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The Most Common Mistakes When Buying a PC

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Everyone has their “face palm moments” especially when they’re buying something expensive and/or complicated such as when buying a PC.

So before you buy a desktop or laptop PC, recognize the errors in the following actions:

  1. Buying a PC from a nearby store. This is not a good idea for several reasons. For one, you don’t get a lot of options to choose from. Then you get a spiel from a salesperson whose only motivation is to make a sale, and not to make sure you get the right PC at the right price. And in general, prices in retail stores are much higher than what you can get online.
  2. Prioritizing price or features over need. It can be very tempting to buy a discounted computer or a shiny new PC with all the latest hardware. But the problem is that you may end up with a computer than doesn’t match what you need.

 

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You have to remember that a computer is a tool. So the first thing you need to do is to determine just what you need a computer for. Once you have a good grasp of what you need, you can then do some research on the spec you have to get to provide for that need. If you have two options that have what you require, you can choose the less expensive option.

Of course, your budget may not suffice for the kind of computer you need. If you want a computer to play all the latest FPS games and you don’t have the money for it yet, you have to keep on saving until you do. Don’t settle for a cheap PC that doesn’t give you the ability to play the games you actually want to play just because it’s the only one you can afford now.

  1. Reading only manufacturer ads. The copy you read on manufacturer websites do not give you the whole picture. You should read customer reviews as well. You can check out reputable tech sites and ecommerce sites like Amazon. These reviews will give you a much more objective assessment on the pros and cons of the product.
  2. Buying it because it looks nice. Not everyone knows about computer specs, so sometimes they base their buying decision on how impressive or cool a computer looks. Or they may even simply base their decision on a particular brand which they “know” is always great. Remember, it’s not always about how sleek the computer is. It’s about what it can do.

So take your time in shopping for a PC. Find out what specs and features you really need and then check reviews for your shortlisted choices. Take time to do your research because all your hard work will pay off in the end.

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Category: PC

Why Has Tablet Gaming Become More Popular Than Ever?

 

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According to the latest reports, console game manufacturers are becoming quite concerned about tablet gaming. Just as consoles surpassed PC gaming in terms of popularity, tablet gaming is now on the rise and is poised to become the most popular platform for gamers.

Console makers are no longer concerned about how people are playing games on their smartphones and laptops. That’s because a lot of people who own a smartphone and a laptop also have a gaming console. But now with the growing popularity of tablets for gaming, the problem is that people are buying them instead of gaming consoles.

 

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Sure, tablet sales have declined this year. But interestingly enough, game revenues for tablets have soared. If you’re trying to decide between buying a tablet and a gaming console, you may as well pick the former.

Here are the reasons:

  • Tablet gaming is better than smartphone gaming. The bigger screen can make a difference when playing games. Screen images on a tablet look better, and gaming becomes a more immersive experience.

In fact, it’s been found that tablet gamers are very much like console gamers. They want more involvement in their games and they play for longer periods unlike smartphone gamers.

  • Tablet gaming is gaining on console gaming. There are many reasons for this phenomenon. For one, tablet gaming is possible at home and on the road. You can’t do that with a standard gaming console. With a tablet, you can be in your living room, your bedroom or in Starbucks.

You also have more choices for games when you use a tabet and a lot of them do not cost anything to play or download. You can just go online and check out the new titles from Apple or Google to see what’s available. Downloading games is also a breeze and it won’t take days to update, which sometimes happens with console games.

  • You can do a lot of things with a tablet. It’s for that reason portable gaming consoles are not doing as well as expected. All you can do with these devices is play games. But with tablets, you can do a whole lot more. You can go online to do research, write documents, send emails, chat, and with various apps you can do just about anything for work, for your health, and for entertainment. It’s not as limited as a gaming console.

In other words, you can use the tablet for work or school, and then afterwards you can use it for gaming. So when you’re done with work for the day or for the week, you can curl up with the same tablet and spend endless hours playing your favorite games.

So why buy a console when you can buy a tablet? You can certainly save money by having a device you can use for just about anything—including gaming!

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When is the Right Time to Buy a New Laptop?

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Sometimes it’s easy to convince ourselves that it’s time to buy a new laptop when we have the money and there’s a new laptop on the market that really catches our eye.

