Which is the Best Computer for You – Notebook or Desktop Computer?


Is a Notebook or Desktop the Best Computer?

 Which Should You Choose?

When comparing a laptop to a desktop computer, there are several reasons why a desktop computer could be the best computer for you. Is a portable or notebook computer the best computer for your needs? On TV and in the movies, we see a lot of portable computers being used in homes and offices. Does that mean that’s the trend?  Is  a notebook or laptop what you should get?

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Acer Aspire E 15 E5-575-33BM 15.6-Inch Full HD Notebook (Intel Core i3-7100U Processor

Laptop computers cost more. The difference in price suggests that unless you really have the need for a notebook laptop, you get a lot more computer for your money with a regular desktop PC. The key issue is portability. If you need a portable computer, get a laptop. (“Laptop,” “portable,” and “notebook” all refer to the same thing, by the way). Otherwise, a desktop computer is a better buy, and better ergonomically.

The Price Difference Between A Laptop and Desktop Computer

You might wonder why laptops cost more than desktop computers with comparable features and power. That is largely because it is more expensive to manufacture laptops and their parts. For portable computer components, factors such as compactness, the amount of heat they generate, their weight, and power consumption are more important than they are for desktops. Those factors add to their manufacturing costs. Because you can get a better bang for your buck, price is one reason why a desktop could be the best computer for you.

Space Requirements for a Computer

While laptops are certainly compact, a desktop computer with a flat panel monitor could be the best computer option for you. In reality, most desktops take up just about the same space on your desk as a laptop. While called a “desktop” computer, the computer itself is most often kept on the floor. That leaves just the monitor, keyboard and mouse on the desk, which is really very similar in footprint to a notebook computer.

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Apple – MacBook Pro with Retina display

A great way to further reduce the space taken up on the desktop computer is get a keyboard drawer to hold the keyboard and mouse. That way, they slide out of the way under the top of the desk when they aren’t needed.

The Ergonomics of Computer Use

Ergonomics is the science of designing and arranging things so that people can interact with them more comfortably and safely. The basic ergonomic principals for computer use tell us that, 1) the keyboard should be as close to your lap level as possible (assuming you touch-type), 2) the monitor should be about arm’s length in front of you, and 3) the top of the monitor should be at about your eye level. Try achieving that with a laptop computer! Two words: im-possible. So, from an ergonomics perspective, a desktop could be the best computer for you.

It is obvious then. From an ergonomic perspective, a desktop computer is the best computer. A desktop is much better ergonomically than a laptop is. For prolonged use, especially, you’re much better off with a desktop computer.

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Acer Aspire Desktop

Computer Usability

Another aspect of ergonomics is computer usability. Because of size constraints, laptops also are lower on the usability scale than desktop PCs are. For one thing, laptop keyboards lack the separate groupings of the different sets of keys with space between them. For another, there are fewer keys on a laptop’s keyboard, so some of them have to perform double duty. On a standard keyboard, you don’t have to deal with that. So, if you’re looking just at usability, there are clear reasons why you could conclude that a desktop is the best computer.

Computer Screen Resolution

Computer monitors can be set at different screen  resolutions. In other words, you can change the fineness of the image on the screen. The range is typically  — that is pixels across and pixels up and down — 1024×768, or even higher. At 640×480, the icons and such appear quite large; at 1024×768, they are substantially smaller. Some of the most common resolutions today for desktop computers are 1920×1080, 1280×1024, and 1920×1200.

Something They Don’t Tell You

Laptop displays, on the other hand, have a fixed, or native, resolution. You can change the setting, but then the images and text don’t look good. While people tend to think that bigger numbers are better, a higher screen resolution may not work as well for you. It may make everything too small to see comfortably. Also, with a decent graphics card, you have a lot of display options with a desktop. Surround display allows you to add multiple monitors or displays to you desktop. I have four monitors connected to my desktop.

Remember, the laptop’s screen is smaller that a desktop’s. While a typical desktop computer screen is 17″ or so a laptop’s is usually in the range of 12″ to 15.” That is a big difference. Make sure you can see everything clearly before choosing a high-resolution laptop.

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