How to choose a laptop for programming

How To Choose a Laptop for Programming

It may be difficult to find out how to choose a laptop for programming. There are many different types of programming. You can either be a programmer, game developer, or web developer. Depending on your field of choice, you may want your laptop to do different things. Some may focus on graphical performance while others on speed.

There are different tools that each profession requires, and just like almost everything else in life, finding the right programming laptop isn’t one-size-fits-all. For game programmers, the gaming programs are way too complicated and powerful for your average laptop. This informative guide will help those who have been struggling to find a strong programming laptop for their field of choice. This guide also intends to help those who don’t even know where to search, making the search less overwhelming.

Processor (CPU) 

Computer Processor, How to choose a laptop for programming
Source: Pixabay

Processors are super important as they help with your laptop with interaction with every application and app installed on the laptop, CPU’s.  The latest processor is recommended, but more recent ones are acceptable as well. The faster your CPU, the better your applications will run. It also helps when you’re compiling tons of code. For those that are working with web designing tools, high-end processors aren’t a must.

The most you’ll need is an Intel Core i3 or something similar. Intel Core i3 is the minimum you should look for. The Intel Core i5 and i7 are more modern and faster and will meet the requirement of most people. An i7 processor is ideal for game developers since you will need dedicated graphics to run a majority of your software.


Computer Ram, How to choose a laptop for programming
Source: Pixabay

This is another element that differentiates between professions, for web designers you won’t need to worry much about RAM since there are no heavy tools for you to work on. 4GB of RAM would do the job since your work isn’t as intense. You may go higher if you choose, but that would be overkill. Programmers might need to run heavy graphics, IDEs, etc, these programs end up taking a lot of memory when you’re constantly running them all at the same time which eventually takes a toll on your laptop.

You don’t want to get anything less than 4GB for programming, but we’d recommend at least 8GB RAM and up from there. I would say that is the perfect spot that you’ll want to hit. For game developers, you’ll for sure need to get at least 16GB. Systems that game developers run are really powerful so you have to prioritize RAM, while also being mindful of your budget. Some laptops even allow you to upgrade your memory. You may want to keep that in mind if you can’t afford a lot of RAM right now but could upgrade in the future. 


Computer Storage, SSD, How to choose a laptop for programming

SSD is another important element you need to consider when searching for a programming laptop as it will help your device’s speed over a standard hard drive. It’s crucial that your laptop has a minimum of 256GB SSD or more.


Laptop Screen, Best screen for laptop for pragramming

Chances are you’ll be working on your laptop for a long time so it’s highly recommended that if possible choose a laptop that has a full HD screen 1920 x 1080 display. Anything less than that won’t be as sharp and the reading experience will be horrible. If you don’t want to be wearing bifocals by the time you’re in your 40s then you should make sure your laptop has a bright and vibrant display. Screens with poor light will have you paying close attention to the details of the screen and damaging your eyesight. 

Battery life 

laptop battery life, how to choose a laptop for programming.

Unless you plan on taking an outlet with you everywhere you go and making sure that there is an out nearby at all times, then I’d suggest a laptop capable of lasting at least 6 hours without a charger. Make sure to do the research on the battery life and don’t just blindly trust what the manufacturer says, because as we all know they can bend the truth at times. Read reviews from actual users, and ask questions

Final words 

How to choose a laptop for programming, conclusion

Many of the things on this list may seem minor, but these small pieces of machinery contribute to a well-running machine, or in this instance a laptop. Programming requires a lot of power from your computer or laptop, so be sure that your laptop/desktop meets specification requirements. A laptop’s keyboard is something else to take into consideration, you’ll want a smooth as possible working experience so no detail is too small when it comes to researching ideas. You’ll be investing money in this laptop once you make your choice as well as your time so hopefully, this list helps you narrow in on the key factors and specifications that you should be mindful of in your decision process.

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