Laptop Buyer Kit 1

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Welcome to Retrevo’s Laptop Buyer’s Kit
Part 1: Laptop Features That Matter
Here’s the first installment of the Laptop Buyer’s kit that you asked us to send you. Over the next few weeks we’ll be sending you more information to help with the entire process of researching, buying and using your new laptop. You’ll receive expert advice on what to look for, the best laptop deals at the moment, how to set up your laptop for the best performance and a list of the must-have accessories.
The Technology Lifecycle Curve
Use this handy guide to understand which features are old or new.
Choosing Your Laptop
For the Student and Traveler:
are designed to be small-screened (8-12 inches) travel companions with limited storage and power for things like word processing, web browsing, email, and light multimedia functionality.

For the Home, Business, or Average User:
Notebooks are versatile laptops with larger screens (13-18 inches), more storage space, and increased processing power for multitasking with everyday applications and casual multimedia.

For the Video & Photography Pro, Avid Gamer, or Business Owner:
Workstations can easily replace your desktop computer for HD video, music, photo editing, heavy data crunching, and intense gaming.

Buying Advice: Laptop Features That Matter
CPU (Central Processing Unit)

  • For Netbooks, the Intel Atom N Series CPU
    outperforms the rest.
  • For Notebooks, the Intel Core i3, Core i5 or the
    AMD Phenom II X3 are solid CPUs.
  • Video editors, photographers, and gaming enthusiasts
    should consider Workstations with Intel’s Core i7
    or the AMD Phenom II X4.
  • Check out our Laptop Buyer’s Kit Bonus: Inside Laptop
    CPUs (coming next) for the entire rundown on today’s CPUs.
GPU (Graphics Processing Unit)

  • GPUs are the primary reason for realistic graphics.
  • For Netbooks and the average Notebook user,
    integrated Intel HD Graphics are sufficient. The
    graphics processor is easiest on battery life and
    designed for pictures, video, and mainstream gaming.
  • More onboard graphics memory (MB) generally
    means faster performance.
  • For Workstation users who want to do graphic-intensive
    gaming, HD video editing, and high-quality photo editing,
    Nvidia or ATI discrete GPUs with 256 MB or higher are
    the best option. Top families are Nvidia GTX and GTS
    Series or ATI Mobility Radeon HD Series.

HDD (Hard Disk Drive)

  • For everyone, select the largest drive you can afford.
    A 500 GB drive for laptops is about the cap.
  • A speed rate of 5400 RPM can slow your computer’s performance. 7200 RPM is ideal.
  • SSDs (Solid State Drives) are all-around faster,
    impervious to extreme shock and all magnets, and have
    less errors –so, less data corruption. No defragging is
    necessary. However, they constitute a serious price hike.

RAM (Random Access Memory)

  • Notebooks and Netbooks do well with DDR2
    RAM. 2-4 GB is average.
  • Workstations for video editors, photographers,
    and gamers should use DDR3 RAM. 4 GB is a
    decent start.
  • Higher maximum RAM capacity lets you add more
    RAM down the line, extending the life of your laptop
    and improving performance.
  • You can also cut down on upfront laptop price by adding RAM later.

More Laptop Buying Info Here
Laptop Buying Guide
These are some of the top features to consider, but there are more features to learn about like wireless display technology, fingerprint and face recognition. Check out our complete Laptop Buying Guide.

In the Next Installment
Laptop Buyer’s Kit Bonus: Inside Laptop CPUs.
We’ll dive into the latest CPU technology, so you can make an informed decision on your laptop’s most important feature.
Remember, the HDTV Buyer’s Kit is yours at no charge. You can unsubscribe using the link below.

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The Retrevo Gang

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