Notebooks are small, portable, flip-open computers that are ideal for working on the go. They are available with different screen sizes and equipment and can thus be adapted to individual requirements.
- Notebook vs. laptop: Where one used to mean two different types of device, the terms are now used synonymously.
- Tips for buying a notebook: Business computers need a strong battery and a slim design, a notebook needs a strong display for streaming, and gamers look for a powerful graphics card and a large amount of RAM with a laptop.
What is the difference between a notebook and a laptop?
Notebook refers to a notebook computer, while a laptop literally sits “on the user’s lap”. In fact, nowadays there is hardly any distinction made between the two terms, most manufacturers use the terms synonymously. The distinction actually existed: It comes from the time when CD drives were still very important and high computing power went hand in hand with high weight.
A notebook was the term used to describe portable computers that fit in any briefcase. They were characterized by their handiness and low weight and, like a digital notebook, were primarily used for word processing and later also for surfing the Internet. Laptops, on the other hand, usually had a CD drive, many connections and powerful processors and were therefore not very handy.
In times of USB sticks , external hard drives and cloud storage, CD-ROM no longer play a role and powerful processors are becoming smaller and lighter. Therefore, the differentiation between laptop and notebook is now obsolete. Incidentally, notebooks are not to be confused with netbooks: The particularly small and light foldable computers had their peak phase from around 2007 to 2011. They are significantly less powerful than conventional notebooks and primarily designed for surfing the Internet. With a display size of 7 to a maximum of 12 inches, they are pioneers of today’s convertibles and tablets.
What is important when buying a notebook
Buying a notebook needs to be carefully considered, after all, everyone wants something from their new device for as long as possible. Before starting the search for a suitable notebook, it makes sense to consider what budget is available. Because solid laptops are available from around 300 euros, but it is also possible to spend several thousand euros. Once the price range has been determined, you should also consider what you would like to use your new notebook for. When making a purchase, gamers inevitably pay attention to different rating parameters than occasional users who only want to check their e-mails once a day .
Notebooks for work
Business notebooks are often expensive because they have to perform a lot of tasks. As a rule, users in the professional environment require a lot of computing power, as they work in several programs at the same time. Depending on the industry, the graphics card also plays an important role. At the same time, it is an advantage if business laptops are flat, light and durable despite their performance – after all, a socket is not always available on business trips. Here it is worthwhile to question which tasks should mainly be done on the laptop. For primarily web- or text-based work, it is advisable to attach particular importance to handiness, battery life and memory. Equipping with an office-compatible operating system such as Windows Professional is also an advantage.
Home entertainment notebooks
In the age of streaming services like Netflix, more and more people are doing without a television and using their notebook to watch films and series without further ado. Anyone looking for a suitable device for this purpose should take a close look at the display quality. If the laptop is actually to replace a TV in the long term, a screen diagonal of at least 15, even better 17 inches, is a good choice. A decent resolution is mandatory. When deciding on a high-gloss or a matt display, the respective advantages and disadvantages must be considered: Brilliant colors are guaranteed with crystal-clear displays, but matt displays have the advantage that they do not reflect when exposed to light. A large RAM and an SSD hard drive help ensure that streams run smoothly and HDMI connections ensure that the device can be connected to a television or projector if the worst comes to the worst.
Notebooks for gamers
A high-quality display is also relevant for passionate gamers – a 17-inch screen is also welcome here. But beyond that, the demands of gaming fans on a notebook are very high. In order for complex games to run smoothly, high computing power is essential: You can read this on the processor; a good clue is usually the number of cores. The hard drive capacity is also important – many games take up a lot of storage space – and the size of the working memory (RAM), which is responsible for data processing. A smooth gaming experience also depends to a large extent on the graphics card – real gaming laptops usually have external graphics memory.