The problem is that you shouldn’t buy a laptop on a whim. If your current one is working perfectly, it runs all your programs without a hitch, and its features match your needs, then there’s no need to replace it. The longer you stick to your current laptop, the more value you get from it.

But there will also come a time when you really have to let go of your old computer and find a new one.

 

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So how do you know that your laptop is no longer cutting it? One definite sign is when it keeps breaking down, and the cost of the repair is much more than what your laptop is really worth. It will make much more sense to put that money towards buying a new laptop instead.

Another clear indicator is that your needs and circumstances have changed, and you’re stuck with a laptop which you can’t upgrade to suit your current situation. Perhaps you’re a dedicated gamer, and the laptop you bought a few years ago was able to play all your favorite games. But now newer games are available and the problem is that your specs are not able to play them.

Or perhaps you only used your laptop to browse the Web, check your emails and edit documents. But now you need it to edit videos and your specs can’t support a proper video editing tool.

Or perhaps you travel a lot now and your current laptop is too heavy to lug around.

If any of these issues apply to your case, it would make sense to replace your laptop.


When Is the Right Time to Actually Buy One?

First you will need to take some time to choose the right laptop. That means you need to figure out your needs and budget so you can pick a laptop that fits those parameters.

Then you also need to know when is the right time to buy it. You don’t want to buy something if there’s a better one for the same price or a cheaper one with the same features coming out in a few weeks. But obviously you can’t wait too long, because that would defeat your purpose for actually buying a laptop.

If you’re an Apple fan, try to monitor when the latest Apple laptop will come out in the market so you can either buy that new model or buy an older model at a discount. If you’re a Windows or Intel fan, you can wait until Intel releases a new processor or buy during the discount season usually in mid or late summer, or during the holidays at the end of the year.

So to recap: you first have to find out if you really need a new laptop. Then take the time to choose the right replacement, and finally, buy when the price is right!

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How a Tablet Helps Students in Class

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A tablet can be a very effective device for entertainment. For teens, you can use it to play all kinds of games whether you’re at home or at the park with your friends. You can use it to watch movies, check your email, or engage others on social networks. You can even use it as a phone or as a camera to take pictures and videos.

 

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But tablets are also very helpful with schoolwork. It offers a wide range of benefits, such as the following:

  • Ebook reader. Why bring real books with you when you can just use electronic textbooks instead? With a digital textbook, you can easily search for specific paragraphs and pages. Digital textbooks are also more affordable. And with a tablet, you can annotate or highlight passages, just like you would on a paper textbook. So there’s no need to go to school with a large (and heavy) backpack. You’re in school, and not traveling in Europe.
  • Notetaking. When you’re listening to a lecture, you can use the pen to take notes instead of using the keyboard. This is much better when your typing skills aren’t good, or if you need to write down formulas or draw designs. Using a pen is simply much faster than trying to figure out in MS Word how to create diagrams or draw shapes.

It’s also much better than using pen and paper, as you can easily erase your mistake. What’s more, you can then just save your drawings and your notes as a digital file. It’s even possible to convert your handwritten notes into a text file.

  • Homework. You can also use a tablet much like a laptop. You can go online and do your research, and then you can type your paper. In many colleges, homework is now required in digital format, and it can even be graded and returned digitally as well.

Of course, with the right apps you don’t necessarily have to submit a written document. It can be in a form of video, an image, or even a sound file. You can edit all these files with a tablet and the right apps.

  • Classroom work. In some classes, professors use tablets for interacting with students, just like teachers used to distribute papers to students. With the right apps, you can even display your work on the board for all to see, or to distribute it among your classmates.
  • Teamwork. You can collaborate with a classmate and work together to solve math problems or work on a project through online shared whiteboards. So you can work together even if you’re not together physically.

So why burden yourself with a heavy laptop when a tablet is available? Unless you’re doing a lot of video editing, a tablet is the more practical choice for a student.

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4 Reasons a Desktop PC is Better Than a Laptop

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Tablets and laptops have become more popular than desktop PCs. But here are key functions that desktop rigs still do much better than their mobile counterparts. 

For more than a decade now, pessimists have been proclaiming the eventual demise of the desktop PC. And in some ways, they’re right. It’s true that desktop systems are no longer the de facto computer systems these days. Laptop sales have exceeded desktop PCs and now tablets are poised to overtake laptops as well.

