Thinking of buying a new laptop?

PC Doctor Dave often finds that his customers are using laptops which never (or very rarely) move from the desk they sit on.
In this note, we explore the relative benefits of desktop (classic towers) versus laptops. Note that all-in-one PCs (where the computer resides within the screen) and small form factor (mini-desktops) have many of the laptops failings.
1. Generally, the power of a laptop is much less than a desktop because high power means heat and without expensive cooling mechanisms (e.g. gold) a laptop will get too hot and fail if it is high powered.
2. Again, for space & heat reasons, the graphics quality on a laptop is likely to be inferior.
3. For that reason, the price of a similar powered laptop is higher than an equivalent desktop.
4. Parts for desktops are much more interchangeable so are therefore cheaper. Often parts for older laptops become unobtainable within a short a period as two years.
5. The lifetime of a laptop is usually shorter (about 2-3 years) compared to a desktop (6+ years). And usually desktops are replaced because an upgrade is needed where as laptops are broken and beyond economic repair.
6. Upgrading a desktop is quite easy and this can extend the lifetime even further. Laptops have a maximum of 2 memory slots whereas desktops usually have 4. This means that twice the RAM can be installed. Dave’s own PC is now 9 years old and will still outperform any laptop you can find today.
7. Dismantling a desktop is far easier than a laptop meaning that repair labour costs are much lower. A worrying trend is that some laptop manufacturers (eg Asus) are designing laptops to be more and more difficult to disassemble with very fragile leads inside and hidden screws with strange screw heads.
8. Multiple disks can be installed in a desktop so that automatic backups to internal (safer) disks can be setup and that transfer of data from an old PC is quicker and easier. In addition, if more storage is needed another disk can easily be added.
9. Refurbished desktops represent a bargain buy or your own desktop can be upgraded. There is little reason to buy new when the lifetime is much longer. With the latest software installed, an older PC will perform more than adequately as many a happy customer will happily attest.