Most people end up with multiple computers when they keep replacing the ones that break. Computer graveyards pile up fast. That dead laptop lying in the corner of your closet doesn’t hurt much until your current laptop breaks and you don’t have a backup to take on your road trip. Or your desktop hard drive crashes and you have nothing to work with while it’s in the shop.
In today’s world, a technology buff can’t survive without having the following types of working computers. Not just for backups, but for daily use.
- A full-sized laptop computer
Netbooks, notebooks, tablets, phablets, and iPads are popular because they’re small enough to fit in your purse or pocket, but they aren’t helpful when you need to get down to work. For serious tasks, you need a full-sized laptop. Even if you don’t use it every day, there will be moments when you need it.
Benefits of owning a full-sized laptop computer:
- Ports. Sometimes you need a standard USB port (or three), especially if you use a certain kind of wireless mouse. A full-sized laptop gives you access to all kinds of ports: USB, S-Video, Lightning, Mini-Display, Ethernet, Firewire, etc.
- Processing power and RAM. Lightweight laptops come with lightweight processors and minimal RAM that can’t withstand heavy use. Owning a full-sized laptop is like having a portable desktop computer.
Despite the popularity of phablets, laptops aren’t dead. Dell just launched a new line of 17” Inspiron laptops powered by AMD’s new Ryzen processor with up to 16GB of RAM. All units come with a minimum of 1TB hard drive space and run on Windows 10. At under $1,000, even the most powerful unit is affordable. With a Dell coupon, you’ll save even more.
- Easy access to your hard drive. You’d think every device that works like a computer would allow you to easily store any kind of file you want, but that’s not true. For example, you can’t just transfer a bunch of MP3s to your iPad as files, and then drop them into your iTunes library. You have to add the files to your iTunes library on your laptop or desktop computer, and then manually sync it with your iPad.
- A desktop computer
Although tablets have become big enough to replace desktops and laptops for many people, a desktop computer is still your powerhouse. With a desktop computer, you can:
- Set up remote access. With remote access, you can view/edit your files from other computers connected to the internet. Having a desktop you can access remotely is like having a virtual home base. When you work remotely, having a desktop is essential, as long as your company supports a BYOD policy. Even though you’re not bringing your desktop into work, accessing it from work still counts.
The device you use to generate the network accessed remotely matters. In 2017, Linksys launched its new Max-Stream EA930011ac tri-band MU-MIMO router. This router provides dedicated bandwidth to MU-MIMO capable client devices as if they’ve got their own dedicated router. This router is powerful enough to allow multiple people to use the network at home while you access it from afar.
With dual WAN capabilities, this router provides a more secure remote access connection for remote workers that use a VPN to connect to their office network.
- Use multiple large-sized monitors. Many programs, like Photoshop and Illustrator, are easier to use when they have a dedicated screen. With multiple monitors, you can designate certain programs to be used only in a specific monitor. Use one monitor for graphic design applications and another monitor for browsing the internet and typing in Microsoft Word.
Large monitors also make it easy to see what you’re doing. Like Samsung’s CF791 34-inch curved widescreen monitor that’s perfect for work and play. This monitor comes with a 3440×1440 display using Samsung’s Quantum Dot technology and a 3000:1 contrast ratio. For gaming on your breaks from work, you’ll have a 100 Hz refresh rate, 1500R curve, 4ms response time, and AMD Freesync. You might want to abandon your dual monitor setup after trying this monitor.
- A lightweight laptop computer
Not exactly a tablet or phablet, a lightweight laptop computer is small enough to carry around, but not big enough to stick in your pocket.
A lightweight laptop, like Dell’s XPS 15, serves one simple purpose: quick and convenient access to the internet and your files when you don’t need to work too hard.
Be prepared for a tech crash
Some people stockpile food. Computer buffs stockpile computers. It makes sense. You never know when you’ll experience a crash, so it’s smart to be prepared.