But desktops will always be with us despite their lack of portability, because they have capabilities that cannot be matched by even the most advanced laptops and tablets.

 

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Here are some functions for which a desktop rig is easily the best choice:

    1. Gaming. This is perhaps the most popular reason for choosing a desktop PC over a mobile computer. There’s nothing that laptop or tablet gaming can offer (besides playing outdoors) that a desktop system cannot match or surpass. Even gaming consoles cannot match the performance of gaming desktop PCs.

With a desktop PC, you can customize to your heart’s content. You can pick the size of monitor you want, or even choose to use several monitors at once. You can choose the best sound card and speaker system. You can get keyboards with special keys and other features that make them especially useful for gaming.

With laptops and tablets, upgrading is a much more difficult proposition. You’re essentially stuck with the components you have. So when a new game comes out with greater minimum performance requirements, you’ll need to buy a new mobile device to play it.

    1. Video editing. This is one special function that requires a lot of muscle, and the desktop PC is the only system with the brawn to do it properly. Many people nowadays shoot videos for personal or small business use. And now you have lots of programs that let you add various digital effects to your videos, such as captions and animations.

When you do HD video editing, your PC deals with each frame in the video and stitches them all together, while it also factors in the audio track. All these tasks require a very powerful processor, a huge memory, a bigger storage, and even a large monitor for clearer viewing.

To see the results of your editing changes on a laptop, you’ll need to wait maybe 20 minutes. With a PC, it may only take about 5 minutes. When you’re dealing with numerous videos, you’re talking about hours of time wasted.

  1. Media center. Here you don’t need high performance. What you need is high storage capability, which is much easier on a PC. An HD video can take up as much as 1GB of space, so on a laptop a bunch of movies will quickly fill up a hard disk.
  2. Home server. A home server is a computer that stores applications and data for other computers to access. This can either be through a home network or through the Internet. Again, the bigger storage capacity of the desktop PC comes into play.

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3 Lies about PC Hardware That Just Won’t Go Away

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For many people, learning about PC hardware is like rocket science. But even if you’re not a technical person, you should be aware of the truths and lies about your PC’s components.

The problem with doing research online is that often the info you get isn’t accurate. This is especially true for PC hardware. Computers have been with us for more than a quarter of a century, and its beginnings seem obscured by fallacies and myths. Today, lies are still being propagated about computer hardware. It’s time to shed light on them once and for all.

  • Building your own PC will save you a lot of money.

 

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Maybe this was true 10 years ago, but not anymore. Granted, if you’re building a gaming PC, you might still get some savings compared to buying the whole package. But if you’re just going to build a computer that can help you with work, you can’t really save money from it. So you’ll go through all that trouble of buying the parts, assembling them and installing the OS only to find out you can find a PC that costs a lot less than what you spent.

There are several good reasons to build your own PC. It’s a good way to get what you really want in a gaming PC. Or perhaps you get satisfaction in being able to build one on your own. But do not attempt to build a PC to save money.

  • The bigger the RAM, the better the performance.

When you install Windows or any program, you’ll be prompted about the minimum requirement and recommended RAM. And if you keep running a bunch of programs all at the same time, more RAM can help. But there’s a point when adding more RAM becomes useless. It won’t hurt performance, but it won’t help it either. It will only hurt your bank account.

To find out if you need more RAM, just monitor your memory usage and see if you often run out. Maybe you’re running a PC game that demands more RAM than what you already have. But once you have all your programs running smoothly, adding still more RAM won’t speed them up some more. It’ll just stay there in your computer, unused.

  • Faster CPU and graphics card are always better. Better for what? Again, this is like installing more RAM than what you really need. It’s true that for gaming and video editing you’ll need a speedy CPU with a high-end graphics card. But if you just watch movies, surf the Internet, check your email, and check Facebook on your computer, a more powerful CPU and graphics cards will simply consume more power and cause your computer to overheat. With laptops, that means a shorter battery life.

Check out some preassembled PCs to see if one matches your needs and your budget. And make sure you get the components that actually match your needs so that you don’t waste money on a features you won’t really use.

 

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Category: PC