Should I Get a Laptop or a Desktop Computer?

One day you may be asking yourself, should I get a portable computer or a static computer, the simple answer is… both! (If you can)

Yes both have their advantages and disadvantages which I will be covering in this blogpost. So, first of all you may need to ask yourself questions along the lines of, will I be moving this computer around frequently? Is size an issue? Am I prepared to cater for either form factor of machine.

So here’s some information on what I think about laptops, their advantages and disadvantages. So as we know Laptops are portable computers theoretically designed to sit on your lap (not all laptops like sitting on laps) as far as portability is concerned laptops are usually more portable than a desktop machine. The advantage of this is that you can take it wherever you go and do work, play games and surf pretty much anywhere (surfing can only take place if you’re connected to the internet, and no I would not advise actually surfing waves with your laptop, I don’t think that’s covered in the warranty) this portability leads on to some disadvantages. Chances are if you are using your laptop on the go you’re running from a battery and batteries must be charged in order for the device to function, so you’ll probably be tethered to a wall socket somewhere down the line. Another disadvantage is reliability, If you’ve had a desktop before you will probably have noticed that they don’t break as frequently as laptops.

Another advantage which can also be a disadvantage is most of the parts are not upgradable or replaceable to chances are everything inside the laptop should work from day one and drivers are usually easily found for it’s internal components.

Your laptop may get scratched, there may be cosmetic damage to the casing, things like keys may fall off, the screen may break and eventually your battery will stop charging after a few years. Also since your laptop may be moving whilst in operation damage to the harddrive could take place, eventually the heatsink (part of the cooling system) will become clogged full of dust (usually the only way to remove the dust is complete disassembly) which will likely cause your laptop to constantly overheat, liquid damage may take place, and all of these things usually lead to it’s eventual death. Generally speaking laptops are underpowered compared to desktops so don’t be surprised if your laptop has trouble running heavy applications or playing graphics intensive games. (Quite a few of these things happen to even the best looked after laptops.)

Don’t be too afraid of laptops though as they can be more of a blessing than a curse (also laptops generally have better resale value than desktops, seriously check online and compare prices for use deskops and laptops, the difference is astonishing).

So we’ve had a look at laptops now for the desktops. Don’t think that all desktops are large and chunky, just take a look at the Mac Mini or the Dell Zino HD for example (yes I class MiniPCs or “Nettops” as desktops too). Desktops are generally much more customizable than laptops, you can usually change cases, graphics cards, power supplies, processors, memory modules, motherboards, harddrives, optical drives… the list goes on. Desktops may also offer greater performance out of the box compared to that of an equal specification laptop.

So, the disadvantages… well for one sometimes that are quite large so portability may be an issue and usually more than one cable is required for the machine to operate so you may be dealing with spaghetti junction when it does come to moving it from it’s primary location. Desktops usually depreciate very quickly compared to laptops and you may find that it sells for much less compared to that of an equal specification laptop. Typically desktops don’t have a wireless adapter so chances are if you’re not on a wired connection you’ll need invest in a wireless networking attachment, these can be a USB peripherals or perhaps a more hidden PCI wireless networking card.

So this has been a quick overview of the advantaged and disadvantages of both laptops and desktops, I hope you have found this article helpful and / or interesting.