Tips for Buying Programming Laptops for the Office

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by Eduardo Bridges, |

Businesses that plan to handle at least some software development in-house will require the best equipment for the job. If your company wants to hire good programmers, they will have to be presented with good machines. Here are several tips on how to buy the best programming laptops for your office:

Don’t Go for the Most Expensive Machines

When it comes to laptops, the price doesn’t necessarily reflect how well the machine performs. Laptop prices can be affected by many things, including size, processor, graphics card, brand, and sometimes gimmicks like touchscreens and touch bars that do not enhance performance. So, do not look to price as an indicator of whether the laptop is any good. There are definitely budget range programming laptops you can choose to ensure optimal performance as well as to save money.

Choose RAM, RAM and More RAM

The main specification you should look when buying a programming laptop is RAM. The more RAM there is, the speedier the machine will be when coding. The minimal recommended amount of RAM for a programming laptop is 8GB. Ideally, you should buy laptops with 16GB of RAM. You can go higher with 32GB and more, but these machines will cost over $2,000 each.

Select Newer Processors

A programming laptop with 8GB of RAM and an Intel Core i5 processor will perform well. But you can ensure optimal performance with an Intel Core i7 processor and at least 8GB of RAM. Buy 6th generation Core processors, and also look for multiple cores. The more cores there are, the faster the processor will be. You can choose an AMD processor as well, but Core i7 is the best available right now for programming laptops.

SDDs are better than HDDs

Traditionally, laptops came with hard disk drives. Nowadays, you can buy computers with much faster solid state drives. SSDs are quite ideal for programming laptops. The downside is that SSDs don’t offer much storage. You can buy HDDs with up to 1TB of storage for relatively cheap. Decide which is best for your office and choose accordingly.

Pick between Screen Size and Portability

The larger the screen size of the laptop is, the less portable it will be. Medium-sized laptops have screens sized between 15 to 18 inches. Smaller screens may make work difficult. Larger screens add bulk to the laptop, and make them harder to carry. The office will have to decide whether to choose portability or larger screens. It’s recommended to by laptops to different screen sizes.

Carefully Consider the Operating System

You can choose between Windows, Linux and Mac operating systems for the computers. Windows is the most common and also the most versatile. Some programmers prefer Linux however. Not many people code on Macs, unless the code is specifically for Macs or iOS. Some code can only be run on Macs. It’s smart to buy laptops with different operating systems if you are not sure which to choose. Having laptops running different operating systems will make it easier for programmers to check compatibility of code with each system.

Heed the above suggestions when buying programming laptops for the office. Choose laptops by the specs, not brand or how fancy one is. You can spend less than $1,000 on each unit if you do your research right. You can bring down the price for each unit even further when buying in bulk.

About the Author

Eduardo Bridges is a small business owner and a former software engineer. During his free time, he researches consumer budget buying habits. He regularly writes blog posts and tutorials about how to purchase low-cost electronics.

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