide what you’d be doing with the laptop once you blow all that money on it; besides keeping it on ‘top’ of your ‘lap’ all the time.
You could be an executive who needs to make presentations. You could be a graphics and special effects professional who needs to edit and render images and videos all the time. Or you could be a gamer who needs a powerful machine to play the latest games with Ultra settings.
It matters because there are different configurations of laptops which are designed for different purposes and have a significant impact on the budget.
What am I looking for in a Laptop?
You need to choose a brand before you do anything. There are laptops with Windows OS, there are Chromebooks by Google, and then there the Macs from Apple Computers. Each one presents a different operating system and equally different functionalities.
After you take a look at the functionality offered, you should be looking for the configuration. More specifically, the type and frequency of the processor and the graphics card, the amount of RAM or random access memory, and storage capacity as well as the model. Additionally, you should see if the OS has been preinstalled as well and the number of input and output ports available.
Confused? We’ll take it slow…
Processors differ in computational capacities and operating frequencies. But it depends a lot on the kind and amount of work or games you’d be handling, so higher is always better. That includes animation effects in PowerPoint, or the ragdoll physics in your games, in case you were wondering.
An Intel Core i5 or an AMD A-10 Quad core is a good starting point for the budget conscious. The elite can opt for the latest Intel i7 or AMD Ryzen powered laptops.
Random Access Memory
This is your temporary storage. Again, higher and faster is always better. DDR4 is the norm, and 16 GB should be your starting point to do anything worthwhile.
Here is the thing – if you’re happy playing games of the yesteryear- like being happy playing the Far Cry 3 than the Far Cry 5, you could do with as less as 8 GB of RAM too. But if you want to use the machine for years, and play the modern games on it as a professional gamer, you know that you need more memory.
If you don’t play games, a laptop with Intel HD graphics should suffice. It will curb that budget for you. But if you are a serious gamer or a graphics professional, the minimum you should opt for is Nvidia 1050 or AMD RX 460. From there on, you have a range of options according to your budget.
Most laptops come with a hybrid drive or a combination of an SSD and HDD. The optimum configuration to look for is a 256 GB SSD for your OS to be fast and 1TB HDD for your movies, apps and games.
Laptops, by themselves, are fully functional pieces of hardware. But sometimes you need to attach a host of external appliances like a mouse or a headset. This requires the laptop to have adequate USB ports, audio jacks, LAN slot, a DVD drive, and an HDMI port at the very least.
Wonder why we did not mention that before? This is because of the more powerful the hardware, the more drain on your laptop’s battery life. So it’s an either, or situation.
There are a lot of laptops out there in the 17” range with similar configurations, but wildly different prices. But before you go for cheaper options, you need to check for their reputation in customer support, RMA / refund process and warranties. You don’t want to get stuck with a low quality broken piece of crap just because you were budget conscious or there happened to be a sale.
Additional things to consider
A couple of other things like the speaker configuration, Wifi and Bluetooth capabilities, backup software and accessories can also be considered depending on the purpose. But most laptops have these covered in some way or the other, so these can be considered secondary. Except for Audio which should be important for gamers.
Getting their right deal
Research properly before making the final choice and look out for offers when buying one. You’re gaming experience if going to get a whole lot better with one and you could even complement it with the right accessories like a gaming headset to get the best results.