Laptops and computers are an investment, but one that just about everyone has to make, whether it’s for a business or a personal PC, which could be used both for personal and work reasons.
With PCs lasting on average 3-5 years (or maybe slightly longer with regular system tune-ups), most people are looking for the best deal they can get, which often leads them to sales on laptops during events like Black Friday or Labor Day.
When you find a system with the space you want for an incredibly low price, it’s hard to pass up. But is that $400 budget laptop really going to be a good value?
Unfortunately, consumers that are shopping for new PCs, aren’t looking carefully at all the specifications, and often will just look at things like hard drive space and price. But there are so many other features that can impact things like performance, speed, and lifespan.
Problems with Cheap PCs That Will Haunt You
You might be in a pinch and just suffered a hard drive crash or other damage to your laptop that necessitates getting a new one. You weren’t expecting the expense, so you choose according to two factors: something that will work and something that’s cheap.
But that choice could end up costing you more very soon due to several problems with cheap computers and laptops that can ruin any “great deal” you thought you were getting.
Short on Memory and Performance
When you find a great deal on a PC, you have to remember the old adage, “You get what you pay for.” Those budget deals are planned out in advance, and the laptop you get during a Black Friday sale often won’t have the same specifications as a similar model sold at regular price.
Memory is one area that is often lacking in cheap laptops, and if your PC has a low amount of memory, that significantly impacts performance.
For example, with a laptop with just 4GB of memory, you’ll most likely notice problems like:
- Slow opening of applications
- Lockups when you open too many web pages
- Problems with it being sluggish and freezing
- Difficulty with memory intensive programs, like photo editors
- Major slowdowns when software updates are being done
- Difficulty loading webpages with a lot of images and video
Often budget PCs will not only come with low memory but will also not have the ability to expand memory, so you’re stuck with a slow performing computer.
A notorious problem with cheap laptops is that the parts are also cheap, meaning in less than a year you might need a laptop keyboard or case repair because the screen area started coming apart. When you add unexpected repair bills onto the original price, it doesn’t seem like such a great deal anymore.
Laptops that may be twice the price of a cheap one, will generally reflect higher quality parts that were used in them. Better quality parts are designed to withstand the general wear and tear that laptops see during daily use and being taken from place to place. So, a higher priced laptop will need less repairs due to using better parts.
That $400 laptop deal may have saved you roughly $550, on a higher priced $950 laptop, but did it when you consider the longevity?
Cheaper parts that are used in budget PCs mean they wear out faster, and instead of 5 or more years of life, you might only get 2 years of usable life – during which you struggle with performance problems.
So instead of saving you money, going for a cheap PC instead of investing in a quality one leaves you, just two years later, back where you started, having to replace your laptop and shell out more money.
Limited Ability to Upgrade
The ability to upgrade parts on your computer, like adding more memory or a new graphics card, not only can increase usable lifespan it can also help keep your laptop fast and productive.
Cheap laptops and PCs often don’t have the same capability for expansion as higher quality systems, so you’re stuck with what you have and can’t add on or increase its capabilities.
Shorter Battery Life
Another drawback of a cheap laptop is the reduced battery life. According to Digital Trends, it’s rare to find a laptop under $700 that offers more than 6-hours of real-world battery life.
The battery is another area where laptop manufacturer’s cut corners to make their “on sale” devices cheaper to make. So, if you buy a $400 laptop, you’ll be more likely to find yourself searching for power outlets in airports, when someone with a better quality laptop will still have plenty of battery life left. It’s not usual for laptops in the $1,000 price range to offer a full day of battery life.
Poor Screen Quality
Cheap laptops tend to have a lower screen quality than better-build laptops. It’s an additional place where manufacturers can reduce device cost. This can make it a real drag if you use your laptop for steaming and have to struggle with poor colors and video quality.
Get Help Choosing a Quality Laptop & Keeping It Maintained
From recommendations on quality laptops and PCs to repairs and maintenance, Two River Computer can help you get the best value from your laptop and ensure it has a long life.
Contact us today to schedule a free consultation. Call 732-747-0020 or reach us online.