These days, programming is a fast-growing field with immense diversity and constant evolution. There are many web or software development fields and many types of developers.
The need for a robust, reliable machine is almost palpable because those conditions are prerequisites for a good application, software, and game. Can your laptop be that machine? Is it powerful enough for programming, or should you stick with your PC?
Let’s find out as we discover the significance of every component inside a laptop.
RAM is crucial for programming, but how much do you need? Manufacturers, developers, and even bloggers propose using eight or even 16 GB of RAM instead of the regular four. That is essential because of the final price and modern application requirements.
Programmers are usually aware of that. Running many tools simultaneously or using virtual machines creates a potential slowdown in a laptop’s functioning.
A high-quality processor is undoubtedly the key to fluid operating. Some authors mention the importance of core numbers, threads, working frequency, cache, etc. One undeniable fact is that working without glitches makes the CPU safe and programming smoother, without delays and disturbances.
Intel i5 and i7 are usually the models with the highest ranks, but AMD Ryzen series 3 or 5 doesn’t lag much behind. You can also look at the best CPU for workstations to learn more about the most suitable one.
This little gizmo is crucial for game developers. There is a difference between integrated and non-integrated graphic cards. Coding and testing games demand a stronger GPU with significant memory. On the other hand, integrated graphics use a portion of existing RAM.
A generous offer of SSDs provides faster and unhampered functioning, faster boot time, and better performance while using or coding applications. Storage of 256 GB can be an excellent start.
Talking about the coins, sparing some more for a bigger hard drive will always be a good decision, something like 512 GB or even 1 TB.
As for personal files and folders, a future programmer should place them on an HDD, an older but still valuable type of hard drive. They are slower but cheaper, and the files you store won’t jeopardize programming and the operating system itself. To decide, find out the differences between SSD and HDD.
If you plan to code, your laptop’s battery should last at least six hours. Running out of juice at the most critical moment is very unpleasant, so the battery should be a deal-breaker or a dealmaker. It all depends on how much time you spend near the power outlet.
Customer reviews are helpful in this case. Many sites can also help you pick the right laptop for programming concerning all the necessary features, including the battery.
The best option is to purchase a laptop with a screen of 15 inches, which is standard in most cases. Customers notice this specific size is the most convenient and doesn’t make your eyes sore.
Spending a lot of time outside makes portability a trait to consider. You can choose from many models on the market, with screens from 13 to 15,6 inches.
The operating system is sometimes a conclusive factor in choosing what to buy. Although many apps work on Windows, Linux, and macOS, there are some features to consider first.
Windows is a better option for those who don’t want to be limited by a brand. On the other hand, macOS prefers to have typing and operating relationships only with a MacBook.
However, that is not a downside of any brand or operating system. It is just a reminder of the characteristics and adaptability of laptop models available on the market.
Linux is the third operating system, and luckily for potential users, pre-installed with some brands, with support for drivers. That makes such a laptop welcoming for every kind of programming and easier to handle.
However, most developers go with Windows as it exceeds others with its compatibility with other software. For instance, you won’t have an issue finding a suitable code editor. Additionally, you have many options for protecting your laptop further. A VPN for Windows is also of the programs worth considering. It can defend laptops and open access to more programming resources.
Note that Virtual Private Network functions like any other application that you install. It encrypts traffic and reroutes it through secure servers.
Some might think a keyboard is not an essential feature. After a few hours of typing your code, your arms and hands will be grateful if your laptop has a high-quality keyboard.
A numerical pad is something a potential buyer must consider. Also, pay attention to the keys’ firmness and softness to the touch.
Additionally, many keyboards have repositioned or minimized keys like Enter, Fn, and Ctrl, which can be momentarily unpleasant and require some adjustment time.
Finally, a backlight is a nice-to-have detail to polish your style and work and to relax tired eyes even in the evening.
Now comes the moment for the verdict. Recommending a laptop is never an easy task because users have different features and activities on their minds.
Choose wisely, according to your needs. Web development doesn’t require top-notch graphics, while creating games can be a nightmare for discrete graphics. Just keep in mind that buying a laptop is not an everyday action. You can upgrade them anytime, but only to some extent.