College Bound

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Computer Buying Guidelines for College Bound Students

What Brand do I get?

Brand doesn’t matter as much as warranty obviously the manufacture of the computer is important but the top 2-3 manufactures are constantly flipping. When looking for a laptop for your College student you want to get at least a 3 year ONSITE warranty; especially if he/she is going away to school. If you get a one year or mail only warranty your student can be without their computer for a few weeks. It’s worth the upfront cost to make sure the computer is covered and can get up and running quickly.

What hardware specifications should I look for?

Check with your school, depending on where they are going and what they are going for the school will likely give you their suggested requirements. The only thing I would add – go for middle of the road or if you can maximum requirements. The important thing is you want something that can last them 4 years. Looking for a cheap solution now may cost you double or triple down the road.

Some suggestions:


Intel Core I3 – is the bottom of the latest Processors it offers a dual core processing – Strong for email, general word processing and internet browsing.

Intel Core I5 – Middle of the processors it offers a Dual Core processors but has onboard cache(cache is like memory just dedicated to a particular task – in this case helps the processor by temporarily offloading/storing information in a queue it provides quicker response to applications) . Performs more of the same as the I3 except you can do more multitasking. In other words if you are going to have a lot of  stuff open at once you want an I5

Intel Core I7 – Top of the line and is a Quad Core processor. more for heavy duty computing, mathematical , video rendering,


The minimum memory for Windows 7/10 should be 4 GB, recommended would be about 8GB. Memory can always be bought and upgraded as time goes on but if your college bound student is going out of state or far away make sure they are all set more memory is better,


Hard Drive

1 Terabyte is the standard hard drive and should offer plenty of storage however for faster access get a laptop with an SSD (Solid State Disk) Hard Drive. a 500 GB is standard for these.

What else should we think about?

Send them with an external hard drive! Make sure the understand the importance of backing up, it can be the difference between spending long hours reproducing a mid term report and sleeping!

You’ll also want some kind of office suite like Microsoft Home and Student Typically runs $150.00

If you can swing also a cheap and compact inkjet printer will help print up last minute reports.

A laptop bag(They make them as backpacks) for properly carrying around campus.

If you need help pricing a laptop out, call Technic at 570-346-8017