- Questions to ask yourself
- Desktop PC or notebook?
- How important is mobility?
- What will I be using the notebook for?
- How much do I need to spend?
- Specialised portable computers?
- Ultraportable notebooks
- Tablet PCs
- Palm/hand top computers
- Ruggedised portables
- Processor and chipset
- Intel versus AMD
- Intel notebook processors
- AMD mobile processors
- Other key components
- Questions to ask the retailer
If you expect to use your computer on the move, battery life is an important consideration. All notebooks now use rechargeable Lithium Ion (Li-Ion) batteries, which currently offer the best performance of the commercial battery technologies in common use.
The performance of a Li-Ion battery is judged by its capacity, which is measured in cells.
Most notebook vendors will offer a variety of optional battery upgrades (batteries with around 6-12 cells) or even a second battery for when travelling.
A word of warning: many notebook warranties that may go for one or even three years will still only cover the battery for six months.
Also, don't forget that high power processors, plenty of RAM, graphics cards and fast disk drives will devour battery life. If you will frequently be operating your notebook on its battery power, you may want to investigate your processor, notebook and operating system's various power-saving options.