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Apple Mac Or Windows PC : Which Is The Best Laptop For Students?

With thousands of students preparing to pack up their bags for the first time, there’s one vital item of kit that no student can afford to be without – a laptop.

A laptop will give you a place to store your work and enable you to create essays, with a little help from internet research. However, your new laptop shouldn’t just be about the boring stuff! You’ll want to use it for fun too, interacting with friends, battling zombies, downloading music and watching a movie or three.

You’ll need a machine that’s going to be able to cope with the demands of university life – both work and play. It should also be sturdy enough to withstand some wear and tear and preferably last the three years you are there. A full size keyboard is a must for all that essay writing and a large screen is preferable if you want to watch TV shows and films.

Mac or PC?

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It’s the old age question, Apple Mac or Windows PC? Do you get a warm fuzzy feeling when you spot that glowing Apple logo? Perhaps you are happier being one of thousands of Windows users? Ultimately, it’s down to how much cash you, or your parents, are willing to spend. If you’ve got your heart set on a MacBook, you can always do some extra shifts in the pub, or sell your laptop here to raise funds.

MacBooks are built to last and will be a good choice if your course is graphics based. A Windows laptop is a good all-rounder and an inexpensive option that should be sufficient to tackle your university work adequately.

If you are planning to take your laptop to lectures, you may want to take weight in to account. You’ll also want something with a decent battery life so that you don’t spend your time competing for the power points in the library.

Specifications

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As long as your new laptop can run Office, surf the web and stream videos, there’s little point on splashing out on a model with the latest processor and large amounts of memory. However, if you are planning to run several programmes and have multiple websites open at the same time, you will need at least 4GB RAM, although 6 is preferable.

A large hard drive is a bonus, but it might be safer to use an external one to back up your work in case of a computer crash. A high-powered graphics card is useful for would-be zombie slayers, although not so important if you already own a console. Most laptops come with a DVD drive, although expect to pay extra for a Blu-ray drive.

At the very minimum, you should look to spend £350 on a laptop; this is a good target price for a low- end Windows machine that will offer all the functions you require.

However, if you require advanced multimedia functions, you will need to splash out on a more expensive device such as a MacBook Air or MacBook Pro. Expect to pay around just under £1,000 for the most basic model and be aware that the Air has no DVD drive.