When it comes to choosing a laptop for college, what you want is something powerful, lightweight and portable with a long-lasting battery.
This is a tool that will be very beneficial to your success in college and is what you'll be doing most of your work on so it is important that your system is up to date. If your laptop is more than a few years old, you may want to consider upgrading to a more powerful notebook. You don't want an outdated computer to slow you down when it comes to college work.
Unless you are in a design-related major, go for a 13 to 14-inch laptop. These are better for on the go because they generally weigh less than 5 lbs. This is something you will be carrying with you all over campus, so if you can get one that weighs between 3-4 lbs., even better.
Try and shoot for something that lasts 6 hours or longer; enough to get you through a full day of classes.
Why battery life is important:
- You don't want to have to carry a power cord around.
- The popular study spots (coffee shops and libraries) get crowded near the power outlets. You can focus better away from the clutter and distractions of a congested study area by being unplugged with a long-lasting battery.
Having a comfortable keyboard is important because you’ll be writing many papers in college. There are different styles of keyboards that can vary based on how big the laptop is. If having a good keyboard is a major concern for you, go into to your local Best Buy and test out keyboards on models you are considering and see what works well for you.
- A backlit keyboard is preferable as at times you will be working in a dark or dim environment.
- If you press down on the keyboard and you see a lot of flex, consider another model.
- Spacing of the keys is also something to consider; go with something that feels comfortable with your typing style.
Other Quick Recommendations
- Memory: Look for something with at least 4GB of memory.
- CPU: At least an Intel i5 or greater.
- Start up and Wake times: Your computer should wake out of sleep mode within in 2-3 seconds.
- Be sure to check out student discounts available from Apple, Dell, HP, and Lenovo.